Software,  Tips

Blog Rolling

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I’ve finally gotten around to taking a look at the free (donations welcomed) Blog Roll creation and management tool suite created by Jason DeFillippo.

“Blog roll” refers to the links that frequently run along the right or left sides of web logs, pointing to recommended or frequently read blogs. offers a suite of tools that allow you to quickly and easily create your blog roll, and see which blogs in your list have been recently updated. Once you establish an account, it’s pretty simply to fill out a web form with the title, URL, and description of the blogs you want in your list. The information is stored at, and updated on the fly when your blog page is refreshed. You set various preferences regarding the display and update notification (there are more options if you donate, or subscribe, but even the free ones are pretty good). There’s good documentation, but look for the link on the left that says “start here.” Jason has made it about as simple as possible. Once you’ve made you blog roll (you can go back and edit later), you’ll want to click on the “Code generation” link to copy and paste the preferred kind of code (javascript, OPML, PHP, RSS) in the template for your blog. There’s even documentation about using CSS to customize your blog roll’s appearance. If you want to add an OPML blog roll to Radio, take a look at Jake Savin’s instructions. Take a look at some of the nifty tools to help display and manage your blog roll, including a bookmarklet for adding new blogs to your roll, and a “blog roll me” script to allow your loyal readers to add your blog to their Blogroll blog roll.

Even if you’re not terribly comfortable with editing your blog template or messing about with HTML/XML/CSS, and the like, is a very easy way to create and maintain your blog roll. There’s enormous potential for this tool for teachers and students with blogs.

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