Blogs That Don’t Look Like Blogs

I’m asking for some help to anyone out there. Next month, I have a presentation at the NMC 2005 Summer Conference where I want to show how blog software can be used for web publishing beyond the public conception of “online diaries”… I am looking for web sites, or pieces of them that are published with blog software but maybe at first glance do not look like a blog.

I’ll be drawing from my own examples, but that is limited and maybe egotistical. These include:

* The Low Threshold Application (LTA) site was created really as a concept to show that blog software can create a site equivalent (or better) content-wise than the original one spun by hand in something like Front Page, but is much easier to publish and includes a comment system not present in the original. This is my primary example, and I will show the tweaks we did in MovableType, including customizing the database, to pull it off.

* I started using MovableType to create at first just an RSS feed for the latest updates to our Feed2JS site. I later added just 2 more templates, to publish the updates as a small content file that is embedded via a PHP include into the main part of the site (below the heading “Latest Changes and History” are the 3 most recent entries) and the full archive.

Some other examples in my pile of previous scrounging:

* “Staying Ahead of Your Patrons With Weblogs and RSS” Steve Cohen used Blogger to create a presentation (an approach I am copying!)

* Wisdom Quotes is a resource of famus quotes that uses the blog format to make it searchable and organizaed into author categories.

* About.com converted its vast collection of subject web sites to ones that are blog published a few years ago.

I’m looking for more, the weirder or more non traditional, the better!

The presentation will be assembling itself over the next 2 weeks, but will be delivered and shared via a Blogger site- http://cat-diaries.blogspot.com/ and will use nothing more than what one gets with using Blogger’s hosted tools and maybe some Flickr-embedded images.

The presentation has the what I thought we too clever title “More Than Cat Diaries: Publishing With Weblogs” which tripped up at least two staff members at NMC who thought it was “More Than Just Diaries: Publishing With Weblogs” or “More Than Chat Diaries: Publishing With Weblogs”. Nope the “cat” is in there. It is out of the bag, you might say.

Please help! I would like to have more examples of blogs that don’t look like blogs.

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An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.


  1. Hi,

    I use MovableType to do a website for the elementary school that my children attend. It’s an archive of columns for the school newsletter that is meant to acquaint children and parents with aspects of cultures they may not be familiar with, especially cultures repressented within the student population. We try to make the information interesting and accessible. The site is http://www.culturecorner.org.


  2. Hello,

    WordPress 1.5 themes allow a lot of flexibility in page presentation, and a blog no longer needs to “look” like a blog.

    I use Authentic Educational Technology as a communications tool to help students, teachers and administrators be better informed about useful, emerging technology for K-12 education.


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