Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Tech Tip: Finding Blogs to Read

Blogs are a great way to learn about new websites, to get a perspective on the news or even get new ideas for the classroom or a hobby. But how do you find new blogs that might be of interest to you? The easiest way is to use a general search engine. Just put in a topic and add the word blog to the search. For example, if I wanted to find a blog about cats, I would just type in: cat blogs. This method may not yield the best results though.

So for this week's tech tip, I will show you five more ways to find a cool new blog that might be worth your time.

Blogrolls are lists of blogs that a blogger reccomends to readers. The list is usually in a sidebar on the side of the blog. A blogroll might be divided into categories or it might just be a plain list. Check out the blogroll on Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day.. blog. Scroll down until you see the blogroll on the right column. If you find a blog you like, make sure to check their blogroll.

Webbies & Edublog Awards
People love lists and awards, don't they? We love to rank and rate movies, music, television shows, and yes, websites. Two of the most popular awards for blogs are the Webby Awards and the Edublog Awards. The Webbys are international award reprsenting the best of the web, so they are kind of a big deal.. The Edublog Awards showcase the best education related blogs, nominated and voted on by educators. 

Blog Search Engines & Directories
There are specialized search engines for finding all kinds of content. Directories are collections of websites arranged by topic. They are usually put together by human beings (as opposed to computers, not Internet elves)..These work best when you want to browse for information. Alltop is a great example. Just click on a category or letter to get started. Specialized search engines are good if you want to search for specific content. If a particular blog comes up often in the search results, you might want to explore it further. Google has a specialized blog search interface that just searches the content of blogs.

Be Social
Facebook, Twitter and other social networks have become most people's favorite place to share news stories and cool websites. You can wait for a friend to share something or you can send a message out to your network and ask for suggestions on a specific topic. You might ask your Facebook friends or Twitter followers for their suggestion for their favorite blog about __________ . 

Look in your favorite publication
Magazine and Newspaper editors, as well as morning talk show producers, need to fill up space and time. They want to provide timely, useful information to their audience. The hottest/most useful/best websites or blogs are cheap and easy information to share. Time magazine publishes a list of best website every year. Here is their lsit of the best blogs of 2011. There are plenty of similar year end lists, so watch out for them in December..  

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