Now that we’ve sold our house in Worcester, my wife and I are starting to plan our drive across country to San Francisco. And since we are about to change our physical venue, I’ve decided to consider making a change to my virtual venue.
My what? If you’re reading this, you’re actually visiting my virtual venue. It’s my blog, which exists in the virtual world (i.e., cyberspace) via a web hosting site called TypePad. I use TypePad as my blog hosting service because I’d read reviews on the internet that touted TypePad as the blog hosting site that gave the blogger more control over the appearance of his or her blog than did some other hosting sites. And I like to have control.
While some blog hosting sites, like Blogger or WordPress, are free, TypePad charges a modest fee to use the service. But I felt it was worth paying a relatively nominal fee to ensure that my blog appeared the way I wanted it to.
And so, I’ve been using TypePad since I created this blog four years ago. My very first post was dated July 6, 2009 and it was all about Sarah Palin. Remember her?
On the technology side of things, though, four years is an eternity. One would think that a company that leverages the internet would be on the forefront of the latest web technologies, right?
But my sense is that TypePad has not kept up, especially when it comes to mobile technology. And as a blogger...albeit a casual blogger...I think this is a serious deficiency, given that more people are using their smartphones and tablets to access the web than ever before.
In fact, one article noted that of the time people spend on the internet, nearly 40% is on mobile devices. The Pew Research Center found that 55% of adult cell phone owners access the internet on their mobile devices.
WordPress and Blogger can detect when people are using mobile devices to access the blogs these sites host and will automagically optimize the blogs for viewing on an iPhone or Android phone. TypePad does not. Even my wife has used the excuse that she doesn’t read my blog very often because it’s so hard to read on her iPhone! Sheesh.
this matter to the tech gurus at TypePad at least three times over the past two years, but it
fall on deaf ears.
Just last month, when I once again asked TypePad support about it, the response I received stated “mobile device auto-detection is definitely on our list. However, there are simply other things that are more important at this time, so our focus is elsewhere at the moment.”
Seriously? Other things are more important? Your focus is elsewhere? No wonder TypePad is falling behind other blog posting sites.
Smart or not so smart
Smart quotes, also known as “curly quotes,” are usually curved in shape and have different opening and closing versions for use at the beginning and end of quoted material. Dumb (or straight) quotes are usually simple tapered vertical or angled marks.
TypePad doesn’t convert "dumb quotes" into “smart quotes.” It also doesn't convert "dumb apostrophes" into “smart apostrophes,” as in the earlier version of the word doesn’t in this sentence. These may be minor matters to you, but they drive me up the friggin’ wall.
Because of this TypePad shortcoming, I have to manually change all of those dumb quotes and dumb apostrophes into smart ones. I did that on this post, except for the examples that I purposefully left as “dumb” examples.
It’s a time consuming pain in the ass, quite frankly. WordPress automatically converts dumb quotes and apostrophes to smart ones. No manual effort on my part needed. And it’s a FREE blog hosting site!
And so, along with our change in physical venue from the east coast to the west, I’m going to conduct an experiment with my virtual venue. For the next month or so I will be posting my blog using WordPress. After this evaluation period, I will decide if I want to return to TypePad or if I will formally migrate to WordPress going forward.
In the meantime, please visit me at Mindful Digressions Two...at least for the time being.