Writing for the web

Writing articles and copy for an online audience is different then writing for print, and the following links offer sage advice for penning good web copy.

IP Attorney Bruce Sunstein Discusses RSS Copyright (#)

An overview of where RSS falls in the world of copyright. A nice link to have if you ever find someone using your feed without permission, this clues you in to what really is and isn't allowed.

Jacuba - Free Online Spellchecker (#)

An online spell checker that can enhance any text area with extras like a dictionary, this bookmarklet looks to be very useful. Read a full review over at Solution Watch.

How The Huffington Post uses real-time testing to write better headlines (#)

Having a good bit of traffic allows The Huffington Post to a/b test article headlines for 5 minutes in order to pick the winner with the most click-thrus. We have done this on client sites by testing copy in different content modules but the tests run for a much longer period. It would certainly be fun to be on the data side of these tests and to see what works best. Anyways, there are some good links in the article to some other a/b test cases.

Five Simple Steps to Typesetting on the web: Dashes (#)

Mark Boulton gives an overview of when to emdash, when to endash and when to hyphen.

Ten Common but Easily corrected Errors (#)

Some common spelling and word use mistakes. It could be worth noting these types of error in a style guide.

Copyscape - Website Plagiarism Search - Web Site Content Copyright Protection (#)

Ever written a nice piece of researched copy for a client and had it ripped off? I bet you have and just don't know it! Here's the service to help you out: Copyscape finds sites that have copied your content without permission, as well as those that have quoted you.

I wonder where they found their inspiration for that logo ;-)

Check out the Resource categories for older content

The latest from my personal website,
Mike Papageorge.com

SiteUptime Web Site Monitoring Service

Sitepoint's web devlopment books have helped me out on many occasions both for finding a quick solution to a problem but also to level out my knowlegde in weaker areas (JavaScript, I'm looking at you!). I am recommending the following titles from my bookshelf:

The Principles Of Successful Freelancing

I started freelancing by diving in head first and getting on with it. Many years and a lot of experience later I was still able to take away some gems from this book, and there are plenty I wish I had thought of beforehand. If you are new to freelancing and have a lot of questions (or maybe don't know what questions to ask!) do yourself a favor and at least check out the sample chapters.

The Art & Science Of JavaScript

The author line-up for this book says it all. 7 excellent developers show you how to get your JavaScript coding up to speed with 7 chapters of great theory, code and examples. Metaprogramming with JavaScript (chapter 5 from Dan Webb) really helped me iron out some things I was missing about JavaScript. That said each chapter really helped me to develop my JavaScript skills beyond simple Ajax calls and html insertion with libs like JQuery.

The PHP Anthology: 101 Essential Tips, Tricks & Hacks

Like the other books listed here, this provides a great reference for the PHP developer looking to have the right answers from the right people at their fingertips. I tend to pull this off the shelf when I need to delve into new territory and usually find a workable solution to keep development moving. This only needs to happen once and you recoup the price of the book in time saved from having to develop the solution or find the right pattern for getting the job done..