Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Best of Blogs 3

Here’s my third installment of Best of Blogs.

The first blog I covered is "Political Punch", written by Jack Tapper, ABC News’ Senior White House Correspondent in the network’s Washington bureau. In the blog, Tapper covers politics as well as popular culture, which I think is an interesting mix.

The blog is a mix of feature stories, news reports and broadcast news reports by Tapper himself. At first, I was going to commend Tapper for his exceptional reporting because there are several stories posted each day on the blog but then I noticed the blog posts are not just written by him; he is a huge part of the blog but I think the other contributors should receive more credit. Still, I very much enjoyed this blog, especially the video about Obama’s White House Easter Egg Roll, one of the latest posts.

The blog is very organized, the layout isn’t confusing at all; the blog is organized in two columns, the left detailing Tapper’s background and a list of recent postings and monthly archives and the right, the blog posts themselves.

The second blog I covered is “On Politics" by USA Today newspaper. This blog features breaking news from Capitol Hill, state politics and many other topics. I like the blog and its great use of white space. The stories are much more in-depth and often deal with what’s going on within individual states, but it’s a great tool to use if you are interested in learning as much as you can about state politics.

The blog, besides being organized neatly, also lists every category imaginable as a sidebar; abortion, other blogs, campaign memos, immigration, etc.

The third blog is my freebie, which I enjoy writing about the most (thanks Professor Thelen!). Since I will be interning this summer in New York City, I chose to write about a blog titled “I'm an Intern in NY", written by Andy McDonald, a former intern in NYC. I was interested in what he had to say; I loved reading the blog, it was humorous at times and brutally honest. He shared ten humorous tips for people who would like to live in NYC; the most striking tip was “Don’t Come to New York City.”

Over all, I enjoyed the blog very much. I would have liked to see more photos however and perhaps an update, because the last post was written in 2005. The writer’s profile says he is now 26 years old so I would like to see what he’s up to now.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Best of Blogs 2

The following blogs I came across through my endless maze of mouse clicking. Here are the chosen three of my second installment of Best of Blogs.

The Gradebook
First, I love the title; it fuels bits and pieces of the previously-held anxiety I had about my past teachers’ grade books; I viewed them as small ill-intentioned notebooks that held the recording of every single move I made. It’s no wonder then that when I came across “The Gradebook” blog by St. Petersburg Times staff writer Jeffrey S. Solochek and the rest of the Times education reporting team, I had my suspicions.

The blog turned out to be very informative and helpful. It provides up-to-date information about the latest education trends, fads and news in the Tampa Bay area. The blog digs deep into current issues going on within Tampa Bay area schools.

I appreciate the blog’s many sidebars that lead to other education-related blogs, Tampa Bay Area school districts. The blog also provides “The Gradebook” bloggers’ contact information readers have any questions or concerns. Also, the blog’s layout is clean, organized and uses white space effectively.

Just by reading the first few blog posts, I learned a lot about what’s going in the Florida education system, which is always important to know.

CNN Political Ticker
The second blog I looked into is “CNN Political Ticker.” This blog covers the latest political news from CNN’s Best Political Team with 24/7 campaign coverage.

The blog is a mix of hard news with feature stories. The first blog that drew my attention was a story about President Obama giving Queen Elizabeth II a video iPod at Buckingham Palace. I didn’t expect this kind of story from CNN or a political blog, but there it was. What’s even more surprising is that the blog post itself elicited 158 comments by readers when I first read it- probably more now.

Overall, it was an interesting blog to read, both informative and fun. It was also very clean and organized, with sidebars listing different news categories and other news headlines.

Dealing with Alzheimer’s Blog
The third blog I chose was the most interesting to me. “Dealing with Alzheimer’s blog” is written by 46-year-old Kris Bakowski, who has early onset Alzheimer’s disease. My grandmother has Alzheimer’s diseases so I have a personal connection to it. I know firsthand the heartbreak caused by seeing your loved one slip away and no longer recognize you.

I found Bawkoski’s blog to be very inspiring; she writes new posts every few days and details her involvement and support in Alzheimer’s-related research and philanthropic work.

I admire her courage and initiative in recording her life this way; millions of people are able to take a glimpse into Alzheimer’s disease through the eyes of a patient. It is sad to think about what her condition will be like in a few years but it is comforting that she seems to be full of life- I can see that clearly through her blogs. Kudos to her.