Friday, August 1, 2008

A Tour Around the GreenUP Challenge Blog

If you visit this blog at the main site (as opposed to reading feeds), you may have noticed that I recently adding some new features. I wanted to point out some of these, both for those of you who are new to "web 2.0" and to entice those who use a feed reader to come visit the site!

Leave Comments

I have changed the settings to allow anonymous comments, at the risk of getting slammed by spammers. If I see an increase in comments from my readers, I will continue to allow anon. comments, which means you won't have to login to Blogger or have an account. So, if you want to leave comments, here's your chance- and do it so that I know you want the service!

The Side Bar
On the left, under the "Archives" and "About me" are three links that help to promote this blog. I want people to read this blog so that I can share ideas on easy things they can do (heck- even I can do them) to bring a little green into their life. And, it helps my ego!
  1. Plurk is a social media site that allows real-time conversations to take place with other users from around the world. It is a cross between the more-famous twitter and the old discussion forums. It is certainly not for everyone, but check out my page to see if you like it.
  2. Stumble Upon is a site that allows you to recommend pages to other users. It requires you to have an account, but I really like it for true take-me-anywhere web surfing, but with filters for your interests (like "environment" or "science"). If you like my pages, be sure to "Stumble" them! Here's a link to pages that I have enjoyed or learned from and then Stumbled!
  3. This link is the social bookmarkers best friend: Social Media It gives you quick access to the most common website bookmarking and sharing pages, like FaceBook.
The next set of buttons are there to make your consumption of the GreenUP Challenge blog easier: they give you an easy way to subscribe to the blog and to stay up-to-date with the comments to blog posts, so that you can follow along in the conversation. The conversation that happens in the comments following a post is one of the really great things about blogging - for both me, the writer, and you, the reader.

Under Links and Blogs are webpages that I have found that do a better job than I at explaining green issues and advising you on how to be green. I will add more as I find them.

That little merit badge is from a site that offset 350 lbs of carbon just by me putting it on my blog! How easy is that? Go check out their page when you've got a second.

At the very bottom of the sidebar is a box labeled "Site Sponsors." These are advertisers that I select because I think they offer products that may offer green alternatives to an item or service.

The companies I have on there now include a book and audio book rental company and a camping equipment rental company. I could see the book rental company being good for anyone who lives in a rural area that does not have a library. For myself, I love to buy books, even though I know it is not the greenest choice. Would renting books that aren't available at my library be a greener choice? As for the camping and outdoor equipment, I think this is a great idea! We bought a tent a few years ago, and I think we've used it once (I can't really count the practice set-ups in the yard, right?). They also rent GPS units, so now I can take part in geocaching, if I ever get the chance!

Please keep you eye on this box, and hopefully I've picked green ideas for you to check out. If anyone knows of an affiliate program that offers green companies, please let me know. The program I am using now has limited choices. I am also trying to get a company that sells fair trade coffee. Check back here in a few days and the ad should be up.

Within each Post
Within each post are several useful buttons or links, after the "content" of the post.

  1. The bookmarking link is here again, if you want to specifically bookmark or share the individual post.
  2. The "## comments" link is where you can talk back to me. Yes, I do want your 2 cents worth. Just click here for a pop-up window that allows you to join in on the GreenUP Conversation.
  3. The next button is for sharing the post with your friends via email. Don't worry, I won't get their address or anything, so share if you like.
  4. The "Links to the Post" will show you any comments and any references of my post on another blog.
  5. The Labels are descriptors that I add to each post. If you wanted to find similar topics within my blog, these labels allow you to easily sort my posts by topic.
That's all folks!
I hope that you have enjoyed the tour around the GreenUP Challenge blog. Blogging is fun and easy, and I hope any hesitation you've had in participating more has gone the way of x-ray machines in shoe stores or radium on watch faces. Those were bad, everyday choices that caused unnecessary harm. This blog is here to help you!

I will post later this week on another simple change that you can adopt in your own life to get that much closer to being green. I am not trying to completely remake my life over night, but to slowly add habits that I can keep up and that my family will participate in too. Comment on this post with any topics you'd like to suggest or just to introduce yourself.


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