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Worth a visit

Need to jazz up your blog but don’t know how? Here are three websites that can help you. Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan tells more.

tech reviews Updated: Sep 08, 2009 19:32 IST
Meenakshi Reddy Madhavan

Need to jazz up your blog but don’t know how? Here are three websites that can help you

Some months are slow months. And yes, I know it’s about time I dissect your blogs and give you feedback. But I just haven’t gotten any interesting mail this past month. So, instead, this week I’m going to offer three awesome blog-related websites that are worthy of your time.

Word pictures
Wordle (www.wordle.net) is a site where you upload a lot of text, or your blog URL or a Del.icio.us user name and it creates a sort of word image for you, based on your most frequently used words. Here’s a glimpse of mine (http://www.wordle.net/show/wrdl/1101114/the_compulsive_confessor). I seemed to have used the words ‘like’ and ‘time’ the most. Here, also is a random picture of Anne Of Avonlea, by L M Montgomery, that I happen to be reading online (http://www.wordle.net/show/wrdl/1101122/anne_of_avonlea).

You can also spend many a happy hour browsing through their gallery. Once you create a pretty picture, you can save it. You get a code to either print or publish it on your blog. I think it would make a fun banner, don’t you? Also, there’s an advanced section where, if you know the number codes for colours, you can specify what colours you want the words to be in.

Make a movie
The next site is called Xtranormal (www.xtranormal.com) and is perhaps the coolest website I have seen this year. Basically, Xtranormal lets you make a movie. You choose animated characters, type in text (broken into dialogue per character) and you can even add sound effects like crickets chirping or fart noises.

You can also choose what accent you want your characters to have — and yes, they do have an Indian accent. Xtranormal’s tagline is “If you can type, you can make a movie” and it is so, so cool. The selection of characters and voices in the free account is pretty comprehensive, so I don’t really think you need to pay extra for the premium account unless you’re a professional. Later, you can post the results on your blog or on YouTube and entertain your readers by giving them animated movie posts instead of just plain old writing.

A whole bunch of ‘em
For Twitter users, I present the very useful Link Bunch (http://linkbun.ch/). When you have a lot of random links that you want to show people and you cant just keep posting one link after another? Link Bunch lets you enter all the links and squishes them into one address. When people click on it, they see all the links in one place. It’s easy and convenient and great to use when you don’t want to clutter up your blog or Twitter feed.

Enjoy the time wasting, and the interesting additions to your blogs and I’ll see you next week!

Meenakshi writes a blog at thecompulsiveconfessor.blogspot. com. Send her your queries at meenakshimadhavan@gmail.com