So I learned yesterday, thanks to my Uncle Henry, that Microsoft Word 2007 has the ability to publish to your blog for you. This is great because unless I'm writing a very basic blog post I like to use Word, for better formatting, spelling and grammar. All of which I certainly need help with.
- Real time grammar and spell check. Blogger has a spell check but it's after you write.
- More writing space. You can have Word take your entire screen up for writing. Blogger has a small text window that is not resizable.
- The text formatting is actually CLEAN. If you've every cut and paste Word text into Blogger before you know that all that wonderful Microsoft HTML is brought in with it. This tool appears to correctly strip down the formatting to regular HTML. (Note: I'm not convinced this will happen in each case and I will continue to test it.)
- No pictures. It appears that unless you use Microsoft Live Spaces for your blog there is little support for other image hosting options. Granted this is a Microsoft product but if you are going to allow for posting to other blog hosting sites, give us the ability to upload to Picasa, Flickr, etc.
- No keywords. I cannot speak for other blog hosts, but I like that Blogger has the ability to add keywords to the bottom of a blog post. It helps with organization as well as helps search engines crawl your blog.
Overall I think this is a great tool and worth using, especially if your blog posts are long and you want them to be somewhat professional. For quick and dirty blogs it's probably an unnecessary tool. Hopefully with Office 2010 some more image services are added. The keyword function I can live without, but no images is a pain. I like to add images to my blog. It adds interest and sometimes they are simply necessary. I'll have to manually add them every time with this Microsoft Word tool.
I give it 6.5 out of 10. The lack of better image hosting integration and the fact that some bloggers will never find the need to use this tool hurt it.