I’m experimenting with some dedicated blogging software called ecto. This blog is run using Typepad which has a browser interface for posting and formatting the site. ecto is a dedicated application, which enables you to draft posts even when offline e.g. on a plane. It also seems to have some more granular control over inserting Technorati tags, like the ones just below.

Plus is has some pretty impressive looking integration with iPhoto, iTunes and Amazon, which I’m yet to test out. ecto runs on a Mac (and Windows) and also integrates into NetNewsWire, so you can blog items direct from the reader. I had tried Rachero Software’s own blogging engine MarsEdit, but found it a bit limiting. One of the advantages of ecto for me is that you can easily cross post entries to different blogs which isn’t simple with a browser interface.

It’s interesting to see how dedicated blogging and RSS software is becoming more sophisticated and more integrated. I expect podcasting and video blogging functionality will go the same way so you have a full communications dashboard for receiving and broadcasting information.

UPDATE – ecto has problems with inserting links. It seems to insert my blog’s URL in front of the link address. I had this trouble with Dennis’ Bazaarz link, and again just now with a couple of the links in this post.

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  • msl

    Can you elaborate on cross posting between ecto accounts (blogs), I’m using mac version and posting to wordpress (MT) blogs. Other than cut and paste not seeing a simple way to do one click multiple blogs posts (The same article to more than one account) or even a simple way to transfer a posted article to a different blog for duplicate posting…
    First night with it. Maybe I’m just missing something obvious.

  • Sure – If you have been able to set up multiple blogs in ecto, it’s fairly simple to publish the post to several of them, though you have to do them in series, rather than simultaneously.
    1. Publish a post to one of your blogs in the normal way.
    2. In the main ecto window, open the published post once more.
    3. In the footer of that post will be a number of buttons eg Add Attachment, Insert Hyperlink. To the right of that you should see your username. If you click that, a drop down menu appears listing all your blogs. The one which this post was published on will be highlighted, but you can select another.
    4. Once a new blog is selected, the Categories on the right hand side will update to those of the new blog and you can select the relevant ones.
    5. Press Publish and you should get a dialog box confirming the action, which I hope indicates the new blog, rather than the original.
    I’m not an ecto expert, and there are lots of features which frankly baffle me, but this process seems to work for me. Let me know if not.