Friday, July 13, 2012

GoDaddy, Weebly, Blogger, Tumblr (Comparing)

I had a good post planned, but due to an exasperating number of petty pet peeves that happened to me yesterday and today, it went straight out of my head. Since I'm here, I'll give the latest update to my right-brain attack on the left-brain, algebraic world of creating a web page. Everybody said, go to Tumblr, kids are lovin' it, yah, yah, yah. So, I set up a silly little fun blog at Tumblr. I'm likin' it okay and thinking it does have possibilities. But Tumblr leaves it up to you to figure out how to edit those standard templates. No help there. Naturally, they want to sell their $50 premium templates, but I'd still be in the same boat, not knowing how to tweak the code without breaking it. Gotta tweak that code, mercy! 'Cuz if I can't make it "my" website, why bother? But, I'm having fun with the Tumblr blog (Vesta Higginbottom, in case you're just dying for it; no link, I'm not overtly plugging). Meanwhile, I've got a simple site up on Weebly, and certainly am not unhappy with it. It's limited, yes... but easy as pie. Now, I'm looking into GoDaddy, to which everyone says, "No! No! No!" Here's what I've learned so far. Phone-tech support was actually quick, polite and helpful ~ quite unlike what all the forums had warned. I also found that, contrary to the warnings being shouted by megaphonish bloggers, GoDaddy's DNS zone editor is not really a bear-trap. It just feels like it at times. My skeletal site, registered at GoDaddy but hosted elsewhere, is not chained to a block wall in some bleak dungeon, but is proudly displayed to the world at large. Yes, their ad-covered parking page, or landing page, was hard to get rid of; but that's because I didn't really know how to get rid of it. I had to be stepped through the process. Here's the deal: there are so many, many things to do and places to navigate on GoDaddy (and on every registrar, it seems), it is just confusing. Can't be otherwise, I guess. Sometimes I get maddening glimpses of a GoDaddy interface or intro page with "Launch" buttons, that looks easy and straightforward. But then I never can find it again. Dang their navigation! Ah well, what else is new? I did manage to set up email (MX-whatever); change my A-name and C-name records; set up a quick entry page with Website Tonight/Instant Page (albeit with a couple of glitches). True, I had to read a blue-million tutorials to get that done. I understand that GoDaddy's home page has to be navigable to geeks and newbies alike, but maybe they could stick a big, red "Easy" button up there for newbs, let them skip the GoDaddy Encyclopedia. I'm still open to the idea of GD hosting. I will say this. Once you identify and find the right GoDaddy tutorial for your needs, it is pretty easy to read. I have not yet tried their paid hosting. If I do, I'll start by sticking my little toe in the water... just some itty, bitty, not-too-important domain. Maybe buy in for six months or a year. Hard to say. Of all the hosts so far, Weebly has been the easiest. I'm still loving Blogger ~ just wish they'd give me a static page to go with it. Between the three (GoDaddy, Weebly, and Blogger), I've managed some fairly complex-looking sites. But I still haven't found that magic bullet...