JRG — Information about bridgeblogging.com

Linux Desktop Blogging

My operating system of choice is Linux Mint, which is based on the hugely popular Ubuntu Linux distribution (Linux Mint has become even more popular than Ubuntu!). However, all the applications are “Linux” applications and can be installed under any distribution. Since my MacBook Pro is running Linux Mint, that is what all my testing was done with.


Installation and Set-up

Standard installation process using the “Software Manager” application. Note that this is a “KDE” application. It ran fine on my Linux Mint installation which uses the MATE desktop, not the KDE desktop. Before Blogilo could be used, I had to use the Software Manager to install three packages:

  • kdewallet
  • khelpcenter
  • kdepim-doc).

Of the Linux applications, Blogilo was the best one reviewed. Among other strong features, it uses the native Linux password saving mechanism (like a “key chain” or “password vault”). When you launch Blogilo, it prompts you for your login password so it can save and use passwords. That is a very nice feature as the passwords for your blogs are not left exposed.

It supports multiple blogs, a full-feature graphical editor, preview of posts and retrieval of posts from the server (you can edit them and submit an updated version). It allows setting a number of options on the post, saving posts locally (in which case they can be edited, whether or not you have an Internet connection). Images can be inserted. Short codes, links and so on work as expected.

What doesn’t work is that if you download a post that you prepared when you were logged into bridgeblogging.com, hand and auction diagrams created using the Bridge Tools do not display correctly. I attempted modifying such a post using both the visual and the HTML editor (starting from the same post which I restored between attempts), with the same result. Blogilo messes up these diagrams (it probably filters the HTML markup). This is probably because of the advanced HTML + CSS markup that is used. So don’t modify posts containing diagrams inserted using the Bridge Tools.


Lekhonee Gnome


Standard installation process using the “Software Manager” application.

Unlike Blogilo, Lekhonee stores account passwords for you blog sites as clear-text in its settings file. However it is nice that it supports multiple accounts. There were no installation issues as Lekhonee is a Gnome application and plays well with the MATE desktop.

This has the basic highlighting facilities: bold, italic and underline. It also supports inserting unordered lists (bullet lists), links, images and line-breaks (versus starting a new paragraph which is what happens if you press the Enter key). The standard keyboard shortcuts for bold and italic (Ctrl+B and Ctrl+I) work as does undo (Ctrl+Z). More than one level of Undo is supported, but I only checked a couple of times.

There is the ability to set whether comments are allowed for the post. The default appears to be “Comments Allowed”, but it is a simple checkbox.

There is built-in spell-checking — well there supposedly is, but I couldn’t get it to work 🙁

Posts can be saved locally. They are saved with a file suffix of .lekhonee (yuck) and are stored as XML, which is not surprising as that is the format used to submit to WordPress using remote procedure calls.

Inserting images may not be quite what you expect. Lekhonee does not upload an image to WordPress and create the code to display it, but requires that you type in a URL, just like when creating a link. Then what it does is to create an <img> tag using that URL. In the “Visual” editor, it is displayed as a small in-line icon representing a graphic.

Posts can be submitted either as drafts or as published.

Bottom Line: Pretty basic. Not as basic as Blog Entry Poster but not in Blogilo’s league.

Blog Entry Poster

Installation and Set-up

Standard installation process using the “Software Manager” application.

A “Preferences…” button at the bottom of the window. The only preferences are

  • Blog Type — There are 8 choices. The one for our purposes is “Self-Run WordPress”.
  • Base Blog URL
  • Username
  • Password

It also displays the “Blog Name” (after you have filled out the above parameters). This is a handy, quick test of whether you have entered the parameters correctly and that Blog Entry Poster can actually connect to the server hosting the blog site. It is not clear what the selection menu button (displayed at the end of the “Blog Name”) is for as it does not do anything. Perhaps it is intended for future development (ability to support more than one blog account?).

Blog Entry Poster (a.k.a. gnome-blog-poster) stores its preferences, including passwords, in clear-text.

Blog Entry Poster is a fairly primitive tool.

The editor only supports straight text with the addition of bold and italic highlighting and creating a link. Highlighting can be done with the expected Ctrl+B and Ctrl+I keyboard shortcuts, but Ctrl+Z does nothing (normally it will “undo” at least the last action taken. Copy and paste work as expected.

It does support spell-checking which is pretty useful.

Posts can only be submitted to be published; they cannot be submitted as drafts.

Links can be embedded and are functional in the resulting post (that is, readers can click on the link and their browser will attempt to display the page). You cannot indicate a “Target” for the link (that is, whether the resulting page should replace the current one being viewed or opened in a new window/tab).

Embedding short codes presents no problem.

Bottom-line: Primitive, but it works for basic text-only editing.

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