A web-based publication that is comprised of periodic articles is termed as blog. The term blog is a combination of web and log. Blogging refers to authoring blog, maintaining a blog and addition of more articles to an existing blog. If there are individual articles on a blog, they are known as blog posts or entries. A blogger is a person, who posts these entries.
In earlier times, web logs were updated manually. These blogs became accessible to a larger population due to the tools that are meant for the maintenance of these sites, along with the browser-based softwares. Blogs are usually hosted by the blog hosting services, whereas blog software is meant for running them on web hosting services.
Blogs function in the same manner as of media. They mainly concentrate on a specific topic, such as education, culture and food etc, and serve the purpose of online diaries too. A blog usually encompasses text, images, web pages and links to other blogs. A typical blog entry has four parts. They are title, body, permalink and postdate. The title is the headline or main title of the post and the main content of the post is referred as the body. The URL of a complete as well as individual article is the permalink. Finally, the publishing date, as also the time of the post is post date.
A blog entry may also contain comments, categories and trackbacks. Readers usually add comments. Categories are also referred as tags. They are usually subjects that are being discussed by the entry. Trackbacks are links to other sites that refer to the entry. Entries are updated regularly in a blog site. However, the lists of links or blogrolls are not updated at regular intervals.
People often get confused between blog and standard web page. A few features distinguish a blog from a standard web page. New pages can be created easily in a blog. New data can be entered in the simplest form, i.e. in the form of title, category and content or body of article. Automated templates allow the addition of articles to the homepage. They create a full page for the article, followed by addition of the article to the appropriate date. If you are preparing for presentations then you may also filter out contents in accordance with date, author and category etc. The administrator is also allowed to invite and add various other authors.
Forums or newsgroups are quite different from a blog. In a blog, only the author or authoring group is allowed creation of new subjects meant for discussion. A network of blogs usually works as a forum.
Blogs have a great future both in terms of creative writing and earning money.