The Blogsmith

Blogs for a Digital World

November 2, 2007

We live and work in a digital world; a world that is far different from the one most of us grew up in. Digital technology pervades so many areas of both our work and personal life, sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming. What we need is a helpful guide to steer us through this digital wonderland. Luckily there are plenty of blogs out there that can help with this task - here are my five favorites.

Pogue's Posts (

David Pogue is the witty and insightful technology columnist for The New York Times. In addition to his weekly column there, he has a Times sponsored blog that he updates several times a week. He is also the author of the "Missing Manual" series of How-to technology books with over three million books in print. Pogue makes technology fun to read about and this is a blog you can enjoy even if you are a tech beginner. He knows technology and he knows how to write about it in an engaging way without resorting to the jargon that you often see in technology reviews. Recent posts on his blog include a review of the LG8700 cell phone (Pogue's personal phone), recording TV with the new TiVo series 3, the new XO $100 laptop, and the latest iPhone update. If you only read one technology blog it should be this one.

Engadget (

According to Technorati (the blog search engine), Engadget is the most popular blog on the entire internet - and for good reason. It covers a large range of technology, and while it is not for tech beginners you don't need a computer science degree to follow along. The emphasis is more on technology for personal use with discussion of the latest cell phones, laptops, music players, digital cameras, and other gadgets. Authored by a team of writers, recent posts discussed the new Mac OS called Leopard, the legality of RFID implants, a slim new GPS navigator, and a new high speed document scanner from Canon. Engadget is part of the Weblogs Inc. Network, a collection of more than 30 tremendously popular blogs.

Crave (

The Crave blog is aptly named - its authors write about technology gadgets people crave: cell phones, online music, games, cars, robots, and other gadgets that catch the editors' attention. The difference between Crave and Engadget is that Crave seems to cover a wider range of technology gadgets. Recent posts discussed the new Tesla roadster (a high performance electric sports car), the new Gateway 42" PC and HDTV (the PC is inside the TV), the Yamaha Disklavier (a digital grand piano that can play downloaded music), and a Doppler radar that can detect beating hearts through walls (for use in the military). If you want to stay up to date with cool but unusual technology gadgets, then this is the blog for you.

TechCrunch (

TechCrunch is not really about technology exactly; it is about technology companies. Here you can read about new internet companies that are poised to make an impact. Authored by Silicon Valley insider Michael Arrington, and former Business 2.0 Editor Erick Schonfeld, TechCrunch focuses on new internet startups within the first year or two of their existence. Some recent companies it has featured include Mint (an online financial planning startup), AdReady (managing internet banner ads), and YuME (an online video advertising network). If you want to know what is going to be big in the coming years, read this blog.

The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs (

No, this is not a blog by Steve Jobs, the Apple CEO and co-founder. It is a Fake Steve Jobs blog, a parody. I included this blog here purely for comedic relief, although you could still call it a technology blog. The author remained anonymous for over a year but was outed by a New York Times columnist in August. He is Daniel Lyons, a technology editor at Forbes magazine and he continues to write the Fake Steve Jobs blog. Apparently the real Steve Jobs thinks it is quite funny.

The technology world changes fast. Ten years ago we couldn't have conceived of a product like the iPhone, and there will be tech products available in 10 years time that are inconceivable today. Luckily there are many people in the blogosphere who are cataloging these changes as they happen. By reading these blogs you will not only be able to stay engaged with the digital world, you could well find some ideas to use in your business.

Peter Renton is the founder of Lightning Labels Inc., an all-digital label printer in Denver, CO, USA. He is the author of the company's blog, at
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