Find msdn bloggers with category clouds!


With over 2,600 bloggers on MSDN its hard to find the bloggers that interest you.  I’ve heard consistently that blog discover ability is a HUGE problem on this site so I wanted to do something about it… but how can you possibly categorize that many bloggers?  How do new bloggers pick categories?  What if the developer in office doesn’t write about office? 


So, thanks to the good folks at Telligent and Betsy for listening to my crazy idea.  I bring you msdn blogs by categories….


http://blogs.msdn.com/categories/


The “cloud” on this page is actually showing shared blog categories. So if you want to see all the bloggers who have dedicated categories for “Xbox” you would end up on this page…


http://blogs.msdn.com/categories/detail.aspx?category=XBOX


The good thing about this is that the bloggers on the site are in control and if they want to join a popular category… they can. Just add the category to your blog that matches other MSDN blogger categories and your good to go. 


The other change that recently happened is that the categories are now emitted as part of the RSS feed so that readers that leverage that field can take advantage of it… and so can technorati. 


Enjoy!

Comments (10)

  1. Ben A. says:

    This is wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Seriously, thank you for doing this – I’ve traditionally had to monitor the front page of blogs.msdn.com to discover new blogs, and now it will be much easier to drill down to a particular product!

  2. BlakeHandler says:

    It’s still hard to find all of "you" Microsoft bloggers because you’re spread across MSDN, TechNet & MSN Spaces. I’ve collected all of your Team Bloggers here for my clients.

    http://spaces.msn.com/bhandler/Blog/cns!1pt1v0Q4vD8jSvNS4lqdAuug!699.entry

  3. Erik Porter says:

    w00t…tag clouds rock…good job!  🙂

  4. MSDNArchive says:

    Thanks for the love so far guys!

  5. Munish says:

    Tag clounds are the most cool and utterly useless thing I have ever seen. Increasing the font of a category as the number of posts in it increases is annoying as hell if I am not interested in that category.

    So what, if the categories I am interested in has less number of posts. I should be able to find them quickly without having to deal with 20 other useless-for-me categories thrown right in my face.

    I think even a simple list sorted by name/number of posts is way more usable than the "cloud". What do you think?

  6. Munish says:

    ok, the "cloud" is made with number of bloggers in that category instead of number of posts. But that still works the same for me.

  7. Chris Conti says:

    When following the link (e.g. http://blogs.msdn.com/categories/detail.aspx?category=XBOX),

    it might be nice if, in addition to the blog’s title/description,  there was also a google-style excerpt from the last blog entry, a date of the last posting, and/or the last few blog entry titles

  8. Joku says:

    MSDN forum suggestion:

    I like to use the IE Address bar to browse what sites I’ve recently visited:

    1. Click the Address bar.

    2. type "forums"

    3. you get immediately list of what forum topics you have visited to

    4. Life is wonderful, profit!^h^h^h^h…

    4. What do I see:

    http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=301850&SiteID=1

    http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=302173&SiteID=1

    http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=299752&SiteID=1

    http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=302911&SiteID=1

    etc etc.

    Am I supposed to have a index in my head or what?

    It’d be MUCH nicer if the links were something like this instead:

    http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=301850&SiteID=1#SerialPort SerialDataReceivedEventHandler

    http://forums.microsoft.com/MSDN/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=302173&SiteID=1#CopyFileEx and invalid parameter error

    etc

    Now in the Address bar you’d be able to quickly see what topics you browsed yesterday and so on and go back without hitting any server in doing so.

    I use this quite a lot in sites which have some description in the link.

    Also the darned

    http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/tydxdyw9.aspx

    would look a little more comprehensible with:

    http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/tydxdyw9.aspx#HumanReadableString

    I don’t know if there’s some problem in doing the things that way but you could atleast research into it..

    Thanks!!

  9. Joku says:

    OTOH

    Why doesn’t the dam* IE store the TITLE of the page along with the URL history in the Address bar???

    That would solve the above problem without changing the code in the sites.

    This could be made simply forexample by splitting the Address bar list drop down popup to 2 columns, title and url.

    I don’t have IE7 but here’s to hoping that such feature could still make it in.. Yeah right…

  10. MSDNArchive says:

    Good ideas.  Joku. I think I may have deleted one of your comments from the last two days while cleaning spam up from my blog. So if something doesn’t show up and you remember what it was let me know.