You might be familiar with the likes of Blogger, Tumblr, and WordPress. They are ‘The Big 3’ in terms of blogging platforms. They offer a wonderful experience for readers, but what if that’s more than you need? If you don’t need free or cheap hosting of your media-rich blog complete with fancy theme, there are other choices.
One of them is Medium, founded by the same people who founded Twitter. However, it’s not available to the general public as of yet. Ghost is another that has yet to be released. But isn’t there anything that’s usable right now?
Try Roon: simple; easy to use; and multi-device compatible.
This handy little blogging platform is free of charge, and simple to use. Just sign up for free: choose a username and password, and proceed to the minimalistic dashboard. If you wish to begin immediately posting things, just click the ‘+’ button.
The toolbar is located at the bottom of the draft post. It offers basic formatting commands — bold, italic, underline, and highlight — along with the ability to add subheadings and images directly to your post.
If you would rather insert code manually for formatting purposes (there are those out there who don’t want to stop typing and would prefer coding to clicking a button), do the following: Bold, Italic; Underline; ==Highlighted==; and #Heading. Note: you probably know this, but just in case you don’t, you want to type the text you want formatted between the characters rather than ‘Italic’ or ‘Underline.’ Ex: to bold the word dog, you’d type dog.
The dashboard is split into two columns. One side contains a list of all of your posts in draft form, the other features all published posts. You can save any post as a draft to return to edit later. If you wish to delete a post, simply open it in the backend and click the trashcan icon located at the bottom of the post.
You might not be used to this, especially if you have used other blogging platforms: when drafting your post in Roon, a line break in the backend does not equate to a line break in the post viewers will see. If you want text to be on the next line, you must hit Enter twice.
At the top of your draft post, you can put a header image in to sit above the blog post using the image button. Roon recommends using a 2000px image to assure it’s responsive across all devices. At the top of the draft window, you’ll find buttons to save, publish, and preview.
The settings, as I’ve said before, are minimalistic. That can be translated to mean limited as well. Personal settings, which are editable: name; bio; email address; Twitter username; and one website URL.
Blog settings exist in another tab. You are able to configure custom domain settings (which will set you back $12/year), choose a blog title, choose between only two fonts, change color, and export your blog. That’s a big one: if Roon goes down, your blog posts aren’t lost forever!
Try Roon if you’re looking to shine a light on your content rather than flashy designs and icons.
What blogging platform do you rely on?