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cap, captain miss america
Hey, anybody who reads a lot of non-LJ blogs (and who reads them off-LJ and not by RSS on their friends' list), can you recommend some of the following:

--Best or most unique layouts
--Best, most useful, or most unique widgets
--Best integration of photos, sound, or video in a non-photoblog or non-videoblog


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The only non-LJ blogs I remember to read on a regular basis are Cute Overload and <a href="http://totallybasmatic.blogspot.com/>my sister's Bollywood blog...</a>. If you refresh the latter, the banner changed every time! But other than that, it's really more about the content than the layout.

Even though I have the rss feed on my journal, I also visit www.habeasbrulee.com at it's address, too, sometimes. It's the food blog of one of my friends, and I think that the layout is gorgeous.

Sometimes I like to poke around some of the other food blogs that she has listed in her side links.

That's mostly it, though.

I am a big Johann Hari fan. It's simple, but really easy to navigate, and I really like that it doesn't have bells and whistles http://www.johannhari.com/index.php

Then theres my favorite, Andrew Sullivan. He integrates photos and videos amazingly to showcase his points, and I really like his layout too. http://time.blogs.com/daily_dish/

Finally, Chris Sim's Invincible Super Blog does heavy image uploads well, but his tool bar on the side is really confusing. http://the-isb.blogspot.com/

Is Sullivan's blog worth reading? I just finished a book of his for class recently. Interesting points but weak argument, which happens a lot.

Yeah, I like him on most points. And if you read the Conservative Soul, you should probably read his blog because he's really, really fond of putting up what reviewers had to say and then refuting them.
I always really liked his columns in TIME. And on top of that, he's just a really interesting person. An HIV positive, strong Catholic guy who loves beagles and South Park.

I read Virtually Normal, where he splits up the debate over gay rights into four different sects. While I thought he definitely gave me many new ideas to consider (I'm writing a paper using lots of his ideas right now), he used way too many universal statements and his categorization bothered me a bit.

Also, he relies way too much on "well I'm a homosexual, so I know" as authority. I'm sorry, but just because I'm straight, it doesn't mean my experiences are typical or that I can use them as evidence for any issues I support.

I haven't read any of his books, but when he draws from personal experience in his blog, it's just that. So when he talks about trying to wrangle being Catholic and also being gay, he relates it, but I don't think he ever verges into "I am gay and awesome and therefore know everything about reconciling faith and sexuality." He might be different in book form for all I know.

I think he's good because he goes places that a lot of bloggers don't. That's why I like Johann Hari too, who is awesome as well as shedding light on stuff that a lot of other journalists just aren't talking about. Both can sometimes be preachy, but I don't think there's a perfect commentator out there.

Erm, well, last.fm is great. They have blog options, plenty of widget-type things, all of which are clean and easy. The blog is nice -- you can easily tag artists and songs so that they'll show up on a sidebar and you can link to their artist page as well as other people who've blogged about them. The preferences are actually useful, too, like changing all photos to text. It's a pretty well-done site for any avid music listener.

most of the concept designers that I know use Blogger because it's easy to add pictures with instant thumbnails and navigate. In fact some of them have used it to make their portfolio sites.

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