Many thanks to Brendachrist, whose Twitter feed alerted me to a nifty tool – The Blog Readability Test.

blog readability test

The Blog Readability Test informed me that this blog is comprehensible to someone with a Junior High School education. I was delighted about that. However, I hope the content is a little more sophisticated than the language. I guess the readability tool only looked at my posts in English. (I'm sorry about the lack of Japanese posts in the past few months. I'll do some more blogging in Japanese soon).

It seems that some other Forrester blogs require "genius" level reading ability. That might be because they're technology focused – and inevitably use more tech. jargon. For people who work in IT, that jargon might not be so difficult. That's why it's important to know who you're writing for.

My colleagues – Kerry Bodine and Megan Burns – developed a methodology for companies to find the usability problems in their blogs. To perform this evaluation, you need to take the perspective of a person in your target audience and read the blog with a specific goal in mind…

Here's a quick overview of Forrester's test criteria from Megan's July 2007 report – Executive Q&A: Blog Reviews. (Click on the figure below for a full size version – and please accept my apologies for the poor legibility of the thumbnail version. Negative marks to me for that).