Friday, September 01, 2006

Suggestions for Improvement














Photo CPOD

Ways to improve this blog, additions or modifications.

And Away we go!
You can copy and paste from the old to continue on the new threads if you like.

59 comments:

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Wow... This new design is excellent -- I'm glad I waited up.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Glad you like it Christina. I hope everyone else does too and finds it to be the same basic navigation.

Richard Yarnell said...

How are you going to handle the transfer of threads from the rainbow?

How long should we continue them "over there?"

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Continue them here in the new threads. Copy and paste if you want to show the train of thought. The old are in essense closed like they were in the past when they got too long.

deb said...

Well done my friend Christopher!

Cheryl said...

If ya'll would like some links on the home page, how about starting a list?

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I was thinking links could be broken into categories of News, Opinion and Educational.

The Mother Earth timeline would be educational. For opinion I like:

A.L.
http://www.anonymousliberal.com/
and the newly discovered

Tragos
http://www.tragos.org/

If you want a link this would be a good way to post it, the simple address, not as a link so it can be copied into the template for the sidebar.

Richard Yarnell said...

It appears that some of the old threads are still active. I just posted a new article, which I hope you'll enjoy, to the "Changing of the Guard" thread. If that one's supposed to be closed, let me know.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Just go with the flow. If cyberspace is finite we have not found the edge yet so any threads that stay active is fine. We have plenty of room. Thankyou Google.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Lordy that was a workout. Adding links is easy. The text and layout, formatting and spacing is a whole other html matter.

It is all set to go now so Cheryl want to add some links?

christin m p in massachusetts said...

I like those new links, Christopher. An extra added benefit for me is that Tragos has links to The Boston Globe and New York Times, so I don't have to get online subscriptions to those publications.

Now, if I can just find a blogger out there who has links to my local newspapers -- The Middlesex News and The Worcester Telegram, then I'll be all set.

Also, I'd like to be able to read the local newspapers of all the members of this blog. If any of you has an online subscription to your local newspapers, could you post the address in this thread, so that we can add those to our links list too?

christin m p in massachusetts said...

While I'm on the subject of local newspapers...

Christopher,
Each time I've clicked on your Maui News link this evening, I've gotten a Server Error message.

Cheryl said...

Christopher,
I had a feeling that wouldn't be simple. HTML is a very clunky language. Thank you for doing it. If any other links get requested, I can add them.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Christina do you have a favorites list on your own computer? You can add links to your local paper or anything else you want there. You don't have to access that kind of stuff from other sites.

Click on the favorites at the top of the page when you are at a site you want to save and then click Add to Favorites. There are variations on that for different computer systems.

If a site is subscription only, how you get there does not matter. If you do not have an account it will not let you in. Most sites like that will offer limited access to parts of the site. The bigger newspapers keep their top columnists behind subscriptions and may let you read the news.

Cheryl, HTML is even more clunky when you have never learned it and are trying to read a foreign language on the template to look for clues. I feel fortunate that I grasp the basic concept of a computer program needing to be told exactly what to do step by minute step and that all those code scripts are the directions.

Judy B. said...

Back on the old purple thread, dan posted a link to the "grandfather report"... could we have a link to it???

deb said...

These are some of the sites I frequent. If y'all feel that this is too many just use the ones people want.

http://mediamatters.org/

http://www.freepress.net/index.php

http://www.fair.org/index.php

http://www.libertynewstv.com/

http://www.prwatch.org/

http://www.workingforchange.com/

http://www.alternet.org/

http://www.commoncause.org

Richard Yarnell said...

Links tend to do two things:

1) they define a bias on the list for those who might happen by to read our stuff;

2) They clutter up the place and tend to reduce the impact of someone taking the time to provide a link. That's so easy to do with point and click,...

Each of us can maintain our own lists of favorite places. I'd rather visit freepress when you tell me there's an article worth my time, than to have all of us reading the same stuff to begin with. Then what do we talk about? The weather here in Bevercreek is slightly cooler today!

Cheryl said...

Christopher, I spend a good bit of my day reading junk like that. That's why I have a hard time settling down to read more during my free time. I've gotten interested in HTML since blogging, but it is so klunky that I get frustrated fast.

On the links list, anyone else have an opinion on whether it should be a long inclusive list, or a short list of more unusual links. I'm leaning toward a less cluttered look. Maybe we can rotate them from time to time.

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Well, maybe we should try out the list first to see how it goes. It's something that's so easy to change if we need to.

I'm for adding those links from Deb's list. And when Dan gets back from visiting in Rochester, we can ask him which sites he likes to visit too.

Since the links are way over in the sidebar, they don't get in the way of anything, and when we hit those slow days where none of us has anything to report, we can go over and look at those sites instead.

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Also:

Christopher,
I would like to have one more thread for Space -- the Final Frontier. Or it could be entitled Distant Future/Distant Past. I think those subjects need their own category, because a lot of the people in this blog like to discuss them.

An even wider encompassing title would be Exploration -- which could include everything from oceanographic exploration, to archaeology and anthropology, to space exploration, to exploration of the human psyche, etc.

dan said...

Christopher and Cheryl, I was away for a few days and so I just got my first look at the new Bread Crusts. You did a wonderful job with defining the threads and adding a stunning photo to each. I'm quite impressed. The quality content here now has a suitable home.

All the links mentioned by Debbie and others are worthy candidates for links here. However, I think Richard makes a good case for not listing too many.

I do like the idea of education links on the sidebar, a resource where we can readily get current facts and figures.

Anyway, congratulations on creating this wonderful new look for the blog!

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I vote for simplicity as far as links go.

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Okay. We'll keep it simple then.

Judy said...

This is a test...
My daughter put in a new program that didn't save my blogging ID, so now I have to remember which one I used... so here goes..

Anonymous said...

"I would like to have one more thread for Space -- the Final Frontier. Or it could be entitled Distant Future/Distant Past."

Love it...could the picture on the thread be the HUBBLE DEEP FIELD?

Your friend John G.

Anonymous said...

"Cheryl, HTML is even more clunky when you have never learned it and are trying to read a foreign language on the template to look for clues."

www.howstuffworks.com

Hope it helps and enjoy, it is a great site...

Judy B. said...

Christipher, why is there in inconsistency in the comments numbers on the main page with the numbers inside the thread??/

Cheryl said...

There's a time lag between posting comments and updating the main page.

Judy B. said...

Yeah, but my lag time is sometimes a whole day....

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Click the refresh button and they will sinc up. You have to do it on the main page and the comment page.

Otherwise you have to close the browser window and come back which is why it seems to take a day for you.

Your computer is staying on the older page until you move it to the newer one even if you leave the site and come back since it takes the memory route when you come back.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I should add there is no lag time. It is immediate as long as Blogger's server from Google is working properly. Dan lost a post the other day and so did I. Sometimes the system itself gets a little wacked, but when it is working up to speed which is %90 of the time clicking the refresh button will bring up new comments and current comment numbers immediately.

Richard Yarnell said...

Some of you have obviously succeeded in creating links within your posts.

When I tried to do that using the code I know, blogspot rejected the tags.

Where, was it Dan, did you post the instructions?

Thanks.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Making Links HTML

<....A href="address of site"....>Words of your Choice then next bracket set.

<.../... A... >

Lose all spacing in brackets and between bracket sets except one space between A and href.The periods are spaces not part of the code. Example

<...A href="http://www.the-scientist.com/article/daily/24460/"....>Cool car

<..../A.....>

Cool car

Richard Yarnell said...

That's what I used and blog site rejected it. Maybe I had a typo that I didn't realize was there.

Thanks.

Judy B. said...

hristopher... Thanks... I had already tried that... I think it is my browser.. Explorer works better at updating but Firefox is faster and cuts out all the ad pop-ups so I am now using a combination of the two.

Christopher, I still remember when I first started at SSB, and asked technical questions, you were the only one who helped me out...

A big Thank You... again.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I added two new links to the news category on the sidebar today. They are like the "U.S. Politics Today", news aggregator that Christina has been talking about.

You do not need to pay for a service like that since there are many already on the web for free and more coming on line all the time. This is a reatively new phenomena generated by RSS feed among other factors and is called reblogging or called "Aggregators" that surf the web for content to post on their sites.

There are copyright issues with this practice and depending on how the aggregator site works they could be in violation or just rude. It can be done ethically as well.

The bottom line is that these new links will give you one place for a wide range of news links all over the spectrum on the web.

Cheryl said...

I like the new links. Alternet is a good site. The other one is new to me. Thanks

dan said...

Christopher, the two new links seem like fine choises to me.

Richard Yarnell said...

One very valuable thing this list has provided has been our disparate lists of favorite places to explore. By that I mean, we all go to different places to read and collect articles.

I hope the links on the home page don't lead us all to the same material.

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Christopher,
The comment I posted in the Earth thread a little while ago (September 26, 2006 9:43 PM) didn't show up in the permanent links section for some reason. Is it just taking longer than normal to update?

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Never mind -- When I closed the window and deleted history and cookies and files, and then returned to this site -- the permanent link was there.

deb said...

Question:

Are some of the threads starting to take a long time to load for those of you on dial-up? Do we need some new threads?

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Who, if anyone is on dialup? Do we want to set a 200ish comment limit to start a new thread?

Cheryl said...

I'm on dialup. The longer posts are getting a little slow, but I've been too tired lately to worry about it.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I changed the number of threads that are displayed on the main page to a limit of 12. Let me know if that helps speed things up.

All older threads can be found in the archives listed by month in the right sidebar.

Cheryl said...

The main page is faster, but the comment pages are about the same. It's not too bad yet. Any suggestions on the next round of topics?

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

Blogger was down all over the place today not just this blog in case anyone was worried. I started new threads so the long comments won't slow loading for some. Just continue the conversatiom from the old Wind and Fire on the new threads.

They are at the bottom of the main page to refer to.

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Google forced me to change to beta blogger -- now I have to go through a bunch more steps before I can post at any of these other blogs... Not a good thing.

christin m p in massachusetts said...

And it erased my sidebar links!

Christopher -- Do you know how I can get back to the old blogger format?

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

The Beta Blogger security can be a bit of a pain. Make sure you are logged in and click the remember me button and allow them to cookie you.

From what I have have read out there once you have switched you can't go back.

To get your links back you will have to look in the template and be sure the code is in there.

How did they force you to switch?

christin m p in massachusetts said...

Cookie me? That's what she said...

I couldn't resist that one, but I'll try to keep my thoughts clean hereafter.

Well, forced was not really the right word -- but they wouldn't allow me access if I didn't follow the steps they gave me to change to beta blogger. I was always able to bypass it before, but this time I couldn't see any way to get out of it, other than to just close the window and not enter blogger at all.

Anyway, since it's a free service, I guess I shouldn't be complaining.

Also, I remember that after my account was changed to beta blogger, I did try out a new template, and then switched back to the one with the foggy sky and lighthouse again. That's probably how my sidebar links got erased. I'll try to put them back in at some later date.

deb said...

Hi y'all...I've almost finished catching up on reading the blog (couldn't go to the links yet). I FINALLY have my pc back, well some of it as everything was wiped out and am starting anew. I have back-up disks, but it will be a while before sorting through them to only replace what I want.

I am on dial-up and it looks as if I may have to spend some serious time on the phone with a pc tech (probably from a far distant land) in order to re-establish my broadband connection. Which brings me to asking Christopher about new threads, when/if you get the time. The threads are loading very slowly...but then again it could be my pc.

Very strange being without a pc for almost a month...but I did find myself stopping in the library and bookstore to pick up weekly periodicals...must have input!!!

OK...just wanted to let y'all know that (at least for now) I'm connected.

John G. said...

Is there any way to make your photos identifying blogs cycle more than one photo?
I.e.: three or four photos per thread...

Cheryl said...

I think that would require more html knowledge than any of us have. The standard blogger.com options just let you post a picture.

We could just change the picture from time to time if ya'll like. If you have anything in mind, post the link to a public domain picture, and we can put it up.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I have seen some Flickr side bar buttons with rotating photos and there may be some such thing that could be posted to Blogger like a YouTube video made as a slide show that plays automatically, but unless I trip over it somewhere on the internet, I am not going to look for such a thing.

Cheryl said...

I deleted a spam on the Earth thread, and another on the Fire thread. Just documenting it, in case we have more.

Christopher C. in Hawaii said...

I have deleted about four or five over the past two weeks. I am surprised this blog hasn't been inundated with them.

John G. said...

We need a (any kind of) contest thread...
It would be a good place to discuss current tactics being employed by candidates in elections local and national too...

John G. said...

When you create the next space thread, it would be cool if you could put the Starship Enterprise on the HDF photo...