Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Editing Blogger Templates part Deux

So I received a comment on my post Changing Blogger Templates wondering how I edited my Blogger template and how I managed to get my widgets to work.

Maybe this will get me re-inspired.......

1) For the existing widgets on my older template - I made sure I had a text file of the original HTML code. This way, if I really screwed things up, I can go back to my old template.

Wendy's HTML focused on Google Analytics......Because I needed to remember where I put things.

2) Blogger has some tips in their help page on changing and customizing templates. They also have some tips on Add Ons. My blogger page is actually pretty basic. I want people to use Feed Readers and not have to come visit the actual page. :')

3) The newer templates allow you to use Gadgets. Dig through the gadgets to see if there is one that already does what you want it to do - without the copy/paste.

This picture shows you the configuration of my sidebar and the Add a Gadget screen.

4) Many of the items on my sidebar use the HTML / JavaScript Gadget. Partially because I have a special widget (eLearningLearning) that has custom code. Partially because I am a well-documented control freak.

5) To directly answer Insider-Insight's question, I created the Popular Posts sidebar item using the HTML / Javascript gadget.

a)I tagged the posts I wanted to appear at the particular link. Example: all of my posts for Annual Gathering 2009 I tagged AG08.

b) I used Blogger's Search Blog feature to make sure that all of the AG08 posts appeared when I used the tag AG08.

c) I copied the resulting link for safekeeping in WordPad. Because I am paranoid.

d) I then used the HTML / Javascript widget to program the links I wanted to appear under Popular Topics.

e) I repeated this process each time I wanted to add something to my Popular Topics list.

This is what my Popular Topics HTML/JavaScript gadget looks like as of today.

I'm sure there is an easier way to do this....but it's worked for me so far....

Hope this helps......

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