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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

New Blogger

I've been playing around with my "New Blogger" template today. Actually, that's not quite accurate. I obliterated my former template and adopted Blogger's new "modular" template. In doing so, my journey towards the Dark Side is complete.

In a scene very reminiscent of the one in Invasion of the Body Snatchers (I know I'm obsessed with this film now; just work with me) where Brooke Adams' body dissolves into dust, only to be replaced by the fiendish, naked, Pod version, I upgraded my template, and with one click, the functional, if not particularly attractive Psychotoddler template vanished and was replaced with this new monstrosity.

So I guess the whole purpose of the "modular" template is to make it easier to add elements to your blog, and to edit the ones that are there. Theoretically that makes sense. However trying to transfer your old, established elements is another story. It doesn't like HTML. Or rather, it doesn't know what to do with it, and if you have anything complicated on your sidebar it gets nervous, and tries to fit it into some other premade pigeonhole. Sometimes it works out. Other times, not so much. What I'm left with is a bunch of modules labeled "HTML/Javascript element" and no way to identify them on my template, without having the internal label show up as a sidebar label.

For example, if I want to remind myself that the "Theme Song" module is the one in which I posted the HTML for the Theme Song, I can type it in the title box of the module. But then it shows up as an official label on the side when you view the blog. If I want to keep it blank on the blog, I cannot label it in the template. Nit-picking, you may say, but when there are a bunch of generic HTML/Javascript elements staring at you from the setup page and you are trying to put them in order, it gets a little confusing.

But I'll manage. For all my kvetching, Blogger remains free and has added quite a bit to my life. I can cut it some slack. I do like the widgets and I plan to use the label feature, both long overdue. And if someone has some code that makes recent comments show up in the sidebar (without installing a third party comment script--I had a bad experience with Haloscan), let me know.


Shifra said...

Honestly I can't see the difference and I'm a graphic artist (by education not by trade.)
Maybe this is what it's like for a man when his wife gets a haircut?

PsychoToddler said...

That's because I've done such a stunningly competent job of reconstructing my template from the ashes of the original.

It's like the pod people. They look the same from a distance. But if you stare at them long enough, you'll see they never blink or sweat. Very creepy.

Shifra said...

Oh well K'koyach then...
My blog seemed to transfer well, but I felt really annoyed about being forced to convert. If only blogger wasn't free we could really do some serious complaining!

PsychoToddler said...

Hmm...got the comment feed going, but it doesn't seem to be updating...

Doctor Bean said...

it looks very nice! as Borat would say, high five!

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

PT: jack and I compared new blogger to new coke last week...

Don't worry though, I'm posting about your favorite subject right now.

Eli said...

I had similar problems upgrading my blog. However, if you edit the HTML of the widgets (you want to expand widget templates) you can label your HTML widgets, but not have the label appear. There's a "only display title if it's non-empty" thing in there somewhere, so just get rid of the whole bit. The widget will be there, but the title won't be seen by anyone.
After tinkering with the new Blogger layout thing for a bit, I actually think it's better than the old version, even though it takes a little bit of time to get it working at first.

PsychoToddler said...

Jameel: Ahem.

Whoa, you're posting about exploding toilets?!

Anyway, regardless of who started the Coke comparison, I'm pretty sure I have the Invasion of the Body Snatchers comparison wrapped up.

Eli: Any help on the recent comments feed? It doesn't update very quickly--seems like something on the page has to republish before new comments get added. There is a good feed of comments available, maybe I need different code to make it work.

Jack's Shack said...

Just when I began to feel like I had a handle on manipulating my old template this comes along.

Oh well.

Eli said...

I'm not sure how the recent comments thing works, but I imagine it's based on the comments feed (http://psychotoddler.blogspot.com/feeds/comments/default), and the "feed" widget. I havn't played with that, but you're right - it may depend on when the comments feed gets republished, or how often it checks for update. I'll play with it and see if I can figure anything out.

yellojkt said...

I was going to play with NewBlogger templates this weekend. Now I'm scared.

Anonymous said...


NASA Astronaut Lisa Nowak Charged With Attempted Murder in Bizarre Love Triangle

outofAMMO said...


Bagel Blogger said...

PT says..."I upgraded my template, and with one click, the functional, if not particularly attractive Psychotoddler template vanished and was replaced with this new monstrosity."

Whoops,(as a late comer) I thought your blog looked just the same and PT was being his usual funny self, that his 'real'... 'good looking'... 'wonderfully creative' template was lost in the 'neverworld'.
Then I realised... (One Day PT some one will talk you into a snazzy masthead.)
I admire your courage PT, I'm still freaking about changing over Bagelblogger's packaging.

By the way when you changed over templates we got to see posts from 6 months ago as though they were fresh at Israel Forum...

Shabbat Shalom
Visit: Bagelblogger

Ralphie said...

Not sure if this is what BB is alluding to, but your RSS feed is outta date. The top title in my PT RSS bookmark is cuurently "A Tale of Two Bathrooms."

PsychoToddler said...

Eli: Yes, that's the feed I'm using. I don't know why there is such an inconsistent delay between the feed updating and new comments showing up on the sidebar. I'm wondering if there is a better feed applet to use.

BB and Ralphie: I've been going back and putting labels on old posts--kind of a way to index the blog. It's time consuming but fun. I definitely was a better writer back then. Maybe I had more time.

Anyway, as the old posts get republished, they are showing up on the blog agregators again.

As they say on TV, if you haven't seen them, then they're new to you!

Yellowjkt: be sure to save a copy of your old one (copy/paste it into notepad).

Crazy Professor said...


You have a riveting web log
and undoubtedly must have
atypical & quiescent potential
for your intended readership.
May I suggest that you do
everything in your power to
honor your encyclopedic/omniscient
Designer/Architect as well
as your revering audience.
As soon as we acknowledge
this Supreme Designer/Architect,
Who has erected the beauteous
fabric of the universe, our minds
must necessarily be ravished with
wonder at His infinite goodness,
wisdom and power.

Please remember to never
restrict anyone's opportunities
for ascertaining uninterrupted
existence for their quintessence.

There is a time for everything,
a season for every activity
under heaven. A time to be
born and a time to die. A
time to plant and a time to
harvest. A time to kill and
a time to heal. A time to
tear down and a time to
rebuild. A time to cry and
a time to laugh. A time to
grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones
and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a
time to turn away. A time to
search and a time to lose.
A time to keep and a time to
throw away. A time to tear
and a time to mend. A time
to be quiet and a time to
speak up. A time to love
and a time to hate. A time
for war and a time for peace.

Here's what remarkable men
have asseverated about the
world's bestseller:

"I believe the Bible is the best gift
God has ever given to man. All
the good from the Savior of the
world is communicated to us
through this book."
-- President Abraham Lincoln

"For we must consider that we shall
be as a City upon a hill. The eyes of
all people are upon us. So that if we
shall deal falsely with our God in this
work we have undertaken, and so
cause Him to withdraw his present
help from us, we shall be made a
story and a byword throughout the
world." --John Winthrop, Governor
of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, 1630

"It is impossible to rightly govern the
world without God and the Bible."
- President George Washington

"The Bible is no mere book, but a Living
Creature, with a power that conquers
all that oppose it." - Napoleon

"That Book accounts for the supremacy
of England." - Queen Victoria

"If there is anything in my thought or
style to commend, the credit is due my
parents for instilling in me an early
love of the Scriptures. If we abide by
the principals taught in the Bible, our
country will go on prospering and to
prosper; but if we and our posterity
neglect its instructions and authority,
no man can tell how sudden a
catastrophe may overwhelm us and
bury all our glory in profound obscurity."
- Daniel Webster (Founding Father)

"The Bible is worth all other books which
have ever been printed." - Patrick Henry
(original member of the Continental Congress)

"The Bible is the anchor of our liberties."
- President U.S. Grant

"It is impossible to enslave mentally or socially
a Bible-reading people. The principals of the
Bible are the groundwork of human freedom."
- Horace Greeley (Editor)

"That Book is the rock on which our Republic
rests." - President Andrew Jackson

"In all my perplexities and distresses, the Bible
has never failed to give me light and strength."
- Gen. Robert E. Lee

"Bible reading is an education in itself."
- Lord Tennyson (Poet)

"So great is my veneration for the Bible that the
earlier my children begin to read it the more
confident will be my hope that they will prove
useful citizens of their country and respectable
members of society. I have for many years made
it a practice to read through the Bible once
every year." - President John Quincy Adams

"The existence of the Bible, as a Book for the
people, is the greatest benefit which the human
race has ever experienced. Every attempt to
belittle it is a crime against humanity."
- Immanuel Kant (Philosopher)

"The New Testament is the very best Book that
ever or ever will be known in the world."
- Charles Dickens (Author)

"All human discoveries seem to be made only
for the purpose of confirming more and more
strongly the truths contained in the Sacred
Scriptures." - Sir William Herschel (Astronomer)

"There are more sure marks of authenticity
in the Bible than in any profane history."
- Sir Isaac Newton (Scientist)

"Let mental culture go on advancing,
let the natural sciences progress in
even greater extent and depth, and
the human mind widen itself as much
as it desires; beyond the elevation
and moral culture of Christianity, as
it shines forth in the Gospels, it will
not go." - Goethe (Author)

"I have known ninety-five of the world's
great men in my time, and of these eight-
seven were followers of the Bible. The
Bible is stamped with a Specialty of Origin,
and an immeasurable distance separates
it from all competitors."
- W.E. Gladstone (Prime Minister)

"Whatever merit there is in anything that
I have written is simply due to the fact that
when I was a child my mother daily read
me a part of the Bible and daily made me
learn a part of it by heart." - John Ruskin
(art critic and social commentator)

"The Bible has been the Magna Charta of the
poor and oppressed. The human race is not
in a position to dispense with it." - Thomas
Huxley (Author & Scientist)

"The whole hope of human progress is
suspended on the ever growing influence
of the Bible." - W.H. Seward (Secretary of State)

"America was born a Christian nation. America
was born to exemplify that devotion to the
elements of righteousness, which are derived
from the revelations of Holy Scriptures. Part
of the destiny of Americans lies in their daily
perusal of this great book of revelations.
That if they would see America free and
pure they will make their own spirits free
and pure by this baptism of the Holy Spirit."
--President Woodrow Wilson

For Christians, the life and death of Jesus
are the ultimate expressions of love, and
the supreme demonstrations of God's
mercy, faithfulness, and redemption.
Since Christ's miraculous Resurrection
on Easter, more than 2,000 years ago,
Christians have expressed joy and
gratitude for this wondrous sacrifice
and for God's promise of freedom for
the oppressed, healing for the broken -
hearted, and salvation. --President
George W. Bush

"It cannot be emphasized too strongly
or too often that this great nation was
founded, not by religionists, but by
Christians; not on religions, but on
the gospel of Jesus Christ. For this
very reason peoples of other faiths
have been afforded asylum, prosperity,
and freedom of worship here."
--Patrick Henry (original member
of the Continental Congress)

God designed humans to want to
believe in something. That's the
image of God that is in us. But as
G. K. Chesterton famously put it,
when we reject the God of the
Bible, we don't believe in nothing;
we believe in everything -- including
Little Green Men. - - Chuck Colson

I am trying here to prevent anyone from
saying the really foolish thing that people
often say about Jesus Christ: "I'm ready
to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher,
but I don't accept His claim to be God."

That is the one thing we must not say.
A man who was merely a man and said
the sort of things Jesus said would not be
a great moral teacher. He would either be
a lunatic -- on a level with a man who says
he is a poached egg -- or else he would be
the Devil of Hell.

You must make your choice. Either this Man
was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman
or something worse .... You can shut Him up
for fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a
demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him
Lord and God. But let us not come up with any
patronizing nonsense about His being a great
human teacher. He has not left that option
open to us. He did not intend to. -- From
Case for Christianity, by C.S. Lewis

"Let every student be plainly instructed and
earnestly pressed to consider well the main
end of his life and studies is to know God
and Jesus Christ which is eternal life (John
17:3)." - - - The Laws and Statutes of
Harvard College in 1643

"All scholars shall live religious, godly,
and blameless lives according to the rules
of God's Word, diligently reading the Holy
Scriptures, the fountain of light and truth;
and constantly attend upon all the duties
of religion, both in public and secret."
- - - Two central requirements in Yale
College 1745 charter

If you stop believing what your professor
told you had to be true and if you start
thinking for yourself you may come to some
conclusions you hadn't expected. You may
find the Bible makes more sense than you
thought or were told to think. Allow yourself
to be ruined, ruined with regard to what you
always thought could be true. Can you believe
what you don't understand? You and I believe
everyday what we don't understand unless it
comes to the issue of salvation.
- - - Dr. Woodrow Kroll

There is simply no historic foundation for the
position that the Framers intended to build the
'wall of separation' that was constitutionalized
in Everson. The 'wall of separation between
church and state' is a metaphor based on bad
history, a metaphor which has proved useless
as a guide to judging. It should be frankly and
explicitly abandoned. - - - Chief Justice of
the US Supreme Court, William Rehnquist

In 1796 the US Supreme Court issued this
ruling, "By our form of government, the
Christian religion is the established religion,
and all sects and denominations of Christians
are placed on equal footing." Some 57 years
later, after Congress was petitioned to separate
Christian principles from government, in 1853
the House Judiciary Committee issued their
formal report, including these words: "In this
age there is no substitute for Christianity.
This was the religion of the founders of the
republic, and they expected it to be the
religion of their dependents. The great vital,
conservative elements in our system is the
belief of our people in the pure doctrines
and divine truths of the gospel of Jesus
Christ." - - - Dr. Gerald Beavan

"It is the duty of nations, as well as of men,
to own their dependence upon the overruling
power of God and to recognize the sublime
truth announced in the Holy Scriptures and
proven by all history, that those nations only
are blessed whose God is the Lord."
-- President Abraham Lincoln

Trust in yourself and you are doomed to
disappointment; trust in money and you
may have it taken from you; but trust in
God, and you are never to be confounded
in time or eternity. - D.L. Moody

Faith and love are apt to be spasmodic
in the best of minds. Men and women live
on the brink of mysteries and harmonies
into which they never enter and with their
hand on the door latch they die outside.
- - GK Chesterton

Best wishes for continued ascendancy,
Dr. Whoami

P.S. Here's some blogs that I found
of interest
as I negotiated my way
through cyberspace:

Every Student
Religion Comparison
Around the Well
Danish Cartoons
Arabic Cartoons
Muhammad or Jesus???
Answering Islam
Is Jesus God?
A Short Look At Six World Religions
God's Word in different languages...
How to become a Christian
Who Is Jesus?
See The Word
Watch The Jesus Movie
Spanish Cartoons
German Cartoons
Chinese Cartoons
Italian Cartoons
Greek Cartoons
Japanese Cartoons
Portuguese Cartoons
French Cartoons
Hindi Cartoons
Russian Cartoons
'Thought & Humor'

Only one of these is amalgamated with me -
can you determine which one??? Tell me
sometime what your thoughts are about
all this:O)

Ralphie said...

What the fushnizzle?

PsychoToddler said...

Ralphie: I was thinking the same thing. That's the hardest working piece of spam I've ever seen!

Doctor Bean said...

Wow. Christian evangelism finally busts into the digital shtetl. It used to be that I just had to throw away the pamplets under my windshield wipers.

Favorite line: "Isaac Newton (scientist)"!! Oh! Him!

So what gives? Is there some guy out there who is so committed (or should be) that he's doing this manually, or do you think they've hacked a way around word verification.

PsychoToddler said...

You gotta admire the effort they put in, though. As a show of appreciation, I'm thinking about converting.

Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

they've even got that C S Lewis "god or crazyman" dilemma up there. how about... maybe he never actually existed?