Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

15.10.10

How I got my name back.

I had to find out what had happened to my name.

When I changed my template, Blogger substituted the word 'writer' for the words 'kitchen hand' in the footer of every post in my blog. And there are more than a thousand posts. I couldn't put up with that.

First a quick fix. In advanced template design, I made the 'posted by' section white over white so it could not be seen. Of course, I could have left it at that and just typed 'kitchen hand' at the base of each post and to hell with the footer, but that wouldn't really solve the mystery. I had to go in and investigate.

Into the netherworld I slipped, silently, like Philip Marlowe into General Sternwood's orchid greenhouse. The atmosphere was similarly stifling. Jagged, ugly, indecipherable HTML was everywhere, running off in absurd line-breaks and full of words like maxwidget and fauxborder. Brave? I'm taking my life in my hands even typing those strange words in this post. They might turn my blog purple with green stripes.

I walked through the whole six million characters of HTML, searching for the word 'writer' so I could change it to 'kitchen hand'. It took me most of the morning.

It wasn't there.

I went to lunch a broken man. How could it not be there? I blankly ordered three hand rolls from the sushi counter in the food court at the legal end of Bourke Street (as against the retail, not the illegal, end) and absentmindedly forgot to ask for wasabi. I remembered and went back, and the lady, smiling, squeezed an extra-large splodge of green paste next to the three plastic soy-filled fishes. Then I walked back to my office and flicked the through the opinion pages in The Australian online, and wondered why everyone was so opinionated these days. Probably goes back to the 1970s when they started teaching children to have an opinion on everything at age six. They should be taught not to have an opinion. You learn more wisely that way.

I finished reading people’s opinions and went back to the task of finding my name. Now I was desperate. So desperate, I resorted to consulting Blogger help. Blogger help generally informs you 'your search did not return any answers' when you've lost your blog or wiped out three years of entries or can't log in. But I tried again, typing 'change post author name' into the 'What can we help you with?' field.

Tick, tick, tick. Blogger itself had nothing to say, as usual, but it returned an item of 'user help' from the forum. That is, someone who has figured out a problem that Blogger couldn't solve.

The advice was that you locate the following HTML ...

(Less than sign)data:post.author/(greater than sign)

... and destroy it.

Back in I went, guns blazing this time. I hit the design tab, then the edit HTML sub-tab, then I clicked on expand widget templates, hit control/command F, and dropped the above piece of HTML into the search box that came up. Bang. There it was, highlighted in forest green. I replaced the whole thing, including its greater than and less than signs (known in some industries as variable field symbols) with 'kitchen hand’. No symbols, just the words.

Fixed.

But where did they get writer from?

I still don’t know.

*

Of course it was all my own fault. I should never have changed my template. I originally intended to be the last person on Earth with an original Blogger template, but that accolade will now go to someone else. At least two candidates are in the links bar at right.

What I liked about the old template was that once you scrolled down, the page was mostly text with no distracting graphics. This can be handy for people reading at work who don't want visible distractions on their screen. The new template, while colourful at the top, scrolls away to text out of black sidebars. It's still just a Blogger template, but with a background I took from an August post. Here's the whole picture, giving you the view from my house at sunrise.

6 comments:

A Melbourne Girl said...

KH, you had me at maxwidget and fauxborder.
Well done, I think I would've given up long before you did.

I'm still trying to work out why, after submitting a new post, I appear to be signed out and can't sign in again.
Another mystery of the universe. Lesley

kitchen hand said...

Lesley, there are at least two Blogger sign-in pages - click on the Blogger 'B' logo at the top to try to get to a different page.

Rowena... said...

I have an original blogger template (albeit tweaked to my liking), and refuse to update for fear of having to go through an unnecessary headache. This means no fancy-shmancy widgets and whatnot and a look that screams "old school!" but as long as it continues to work, it's all good to me.

Dr. Alice said...

You can have my original template when you pry it from my cold, dead fingers. :-)

I don't like visual distractions either, I mostly go for text. I have added a few widgets here and there but not many. For one thing, it loads faster that way. I do add the occasional picture, but that's rare too.

Congratulations on fixing the problem! I generally find the Help page useful too, when I have an issue.

White Dove said...

Congratulations KH...what a challenge. That's the nether world for me and I never enter it. I thought you were talking in tongues!

kitchen hand said...

Rowena, I don't like the whole pretension of over-designed sites. Old school is fine.

Dr. A., of the original templates I probably liked yours the most. I recall Janis Gore at Gone South used it as well, before graduating to another.

WD, I just bang on a lot. It helps.