or … when it rains it pours
The Café Ludwig “gateway to my online presence” had been getting long in tooth. It no longer made Google happy as it was not designed to accommodate mobile devices. It was built the old-fashioned was using Microsoft Expression Web (if anybody remembers that). I decided on a total rebuild and used the WordPress “engine”.
WordPress, with its blogging roots, allows for a blog even when used as a “regular” website tool. I tucked the blog into a corner and used it for a few news stories. I decided to use the Café Ludwig blog to participate in Blogging 101, a WordPress training course. That course was meager in technical instruction but long in “community” building. WordPress ties the bloggers together with it Reader that allows following blogs and finding posts by topic “tags”.
It wasn’t long before I discovered that my blog posts did not come up in the Reader. Other participants complained that they could not “follow” my blog. Nothing in the course helped me set things right. I struggled most of the month of January trying to find the fix. Finally I heard from a WordPress “happiness engineer”. Here is an excerpt from that communication.
The Reader topic pages only show posts from WordPress.com blogs. So much for using self-hosted sites for blogging.
One of the tasks in the course was to set up an event to allow bloggers to work together. I had started “Monday Window” a weekly feature showing photos of one or more windows and invited other bloggers to participate. This, of course did not work well at all. My solution was to throw in the towel and move the event to a WordPress.com blog.
The Edge browser in Windows 10 kept picking on my Café Ludwig site, flagging it as “potentially harmful”. It is legit! The thought occurred that I should replace “café” with a stronger beverage.
The Monday Window weekly parade of windows from around the world is now anchored at a “proper WordPress.COM blog” come see, come join:
© 2016 Ludwig Keck
Join the fun – “Monday Window”
“Monday Window” is a weekly blog post featuring one or more photos of windows as the main subject. The posts are published every Monday at 14:16 UTC.
This is just a fun project, it keeps you looking with fresh eyes at your neighborhood, your city, and all the places you visit. Keep you camera with you. Snap views of interesting windows. Share them on your blog once a week, schedule the post to publish the next Monday at 20:16 UTC. So that all participating bloggers publish at the same time. See what others have contributed under the tag “Monday Window”.
For a bit more information click here: Participate in the Monday Window project.
Come on, have more fun with your camera and your blog! Join in!
UPDATED – 5 Feb 2016 – Now links point to the new home of Monday Window:
Two Cameras – Two Views
© 2016 Ludwig Keck
This ain’t progress
The WordPress.com desktop app is a nice way to keep your blogging world neatly in one place. In my earlier review I mentioned shortcomings in media handling (Blogging with the WordPress.com app). Now it seems these shortcomings are also showing up in the in-browser version and in the WordPress Dashboard editor.
Take a look at the two images, see if you notice the problem.
Did you notice that in the top image there is a size option which is missing in the second screen capture? Both of these come from the Dashboard editor.
In my decades of work in software development I learned early on that the surest path to failure is an inconsistent and confusing user interface.
I have found no explanation or reason for this behavior in the WordPress editor. In the desktop app there is no sizing option. What is the reason for this giant leap backwards? Why would WordPress want to confuse its users? Why take options away that are used to enhance the look of blogs and sites?
© 2016 Ludwig Keck
Face it, nobody lands on a blog Home page. It is like that front parlor in homes of old, pretty, comfortable, neat, inviting but unvisited. Think about it, how do your readers get to your posts? They follow a Twitter link or see your notice on Facebook, and go right to the post page. If someone searched for something they too wind up on a post page and not your Home page.
Yet the “look and feel” of your Home page can make a huge difference in your success. There are two important reasons why showing less and revealing more by using the “Read More” tag can do magic for your blog.