Showing posts with label Blogger. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Blogger. Show all posts

Monday, August 10, 2015

Putting lipstick on a . . . blog

Things may look a little different around here. Not a whole lot . . . but enough.

Welcome to the new look of Revolution 21's Blog for the People. The basic format is the same, but we've given the old girl a new set of duds and a little eyeliner and lipstick after several years. I like the new look, and I hope you do, too.

Probably the biggest thing you'll notice is that the blog now displays a lot better on tablets, courtesy of installing (and tweaking) a new Blogger template that, at long last, will keep all the elements of this thing where they're supposed to be, no matter how you size your browser window.

IT'S LONG overdue, and she'll be looking a lot less like a hot mess, all without you having to futz with the size of your browser on the computer screen. Here it is full screen on my Surface, on the right.

Before, it would have looked staggeringly weird. But you probably know that if you have a tablet and have ventured over to the blog.

So, that's all I have to say about that. Enjoy the new, more adaptable look of the Blog for the People.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012


If you type "" into your web browser now, something will happen.

That's an improvement over what's been going on here -- or not going on here, actually -- for more than a week. About that, I have just two things to say:
● Never assume that pointing your Internet domain name at this website instead of that will be anything but a harrowing, drawn out, overly complicated and crazy-making experience.

● Avoid Network Solutions as a host for your website or as a registrar for your domain name.
Revolution 21's long not-so-national nightmare began as the web-hosting contract ended. Basically, I didn't want to pay significant green just for Network Solutions, may a camel pass gas in its tent, to host a website that did little other than point you to this blog, 3 Chords & the Truth and where to buy R21 swag. That and a couple of email addresses.

The plan was to leave the domain name -- -- registered at Network Solutions (pretty cheap and the contract had yet to expire) and just have the web address point right here to Revolution 21's Blog for the People. After all, the blog is where all the website action is anyway and, as you've no doubt noticed, it now has several pages for all the same destinations and explanations.

And the hosting is free on Blogger. That, my friends, is a big monetary and operational "Well, DUH!"

EXCEPT. . . .

To redirect your domain name, Google/Blogger gives you one set of instructions and Network Solutions gives you another. Blogger's won't work with Network Solutions -- indeed, the web host rejects one of the DNS addresses Blogger says you must enter -- and Network Solutions' do nothing on the Blogger front.

So you call the technical support at Network Solutions late one night -- actually, early, early one morning -- and the Guy Somewhere in Timbuktu gives you a third set of instructions that turn out to be somewhere on the bad side of bulls***.

So later that day, you send a help request in writing with a detailed summary of the problem and "27 8x10 color glossy photographs with circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one explaining what it is." They say they'll get back to you within a business day.

A business day passes. Nada.

Another half a business day passes. Nada.

You're doing a slow burn, and you do some research on the Web. And from running across many of Network Solutions' unhappy customers who became grateful ex-customers, and from seeing rave reviews of DNS hosting companies that actually can get your domain to work with Blogger, you decide to just transfer your domain to a better place. In this case, that better place is easyDNS in Toronto. Even between the devalued American dollar and the strong Canadian one, the price is what I was paying at That Whose Name I'm Done Uttering.

OF COURSE, after you've signed up with easyDNS -- which will redirect your domain name for you . . . for free -- then TWNIDU starts trying to rekindle the geek romance when you call up to inform them of the coming tech divorce. And then . . . then you hear back from tech support regarding that written help request you sent.

The service rep writes that he's sorry about the delay, and won't you please give him another chance or he won't be able to live with the shame and the loneliness and the regret, that he'll do something drastic if you don't take him back, he swears to God!

ACTUALLY, that's not exactly true. He wrote to apologize for my request being sent to the Group W bench, and to say that TWNIDU could just go ahead and reconfigure my settings and redirect the domain name for me.

For a minimum of $99.

Sorry, dude. The tech support from north of the border is fast, friendly, personal and free . . . and now everything works just fine. And we also find time to chat about beer a little.

Did you know that beer on tap is unheard of in Ontario, and you have to go to the provincial bottle shop to pick up a six-pack? Bien sûr, there are no such stabs at prohibition across the border in Quebec, for the Gallic heart (mine included) requires an unregulated sip, snort, quaff or blast every now and again.

Tonight, when I typed in "" and, lo, the blog appeared, I just may have hoisted a couple of cold ones in sudsy tribute to the good people of Canada . . . and their technology sector.

To TWNIDU, I merely say "FU."

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

F*** Google

After a year of resistance, it's about to become futile.

I'm going to get the new, "improved" Blogger interface whether I want it or not. In fact, I'm using it now.

And I hate it.

Perhaps "hate" is too weak a word. All right, I loathe it. Despise it. 

It sucks.

some things are easier -- allegedly -- with the new interface. Adding a video, for example. But not that much easier, and you get what you get. You can't change the size that way . . . see?

You can't customize the size of your photos, either. There's small, medium, large, extra large and original size. Before -- unless you were foolish enough to try to post to your blog from the Google Chrome web browser -- you could drag a corner of a picture and make the thing as large or small as you wanted.

If you'd like to try that with the new interface, dig into the HTML code, open up your calculator program and do the math. See the "TV set on acid" above? Did the math to get it that size.

I hate math -- even the easy stuff like that. Maybe I should invent a proportion wheel marked off in pixels.

Homogenization and standardization is the way of our postmodern, corporate world, though, isn't it? You know what? I resign. I quit. I refuse to be the idiot against whom everything must be "proofed."

If you want to be a cog -- or an idiot -- go ahead. Not me. I'm about this close to going off to live in a shack in the woods.

And this blog is now officially on life support . . . not that the world would come to an end if it did. Anyway, that's what I'm thinking. Your mileage may vary.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Blogger, thy name is Mudd

You know that commercial where the two guys escape from prison, but keep getting such awful customer service outside the barbed wire that they end up running back to the joint?

It's a tempting thought.

In other words, "Yeah, Blogger's at it again."

In this case, unless you have a Google account, you can't post a comment to this here blog. Or any Blogger blog, apparently. I don't know what the deal is, except that it ain't just me. And that the Blogger powers that be are maintaining radio silence.

Because why don't you have a Google account? Huh?

Ve haff VEYS . . . .

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Which do you like better?

OK, I'm mad at the insensitive and unresponsive technocrats who run my blog host. But I don't have to take it anymore.

As I said in the last post, I was able to hack the code to make things display more or less like they're supposed to. Then again, the resolution of the headers now is much degraded, which -- to me, at least -- looks unprofessional and bush league.

On the other hand, I am still able to embed the Revolution 21 podcast on the blog.

So, the question is put to the jury of y'all readers; Which do you like better? This version of Revolution 21's Blog for the People on Blogger . . . or this version on WordPress?

At least one inquiring mind wants to know.


Why is it that, amid all the "ease" and "freedom" I'm afforded by modern technology, I've spent massive chunks of the past three days trying to make this blog look like I want it to?

The way it used to look.

HOW COME after Blogger allegedly made a change to how you post blog headers -- making it so simple that anyone can do it -- I can't do it? Because when you try, the header no longer spans the width of the layout.

And that's where the "ease" technology brings to our lives led me to get comfortable enough with CSS to try to figure out where -- and how -- to hack the design template of this blog. If you were wondering about the non-existent posting Monday, that explains it.

Now the header looks like a JPEG blown up just too dang big, even though it's not. But at least it's the right size.

Of course, this being the age of customer antiservice, Blogger never notified anyone about the pending change. We all found out when our blogs started looking funny.

Saturday, folks thought it was a glitch. By Sunday, word leaked out on the "help group" that it wasn't a glitch, it was policy.

To screw over God-knows-how-many blogs out there on the "Internets."

Research, tinker, repeat. Then learn to live with less than what you had. That's "progress" for you.

IT WASN'T THIS WAY in 1979. Back then, if you were a "Jack of all trades, master of none," you were doing pretty good.

Twenty-odd years ago, all I needed to be "expert" at was writing and editing. To achieve a measure of expertise in that, I went to college and got a journalism degree. Then I got a job being an "expert" doing that at which I was . . . expert.

Now I'm doing this. And while I can cover the writing, and the editing, and the audio production and the talkin' into a microphone and playin' tunes . . . I don't know squat about CSS coding when Blogger clobbers the blog half of the Revolution 21 media empire.

Just another thing to learn to fake your way through in an age where customer support -- or even caring about the customer at all -- is just me standing high above Long-Ago Acres, taking in the wistful vista. Now I will add my dubiously mad coding skillz to my computer-networking skillz and computer-retooling skillz.

How life gets complicateder and complicateder the further away I get from 1979 . . . when you didn't even have to know how to use a computer if you didn't want to.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Blogger stinks . . . oh yeah, here's the show

We've been preoccupied with Blogger's suddenly not seeing fit to let folks design their blogs the way they like, so the show didn't exactly get posted. Until now.

Still preoccupied. Show . . . oh, yeah . . . psychedelic stuff to start, an eclectic set in there.
Commodores. Yeah, that's the ticket.

Punk punk punk. Tractor punk from Omaha, Sit-on-This-Here-John Deere-and-Spin, Yuppie Boy, Nebraska.

Stuff like that. Yeah. Listen or else.

I'm outta here.