Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Back in blogging

Well, well...as readers have noted, this blog has been in disrepair for some time. What happened? At first I thought it was a Blogger problem and it sort of was - just not the one I suspected. When I went to look at the Blogger Help forum in Google Groups, I found out that Blogger was having some serious problems. I assumed that my difficulties were associated with those problems, but as it turned out that wasn't the complete story.

Eventually, I posted my story to the help forum after many of the other issues seemed to be cleared up. This morning, someone suggested that I save my template, then choose a generic one and see if, after I republished, all of my posts would reappear. They did. It was my template that had gone awry. Another poster to the forum noted that I was probably missing a close tag and that was causing further problems. In fact, I was missing not only the close tag, but many other bits for the right hand column of this blog. But, how? Seeing as I made only one minor change and it wasn't in any portion anywhere near the end of the blog?

This is where Blogger comes into play in this screw up. When I went to make the minor change (adding the Amnesty International banner in the left hand column), Blogger didn't load my complete template. The Blogger error was that it truncated the code which precipitated the problems. My errors were that I didn't preview the changes before saving the template and republishing AND that I didn't know that I should be aware of this Blogger problem and scroll to the end of my code to check for such an error (you can always back away without saving the changes, hence saving your code, or re-load the page).

The good news was that the people on the forum were helpful. The extra special good news is that I'm anal about backups. In fact, I had a backup of the template that I burned to DVD just days before any changes were made. It was easy to drop in the Amnesty International code (and make another back up) before copying over the template code and reviving this here bloggy thing. So, back in business...now it's time for some breakfast.

Thanks for your patience and for the emails from those who were concerned. They warmed my heart.

1 comment:

Chuck said...

Excellent post mortem of your experience. Many Bloggers can benefit from your example.