Links



The images above, are actual Image Links, and are click-able. Use them to navigate to the sites indicated!

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Accessing Advanced DNS Settings on Google Apps



Accessing the Advanced DNS Settings screen on the NEW Google Apps, is relatively easy.
Click on the following icon:








TOP

Custom Domain - adding a new form of payment - Credit Card



There is an interesting 'catch' to the NEW Google Apps system for renewing Credit Card details. If the card number has changed, for instance, you need to list it by way of 'Add a new form of payment', because the 'system' sees any change, as a new one.


You access the Billing screen via the Admin Console ...



then, the Billing section ...



Select the 'Add a new form payment' option ...



It looks like this ...



There's even a 'HELP POP-UP' available when you click on the little question mark ...



TOP

Custom Domain - Updating your Credit Card Details



I had a nasty experience with my Credit Card the other day, so was required to get a new one. This, naturally, necessitated notifying certain agencies which auto-debit from my account. One of those agencies, was Google - for my Custom Domain Auto-Renewal.

Could you imagine the pain and anguish if the Domain was not renewed because of something so trivial ? I couldn't, so I updated my details. Mind you, Google Apps send an email to account holders in advance of the due date, so a last minute reminder would have avoided the horror...


Copy of last year's email - (before the NEW Google Apps Domains format.



Now, the New format, being vastly different, requires you to open several new screens ...

From the Admin Console ...



you need to open the Billing settings screen ...



Then 'Edit' your details, if required ...



and, Check your details ...



Don't forget to 'SAVE'.

TOP

Your Domain - Automatic Renewal



The NEW Google Apps is here, and very different to the old screens, and finding things, as you once knew them, can take time. One of the good things about the new screens is that, once you check that everything is OK, you don't have to use them again, for a long while - or, is that a downside? I'm not sure.


I wanted to check that my Domain Registration details were correct, and that it was ticked for Automatic Renewal.


First job - log in:




I see a very different picture - The Admin Console:




I click on the icon that I want (Billing):





The next screen shows me the Domain Registration options:




Then, I can find out, or change, what I selected years ago - Automatic Renewal!




I can also check the details of my account, while I'm there, or even add the details of my NEW Credit Card - (next post)!

You can also arrange annual Automatic Renewal, when purchasing a Domain. There is also a check-box on the Advanced DNS Settings.

TOP

Saturday, 20 July 2013

iGoogle will meet it's demise on November 1, 2013.



Being taken up with things other than computing, lately, I just noticed this reminder about iGoogle. There's probably others in the same boat. Here's what I saw when I opened my Browser this morning, to Google, and I quote ...


"What's happening to iGoogle?"

"iGoogle will be retired on November 1, 2013. The mobile version was retired on July 31, 2012.

How did you come to this decision?

We originally launched iGoogle in 2005 before anyone could fully imagine the ways that today's web and mobile apps would put personalized, real-time information at your fingertips. With modern apps that run on platforms like Chrome and Android, the need for something like iGoogle has eroded over time, so we’ll be winding down iGoogle on November 1, 2013, giving you a full 16 months from the announcement to adjust or easily export your iGoogle data.

Can I save my iGoogle homepage settings?

Yes, you can export your iGoogle homepage settings (including country, language, theme, layout and gadgets installed) to an XML file.

To export your settings:

  • Click the settings icon 'gear wheel' image Options, then, iGoogle settings.
  • At the bottom of the page, click Export next to "Export iGoogle settings to your computer."

What will happen to the data stored in my gadgets?

All of your personal data stored in other Google products will continue to be available via those products, including Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Finance, Google Drive, Google Bookmarks, and Google Tasks.

Some gadgets, such as the to-do list, allow you to download your data to a file. To download from your to-do list, click the Download all option under the My List drop-down menu next to the title of your list.

Most iGoogle gadgets are created and maintained by third-party developers. If you’d like to export your data, you should contact the gadget creator directly.

I really like iGoogle -- are there any other alternatives?

On your mobile device, Google Play offers applications ranging from games to news readers to home screen widgets.

If you’re a fan of Google Chrome, the Chrome Web Store provides a similar range of options like productivity tools and applications to check the weather. In addition, just like iGoogle, you can personalize Chrome with a theme."

May 28, 2013





TOP

Monday, 8 July 2013

Personalising a Private Blog Invitation.



Personalising a blog invitation, is impossible with Blogger, because Blogger does not give you access to the invitation, before it is sent.

So, if you want to add a personal note, or a description of the blog, you have to send an extra email, apart from the invitation, explaining what it's for. For example, if I want to send an invitation to this blog, to a friend, I would say something like;

"Dear Bob,
I am sending you an invitation to my Private blog, called 'the Blogger' blog, which concerns itself with technical aspects of blogging, which you are interested in. It covers many of the subjects we talked about, and shows you easy steps to complete them.

I hope you accept the invitation to become a reader."


To do that, I have to think outside the box. How can I personalise my invitation to Bob? There is only one way to achieve that, and it requires the use of a 3rd Party, in this case, myself.

It's the person who ACCEPTS the invitation, who becomes the Reader - not the recipient of the emailed invitation ! Remember that!

I send an invitation to myself. I copy the invitation acceptance link (URL) from the email sent by Blogger, and compose an email to Bob, adding my personalised message, and the link (URL) to the invitation. Easy as. Bob accepts. Done.

I can always delete the Reader if someone else accepts it.

TOP

Private Blog Readers - Inviting, and Acceptance



The question is often asked; "How do I invite Readers to my Private blog?" The answer is very simple, but you have to follow the rules. One of the key words here, is 'Private'. Naturally, you wouldn't invite Readers to a Public blog.

The first thing you must do, is change the Settings on your blog to allow for inviting Readers. This would mean changing from 'Only blog authors', to 'Only these readers' ...



see Blogger Help ...
"Click the Add Readers link and then enter the email address of a person to whom you want to grant access to your blog. To add multiple people, separate their addresses with commas.

For each address entered, the Google Account associated with that address will be given access to view your blog. If an address is not associated with an account, that person will be sent an invitation email with a link allowing them do one of three things:

  • Sign in to an existing account
  • Create a new account
  • View your blog as a guest (no account required)

In the first two cases, the reader will be given permission to view your blog whenever they are signed in to their Google Account. As a guest, they'll be able to continue viewing your blog through the link in the invitation email, but this will expire after 30 days. After that, they'll need a new invitation."



The next step is for your Invitee to accept the invitation. As said above, if the invitee does not have a Google account, he/she must create one, or they are classed as a guest, and must be re-invited, every 30 days.



Acceptance, with an account, is easy ...







The invitees blog Dashboard Reading List will look like this, with the blog simply listed. In this case - Test First :



The next step is taken by the blog owner. Check that the correct person is the acceptor of the invitation !



Of course, Invited Readers can NOT change, or add, anything to your blog. Only authors, or administrators, can do that. Should you wish to stop a Reader's access to your blog, it is a simple thing to delete him/her.

Should the invitee take too long to accept the invitation, he/she will see this message, when they try to accept ...



... see Next Post: Using an intermediary between blog owner, and invitee, in order to personalise the invitation... which leads me to warn:

IN MOST CASES, ONLY SEND INVITATIONS TO PEOPLE YOU TRUST IMPLICITLY !


TOP

Monday, 1 July 2013

Co-Authors on a Blog - How to add them.



There is often a case for adding a Co-Author to a blog. Maybe it's someone who wishes to write about your theme, or that you wish to have contributions from. Whatever the reason, adding a Co-Author(s) to a blog is easy as sending an invitation by email.


The only person who can do this, however, is a blog Administrator. The owner/admin of the blog, goes to the Settings - Basic screen to access Permissions.
The owner/admin sends an Invitation by email to the prospective Co-Author, who needs to accept that invitation. Co-Authors are referred to as Team Members of a Team Blog.
They must have a Google account
, if they do not have one already. If not, they will be prompted to create one. Authors can only create and edit their own posts.


The Settings - Basic screen - Permissions ...


Add the name and email details - then send the invitation ...


Invitation sent ...


Your Co-Author receives an emailed Invitation ...


He/She accepts the invitation


He/She is now a Co-Author of the blog ...



Co-Authors can be promoted to the role of Administrator, at the click of a button.

TOP

Friday, 21 June 2013

Changing Blog Fonts - Design/Customise Screen



Many bloggers have questions about changing their blog fonts, and get frustrated because they (the fonts) don't change. Are they doing it correctly? Heaven knows, but it's as simple as falling off a log.


Blogger has NOT helped in this area, either. We are very lucky to have a variety of templates to choose from, for our blogs, but the customising varies from template to template. Simple, Awesome, Picture Window, Watermark, Ethereal and Travel - lots of Layout combinations, and colours etc, too, and what you can do with them all. What works on one, may not work on another. Options are different, too. Don't forget, though, to apply your changes !

Step 1 - go to the 'Design/Customise' screen ...


Step 2 - Choose 'Advanced' option ...


Step 3 - Choose the section you want to change the font in. In this case, Page Text. Choose the Font, Text-Size, and Colour ...


Step 4 - Check your changes are satisfactory ...


Step 5 - 'Apply' your changes to the blog ...


Step 6 - You'll notice the changes haven't happened for the WHOLE blog, just the Page Text, as chosen in Step 1. They would be, if I wanted (chosen) them to be ...


Step 7 - Choose the sections you want the change to apply to, if you haven't already ...


and ...



N.B: Different templates (Dynamic Views, Picture Window, etc,) could have different names for the options ...







Remember, after you make your choices, 'Apply to Blog'


TOP

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Word Formatting Issues and the 'Compose Editor'



Some people say; "Never, never, copy from MS Word to Blogger, without copying it to Notepad first, to avoid formatting errors". I said it, myself, until I started testing.

The following recipe, was copied directly from a Word document, to this blog's html editor. Of course, I had to re-format it with <br/> tags.


HOME-MADE CRUMPETS


Quantity: - Makes approx: 20 crumpets


Preparation Time: - About 1 hour


Ingredients: -

• 450gms (1lb) Plain Flour
• 15gms (½ oz) Salt
• 15gms (½ oz) Fresh Yeast
• 600mls (1 pint) warm water


Method: -

Sieve the Flour and Salt. Mix the Yeast with a few tablespoons of the warm water. Whisk three-quarters of the remaining warm water into the Flour and then add the yeasty liquid.
Cover and leave in a warm place until the mixture has risen.
Once it has risen, check the consistency. If the Batter is very thick, loosen it with the remaining water. The Batter should now be left stand for 8–10 minutes.
Warm a non-stick frying-pan on a low heat. Grease some Crumpet rings or small tartlet rings and rub the pan with Butter.
Place the rings into the pan and pour some mixture into them until it reaches half-way – about 5mms -1cm (¼-½ in) deep. Cook the crumpets on a low heat until small holes appear and the top has started to dry. The base of the Crumpets will now be golden and it can be turned over and cooked for another minute.
The Crumpets are ready for lots of melted butter and your choice of topping!


* Note: The Crumpets can be cooked without turning over – simply allow the top to completely dry.
The finely grated zest of 1 Lemon can also be added to the Batter to give a lemon bite.
If fresh Yeast is not available, use 2 teaspoons dried Yeast. Mix with the Flour and Salt, and then add the water and leave to rise, as above.




This following part is copied straight from Word... (Copied into the html editor)


HOME-MADE CRUMPETS - Makes approx: 20 crumpets Preparation Time: About 1 hour Ingredients: • 450gms (1lb) Plain Flour • 15gms (½ oz) Salt • 15gms (½ oz) Fresh Yeast • 600mls (1 pint) warm water Method: Sieve the Flour and Salt. Mix the Yeast with a few tablespoons of the warm water. Whisk three-quarters of the remaining warm water into the Flour and then add the yeasty liquid. Cover and leave in a warm place until the mixture has risen. Once it has risen, check the consistency. If the Batter is very thick, loosen it with the remaining water. The Batter should now be left stand for 8–10 minutes. Warm a non-stick frying-pan on a low heat. Grease some Crumpet rings or small tartlet rings and rub the pan with Butter. Place the rings into the pan and pour some mixture into them until it reaches half-way – about 5mms -1cm (¼-½ in) deep. Cook the crumpets on a low heat until small holes appear and the top has started to dry. The base of the Crumpets will now be golden and it can be turned over and cooked for another minute. The Crumpets are ready for lots of melted butter and your choice of topping! * Note: The Crumpets can be cooked without turning over – simply allow the top to completely dry. The finely grated zest of 1 Lemon can also be added to the Batter to give a lemon bite. If fresh Yeast is not available, use 2 teaspoons dried Yeast. Mix with the Flour and Salt, and then add the water and leave to rise, as above.




The following was copied straight into the Compose Editor.


HOME-MADE CRUMPETS

Quantity: - Makes approx: 20 crumpets

Preparation Time: About 1 hour

Ingredients:

• 450gms (1lb) Plain Flour
• 15gms (½ oz) Salt
• 15gms (½ oz) Fresh Yeast
• 600mls (1 pint) warm water

Method:

Sieve the Flour and Salt. Mix the Yeast with a few tablespoons of the warm water. Whisk three-quarters of the remaining warm water into the Flour and then add the yeasty liquid.
Cover and leave in a warm place until the mixture has risen.
Once it has risen, check the consistency. If the Batter is very thick, loosen it with the remaining water. The Batter should now be left stand for 8–10 minutes.
Warm a non-stick frying-pan on a low heat. Grease some Crumpet rings or small tartlet rings and rub the pan with Butter.
Place the rings into the pan and pour some mixture into them until it reaches half-way – about 5mms -1cm (¼-½ in) deep. Cook the crumpets on a low heat until small holes appear and the top has started to dry. The base of the Crumpets will now be golden and it can be turned over and cooked for another minute.
The Crumpets are ready for lots of melted butter and your choice of topping!

* Note: The Crumpets can be cooked without turning over – simply allow the top to completely dry.
The finely grated zest of 1 Lemon can also be added to the Batter to give a lemon bite.
If fresh Yeast is not available, use 2 teaspoons dried Yeast. Mix with the Flour and Salt, and then add the water and leave to rise, as above.




My Observation:

When copying straight from a Word doc to Blogger, to avoid formatting problems, it would appear that you should copy to the Compose mode editor, or if you want to use the html editor, you have to reset the formatting.

Apart from that, I can't find any other formatting errors, but I ask myself; "Why even use MS Word? With 'draft' available on blog editors?"


TOP

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Copy / Paste from Word - without Fear?



I have been astounded, several times in my life, mainly by the simplicity of things which I thought intricate and complex.

Today, David Kutcher, wrote:

"I've been using computers for forever. Control-C, Control-V. Copy/Paste.

But I never knew about Shift+CTRL+V until yesterday? Wow.

What's the difference you ask? Lets say you're making a blog post and you're copying content from a Word document to Blogger. If you copy/paste with Control-C and paste with Control-V, it'll bring over a ton of awfully formatted content and extra Microsoft tags, making your markup a disaster.

But, if you paste with Shift+CTRL+V, it'll paste without that extra junk markup.

Mind. Blown."


I think that's the greatest news (for some newbie bloggers), since sliced bread!

Thank you, David ! My mind's blown - too! But, how is this different to copying directly into the Compose Editor?


TOP

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Information. Where Do You Get It?



Having been a Helper on the Blogger Help Forum, for a number of years, a TC if you want to call me that, I am constantly searching for reasons, as to WHY things go wrong, and where I can find out what's being done, so I can give the best advice.

I am constantly disappointed by Blogger and their lossy (if you're not happy, bad luck. We can afford to lose you) attitude. This company is so big, and spread so wide, that the individual blogger, with a problem, is of little or no concern. How do I know that? Just try finding out what's happening - currently.

The areas I investigate, and expect to be disappointed, are Known Issues, and Blogger Status. How else am I to find out if a problem has been reported, is being worked on, or even exists?

For example, a few bloggers have reported problems with YouTube. I looked in both the usual places ...





Sadly, these provided no help, or insight, at all. In fact, Known Issues hadn't been updated for nearly 3 YEARS!! Why do they even have it? Padding?

Get with it, Blogger!

TOP

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Blocking, or Stopping, a Google+ Follower



(See Updated post.)
Sometimes, someone likes your blog, and will Follow it from his/her Google+ Circles, or using his/her Google+ Profile. That's a compliment! However, some bloggers may not wish to have this 'strange' person Following their blog. To them, it is like having a stalker, I'd imagine. It's someone scary and not wanted - definitely to be rid of. Why? I don't know, but it happens.

So, how do you Block some un-wanted Follower? Simple. For this example, I've chosen (the dastardly) David.

Step 1 - Choose the un-wanted Follower from the gadget images ...



Step 2 - his/her Profile will be displayed. Click the little gear-wheel icon, and a drop-down menu appears. Click on Report/block (name)



Step 3 - Now, the tricky part. You get to choose what you want to do - crucify the person, just mutilate him/her, or beat him/her up a little. JUST JOKING, folks! Seriously, though, you can do some damage here to a Follower who may be innocent of all wrong intentions. Just Block him/her. Don't go Reporting his profile - unless he/she deserves it.



That's it!

TOP

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

File Formatting, and MS Picture Manager



Last month, I was uploading heaps of photos to the website, for my Family Tree, when I came across a problem. The photos were not appearing - in fact, they weren't even uploading! "Oh, sh*&/%$, what could be wrong?" After repeatedly cursing, gnashing teeth, and scratching my head, or all, at the same time, ('cos I'm male, and have proved I can do many things at once), the 'penny dropped'. File format! Check it, and at the same time, find out which file formats this damned site accepts (another multi-tasking experience).

Having sourced the photos from many places, including the web, and there are many different file formats... BMP, PNG, TIFF, JPEG, GIF, RAW, PPM etc, it was a good bet that some were maybe corrupted, or of the wrong format. Ironically, the photos I was having trouble uploading were PNG format. Apparently, the site I was adding them to, didn't accept that format! Bingo... but, what was I to do about it? - *&^%$ !

From experience, I remembered that MS Picture Manager has an Export feature for file format changes, and file replacement. This was a must, to solve my problem.

1. Open MS Picture Manager and upload the questionable image.
Click on File, then Export.





2. Check the image is all set for export




3. Select the File Format you require




4. Replace the File and Save




This could be the answer to some people's problems uploading images in Blogger, too, although Blogger allows several format types.

TOP