WordPress, Birthday, and More Banners

September 1, 2006 Posted by Tyler Cruz
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Hey all, I’m back. I guess I’ll keep blogging… but I’ll admit that my heart isn’t as into it as it used to be, as a result of the recent problems I’ve been having with Blogger, WordPress, and YouTube. But, I’ll try to stick with it…

  • WordPress
  • Birthday
  • More Banners 

WordPress

I’m brand new to WordPress, and so it will take me quite a while to get used to it. Blogger was fantastic. It had only one major downside to me: creating/editing posts was a major chore. Their “rich” toolbar system made formatting frustrating to say the least. If you added bullets, you’d usually have to go back and tweak all your text to make it actually work. Adding an image through their image uploader area would work simply awesome, when it did work. However, for me it worked about 5% of the time.

I would waste so much time with Blogger’s editing system, in fact, that it usually took me about twice as long to write a post, simply because I’d have to fix all of the formatting areas it made, or because often it’d ‘eat’ content I wrote.. it just vanished!

However, the final strike was when it refused to display links with a ? in them, such as dynamic URL’s. When YouTube was down and not uploading my video, I had decided to use Google Video, but when I tried to enter their dynamic URL into Google’s Blogger (you’d think both sites being the same company would work with each other easily), Blogger would always strip away everything after the ? in the URL.

Anyhow, so I’ve switched to WordPress. To be honest, I’m not really liking it. But I have no other choice really – sure, I could try another blogging system, but I’m not made of time, and importing would be a mess again anyhow.

Here are my thoughts and comments on WordPress so far:

Bad

  • So far, their ‘rich’ toolbar is no better than Blogger’s, however I haven’t had any major problems yet. 
  • I can see nowhere to change my font size or colour.
  • There is no easy image uploader. I can’t believe there isn’t.
  • WordPress Themes really suck. There are some beautiful ones for sale on TemplateMonster, but otherwise the free ones available suck. You basically have to get it custom-made if you want anything decent.

Good

  • It uses MySQL. This means no ‘republishing’ everytime a template is changed, unlike Blogger. It also allows me to make backups easier, instead of downloading a lot of files, I can download one dump.
  • It is far more custom. You can download various plug-ins, which is probably the biggest difference from Blogger.
  • I do not need Blogger.com to be up in order to write to my blog.
  • There is a developer community within WordPress, meaning important issues are addressed usually faster than Google.

Now, there’s a lot to customize and learn, and there’s a lot of template things I need to work on, such as adding many of the elements from my old design. What I will be doing is adding a few new things each blog post. I plan to do it this way so that I don’t overwhelm myself, and because I’m extremely busy these days. So, expect to see a few new improvements each time there’s a new post here.

This time, I’ve made the following changes:

  • Finished adding my blog link exchanges to the right side.
  • Added the 468×60 banner again (paid advertiser)
  • Made old images which weren’t viewable from the conversion available again.

I have two more matters with WordPress to address before I’ll move on:

There are many things that I do not know how to do. Therefore, since many readers here are experienced WordPress users, I’ll be asking a lot of questions for the next little while.

I’ll start with these:

1. How can I remove the categories option completely? Is there an ‘easy’ way, meaning no modifications or plug-ins, or am I forced to categorize my posts?

2. How can I add the date at the top of each post like I had in my old Blogger template. Is this easy to do?

3. How can I add RSS feeds again? My old RSS feed is now gone, so people won’t be seeing them anymore since I’ve switched blogger softwares.

4. What are some recommended WP plug-ins?

5. How can I change my font size with the rich toolbar? Is there a way?

Lastly, I’d like to request some money :) You see, I hate this new design as much as you do, but WP doesn’t have much to choose from in terms of quality. Anthony said he designs WP themes – but for $250 + coding, so I’m guessing $350 or so. I’m broke now, having spent every penny and going to continue to spend every penny, towards my new place and towards taxes.

I also don’t like the idea of paying for a blog design, when really I’m not making money from the blog. Sure, I have one banner, and the odd paid plug, but I just don’t like the idea of shelling out so much money just to make this blog prettier for others. Therefore, if any WP designers are willing to design me something for free, give me a shout (twcruz (at) hotmail.com is my MSN). I’d appreciate it! If nobody comes forward within a week or so, I’m thinking of having a donations area here and will try to raise the money to get it skinned.

Birthday

Yesterday I turned 23. How depressing. I’ve never been big on birthdays.. but now I hate them more than ever. I feel I’m so freakishy old. I feel my ‘success’ it about 5 years too late; I feel I should have accomplished so much more by this age. However, I can make the excuse that I didn’t really start into this game until I was a lot older than when most kids now start… that’s my excuse nonetheless…

Anyhow, Lisa came over in the evening and brought me a bunch of gifts (I told her not to a billion times but does she listen? No, she doesn’t. She brought over a bunch of food (pizza, chicken wings, pop, etc.) which I really enjoyed, a few presents, and two things which I thought I’d share here since I think you’d may be interested:

A PublisherForums shirt! I was surprised, mainly because I was surprised she knew how to grab the logo from the page, lol. Her favourite site is CookingForums by far, and so I should get a CafePress store up for that sometime soon…

um

And here’s the cake she brought! 

um

More Banners

I received these banners from my banner guy a while back, but didn’t have the time to post them. Here’s a few of them:

um

You can view all of them here. If you like them, I used BannerAgora for them. If you use them, do me a favour and pass my name along.

Anyhow, that’s all for now. I don’t want to write too much as I’m still getting used to WordPress.

Good luck, and good earnings!

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Posted: September 1st, 2006 under Blog Related  

18 Responses to “WordPress, Birthday, and More Banners”

  1. Matt Stidham says:

    I wonder how many cakes have been decorated with the acronym “CTR”?

  2. Tyler Weaver says:

    I was thinking the same thing…

    For the categories thing, you could probably just leave them all uncategorized and then just remove the part that has the categories from the templates.

    Or you could start using them.. They are typically pretty good for new blog readers to read all historical posts on a specific topic they like.

  3. Andy says:

    1. Go into the template file and remove “, 2006 under ”

    2. Add to index.php within the post while. Use http://php.net/date to display it how you want

    3. Add ” title=””>RSS anyway. I advise you add it in the sidebar

    4. Hello dolly rocks :)

    I advise you use Windows Live Writer (beta) for posting, it’s great :)

  4. Andy says:

    Hmm, wordpress didn’t like my html/php. Message me on MSN and I’ll send it over.

  5. Vik says:

    Happy bday Tyler. And I hear you on feeling old. I recently turned 26 and feel like life is about to end. Don’t know how people survive once they reach 30 :-)

  6. Kyle says:

    To help you out a bit:

    1. There is most certainly an upload images (and other files too) option in wordpress. It’s right underneath the write screen. Here’s a screenshot:
    http://warpspire.com/misc/wp_upload.png

    2. Have you looked through the theme browser? http://themes.wordpress.net/ Don’t judge wordpress themes by their thumbnail either, because of the options tab that they allow – many themes have doezens of alternate appearences all in the same package.

    3. To remove categories, just remove instances of

    4. To add the date, add

    5. Your RSS feeds are most definitely still here: http://tylercruz.com/wp-feed.php You just need to put in some .htaccess redirects.

    6. Changing your font size/color is the job of the CSS, not the blogging platform. Edit style.css inside the theme directory for this.

  7. J says:

    I’m quite sure there is an easy image uploader. It’s usually right underneath your textbox. Just have to set the folder permission right and it works like a charm.

    Becareful of spams though. Won’t take long before the bots start flocking in.

  8. Ben says:

    To insert the date for each post you should use the_time():

    For writing posts, I’d recommend the Performancing for Firefox plugin – you open up a post editor right in Firefox and can access no matter where you are. http://www.performancing.com

    Categories can’t be completely removed, but you certainly aren’t required to use them. Just delete any PHP snippets that reference categories.

  9. Matt L says:

    Don’t sweat the age thing. Most of us will live to be over 100 if we take care of ourselves. I didn’t start on the Internet until the age of 28 (gasp). People can learn business savvy at any age, but we don’t really start picking up the wisdom until 25 or later anyway. We think we’re wise at that age, but we all look back and know better.

    Enjoy being 23. Most people have an itching desire to slug someone who says “I’m 24 now… I’m so old.” Don’t be that guy :)

  10. Andy (another one) says:

    I also have recently turned 26 and feeling the same things. I have only just started thinking about the Internet entrepeneurial thing, insprired by you I might add. Happy Birthday!

  11. asceth says:

    Like J said there will be tons of spam bots coming in sooner or later. I’ve done a couple wordpress installations and themes and found that http://unknowngenius.com/blog/wordpress/spam-karma/ spam karma 2 blocks most of the spam bots or at least asks you to moderate comments it can’t decide on. It does pretty well and will save you headaches later on.

    Make sure to enable the one option that allows legit people to enter a captcha if their comment is seen as “spam”. That usually happens if someone gives two links in a post or more which bots do, hence why it is caught but real people would be able to do the captcha saving you even more emails about “I can’t comment something.”

    Oh and http://www.wp-plugins.net is a great resource for wordpress plugins. Happy Birthday!

  12. Jeff says:

    For a image uploading tool try: http://tinyurl.com/l2x43

  13. Tom says:

    Hey Tyler –

    I come to your blog a lot and I really enjoy it, I would hate to see you stop writing.

    As for the birthday thing, I just turned 23 in August and I feel the same way you do. I feel like I should have a lot more money, etc but with the money you’re making today, I think that’s more than great. You already have money saved up to put down a downpayment. Right now, I have an apartment and I haven’t even thought of buying a house at my age. I think you’re doing extremely well! Hey, I even have friends that are 25-26 that are still living at home with an $8/hr job bagging groceries ;) At least you’re not in those shoes.

    Happy Birthday and keep on earning and keeping us updated.

    Tom

  14. Goo Theory says:

    And here I was thinking it said C++ on the cake.. I’m too old school I guess.. ;)

  15. Danila says:

    What places you recommend about this topic

    actually

  16. WordPress is by far the best blog publishing platform out there that’s free. There are soooo many free WordPress templates out there…you just have to hunt for them. I’ve found several that are quite slick. Hang in there buddy, maybe I’ll create a WP template site.

  17. Tom says:

    My god you guys are pathetic. How can you feel old at 23 or 26? Honestly, I see 26 year-olds and I think “kids”.

    About the time John Glenn was going into space most recently, my grandmother was telling me she was too old to do something or other. I said “Old people do all sorts of stuff. Look at John Glenn.”
    “John Glenn’s not old” she said.
    “Well, he’s 77 now.”
    “See!” she cried. “He’s just a kid!” My grandmother was in her 90s at the time.

    Anyway, 23, 26. Whatever, it’s so young. You are young enough to try anything and fail 3-4 times yet. You could give up on the internet and go to med school and give up on medicine and become hobo poets and get tired of that and move on to something else before you’re actually even middle aged, let alone old.

    My god you guys are pathetic. You should be revelling in your youth not moaning about getting old. I think when you hit your late 50s it’s hard to find energy to work and play like you once did, but I felt as strong at 36 as I did at 26.

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