24 October 2006
FO, and Some Stress Relief
Stylish, yes? It's not blocked yet, because as usual I'm too impatient to get the pictures taken. I know it's short, but I like it that way. The cashmere & silk content of the yarn made me think it was perfect for a cravat/ascot-type scarf. With all those lacy holes, it wouldn't be warm enough and might, I think, look kind of odd as a tradional-length scarf, because it's obviously not for winter wear. I think it's perfect for the kind of weather we have right now, which makes it exactly the kind of scarf I most needed - enough to keep the wind off your throat and fill in the cracks in spring/fall jackets, but not enough to make you sweaty on the subway platform.
HOW TO SPEND LESS OF YOUR LIFE BEING FRUSTRATED BY BLOGGER:
I notice that Blogger's frequent refusal to upload images and its occasional refusal to do anything at all is driving lots of people nutso. I used to be one of these people, but then I came up with a solution that makes much life much, much easier. Here's what I do:
1. I compose my posts in another program, and only copy and paste them into the blogger post window at the last possible second, to preview and publish, zap. I use a database program (Filemaker) because I happen to have it and use it all the time for my dissertation, so it's easy. But you could also use a word processor. I like my database, though, because I end up with a nice, easily browsable record of all my posts (though without the images) that's much easier to scan through than the archives of my blog.
2. I copied the code blogger uses for displaying images and for inserting links into the post text, and I keep them available in my database file (you could also put them in a word processing file and either save it as a template, or just always open that same file, but "save as" something different after you've added your original text for a particular post). This way I don't have to wait for blogger's image uploader thingy to provide that code (since the code is very simple and the same every time, and Blogger refuses to offer it half the time...)
3. I store all my images on PhotoBucket.com, and link to them from Blogger, rather than storing the images directly in blogger. PhotoBucket's uploader is much easier and more reliable than Blogger, and all I have to do on Blogger is paste the URL from PhotoBucket into the code I already have ready and waiting for me (see #2).
4. I can take as much time as I like to compose the post - or stop in the middle - without ever even opening Blogger. I log in to Blogger only to paste in and send off the post. 30 seconds, max. That means Blogger is usually working reliably for the length of time I need it. Not always, of course, but usually. :-)
Ah, life is so much better now.
So, here's the code I use - the stuff in square brackets is what needs to be replaced each time. Don't leave the square brackets in, but DO leave in all other brackets and punctuation.
To link to another web page:
<a href="[URL, or address, of the web page]">[Name of page that
will appear on screen]</a>
To place an image on the page at the right size for Blogger, with a link to another page (a bigger version of the image, for example). Note: this code contains the maximum image size for MY template (320 pixels) and the alignment and border settings that I chose (centered, no border). If you want something different, just go to one of the old posts where you did it the blogger way, and look at it in the "Edit HTML" tab. You should see similar-looking code for the images. Copy that instead of mine:
<a href="[URL of the web page the image should link to (can be same as image URL)]"><img style="DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 320px; CURSOR: hand; TEXT-ALIGN: center" alt="[you can put text in here that will show up if/when the image is unavailable or someone is browsing on a slow connection and has chosen not to see images. Or leave it blank.]" src="[URL of the image]" border="0" /></a>
To make text bold, but <b> before the text in question, and </b> after it.
For italics, make it <i> and </i>
For strikethrough, make it <del> and </del>
To center one line of text, put <center> at the beginning and </center> at the end.
To set one paragraph off as a quote (I think it pushes the left margin in and puts it in italics), put <blockquote> at the beginning, and </blockquote> at the end.
I think that's as much HTML as I've ever used in a blog post. If you want more, go to W3Schools.
But I have a question, involving Flickr. I like Flickr a lot, and it has lots of really cool features. But call me a total fool - I can't for the life of me find the URL for the picture itself (not the Flickr page that displays some version of the photo on its own site). I know many of you post your Flickr pictures to your blog - where is the URL??? Please help. Flickr has a much easier means of uploading, although it does involve downloading some software. I think I'd still use both Flickr and PhotoBucket, as a means of organizing different photos for different purposes, but it'd be nice to know how to post the Flickr images directly (btw, I know you can select a photo on Flickr and choose "blog it" but I hate that, as it takes all your control away and seems to allow only one pic per post in any case).
Spider, et al.: balzam is really good in tea, too! Yowza!
Beth: I know, I know. I'm getting to it NOW, I swear, since the scarf is done. The good news is that I don't have to ship it - we're going to see the in-laws for xmas. So, yes, I'm probably even going to wait to felt them until we get there. Officially, this is so they'll get a better fit. Really, it's because I hate felting in commercial machines. But I still need to start knitting asap.
Miscellaneous note: in burbling to Hubbster about all the lovely Rhinebeck posts out there and how sad I am that I missed it, I inadvertantly referred to the event as "Yarnbeck" several times without noticing what I was saying.
I'm going to go sing Laura's song some more now.