Thursday, February 09, 2006

Confessions of A Bloggar

OK People. I have a confession to make. I frequently use a third-party editor for my blog. It is called W.Bloggar. My confession is not that I use this blogging tool. Rather, my confession is to you, my fellow bloggers, for not having mentioned it before. (*hangs head in shame*)

I just spent the better part of 2 hours working on my last post using the standard Blogger ™ editor . I usually try to take great care to get things just right. After I complete writing a post, but before publishing it, I usually copy and paste it over to Word. I prefer the spell checker in word, and also I then have a backup copy should anything go awry while posting to Blogger. (I've been burned too many times to not have a backup copy before publishing.)

Anyhow, I spent the last couple of hours doing my last post, when I see this funky message down just beneath the Blogger text editor. It said something like "Connection to Blogger has been lost, saving or publishing may fail." Then it gives you a link to test the connection to see if it is up yet. I clicked on the test link, and the same message cam back again! Now what do you do?

So I went overboard with backups. I had my copy in word. I copied and pasted the post into my Gmail email account (which also is an HTML editor) and emailed it to myself. Then I opened up W.Bloggar. I copied and pasted the post into W.Bloggar, clicked on the Save and Publish button, and voila! It was posted to Blogger! I didn't have to wait for blogger to come back up, and I didn't lose my post either.

W.Bloggar has saved my bacon a number of times! From the W.Bloggar FAQ page, here are a few excerpts to describe W.Bloggar:
The w.bloggar is an application that acts as an interface between the user and one or more blog(s); in other words, it is a Post and Template editor, with several features and resources that the browser based blog editors do not offer. Because w.bloggar runs over the Windows GUI, it allows the user to edit posts without being connected to the Internet. Posts can be saved locally; and anytime the user wants to publish a new text, one click on the w.bloggar icon in the system tray brings up the editor, and one more click will post it to the weblog.
W.bloggar lets you compose your post off-line. You don't have to be connected to the internet. You can save your post on your own computer, so even if your connection to Blogger (or whatever blogging platform you use) fails, you still haven't lost your post into the ether!

You can also edit your template very easily in W.bloggar. Even if I didn't use it for creating and publishing posts, I would have it just for the ease with which you can edit the template of your blog. In the regular Blogger application, you have to wend your way through a number of screens and tabs to get the template. Then you edit it. Then you save it. The you have to republish your whole blog to have the changes take effect.

With w.bloggar, you click on the template icon, and your template appears in the editing screen. You make your changes, and click on "Post and Publish", and its done!

W.Bloggar also has a feature to attach photos to your post as well. It works OK, but the photo has to be already on the Internet in order to link to it. You cannot upload a photo from your hard drive into w.bloggar (because its just an editor, it doesn't have anyplace to upload and store the photo to on the internet). You may want to publish the text of your post first, and then go back into the regular blogger editor (when its working, that is!) to add the photos.

You can download w.bloggar here, if you are interested in giving it a try. It is freeware. That is you can download and use a fully functioning copy of the software free of charge. If, after using it, you decide that it is worth something to you, you can make a donation to the developers -- but only if you voluntarily wish to donate. (Hmmm . . . I haven't made a donation yet, and the software really is of value to me, so I will probably make a small donation soon.) I have also added a W.Bloggar button on my sidebar. If you click on it, you will be taken to the W.Bloggar home page.

Anyhow, I know that others have been frustrated with the unreliability of the Blogger editor. I have heard the cries and howls of torment, as Blogger has eaten posts that have been so lovingly crafted together. After my experience tonight, I could no longer hold my silence, and let others suffer needlessly. I should have spoken up sooner. I hope you'll forgive me.


Mo Mommy said...

Thanks for the link. I'm going to take a look. Mostly because Blogger LOST 3 full posts the other night. One second they were there, and then "poof" I haven't seen them since. Thanks again!

Woody said...

One of the joys of growing up with a Mom who was (and still is) a strong typist. I took a typing class in junior high, but by then it was all academic. Also, I tend to be a traditionalist when it comes to spell checking. I'm the kind who enjoys the thrill of the hunt. If I make the occasional mistake, I squirrel it away for future reference.

I type nearly every one of my posts in good ol' Wordpad. I include my own html tags because I'm a webbie by training. Copy, paste, and publish. Haven't lost one yet, and Mrs. Woody compiles my stuff every so often for printing.

Geez, I'm an insufferable snot at 1:30 in the flippin' AM. Gotta go to bed.

Marti said...

I always compose posts in Word first and paste to Blogger. As you say, it can be devastating to lose it without backup!

Worse yet when they lock you out of your blog altogether and you have to start all over (said the voice of experience LOL)

Happy Valentine's Day to you and yours!

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