Friday, June 27, 2008
Plenty New Features for Google’s Blogger
Embedded comments, and star ratings
Google’s Blogger has a couple of new features available at the special Blogger Draft
site. Among these changes are:
- Star ratings: Let your visitors vote from one to five stars. You will then be able to see the average rating for a particular post. You can find this feature at your Layouts page; click Edit at your Blog Posts element, and check the Show Star Ratings box.
- The ability to put the comments form embedded below the post. Blogger’s old comments functionality had very low usability for a couple of reasons; one of them was that it took you to a separate layout when you wanted to comment. To enable this change bringing better integration, switch to Settings -> Comments, and in the Comment Form Placement segment check the “Embedded below post” box. Click Save Settings to approve. Who would’ve thought the day would come...
- Integration into Google Webmaster tools. You can now follow a dashboard link reading Webmaster Tools. Automatically, all your Blogspot blogs will be added to the tools suite, though they still remain to be verified. With Google webmaster tools, you can utilize statistic information and diagnostics, for instance.
- Exporting and importing your blog. Google announced you can now export all of your blog posts into a single (Atom-formatted) XML file to allow for a backup... or perhaps, to allow to move to another blogging system, or do something else with the data. Reversely, you can also import that file back into your system. To give this a try switch to the Settings page for your blog; you’ll find the links “Import blog” and “Export blog” on top. Exporting will trigger a download named e.g. “blog-06-27-2008.xml” (this might fare better with the ISO date format yyyy-mm-dd).
- A new post editor. The new post editor has a different image handling. Google says, “When you upload an image to the new post editor it will appear as a thumbnail in the image dialog box. That way, you can upload several images at once, and then add them into your post at your convenience.” Also, the HTML editing mode saw a couple of improvements; <br>eaks won’t be added automatically, and there will be a clearer formatting with new lines for generated HTML.
These features are also further detailed in the Blogger in Draft blog. If you don’t want to always visit the special draft.blogger.com URL, you can now also make the Draft mode your default mode; look for the checkbox reading “Make Blogger in Draft my default dashboard” at the top of your dashboard.
[Thanks DPic and Mrrix32!]
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