2007/01/27

New Blogger Really Is New Coke

Well you'd never guess to look at it, but Blognonymous has been on New Blogger since about midnight, and you know what...BFHD! It ain't all that.

Aside from taking an hour, the transition went smoothly enough. But here's the thing: Google will never be able to retire 'Blogger Classic'--at least not without pissing off users who've made substantial mods to their templates--maybe 25% of us. They didn't even try to convert mine--just put me into what I'm going to call Blogger Compatibility Mode. Blogger ClassicLike a Win98 user who can't upgrade, I'm stuck with the old functionality for my luddite template. And you know what, I'll never switch unless they force me. I don't have the time to learn their new template language and won't risk their transition process. So...hierarchical archives? Not on Blognonymous. Drag & drop template editing? Nope. About all I'm getting out of this is post labels, and I'm not even sure how to format them yet.

And what about self-hosting? Well now...seems Google is really interested in getting you to point your domain at one of their servers. Drag-and-drop template editing doesn't work without it, but again consider what you lose. The ability to back up your blog? Shell access to your host so that you can make custom changes, add complex functionality, or prevent Google from deleting...whatever they want? You betcha!

Yes, there are some definite advantages to New Blogger--I'll probably explore post feeds in a day or two--but like New Coke one wonders, "What's the point?" and I just can't shake that faintly bad taste in my mouth.

Oh! Almost forgot...New Blogger eats comments.

23 Comments:

Yeah they had the option of signing into old blogger for awhile there but now (as of yesterday) they forced me to make the switch. It seemed to go o.k. but who knows what I lost in the process. :/
You know I hated it when I first switched, but I love it now. Even though I'm using a template that just calls the post and comments section so you have to see an archive page in order to see more than one post, I love playing with the template.

I can't code, but I'm learning to understand and fiddle with what I have, at least enough to modify it when I want. If you had seen the template I started with, the hideous colors and rounded corners and boxes everywhere...

Check out the new blogger hacks, there might be widgets that do what you want. It will be okay.

And I hated the New Coke.
Yeah, and that New Coke sucked. I don't like New Blogger. Not one bit.
BTW, what I would give to see you in costume at Texas RenFair. :-)
I could care less about the drag and drop functionality - most of what I wanted to do could be performed with cut and paste and a minimal knowledge of HTML. Like throwing a break tag in once in a while when two sidebar graphics overlapped, for instance. Nonetheless, I eventually was forced to switch when it became evident that they had deliberately put the Old Blogger sites on their most ancient and/or problematic servers and hard drives.
What worries me is the impact on privacy of having nearly everything I do go through this google account. Never mind the commercial datamining that one must concede is the reason that all these 'free' services are offered without cost. I'm thinking of whatever future (or current and clandestine) NSA programs may wish to aggregate all the bloggers' activities together into one convenient spot for harassment or even quasilegal sanctions.
James...hopefully nothing. I'm guessing here, but if you've got access to the new template functionality, then they succesfully converted it, and you probably didn't lose thing.

Deb... I can't even get access to the new template formatter. Doesn't even show up and probably won't until I agree to go their 'conversion' process.
Old Broad... I'm with you New Blogger, like New Coke is a big freakin' snoozer. (And that RenFair thing...no pictures survived, thankfully!)

SadButTrue...there is only one solution to the Google/NSA/Blooger-on-crappy-equipment thing: Self-host. It's the only way to go. Course you'll need your own domain, but hey, you're blog name is original enough. Shouldn't be a problem.
Wow! I'm so glad I started a test blog instead of converting. The test works great, and I basically use it the same as I do the Old Blogger, "edit html" just for pasting stuff and changing pic links to point to the websites where I found them rather than to Blogger's pic servers.

I may yet convert, but so far it won't let me. Not sure why. Not sure I care, as long as I can still access it as is.

Good luck finding fun-stuff to play with on the New B, Frog!
The bastards got me too! Went to post today and they forced me to sign up! I even thought I'd change my template, but since they didn't offer one that had what I wanted (a place to put a picture in the header) I stuck with the old. Then, to make matters worse, I signed up for AdSense, and tried to follow the link and ended up at a page of nothin' but code.
Hey Lew, if I can help with Adsense just drop me an email. I think I've pretty much got it figured out.

Sorry they forced you to switch. Though I have to say that, for the moment, I'm pretty glad I've got access to the old template.
kvatch....
I also haven't switched yet and yes I'll probably be forced too at some point in time.

Just what is involved in hosting or having your own domain? What would it require as far as equiptment and the like? Or could you have someone else hosting the site and still retain the template your currently using or would you have too create your own template?

Any suggestions or ideas?

God Bless.
Well that was fun. Took me three times for it to post comment.

God Bless.
I too was able to switch last night. Other'n some initial comments being turned annonymous issues, all went fine.

I do write on some blogs that haven't switched over yet, as do some my co-authors. THAT is still an issue. . .

I have the option to switch my template available, but have no intentions of touching it!
Yeah. I switched a few weeks ago, and the only thing I thought was cool was being able to label posts. I tried to switch to the new template, but it got way too complicated, so I switched back.

I'm fine with how things are right now (although you know I love me some 3C), so whatevs. You get what you pay for, I guess.
I miss my original froggy template. This feels uncomfortable.
AnonP...too much to talk about in a comment. I'll do a post on the subject later today.

John...yeah me too. About 20 comments when "anonymous" when I switched. Frustrating.
Mags... That's an important piece of information! One can switch back? Cool. Hey, if you want to do 3-column send me an email and I'll cut the sections of my template that make it happen. Once I found the magic formula for widths and floats, it worked great...well...at least in Firefox (win/mac), Safari, and IE7.

Jim, welcome to Blognonymous. Are you saying you like the 2-column layout?
kvatch... I have not switched but I have backed up everything in preparation... I found a nice program, freeware, that backs up your blog, images and the whole shebang... You need a good size hard drive if your blog is very large. My main politics page was 120 megabytes with all the individual posts archived. You can browse offline in this archive and it looks just like surfing around in your online blog.

Not sure how blogger would take to using one of their store-bought templates on another server but, what the hey... None of my pages are stock templates anyway...

Google :: HTTrack

It will take you to their site for the program...

Hope this helps...

Regards
- fc
kvatch...
I generally use either Netscape 7.2 or Netscape 8 and your site views with no problems.

Haven't tried to sign in yet the last couple days into my dashboard so don't know if they'll let me.

I am able though to leave comments using my blogger name and pswd so I will just have to wait and see.

I'll watch for that post though, thanks.

God Bless.
I was forced over some time ago, and fortunately my template made it in one piece. But then, it's hard for even Google to screw up plain vanilla!

I have authorization to buy my own .com/net from the war department, but I've been hedging. Glad I did. Your comments were revealing.

It's free, as long as you.....

Sigh....and what else is new, right?
FC... I actually back my blog regularly--'bout once a week. Transmit, my file transfer program, does a good job of keeping my local copy and my remote copy in sync. As for the Blogger templates, you can use any of their stuff whether you host your self or not. Not a lot they can do about it.

AnonP...the post is coming. Tonight or tomorrow morning.

TFWY, didn't understand that second comment, but regarding Google, I just don't like having things on servers that they control. Also, when Blogspot goes down, Blognonymous stays up because I self-host.
I moved my non political blog last night (you've been to the political one (Liberty Lost).
I don't care - one thing Blogger has been since way back in the the pre 2003 Pyra Labs says is "in transition" and often busted.

I'm with you on learning the new language of "New and Improved" Blogger. It's too much effort.
I found this link that explains all the new terms and conversions from old blogger to new. It will be okay.

Besides, you don't have a whole lot of choice. :)

I'm normally a Pollyanna.
Paul... I suppose I might have chosen Typepad way back when, but the "Typepad Meltdown of 2005" convinced me otherwise. At least with Blogger, I've never lost any of my posts or comments.

Deb... Hey that's a great find. Thanks so much. I probably won't attempt the switch to the new template language anytime soon, but this will be a great help for the future.

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