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Posts from April 2013

Spotlight: To the dogs (and cats, and tapirs)!

Each week, we scout for great posts in our Typepad Showcase that fit a particular theme and are guaranteed to inspire. This week, we've rounded up some of Typepad's best animal loving bloggers for a fun Friday trip to the zoo (and the dog park)! Click through each photo and visit, stay awhile, and try to stop yourself from saying awwww! We bet you can't.

Let's go!

The Washington Humane Society (WHS) Field Services Officers have seen it all, and still every day holds never-before-seen situations. Check out the first in their new monthly series of stories from the field:


Every dog lover has wondered at one time or another just how - and what - dogs think. Luckily, Rolling Dog Farm brings us a truly amazing look into the subject via the New York Times:


The Pet Blog Lady is at it again! She recently had the singular opportunity to send interview questions to the one and only (Twitter and YouTube famous!) Loca the Pug, who lives in Belfast, Ireland:


And finally, our good friends at Zooborns bring us more news of Salzburg Zoo's new baby South American Tapir. Here's a clue - it's a girl! Tune in to the zoo's webcam, and submit your own girly name suggestion for baby tapir!


We hope you enjoyed this week's roundup of fantastic Typepad blogs! Check out more great blogs from animal lovers right here. Interested in joining the Typepad Showcase? Submit your blog today - you might just see yourself in the spotlight!

Zemanta Automatic Recommended Links & Posts Feature

You may remember last year when we upgraded our Zemanta integration by adding Related Posts to the Compose page. We've now upped the stakes again by adding their Automatic Recommend Links & Posts feature.

Automatic_recommended_linksThe Automatic Recommended Posts feature does just what you think it does - it automatically adds related posts from your blog to the bottom of your posts. Think of it as the easiest way to add a related posts widget, right from the Compose screen.  Starting today in Beta and for 25% of our subscribers, you'll see the option to automatically insert Recommended Posts from your own blog. This is a great way to generate more page views without doing any additional work.

Additionally, if you choose to sign up directly with Zemanta you can participate in their Promoted Content exchange. This means that your content will be promoted across their network to get you new readers and highly relevant 3rd party content will appear on yours. If you meet their size requirements you are also eligible to earn money by displaying sponsor content.

Also note that when you check the box and turn on automatic recommendations the feature is activated for that post and all future posts until you uncheck it. Past posts are not affected. Please tell us below in the comments if you'd like a simple way to turn on Automatic Recommended Posts for all your posts: past and future.

But why link to other bloggers? What's in it for your readers and, more importantly, for you? We'll let Zemanta answer that for you:

We'll be rolling the feature out to the rest of you within the next few weeks, so keep watching your Compose page!

We do have one known issue right now that we wanted to make you aware of.  If you click the "Automated" related links, make sure not to select any of the links manually. This will cause a duplicate in your posts. 

The folks at Zemanta are working on integrating them soon, but for now, you'll need to just either manually select their related posts OR click the "Automatic" checkbox and update their post, but not both.

Have any more questions?  Our Knowledge Base can help you out or you can click the Help link within Typepad to open a new help ticket.

Typepad 101: How to embed pins and add Pinterest widgets on your blog

Welcome to Typepad 101! Whether you want to add some new features to your blog's design, or simply make your blog more functional, Typepad 101 has you covered. This tip is suitable for bloggers at all levels - no special tricks or upgrades needed!

Pinterest has become one of the most popular ways to curate your passions and share them with your blog readers. We're big fans of how Pinterest works with Typepad blogs, and over time we've shared various tricks with you, from adding a hovering pin-it image to verifying your blog, and lots more.

It's been almost a year since we showed you how to embed a Pinterest pin in a blog post. Recently, Pinterest has made some changes to how embedding pins works, so we're going to go over that today, and as a bonus, we'll also teach you how to add a Pinterest Profile Widget to your blog's sidebar!

Let's get started.

First, let's decide which pin we'd like to add to our post. Go to the pin page, then click the Share button in the upper right hand corner, and choose "Embed". This one looks good:


You'll be taken to the Pinterest Button and Widget Builder, where you can get everything set up for embedding pins now and in the future. Make sure "Pin Widget" is selected, and click the Build It button:


Continue reading "Typepad 101: How to embed pins and add Pinterest widgets on your blog" »

Typepad Release Notes: Spring Fling and Typelist update

Spring Fling - a brand new theme

There's still some Spring left, and we want to celebrate it with the release of a new theme, Spring Fling. 


Bw Bw Coral-floral Coral-floral

With four color variations, Spring Fling is a fun and light design that can beautifully showcase photographs and videos, as well as allow for wide sidebar content. Setup a test blog and try it out today!

Typelist update

To add to the customizations that you can make to your blog via CSS, we've incorporated something that will let you modify individual Typelists. Now with custom IDs, you can style each Typelist added to your blog as separate entities rather than settling for the same style across them all.

But how do you take advantage of that? Easy! After adding a Typelist to  your blog, use your browser to view the source of the blog so that you're looking at its code. Look for your sidebar content where the Typelists exist. In the first DIV wrapper, you'll see an ID. That ID will be a lowercase version of your Typelist title, with multiple words separated by an underscore instead of a space.

For example, if you added a Notes Typelist with the title "Welcome", you'd see the following in your blog's source code:

To style this module, and only this module, you would use the ID "welcome" in your CSS, indicating that it's an ID and not a Class. That would look like #welcome.

#welcome { background-color: #cccccc; }
   #welcome .module-header { border-top: 5px solid #333333; }

The above CSS would set a gray background color to the entire Welcome Typelist, and add a dark gray border to the top of the header. No other Typelists would be affected by the CSS.

If the title of the Typelist was "Welcome to my blog", then your ID would end up as "welcome_to_my_blog" and the CSS indicator would be #welcome_to_my_blog.

This addition means Big and Totally Awesome changes can be made to your blog's design. We'd love to see how you use this new ID option, so make sure you share your changes with the rest of the community in the community forum!

Typepad 101: Choosing Colors for Blog Design

If you've ever created your own blog design, either from scratch or via our Theme Builder feature, you know that choosing just the right colors can be a little daunting. The colors you choose will have an immediate impression on visitors to your blog. Bright and bold colors convey confidence and joy while dark or subdued shades can convey professionalism and a serious tone. Color selection is a way to tell readers who you are before they even read your content.

The Basics

First, bright or unique colors are fabulous but it's very important that your content remain as legible as possible. Consider using bright colors as accents and keeping your post text black or white. If a visitor can't read your content, they simply won't come back. 

Further to that, try to make sure that links look like links. That means they're somehow different from the surrounding text - a contrasting color, bold font, underlined, etc.

Think of color in blog design as spices in your food - the blog text is the star of the show and colors enhance the overall flavor and add personality. If you're unsure about color, add a little bit at a time - you can always change it back if it doesn't feel right.

This Introduction to Color Theory for Web Designers has a great section about contrast and legibility.

Finding Inspiration

One of the great things about color is that it's everywhere we turn. You probably have a favorite photograph or piece of art - would those colors work for your blog? How about an advertisement or piece of fabric that grabbed your attention? There's absolutely no limit to where you can look for color inspiration.

PictaculousIf you are starting with a photo, either to use as a banner in your design or just as inspiration, try uploading it to Pictaculous and the site will spit out color palette suggestions. If you're not great at picking colors yourself, this takes all the guesswork out of the process.

For even more inspiration, look to sites like Colour Lovers and Design Seeds. Both sites have palettes that you can use as starting points with your own design. The color combinations are unique and trendy, which will keep your blog's design on the cutting edge.

Another great way to find colors for your blog's design is to explore sites you're already using, like Flickr or Pinterest. We recommend collecting sources of inspiration and seeing if there are common bonds, like a particular shade or combination of colors.

Where do you turn for tools and inspiration for selecting colors for your blogs? Share your ideas with other Typepad subscribers over at Get Satisfaction. We look forward to being inspired!

Spotlight: Four great blogs that will make you want to get organized!

Each week, we scout for great blogs in the Typepad Showcase that fit a particular theme and are guaranteed to inspire. This week, we've hand-picked four great Typepad blogs that will make you want to get organized. Each of these blogs is guaranteed to captivate, inspire, and make you think - and get ready to start your spring cleaning. Click through the photos below to visit each blog, and see why we think they're fantastic.

Let's go!

Amy is organizing fabric and findings at nanaCompany:


Bari J offers up some fabulous spring cleaning printables for a mere $4.95!


Delightfully Domestic's Ashley tackled her entire apartment:


And Suzanne from Notes from the Patch has cleaning her gas oven burners down to a science:


We hope you enjoyed this week's roundup of fantastic Typepad blogs! Check out more great Typepad blogs right here. We'd love to see your blog in the Typepad Showcase, so go ahead and submit it today - you might just see yourself in the spotlight!

Typepad 101: Hide Design Elements With CSS

Welcome to Typepad 101! Whether you want to add some new features to your blog's design, or simply make your blog more functional, Typepad 101 has you covered. If you're at a plan which doesn't include Custom CSS, you can upgrade to put these tricks to use on your blog.

Is there an element of your blog's design that you simply do not want to display? With a bit of CSS, you can hide an element on your blog, like sidebar module headers.

The CSS needed is the class of the element you want to hide followed by the { display: none; } code. At Design > Custom CSS, you can enter the code and click Save Changes to update your blog. Some examples which you may find helpful are below.

For instance, if you want to hide the URL field on the comment form, you can use the CSS:

#comment-url { display: none; }

Additional information can be found in the article on hiding the URL field in the comment form.

To hide the navigational links which go to the next and previous posts on individual post pages, you can use the CSS: .content-nav { display: none; }

Continue reading "Typepad 101: Hide Design Elements With CSS" »

Typepad 101: Your About Me Page

Welcome to Typepad 101! Whether you want to add some new features to your blog's design, or simply make your blog more functional, Typepad 101 has you covered.

Your blog is all about you.  Your thoughts.  Your ideas.  Your personality.  Doesn't that mean that you need to showcase who YOU are on your blog?  An About Me Page is the perfect way to do this.

All paid Typepad plans come with a default About Me Page that is easy to edit.  Simply go to Account > About Me Page and you'll find this section:

With the default About Me Page, you get to choose many options to add to the Page.  This includes displaying your name, photo, your e-mail address, your URL, any Typelists, and more. Additionally, you can choose the design you want applied to the page.

Your About Me page is located at:

http://<your Typepad domain>

Or, if you have mapped a domain to your entire site:

http://<your custom domain>/about.html

You can display a link in your blog's sidebar that goes to your About Me Page by selecting the Link to Your About Page module Design > Content.

You can read more about the About Me Page in our Knowledge Base.

The About Me Page is limited to two column left layout, so if you're using a different layout on your blog, the default About Me Page may not be best for you.

In that case, we recommend the even simpler option of creating a new Typepad Page.  This new Page will exactly match your blog design.  Simply use the drop down option on the Compose button to create a New Page:

Now just type the information you want to display in the Compose section, like you would any post and save your changes.  Et viola! You're done!

To add this Page to your sidebar, you create a new Link Typelist.

To add it to your Navigation Bar, go to Design > Content, click the pencil icon, and add the new link there.  We have more information on this here.

You can also use the Pages Sidebar Module at Design > Content to add a list of all of your Typepad Pages to your sidebar.  This is also covered in our Knowledge Base.