Saturday, September 08, 2007

Don't Like The Profile Page Element? Make Your Own

Every week, we see questions
I have friends posting in my blog, so it looks like a team blog. But it's my blog, and I want to show only my profile.
or
I want to list a friends profile, even though she's not technically a blog member.
or maybe
I want to add my birthdate (my city, the colour of my hair, whatever...) to my profile. How do I make it look good?
and questions about tweaking the blog template, to accomplish this need, abound.

The Profile gadget, like most "out of the box" blog features, is pretty basic.
  • If the blog has one Member (presumably, you), an excerpt from your personal profile is displayed.
  • If the blog has more than one Member, a Contributors list is displayed, with each entry a simple link to the personal profile of the member.
Very simple functionality, and sufficient for the beginning blogger.

Eventually, the beginning blogger becomes the intermediate blogger, and the questions (as above) start.

Make it easy for yourself, when you want something more in your Profile page element. Don't touch the template (making it complicated if you ever want to upgrade the template).

Just remove the standard Profile gadget from the sidebar, and replace it with an HTML / JavaScript / Rich Text gadget of your own design.

If you know HTML or Rich Text, you can write the equivalent of the personal profile, or the contributors list, in 5 minutes. Or take 15 minutes, and come up with something really shiny.

Use your imagination here.
And with the profile being coded as a gadget, not as a template tweak, it will be transportable if you change templates. Easy to create, easy to maintain, easy to retain.

This is yet one less need to use the template editor, if you have a blog with a designer / layout template. There are a few other techniques that you may consider, if you want to make yourself anonymous in the Blogosphere - but there are few that are easier to do.

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1 comment:

A.G. Iacopino said...

About Me doesn't come up and the widget is deemed saying that it's already added but it doesn't appear in the blog. What if I want to create my own as you said but I don't know html?
Any hint? of do you have a basic profile written in html that I can use and ad my info in rich text?
if you can email me will be great:
antonio.iacopino@gmail.com
Thanks