Saturday, August 10, 2013

Layout: Add A Gadget

We add gadgets using the dashboard "Layout" wizard.



From the "Layout" wizard, find any link to "Add a Gadget".

Choose any one of dozens of interesting and useful accessories, from the Blogger gadgets library.
You might want to note several details.
  1. Some sections of the screen may not allow gadgets to be added.
  2. When you find an interesting gadget, be picky! Gadgets listed as "by Blogger" will be more reliable, in the long run.
  3. Some Blogger provided gadgets are found under "More Gadgets" - not on the main gadget list page of "Add a Gadget". If you don't find the Blogger gadget that you're looking for, look under "More Gadgets" - and again, be selective!
  4. A gadget, as added, will be displayed on every page of the blog. With a little extra work, you can make the gadget appear on a specific page, if desired.

The "Add a Gadget" concept has an interesting history.

Occasionally, we see concerned bloggers asking about their inability to add page elements to their blog.

Besides several key settings in the template, there's a naming problem, which surfaces occasionally.
When I go to the dashboard Layout wizard, I'm given the option to "add a gadget" but not to "add a page element." The Add a Page Element button has never been displayed since I started the blog, so it's not something I broke myself.

Long ago, "gadgets" were called "page elements" - and the "Layout" display was named similarly.

Long ago, we used the "Page Elements" wizard.


What everybody may not realise is that what Blogger used to call "widgets" are now called "gadgets", and adding a "widget" (weird term) / "page element" (boring term) is now called adding a "gadget" (descriptive term).

What we used to call the "Page Elements" wizard may be found as the "Layout" link in the dashboard. If you publish the blog using a dynamic template, layout customisations may not be supported - and you may not have "Settings - Layout".

Of course, there could still be cases where the "Add a Gadget" link doesn't appear, doesn't appear where you need it, or doesn't work for you. You still need to be aware of template restrictions, whether intentional or non-intentional.

When you look at the selections in "Add a Gadget", note the author names, carefully. The gadgets that are not attributed as "By Blogger" are provided by third parties, and should be selected with care. If your blog uses a dynamic template, you'll especially want to use gadgets "By Blogger" - and avoid the "HTML / JavaScript: gadget - as gadgets in dynamic templates require specific code, that you will probably not find in third party accessories.

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4 comments:

Kana said...

Maybe a stupid question, but how do I add a ''gadget'' to a custom blogskin ? I made this myself so I know I should just add blogger tags, but somehow it doesn't work. ...

Chuck Croll said...

Kana,

If you have a custom blogskin, then you (or the creator of the custom blogskin) have to figure out how to make it work. This is a disadvantage of custom, third party code.

It's up to the creator to include compatible code - or not.

Sorry.

http://blogging.nitecruzr.net/2008/08/your-blog-and-third-party-accessories.html

Jennifer Swedenborg said...

is there a gadget to get IN some rssfeeeds into the blog? like a little portal for a couple of friends blogs - i would reaally want to get my friends posts onto my blogg - collected and updated

Chuck Croll said...

Jennifer,

That would be the Feed gadget.