Post by Mark
For the past two days I’ve been working on a redesigned template for this blog. I really don’t have any major problem with the current design but I do think there are a couple of areas that does need addressing. I was planning on working on the redesign in secret and then overnight just surprise everyone with the makeover but I decided going the other route. If large companies like CNN and Amazon are allowing their users to see and give feedback of their redesign while still in progress why can’t I?
Now I still have a lot more work to do on the redesign but you can take a peak at it by going to unex-t.com/blog. This is more or less how the new redesigned site will look like, most of the changes I am currently working on are the smaller details. I probably will replace the header with a newer one, I might not, I am still not sure about that. At one point I was actually thinking of rebranding from 248AM.com to markandnat.com but decided against it the last minute.
Anyway your feedback is welcomed, I still have a lot of work to do and might take your ideas into consideration. Keep in mind there are a lot of things that aren’t working yet or looking strange on the test site. [Link]
Update: Here is a screenshot of how the new design might look with a black background. I am finding it a bit claustrophobic compared to the white background version. [Picture]
Update 2: Here is another option with a black background which I think works better than the version in the first update but I think I still prefer the full white background. [Picture]
Post by Mark
This post is a bit technical but its meant to be a small guide for bloggers who want to post using their phones.
The past two days I have been experimenting with different softwares and ways of moblogging. The easiest way I found to moblog was with a software for my Nokia called Shozu. It’s very easy to use, I just take a picture and a small window pops up asking me if I want to send it to my blog. I could then click yes and it sends it or I click on more options and add more details like a subject title and body copy. But I had two problems with Shozu. The first one is the fact that it resized my images down to a thumbnail size and you could only see the larger picture by clicking on the link. I didn’t like that and there was no option to change it. The second problem I had was that since the software is free, Shozu places their logo at the end of your posts. I also didn’t like that, they should at least have an option where if you pay for the software they remove the logo but they don’t so I looked for an alternative.
After a bit of experimentation and googling I found a better solution (for me at least). It’s not as practical as Shozu but I am in total control of everything. I decided to go with the Blog by Email route and here is what I did:
1) Created two new email accounts
2) Got a plugin for wordpress called Postie
3) Got a software for my Nokia called Resco Viewer
I setup one email account on my Nokia to send emails from. The second email account would be the one I would send my posts to. I then installed the Postie plugin in WordPress which is a must have plugin if you are planning to blog by email. Firstly, Postie allows u to attach pictures and videos to your emails and then posts them for you. it also gives you a lot of other options for example Postie has an option where it could palce the image above or below the body copy, I chose above so it would match my regular posts. Postie could also resize your images and compress them before it posts them which is really important if you can’t resize images on your phone. Finally I purchased the software Resco Viewer for my Nokia. With my phones camera I have two size options when it comes to taking pictures, 1600×1200 and 640×480. The max size for images on my blog is 400 pixels wide. If I wanted to I could take pictures at 640×480 and have Postie resize them for me but by resizing the pictures myself on the phone and compressing the images slightly, the file sizes would be a lot small meaning it would be cheaper for me since I pay per kilobyte.
So the process now goes something like this:
1) I take a picture on my phone at 1600×1200 pixels
2) I resize the image to 400×300 and compress it
3) I send an email to my blog and attach the resized image
4) Postie checks my email constantly, when it finds an email it posts it on the blog under the category Moblogging
Now the biggest problem is my phone doesn’t have a spell checker to expect a ton of misspellings. So thats basically how I will be moblogging while in Paris. I will continue to post regular posts but the photo ones are meant to be something new and something I haven’t done on this blog yet. It should prove to be entertaining.
Post by Mark
The Forum on this blog has a “For Sale” section where users place items they want to sell and other users in the forum can bid on them. There have been a lot of good deals in the forum recently for example, a nearly new Xbox 360 with 13 games, extra pads, and even an extra hard drive got sold for KD200, I personally purchased an excellent condition Apple G4 iBook for KD90, and just a while ago someone sold their 1 month old 4GB iPod nano for just KD30.
If you haven’t checked out the forum yet you should. Its a great place to meet people and there are a ton of things for sale there. Here is the link. [Forum]
Post by Mark
It seems there is someone going around pretending to be me and leaving some strange and nasty comments on various blogs. Well that person is not me and the easy way to tell is from the email address they use. The fake mark uses the email address firstname.lastname@example.org while I use a completely different one. I only post comments on a few blogs and those bloggers know the email address I use.
Just a heads up…