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Experimenting with my blog

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I feel pretty accomplished for today. Most of what I’ve done isn’t something that all of you can see (adding new widgets, plug-ins, etc.) on the blog. Today was more of an accomplishment because I have learned more about how to work my dashboard.

  1. I set up my twitter account and followed jimgroom on twitter. I have to say this was probably the easiest thing I did today. The set up directions were pretty straightforward.
  2. I updated my ds106 profile page. I added twitter to it. This, too, was pretty easy.
  3. I  installed the subscribe to comments plug in a few days ago. This was easy.
  4. The Akismet installation was not very hard, but still a little bit more work than the previous things I’ve listed. I had to go to the Akismet website and sign up there. At first I was worried because I thought I would have to pay for it. But no worries, its FREE. There is a paid option but that is recommended for business websites.
  5. I installed the twitter tools plugin. This required more work that the Akismet set up and I would have been totally confused but there were step by step instructions on the plug in set up page that told me exactly what to do on the twitter site and on the installation site.
  6. This is where things get pretty confusing. I was ready to install the google analytics plug in. But first I went to google to sign up for an account. That was easy. What was frustrating was when I came back to the install page and tried to link my google account to my blog. It just kept telling me that the authentication had an error and couldn’t complete. I saw where it had an option to manually enter a UA code. So I went to google and searched “manually enter a ua code” which brough me to here:             This helped me realize that a google account is not the same as a google analytics account. So I searched “google analytics” on google and it took me to the page where I could set up the analytics portion of my account. This has to be done before the google analytics plug in will work, I believe, because the next time I tried to authenticate it, it worked! I do have to say though, the set up for google analytics was not nearly as helpful as the twitter plug in help. So I haven’t seen a changed on my page and I’ve checked the widgets and don’t see it showing up there. I’m not sure if it is something that is even supposed to show up, but I’m hoping to find out in the next day or so if this install is working properly.
  7. Lastly, I just played around a bit with some widgets and I thought I found a cool widget. It was an enhanced meta widget that allowed me to customize the choices based on the privileges of the page viewer. I could chose what showed up for viewers and what showed up for me when I’m logged in. It was a cool concept, but it broke my page. Fortunately, I had the dashboard open in another tab so I was able to take it off without really breaking anything. This is something I recommend. Always keep your dashboard open in a separate tab or window when you are playing around with things. That way, if you end up breaking your site, you can still get back to the dashboard to get rid of whatever broke it.

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