Update On The New Blog Editor

Greetings Christian Bloggers,

Twenty days ago we announced a new blog editor for the ChristianBlog.Com website and it has been great to see the wonderful feedback that we have received so far about it.

Over the last nearly two weeks have added a number of small new features, updated a few features that needed adjustment, and fixed a few bugs that needed squishing.

Questions & Answers:

There have been a number of questions that we have been asked and we wanted to address as many of them as we can.

Question:

I do not like the new editor and want to keep using the old one, but you say you are doing to do away with the old one. Any chance you would reconsider keeping the old one around?

Answer:

We are looking for ways to solve the issues that you (and others) might be having with the new editor. IF we find we are unable to resolve the vast majority of the issues that you (and others) are having, yes, we will consider keeping the old editor on-line until we can find a way to either resolve, or as close as we can resolve, the issues.

Question:

The new editor is not very (or at all) friendly to tablets and mobile phones. Please, fix it!?!

Answer:

Ok, that is not really a question, but we understand the issue! Yes, the new editor is not very friendly for tablets or mobile phones. This is an issue we are very much aware of. We meant to include this information within our original announcement but failed to, our mistake. At this point in time there is no solution to this issue. Tablets (such as the Apple iPad or Amazon Kindle Fire) are primarily designed to use 'applications' and not be used via web browsers, especially for complex things such as publishing blogs. This is why most other Blog Service Providers do not even offer web-based publication via their websites. While we at least allow it, we realize there are some serious issues - yet one of the few reasons to allow the old editor to remain in place, as it at least works better (but not great) on tablets and phones.

Question/Response:

But, I thought ChristianBlog.Com announced they were building an iPad version of the website?

Answer:

Yes we did announce that we were building an iPad version of the website. We also announced that we were unable to continue to fund the development of the iPad version of the CB website. We knew going into the project that it would be a costly one, however the costs soon began to become much greater than what we could justify. After it reached 3x the cost of our projected costs the decision to shut down development of the project was terminated. We did post a number of notifications to the CB Community seeking comments on whether we should keep it going or if we could put together a fund-drive to continue the development of it, and the end results were that we simply could not justify nor acquire the expenses/funds to continue the project. Regarding an actual "application" that would be installed on the iPhone/iPad/Fire/etc... those typically range in the $60,000 through $150,000 price range for an application the size and scale of what would be required for CB, and that is just to develop the initial version, not taking into account any additional updates. That is simply out of our budget.

Question:

Is there ever going to be an "autosave" feature?

Answer:

This is probably the most asked question we have received. For reasons unknown the autosave feature causes the "Source" button to not work. We spent weeks trying to resolve the issue and could not. As the "Source" is a much more important feature than autosave, we decided to keep the more important feature. That said, we are working on adding a "Save" button that will be located next to the "Publish" button. By pressing the Save button it will save the blog (and corresponding data) to our database. So by just clicking the button every few minutes you can make sure that your blog will be saved to our database and thus be accessible via the 'My Blogs'. We do not have an release date for this yet, but it is something we hope to have finished within the next 45 days.

Question:

When will the "Publish it Later" feature be available?

Answer:

Shortly after we finish the aforementioned "Save" feature. The core of what we need to get the 'Publish it Later' feature working will be developed while developing the 'Save' feature. Bummer, we know!

Question:

The "Paste From Word" option is so helpful, thank you!

Answer:

Ok, not really a question... but, yes, that is a very nice feature of the new editor!

Question:

I just spent x-hours writing a blog and hit the publish button and I lost it all (!!!)

Answer:

Ok, take a deep breath... first, we highly advice (and have since we started the CB website 7+ years ago) that you always write your blogs on your computer, using MS Word, MS Write, or whatever you might use in OSX or Ubuntu. Why? (1) because this will mean you always have a copy of your blog!, and (2) because if the website fails or throws some error message, you do not loose your blog! But, what if you do not take our wisdom and advice? The first thing we recommend that you do is head back to the "publish" page. Do NOT close out your browser! The website tries really hard to save your blog message as soon as you press the "publish" button. It does not always work, but it tries really hard. So long as you do not close your browser, if you go back to the publish page, the website will try to place your blog message back into the message field. If for some horrific reason it does not, try using the old editor and see if it will insert your blog message into that editor. It might work, but it might not. Until such time as we can get the "Save" button working (and even that will not 100% solve the problem) the best advice we can give is... write your blog on your computer in MS Word or such! Than just copy-and-paste it into the CB editor. Really, that is our answer on how to solve this issue. We would just like to point out that we have all lost things on the internet... even the biggest blog service providers loose blogs at times. That is why they too recommend... write your blog in MS Word or whatever. Trust us folks... you will never loose another blog again if you just do that. (well, unless your computer shuts down and you do not save it :-p)

Question:

Can we get a spell checker?

Answer:

Sorry that is just not going to happen. Why not? Because the only spell checker that we have found that works with this new editor requires us sending the blog content to another Service/company that handles spell checking, and our own Global Policies do not allow the ChristianBlog.Com Services to perform such actions with our members content. (that is called privacy rights - us protecting you by following our own privacy policies that help protect you) If you use Google Chrome as your browser you can click on the "Source" button (top row, far right) and Chrome will automatically show you any spelling errors, because Google Chrome has a built in spell checker - but this only works when you click on the "Source" icon.

Question:

How do I make the images be smaller or larger?

Answer:

Once you have added a photograph to your blog, click on the photograph and press the "Image" button (bottom row, near the far right side) and you will be presented with a pop-up window that will allow you to edit the size, alignment and other settings of the photograph. You can use the "Valign" and "Halign" to adjust how much "padding" will be around the photograph, which is useful for helping to keep text from being so close to the photograph. We have attempted to resolve this issue on our end, to a degree, but it might be something that you will want to do above and beyond. You might also want to check the URL of the photograph, especially if you are using a photograph uploaded to your Media Storage. When you upload a photograph we make three sizes of it, and use the smallest version for including in your blog. This is indicated by a "_t" near the end of the URL. You might find it helpful, if you need a larger image, to remove the "_t" from the URL/path of the photograph.

Question:

Why is everything that we "quote" have these weird gray lines next to them?

Answer:

Well, what do you have against the color grey?? On a serious matter, that is the new "quote" style that we have chosen for quoted text. No more ugly blue boxes with micro-sized text.

Question:

How do I get a youtube video to display?

Answer:

Unlike the old editor, getting a youtube video to display is very easy! Just paste the URL of the youtube video into your blog and the magic will happen as soon as you press the "Publish" button. It should also display when you press the "Preview" button (top row of the editor, on the far left) so you can make sure that it is displaying properly. It is important to note that the video will not display inside of the editor itself. Maybe in the future(??)

 

In Closing:

That pretty much wraps up things for now. We continue to seek feedback from our bloggers regarding this new editor. Likewise we hope we have answered most, if not all, of the questions that we have received over the last almost two weeks. If there is a question you have regarding the new editor, please let us know!

@watchmanjohn
John Knox @watchmanjohn ·

Excellent work - thanks

wmj

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