9.Tools

As I have been helped so much I feel that I should pass on some of the “blogging hints” that were given to me. The first one is that, to make life a lot easier, you should turn into a text-file (.txt) whatever you wish to copy in your blog. In order to insert DOCUMENTS (LibreOffice/MsWord/etc.) into a WordPress blog one should first turn them into TEXTFILES (.txt) and edit them in “text editor” if/when required. David Hatton (see “Acknowledgements”) told me how this is done :
1. OPEN the document in its original format (LibreOffice/MsWord/etc.)
2. CHECK it for completeness etc.
3. Left-click “File”
4. Left-click “Save As”
5. Change the letters after the dot (.) to “txt” in the name in the pop-up window (top of screen)
6. Check that the filename now reads “xxxxxxx.txt”
7. Left-click “File type” in the pop-up (bottom of screen) to open the menu of choices
8. Left-click “Text (txt)” in the the roll-down menu
9. Left-click “Save”
10. Left-click “Use Text Format” when asked.
11. DONE. Now close the original document software (Libreoffice/MsWord/etc.)
12. Check that the text-file (“xxxxxxx.txt”) you have created does exist and has been saved.
13. Re-OPEN it in your TEXT EDITOR (e.g. “notepad++” for Windows, gedit” in Linux)
14. Highlight the part of the text-file (“xxxxxxx.txt”) which you wish to insert into your blog.
15. Left-click “Edit”
16. Left-click “Copy”
17. Minimize the text-file (“xxxxxxx.txt”)
18. OPEN the BACK-END of your WordPress blog.
19. Go to the PAGE where you want to insert the part that you have copied in 16 above.
20. Find EXACTLY WHERE in the page you want to insert it.
21. Enter/Return 2 or 3 times to create blank-lines around your cursor position.
22. Left-click “Edit”
23. Left-click “Paste”
24. Check that everything is OK. Clean up if needed.
25. UPDATE
26. Quit your WordPress blog.
27. OPEN the FRONT-END of your WordPress blog for a last check that everything is OK.

The second hint is about retaining the numbering of the pages of the blog. This is not easy as WordPress tends to do this numbering automatically. My own trick (obtained from a blogging forum) is to force this numbering to remain alpha-NUMERIC. In order to enforce this you have to NUMBER your pages yourself without any spacing between the number and the NAME of your page.

The third hint is about creating a “samizdat” of the blog  should America (the self-appointed protector of the Western world!) decide to take your blog off-line. This third “hint” is to create a HARD COPY (a “Samizdat”) of the pages of the blog. When your blog contains anything controversial, its samizdat becomes crucial because of the developments of the “War agaisnst Terror” and because of the efforts of the American “NSA”, and of the CIA to spy on all electronic communications the world over. Even though the American legal system is trying to extend the “First Amendment” protection to electronic communications, it would be no use to you should your blog be taken off-line without any trace. Here is a tedious, but safe and easy, way to create your own samizdat.

1. Open the front-end of your blog.

2. Print out the first blog-page (“About”, “Home”, whatever it is called). Its printed pages will be numbered, for instance, “1 out of 3”, “2 out of 3” and “3 out of 3”. Keep this numbering as well as any other information (date, etc.) as is.

3. Number manually these pages (in this case : 1, 2 and 3).

4. Put them aside, print-down, to start stacking in reverse order.

5. Repeat the same operations (i.e. steps 2 to 4) with the second blog-page .

6. Continue doing this with every single blog-page , until you have printed out (on paper, in samizdat fashion),and manually numbered the whole blog.

7. This printout (on paper) is your samizdat : it is identical to the blog and it can be duplicated in the same way as the Russian scientists used to in the shameful old days of the Soviet regime.

KEEPING YOUR SAMIZDAT UP-TO-DATE

This periodic update is, again, tedious but safe and easy. The following is about major updatings. Handwritten editing is sufficient for typos or small corrections. Usually the major updatings will increase the number of printed pages of the blog-page involved. Let us take an example from this blog. When I added the “safe and easy, way to create your own samizdat” instructions to my “Tools” blog-page , this added ONE more printed page to that blog-page which now includes : “1 out of 3”, “2 out of 3” and “3 out of 3”. In order to avoid re-creating the whole samizdat, here is what you do :

1. Open the front-end of your blog.

2. Print ONLY the NEW “Tools” blog-page. Its printed pages are numbered “1 out of 3”, “2 out of 3” and “3 out of 3”. Keep this numbering as well as any other information (date, etc.) as it is.

3. Number manually these pages : 22, 23 and 23(a) (in the case of our example, see above). NOTE : this “23(a)” saves you renumbering the rest of the samizdat.

4. Manually replace, in your samizdat, the old “Tools” blog-page , which had only two printed pages , with the new one which now has three printed pages. Done!

NOTE : Have a look at “Appendix A” of the book “WORDPRESS the missing manual” (ISBN : 978-1-449-30984 [LSI]). It might help you to shorten the samizdat-creation process. See also : http://my.safaribooksonline.com .

FURTHERMORE

For a blogger who has reasons to fear that his/her blog could be taken off the air the “SpiderOak cloud-saving” is another useful kind-of Samizdat, and even more so if you have preserved its “Zero-knowledge” aspect (see www.spideroak.com ).

Moreover SpiderOak will automatically do for you the up-dating of this “kind-of Samizdat” (with ” Zero-knowledge” as long as you have not disabled it).

On the other hand, do not forget that your “SpiderOak cloud-saving” might also be be taken off the air under the pressure of such “benevolent protectors of humanity” as the USA and its servile allies, including Australia and France. So, my advice is that one should have both of these Samizdats up all the time, and that one should keep the hard-copy permanently up-to-date.

One more warning:

Glenn McIntosh (of « LUV », see Acknowledgements) has warned me that, should a blog become heavily visited, and get a lot of feedback, my Samizdat approach would rapidly get swamped. I have not had to worry about this so far (my own blog could enter the MacMillan Book of Records as the least visited !) but, should your own blog attract lots of feedback it might be worth trying to store separately these feedbacks into a kind of « non-printed USB Samizdat .

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