“Daily Painters Widget”- For The Artistic You

Written by + on July 29, 2010 under Software

Mona LisaInspiration is something you would like to have and why not make sure everyone who reads your blog would have a similar experience? Well, worry about that no more because there is a Daily Painters widget for your blog! Great news, huh? Yes! You could actually get it here.
This widget actually works for a lot of blogs, not just WordPress powered blogs so those of you who have non-WordPress using friends could share the joys of having blog widgets with them. You just need to generate the HTML code that you would like to have on your blog.

Configuring the widget
This widget is something that you don’t configure on your WordPress Dashboard. You configure it before you even generate the code for your blog. Select the color for the text and the border, as well as the background color. You might like to choose colors that go well with the overall color scheme of your blog. However, your colors are limited to the following: black, white, gray, aqua, blue, fuschia, green, lime, maroon, navy, olive, purple, red, silver, teal, yellow.

Once you have already selected the colors, you can copy the code generated and paste it on the sidebar.php file of your WordPress theme or look for the sidebar code on your blog template. (Not sure what a blog theme is? You could check out these blog tutorials.)

Good points of this blog widget:

  • You get really interesting images, which are different paintings) at random.

  • You could use this for any kind of blogging software that allows you to tweak your template.

  • It is a simple to use to widget. (Just copy and paste!)

Not-so-good points of this blog widget:

  • It uses a table to display it. (If you are biased towards a purely CSS layout, this could be such an eyesore, sticking out of the theme or template code.)

  • You are limited to the colors indicated.

  • You don’t have much control on how slow or fast the images would change on the widget.

In any case, it is still an interesting blog widget to have. If you love looking at paintings and images to inspire you or maybe soothe you, it is worth looking at. You would just have to weigh out the pros and cons of this blog widget, considering what you’d like on your blog of course.

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Let Your Blog Readers Know What Happened a Year Ago

Written by + on July 22, 2010 under Software

calendar

If you have been blogging for quite a while already, you know that your archives section is already quite overwhelming. Sometimes you might feel like highlighting your previous entries but it’s just too much of a hassle or it might be too difficult to dig them up because of the number of entries. In any case, you could actually check out this widget called Around This Date in the Past. It is based on the following plugins:
“One year ago” plugin
Wayback plugin
Wayback widget
“Around this date in the past” plugin

Default settings:
It shows a list of a week’s worth of entries that were posted around a year before the current date.

What you could set:
Title of the widget
Number of days’ posts before and after a year ago that will appear
Mode of the widget.
Mode 1: get posts around this date from ?X? years ago.
Mode 2: get posts around this date for the last ?X? years.
Mode 3: get posts around this date since year ?X?.
Limit of number of posts to be retrieved

That makes the widget really fun to use. After all, you could have three modes to choose from when it comes to diplaying past entries.

Here’s another good reason to use this plugin: It creates more internal links. A rather good tactic for search engine optimization. Maybe that would convince you to use this widget if you have not really thought of a practical use for it. Either way, it is an interesting plugin. Just grab it so you could enjoy using it already.

Note: The creator’s blog is mainly in Spanish but try posting comments about it anyway in case you have difficulty in using it. There are English versions of the plugin page so you shouldn’t worry too much. :)

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WordPress widgets, blogging and creativity

Written by + on July 15, 2010 under Software

It looks like people are constantly seeing how useful WordPress widgets could be. Considering the download stats. that is. You could see the spike in the graph when it was initially released in late March. What is it about widgets that people can’t help but use them?

WordPress widgets make your blog more visually appealing and also more interactive and informative. You have all these kinds of widgets that interact with other sites like Library Thing and Squirl. You can even include Google Gadgets on your blog so that you have games on it. Even horoscopes are available for your widget (thanks to Patrick Chia). Considering how easy it is to use these widgets, no wonder people keep on downloading and installing them. And without the widgets plugin, this is simply not possible.

Aside from that, development of WordPress widgets and plugins are still on-going. Seems that this avenue for creating widgetized versions of plugins and widget-friendly themes makes people all the more interested. Each of us would like to make our blogs fancier or more reader-friendly and as such we dare experiment with so many things.

Then again, widgets is not necessarily everyone’s cup of tea. Some people like their blogs as they are. Just the entries, archives and calendar. But now that blogs have evolved to be some kind of content management system for different purposes, you can’t help but be so amazed at everything that has happened and everything people have done to improve it. Who says blogging is just for geeks? Who says otherwise? There’s something in blogging for everyone and it might be the way for people to see creativity in everyone, be it in a geeky way (because of the development of widgets and plugins) or because of the ways they could use their blogs.

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Using Text Widgets on your blog

Written by + on July 8, 2010 under Software

letter blocksText widgets are probably what some people would consider as useless or not so cool. Think again! These text widgets might be the ones you could really use more often than not!

The WordPress Widgets plugin has the text widgets there by default. There are other text widgets that are available online. Some of them are even capable of better things liek inserting HTML and PHP. It’s really interesting.

Funky things you could do with the text widget:

  • Adding information about you.
    Maybe if you have your blogger code or your geek code, you could put there. Or a brief biography.

  • Adding information about your blog.
    Just a little snippet so first time visitors would be able to see what your blog is all about and get their attention.

  • Adding a poem.
    If you have a poem that basically says what your life philosophy is, why not add it using the text box widget?

  • Instant status reports.
    If you just want quick updates on your sidebar as to your status, you could place them using the text widget. Hmmm. Maybe for example you’re hooked on to watching Iron Chef or playing some game, you could add something like “Currently addicted to (whatever thing or show)” on it. Nifty, right?

There are so many other things you could do with the text widgets. Only you could limit yourself as to how creative you can get on your own blog. If you would like to learn a bit more of the basics, of blogging you could check out some blog tutorials. That way you could decide on what you would do with your own blog and figure out what widgets would be suitable.

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