Join 3,512 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


New Blogger
May 9, 2004 7:51 PM   Subscribe

It's New Blogger, launched today at 3pm, with a retooled interface, more rounded corners, single entry archives, comments, user profiles, more template tags, mail-to-blog, knowledge, and more. (Farewell, good ol' black. We'll miss you.)
posted by brownpau (83 comments total)

 
screw that, I just want a free gmail account.
posted by machaus at 7:53 PM on May 9, 2004


Knowledge is forbidden.
posted by Gyan at 7:55 PM on May 9, 2004


Then again, maybe not.

what happened to the 403?!
posted by Gyan at 7:56 PM on May 9, 2004


Wow, it's just like LiveJournal! OMG! LOL!!!!!!1
posted by keswick at 8:03 PM on May 9, 2004


I wouldn't be surprised if the user profiles started to get Orkut-integrated. Wouldn't be surprised one little bit.

Also: anyone know what's up the Google-redirecting URLs on the site?
posted by gramcracker at 8:04 PM on May 9, 2004


Wow, comments...!??! I'm wary of turning them on, now that I've gotten used to not having the option. It may belie my self-assurance that there were plenty of people who wanted to comment but couldn't... thanks for the alert, anyway, brownpau!
posted by soyjoy at 8:07 PM on May 9, 2004


And here's what Haughey says.
posted by brownpau at 8:16 PM on May 9, 2004


Actually, the user profile features *aren't* like LiveJournal, in that the info that the profiles link to is presented in a pretty damn useless fashion... which is to say, even less useful than how LiveJournal does it.

As for the robustness of the commenting, Atrios says:
"mmmm. Guess I should try out the fancy new blogger comments. Let's give it a go...

...okay, we'll not make that switch yet."

posted by insomnia_lj at 8:31 PM on May 9, 2004


Fucking great. I just switched to MT after about 3 years on Blogger.
posted by scarabic at 8:45 PM on May 9, 2004


The new blogger is pretty nice i'd say. If you want a simple tool for blogging I think it can't be beat. And the new default templates look so damn nice.
posted by chunking express at 9:21 PM on May 9, 2004


Whoa, the profile page is almost exactly like a friendster/orkut/tribe profile page. It's like identity, community, and demographics all rolled into one.
posted by mathowie at 9:37 PM on May 9, 2004


Man, all those referrer-porn-spamers are going to have to learn a new interface.
posted by alan at 10:04 PM on May 9, 2004


Man, all those referrer-porn-spamers are going to have to learn a new interface.

With the difference that all blogger information is stored in one database, which will probably not accept it if there are more than X the same comments in a certain time-period.

However the comment functionality is a bit shaky at the moment. I enabled it on one post fine. After I left a comment the whole post disappeared and I had to republish my blog. Also publishing with comments enabled takes a long time, but I am sure that blogger will sort these things out.

And the comment functionality can be anonymous as well, so you don't need to register with Google if you don't want to. (They know everything about you already, don't worry about it.)
posted by sebas at 10:10 PM on May 9, 2004


God it's slow and horrible.. But the email-to-post feature supports html.. The comment process is a few too many clicks compared to Haloscan as well...
posted by Space Coyote at 10:41 PM on May 9, 2004


This seems a lot slower to me, though I do like the way the "posting-box" looks, even though I rarely type directly into it.
posted by interrobang at 10:46 PM on May 9, 2004


I"m getting timeouts and Error 500 pages all over the place. I guess the sudden inflow of breathless "OMG-ITS-A-NEW-BLOGGER.COM" traffic is tying things up. Still, this is good. I'm really liking the dashboard and profile.
posted by brownpau at 10:48 PM on May 9, 2004


Deliciously snazzy. The drop-shadowy flavour-of-the-moment look is pretty, but will date quickly, no doubt. But then again, if it's all compliantly css-y, it'll be a snap to change or skin or whatever.

I wonder if MT 3.0 will similarly wow. I suspect not, given that it's not meant to be a feature release.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:06 PM on May 9, 2004


Some interesting commentary (more in the comment-thread than the post itself) at Phil's site.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:30 PM on May 9, 2004


Doug Bowman on doing the redesign. OK, I'll shut up now.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:43 PM on May 9, 2004


But then again, if it's all compliantly css-y, it'll be a snap to change or skin or whatever...

Yes. Absolutely.

Whoa, the profile page is almost exactly like a friendster/orkut/tribe profile page. It's like identity, community, and demographics all rolled into one....

Yes. After my searching all night, Matt is the first to comment on what's a bit of a peculiar development here.

... though I do like the way the "posting-box" looks, even though I rarely type directly into it

<understatement>Me, too. Though, I have a few ideas to help with this.</understatement>

Some interesting commentary (more in the comment-thread than the post itself) at Phil's site ...

Totally. It makes us smile. My fave comment? "this is the best they can come up with?" Which is a completely fair assessment...but I have to smile knowing what's going to happen on the back end and in the next [mumble, mumble, please-someone-untie-my-mouth-so-I-can-talk-about-it-thing].

Thank you for the feedback. (sez me, Google engineer) I'm excited about what's happening with Google and Blogger and what will happen...later.
posted by massless at 12:14 AM on May 10, 2004


Ah, come on.
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 12:56 AM on May 10, 2004


but I have to smile knowing what's going to happen on the back end and in the next [mumble, mumble, please-someone-untie-my-mouth-so-I-can-talk-about-it-thing].

Best use of free advertising ever. Promise everything/explain nothing.
posted by justgary at 1:56 AM on May 10, 2004


Did anyone else notice that if google were to change their name to 'Goobler,' and Blogger were to become 'Blooger' then they would be anagrams?

Just sayin'.
posted by kaibutsu at 3:35 AM on May 10, 2004


With the difference that all blogger information is stored in one database, which will probably not accept it if there are more than X the same comments in a certain time-period.

I meant all the porn oriented blogspot blogs that make up a large portion of blogger's cliental.
posted by alan at 4:31 AM on May 10, 2004


While it looks and works better, they still lack basic features for building networks. Google, being Google, believes everything is in the links; this explains the Orkute aspect.

Building a network of friends (1. who are going to use the service and recommend it to others; 2. ... 3. Profit!) should be done by encouraging collaboration. Right now, the post gets all the attention (BlogThis, edit box, tool for editing), the comments are lagging behind (the edit box is not even on the same page). For a small network of trusted friends, spam is not a problem, so all the protection is not necessary.

Here is I would like to have:
- folder setting for upload files; should not be the same as the main folder;
- comment box (for “members of the team”) on the same page as the comments;
- basic tools for the comment box: bold/italics/blockquote/link/upload file/spell check;
- make deleted posts disappear completely;
- possibility to edit your own comments.

Editing your own comments it is tabu in the blog world; but should not be a problem for a circle of friends - if a person is abusing the feature, he or she should not be part of the team. Also, keep seeing your stupid mistake over and over, does not help collaboration.
posted by MzB at 5:28 AM on May 10, 2004


Updating mine with a new template was fairly speedy, but that first re-publishing of my archives took a ridiculously long time. And unfortunately it seems that when you enable Blogger's commenting feature, the comments begin with the most recent post after enabling commenting. Commenting on older posts isn't possible, or if it is I haven't found a way yet.

Also, I'm running into some issues with some larger images I had posted. In the previous incarnation of my blog, the CSS and HTML were coded in some way (don't ask me which way) so that the right edge of an image would extend the right edge of the column of posts, moving the sidebar over to the right. Now a large image will run into and appear under the sidebar unless it's sized to fit the width of the postings. I'd love to find a way to tinker with the CSS to fix that, if possible, but I haven't a clue.
posted by emelenjr at 5:43 AM on May 10, 2004


It looks nice, but I have my own template and a commenting feature that works fine for the 2 comments/month I get. I've been happy with Blogger so perhaps I'm not the target demographic.
posted by tommasz at 5:49 AM on May 10, 2004


"Did anyone else notice that if google were to change their name to 'Goobler,' and Blogger were to become 'Blooger' then they would be anagrams?"

L' Booger?

Pardon my French.
posted by insomnia_lj at 6:03 AM on May 10, 2004


Yeah, the default templates are much better. My almost-just-started blog looks like it's designed by someone other than a retard now (though I'm not sure the same can be said for the content creator.)
I'd love to learn CSS etc, but I just can't be arsed

Had a problem when trying to republish my entire blog, when I enabled comments and changed some other stuff: kept sticking at 12% and reloading ... reloading. Early days I suppose.

All this and a free gmail account. Looks like I picked the right time to start a blog.
posted by Blue Stone at 6:31 AM on May 10, 2004


I must have got Blogger's reboot seconds after it happened, because it was way faster than the old design. Plus, with bigger letters you can actually read faster and easier. And with the most of the items better placed, you can again reach your destiny in less time (and without having to put your cursor over a 5x5 pixels square on the top edge of your screen). Really nice update.
posted by nandop at 7:13 AM on May 10, 2004


Republish Blog:

Publishing is in progress

Files published... 66% ...
(later) Files published... 66% ...
(later) Files published... 66% ...
(later) Files published... 66% ...


Heh. "Plus ce meme change..."
posted by brownpau at 7:24 AM on May 10, 2004


I've turned on the comments on the last three posts I've made, and they're working pretty well. Haven't had any issues as yet.

One thing, though. It can't republish my entire blog. I've got so many entries it keeps timing out. I've republished the index, though, and it seems to be working just fine.

The rest of the interface is pretty good, really. I like it so far. Funny, I was just about to move my blog to a new host so I could install Moveable Type. Guess maybe I'll hold off on that.
posted by greengrl at 7:32 AM on May 10, 2004


Oh yeah, and I signed up for a Gmail account too...
posted by greengrl at 7:33 AM on May 10, 2004


It's not just number of entries, greengrl, because I just started a test blog with a single entry, and it's taking forever to publish. Probably just residual maintenance matters combined with sheer traffic and posting volume.
posted by brownpau at 7:34 AM on May 10, 2004


brownpau, unless you were being clever and referring to changing memes, the expression is "Plus ca change, plus la meme chose."
posted by emelenjr at 7:52 AM on May 10, 2004


ça. Grr.
posted by emelenjr at 7:53 AM on May 10, 2004


you can again reach your destiny

blogger: reaching your destiny
posted by quonsar at 7:54 AM on May 10, 2004


Thanks for the catch, emelenjr. Hee. Oops.
posted by brownpau at 8:01 AM on May 10, 2004


Commenting on older posts isn't possible, or if it is I haven't found a way yet

If you open an old post and click on the words "More Post Options" you'll see an option to "Allow New Comments on This Post".
posted by massless at 8:10 AM on May 10, 2004


gmail? Where?
posted by casarkos at 8:33 AM on May 10, 2004


massless: Aha. Suddenly that seems like it's not worth the trouble. Over 430 posts since 2001...

brownpau: de rien.
posted by emelenjr at 9:01 AM on May 10, 2004


Jeffrey Veen has another insider perspective.
posted by jjg at 9:18 AM on May 10, 2004


Hmm. I'm dying to see the new templates. Is there any way I can have a look through 'em without creating a Blogger account, or randomly hitting Bloggers weblogs and hoping to see all 26?
posted by DrJohnEvans at 9:53 AM on May 10, 2004


All the new templates.
posted by jjg at 10:01 AM on May 10, 2004


Hey, thanks.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 10:07 AM on May 10, 2004


So, basically, we're supposed to drool because Blogger now has most of the features of other weblog services... making it kind of like MovableType or LiveJournal, only without all the functionality?!

If this update appears notable, it is only because it stands out in comparison to all the really basic features they *haven't* offered from day one.
posted by insomnia_lj at 10:24 AM on May 10, 2004


we're supposed to drool... making it kind of like MovableType or LiveJournal...

I hope no one is suggesting that anyone's supposed to drool. It's just that there are an awful lot of Blogger users and now their service has improved.

If the update appears notable, it's fair to say that it is, in part, because it helps a lot of people.
posted by massless at 10:45 AM on May 10, 2004


If anyone out there gets a gmail invite under the new blogger look, could you please email me a screenshot of what the invitation looks like, now? No, I don't need another account, but I need a screenshot of what the invitation (now) looks like.

Thank-you!
posted by Marquis at 10:54 AM on May 10, 2004


I thought the world went all screwy as the last time I signed into blogger I was on a different continent. /sanity check

Someday, I will abandon Blogger when I have the time to devote to the project; in the meantime, I might give the comments a whirl. (I do use comments on my personal web site through YACCS, just not on the front page of another site I maintain which uses Blogger on the front page.)
posted by Dick Paris at 10:57 AM on May 10, 2004


I need a screenshot of what the invitation (now) looks like

Sadly, the gmail invite isn't currently included in the new look and feel. But it will come back online after we get some breathing space post-launch.
posted by massless at 11:14 AM on May 10, 2004


They added some features that I wanted for a while, not to mention that, knowing little about XML, except for the fact that I wanted it, they worked out a simple way to add it that has allowed me to add syndication to my site.

This and the gmail address make life worth living.
posted by drezdn at 11:21 AM on May 10, 2004


all the links point to webpage.g --- whats .g!?
posted by Satapher at 11:43 AM on May 10, 2004


i believe it stands for gangsta.
posted by lotsofno at 11:58 AM on May 10, 2004


Despite all my various blogs, I've never gotten a gmail invite either. I guess I'm just not cool enough. ;)

The new functionality looks cool, and I switched a blog that I use primarily as a "blog this" repository over to a new template...the rollover was pretty smooth. I think if you weren't used to working with templates, user's might be confused as to where to put things like additional links and whatnot, but if you're used to the templates, plugging stuff in was pretty easy. Haven't enabled comments on it, because I can't imagine that anyone actually reads it. My heavy traffic blogs are on livejournal because they had better functionality a long, long time ago, and because I can embed them in other pages with a seamless javascript.

Still, I want a gmail account darn it.
posted by dejah420 at 12:46 PM on May 10, 2004


Of course I have been getting connection timeouts for the last hour trying to republish. I guess there are a bunch of people republishing their entire blog a half of a dozen times today.
posted by spartacusroosevelt at 1:07 PM on May 10, 2004


I got a gmail invite a while ago, through Blogger, pre-redesign. I think the invite (which was really just a link on the Blogger homepage basically saying, "Hey, want a gmail address?" was extended to me, IIRC from the wording, because I've been a longtime Blogger user.
posted by emelenjr at 1:37 PM on May 10, 2004


i've had a gmail account for nearly a month now. *taunt*
posted by keswick at 1:44 PM on May 10, 2004


Of course I have been getting connection timeouts for the last hour trying to republish. I guess there are a bunch of people republishing their entire blog a half of a dozen times today.

Actually, I saw my girlfriend (who is several-weeks-new to the blogging thing) make several posts to her Blogger for the first time Saturday (pre-update), and she republished her entire site every time. I haven't peeked at the new interface, but the republish all button was right there after you posted. She just thought it was what you do.

Just got her set up with dotcomments last week, too.
posted by rafter at 1:49 PM on May 10, 2004


i thought everyone hated gmail and what the hell is .g?
posted by Satapher at 1:58 PM on May 10, 2004


gmail is sweet ass sweet, Satapher. I'll never go back.
posted by interrobang at 2:53 PM on May 10, 2004


Sat,

i have had gmail for a few weeks.

i love it.

don't believe the hype.
posted by tsarfan at 2:59 PM on May 10, 2004


Hello is pretty damn sweet too. (From a n00b blogger perspective anyway.)
posted by Blue Stone at 3:39 PM on May 10, 2004


Yeah, Blue Stone. I just gave hello a whirl, and it's pretty nifty. The seamless free image hosting for blogspot blogs is going to be huge, I think.

A lot of posters have decried blogger, in both it's old and new incarnation, as being dumbed down. I say that anything that lets non-tech-savvy users pick up a blogging tool and beginning writing is a good thing. Sure, movable type is more extensible and versatile, but it's also not accessible to most. Blogger is.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 3:59 PM on May 10, 2004


Ok, but where's the plus version? They disabled removing BlogSpot ads some time ago, and never put the option back. Domain mapping? Comment fields inline with the permalink page?

Maybe they should have a $10 plus version, where you get domain mapping, can map said domain to your gmail account.
posted by benjh at 4:23 PM on May 10, 2004


what the hell is .g?

g is whatever it's been defined to be. could be pure html, could be scripted code, or a proprietary application file, whatever. on apache, for example, its a simple matter to add a filetype and call it anything you want. the default mime type is (i think) text/html, so putting a file named webpage.whatever in your webspace and requesting it via a url http://myserver.com/webpage.whatever would cause it to be sent to your browser along with a header indicating that your browser should interpret it as text/html. you may not have noticed that there are a few url's around mefi with a .mefi extension. like http://www.metafilter.com/user.mefi/1354. of course, this is a dynamically generated site for the most part - there isnt any file named 1354 or 1354.html or even 1354.mefi - the way this works is matt wrote code which parses the url and uses parts of it to query the database to retreive the content you want. the code likely resides in a file named user.mefi, but only #1 can really say for sure!
posted by quonsar at 4:56 PM on May 10, 2004


i got a little sidetracked there - the point is, with a little fiddling of web server settings, you can have .jpg's named .clank, gif's named .boom, and html named .FOON!
posted by quonsar at 5:01 PM on May 10, 2004


A lot of posters have decried blogger, in both it's old and new incarnation, as being dumbed down. I say that anything that lets non-tech-savvy users pick up a blogging tool and beginning writing is a good thing. Sure, movable type is more extensible and versatile, but it's also not accessible to most. Blogger is.

Yup. I work all day on a computer doing webstuff. I have neither the patience or the inclination to install and run Moveable Type for my blog at this point. Do I think about it? Yeah, but it's so much easier to use Blogger...

Also, I signed up for a gmail account a few weeks ago when I got one of those "longtime users of Blogger" invites. I love it. If you get the chance, sign up.
posted by greengrl at 5:43 PM on May 10, 2004


oops. I think that should be "I have neither the patience nor the inclination", right? Can't think today. It's Monday.
posted by greengrl at 5:44 PM on May 10, 2004


The comments function suck. If you want to leave a comment you have to either sign up and create a profile, or post as "Anonymous". I want blog owners to be able to reach my site or email with ONE click from the comment, and not being required to go via a pointless profile page.
Please, Blogger users, stay with Haloscan or whatever. This system is a PITA.
posted by mr.marx at 5:58 PM on May 10, 2004


The Coming Great Golden Age of The CentralizedShinyThing™
posted by quonsar at 6:06 PM on May 10, 2004


Exactly. Terrible.
posted by mr.marx at 6:17 PM on May 10, 2004


thanks quonsar, thats actually what i figured
posted by Satapher at 6:32 PM on May 10, 2004


That's what I thought the comments were going to do. I hadn't actually tried it out yet (only use Blogger for a project that doesn't need comments). It sucks that people will either have to have a Blogger account or be anonymous.

I outgrew Blogger a few years ago, but the changes do look like a good thing (or at least headed in the right direction) for people who are just getting started with their own web site/blog.
posted by Orb at 6:37 PM on May 10, 2004


I like it a lot. I don't have to wait for my old posts to load so I can make new posts fast.
posted by mcsweetie at 8:23 PM on May 10, 2004


I prefer the old post authoring page, with the split frame view. Comments and the new templates are not of interest. ??? Profit?
posted by billsaysthis at 8:29 PM on May 10, 2004


I don't know much about all this stuff, but http://www.enetation.co.uk has proven a fine way to add the comment function to my site. That was all I was really looking for... Now, to take advantage of it...
posted by micropublishery at 9:04 PM on May 10, 2004


I think the naysayers and the livejournal and MT partisans in this thread are really picky. I think the new stuff is very nice, and for people like me who never do a damn thing with code, sticking with Blogger has proven a very reliable and proven way to maintain a blog.

Nerds.
posted by norm at 9:49 PM on May 10, 2004


The GoogleBlog is up. I assume it uses Blogger. Heh.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:55 PM on May 10, 2004


So, basically, we're supposed to drool because Blogger now has most of the features of other weblog services... making it kind of like MovableType or LiveJournal, only without all the functionality?!

I'm thinking anything you post regarding blogger should come with an asterisk (though I agree with your thoughts).

Blogger does look much nicer, though when updating a design from 3 years ago it doesn't take much to improve it.

And the new toys are nice, but honestly, this is just getting blogger back in the game. How long have they just coasted on their name alone? How many people had to leave blogger before something was done? Anyone think Ev would have still been using the old blogger if it wasn't his baby? Finally they can compete with the competion, which is good for everyone. If only google had bought blogger during the two years it languished in its timecapsule.

Add a photo page option and blogger would be coming close to typepad's funtionality, for free. Maybe this will give typepad a kick in the pants when it comes to improvements needed imho (other than opening sites in every corner of the world).
posted by justgary at 12:25 AM on May 11, 2004


My main complaint.... Preview Post isn't really "forward", so hitting "back" doesn't work as you would think, and has to pop up a dialog to warn you that you're about to lose your entire post. (!)

Also, some of the title text on the new templates is squushed together in Firefox. Pretty glaring.
posted by smackfu at 8:49 AM on May 11, 2004


A couple of my friends have switched over to the new comments provided by blogger, and I can tell all of you that it's a huge pain in the ass. You have to practically fill out a form to use them, and even then, you can't really lie.

Part of the charm of Haloscan comments is that you can alter who you are to go along with what you're saying, and it can be funny. The blogger comments make the service feel like livejournal.
posted by interrobang at 10:00 PM on May 11, 2004


"I'm thinking anything you post regarding blogger should come with an asterisk (though I agree with your thoughts)."

Oh, puhleeze... I owe LiveJournal.com no loyalty whatsofreakinever. My loyalty was always to LiveJournal, the open source project, or LiveJournal, the users, as opposed to LiveJournal, the cluelessly run dotcom.

Case in point -- I've said very favorable things about Movable Type before on MeFi, though I still think that it's too hard for most people to install and set up. I think that TypePad is the best weblog app out there for most people -- except that it lacks community features and that it would do far better with a free/paid business model like LiveJournal (or Salon, if you will...) Pay-to-paly doesn't work well on the web, as it kills your growth potential, "viralness", and word of mouth.

Truth is, Ev dumped the former Blogger staff -- in a way I still think was kind of cold -- and then coasted for two years until circumstances changed enough that he could get a buyer. During that time, precious little was done to add any real value to the business. New value was added primarily by the growth of the userbase. Even the growth rate during that time wasn't particularly impressive, largely due to performance issues with the site.

I'm a big advocate of RSS, and over the past year or so, I've had to help Blogspot users out with creating RSS feeds, because Blogger didn't do it, or, when they did do it, they didn't do it right. I'm glad that they have the resources now to address these problems, but I'm still not exactly impressed yet.

"The blogger comments make the service feel like livejournal."

That's actually a very valid criticism. I have always hated the way that LiveJournal handles anonymous commenting, in that it basically forces people to fill out a profile in order to get heard. Someone should be able to comment anonymously and leave a REPLY TO: email and URL with a minimum of fuss.

All that registering at LiveJournal or Blogger does securitywise is one thing -- it associates a username with a valid email address. If that is the only goal, then clearly there are far less annoying ways to handle this than essentially making people create a new account.
posted by insomnia_lj at 2:16 PM on May 12, 2004


I owe LiveJournal.com no loyalty whatsofreakinever. My loyalty was always to LiveJournal, the open source project, or LiveJournal, the users, as opposed to LiveJournal, the cluelessly run dotcom.

Point taken.

Truth is, Ev dumped the former Blogger staff -- in a way I still think was kind of cold -- and then coasted for two years until circumstances changed enough that he could get a buyer.

Sure. That's the advantage of having a product that fits onto a hard drive. No matter how bad the business model was, or how bad business got, he could just keep blogger under his desk.

In the end, all blogger had was the users, which was enough for google to come to their rescue.
posted by justgary at 9:45 PM on May 12, 2004


« Older Avalokitesvara....  |  Local news gets interesting.... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments