One of my favourite aspects to switching to this board was how much easier it was for me to post my Deck Log column.  I was able to post my own art and had more opportunities to proof my work, and I had it down pat:  write the article, save it as a draft, proof it a few times, then post the art, tinker with it until I had it where I wanted it, and then launched it for a moderator to approve.

 

To-day I sat down to do the same thing, and as I usually do, I "saved it as a draft" about a third of the way through, to keep from losing it to a computer glitch.  Only this time, when I saved it as a draft, suddenly all the lines between paragraphs disappeared, leaving me with one big block of text. 

 

The problems compounded.  When I clicked on "preview", the same text that was in one block as a draft suddenly either (1) appeared with every line double-spaced; or (2) the paragraphs were intact, but there was quadruple spacing between each one.

 

And if I tried to attach the art to the draft, instead of getting the property data, the actual art appeared in the draft, without a wrap-around.

 

I've played with "rich text", "HTML", and the "remove formatting" key, but nothing fixes the problem.  I have exceeded my troubleshooting knowledge.  Can someone tell me what the problem is?  And more important, how to fix it, because as it stands now, I can't post any more columns.

 

Much obliged to all you techhies out there.

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Well, it's not a solution to the original problem---of when I typed directly in the blog write space, all of my text came out in one block of type. But now that I've fashioned a work-around with cut-and-pasting, it's not as important. Apparently, as long as it's a Word 97-2003 document, it will cut-and-paste to the blog write space and work. There's still the problem of the font size, but I bet there's a simple solution that someone will tell me about.

I've spoken of my two biggest fans, the Wards, in San Diego. When they heard of my problems posting my latest article here, they asked me to send them a copy of it in an e-mail. If I hadn't done that and if they hadn't come back and told me that the file came up as computer gibberish, I never would have taken a closer look at my Word files. I knew there was some sort of difference between Word 2007 and 97-2003, but only based on the icons demarking them; I had no idea of the background or even the terminology. I just logicked out that, if they weren't able to read the Word document I sent them, then if I somehow could attach the text to a Word document that was made on my old computer, it would probably work.

And that got me to thinking, maybe that was the problem with cutting-and pasting my article from Word to the blog write space. So I gave it a shot, and somehow (and I hope I can remember how I did it for the next time), I made it work.

When the Good Mrs. Benson rose for work this morning (she's the computer techie in the house), I told her how I had found a way to make the blog posting work, mainly because I had detected a difference between my current Word documents and my old ones. That rang a bell in her head, too, and she told me essentially the same thing you just did, CK. She also showed me how to save my documents as Word 97-2003, rather than Word 2007---a rather easy click of a button.

Probably every Legionnaire here has more knowledge of computer language and technology than I do. But one of the things I give the designers of home computers credit for is that, even without that knowledge, if one pays close attention to the visible details, one can make things work with an application of logic. In this case it was: X works, but Y doesn't, so what makes X different from Y? And once you figure that out, or sometimes, even if you don't, then how do you make Y become X?

All of you helped in the sense that it gave me ideas for more things to try. I had no familarity at all with personal computers until I returned to the Navy in '96 as the staff engineer for DESRON 20 and discovered that everything was done through computers. And to make it worse, the guy I relieved had taken the keyboard template---the little cheat sheet that tells you what keys do what---with him.

So I taught myself---by pressing keys and combinations of keys, and logging down what they did. And then, opening functions and testing them, and logging down what they did. That's what taught me the logic inherent in computer design. And it's how I've resolved computer issues ever since. (Meanwhile, the GMB is one of those people who can just walk by, see the problem, hit a few keys, and say, "There! It's fixed.")

Much obliged, fellows.
If I'm reading your question correctly Commander, you have nothing to worry about.

When I discovered the painful change in tools that Ning had foisted on us, I also noted that as I typed my blog posts in "Rich Text" that the font seemed too big. But, like you, I had already used all of my allotted time on the cussed post and posted it, figuring I'd go back later and edit in a size code, if necessary.

The thing is, I didn't have to. Weirdly, the blog write isn't WYSIWYG ("what you see is what you get") although that seems to be the idea behind the new tool bar. The extra-large blog write text becomes normal-size text upon posting. It's a weird little wrinkle, but a harmless one.

And while I've got you "on the phone," I'll summarize my workaround theory for how I'm dealing with this.

The new tool bars appear to be the new tools just for initial posts -- that is to say, the ones you can edit. Replies and other posts you can't edit seem to have the old tool bar. So essentially what I do is write my posts in a "reply" area if they're going to require thumbnail art of any of the old tools, then cut and paste them into the blog write area in HTML view. There's usually a couple of minor spacing issues, which I edit in RICH TEXT. And, of course, you can continue to edit the blog post once it's in its proper place (and I make sure to delete the rough draft in the "reply" area, assuming I saved it at all).

The good news here (if any) is that I'm becoming more familiar than ever with HTML coding. I've gotten to the point where I can distinguish between text-wrap coding and non-text-wrap coding on art, as well as thumbnail sizing, and can add the codes manually ... sometimes. As you say, comparing what works with doesn't in computers is blessedly consistent. But sometimes I fail, and when I do, I can always fall back on the workaround described above.

Hope that helps. I'm still figuring some of it out myself. The new toolbar for initial posts first appeared in the groups, but the blogs were fine. Then it infected the blogs, beginning sometime last week (which delayed my own column for a few days). I'd make a general announcement, except that I don't really know enough to say anything except "watch out!"
Well, Cap, my latest blog article has "hit the stands", so to speak, and it is still in the large type. It's a bit disconcerting, but it's not a terrible flaw. Besides, I have a hunch that is one of those things that will work itself out. The next time I post an article, I'll probably do something slightly different than this time and the font-size will remain the same. My experience was opposite yours, though. In the draft stage, the font-size was normal; it didn't grow big until I previewed it/submitted it for posting.

Interestingly enough, I didn't need a work-around for the art after I cut-and-paste my article from its Word 97-2003 format. Now that Word document also included the art (I did that for the Wards, who asked to see my article, even if I couldn't post it), but when I transferred it to the blog write space, the art didn't migrate with the text. So I used the feature in the blog toolbar and it worked just fine. The first time, when I tried to write my article directly into the blog write space, I also had no problem inserting the art. Like always, I had to play around with the pixel size, to get it just right to my taste. And I had the presence of mind to jot down which pixel sizes I was using for each piece of art. So when I finally got it posted this morning by the cut-and-paste method, I didn't have to play around with the art size---I already had down just what size I needed for each art insertion. However, that was just a time-saver; I don't think I would have had a problem adjusting the art, if I had had to do so.

I'd still rather be able to just write my stuff directly in the blog write area with repeated "save as drafts", but the Word document work-around, as long as it continues to work, is acceptable. I grasp what you're saying about writing the article in the "reply" area, and then transferring it to the blog write area, but I don't see that as being less complicated than cutting-and-pasting from a Word 97-2003 document. It's certainly another option, though.
Glad to see things working out, Commander. I feel bad that I didn't suggest that Word 2007 format problem: I've been seeing it for years at the library, since we're still using Word 2003 (upgrading to 2007 in a couple months, though). If I had been reading this thread more closely it might have occurred to me. I like your logical approach towards computer issues. You're right: you can eventually sort things out for yourself that way (usually).
I knew I was boycotting Office 2007 and beyond for a reason...

I've just attempted to create a blog post myself, and I find it tremendously confusing. EDIT: I'm seeing more controls in Internet Explorer...perhaps Ning isn't optimized for a real browser.

Commander, there's a fairly simple way to reduce the size of the text in your posts using simple HTML/CSS. At the top of your article, add the following code:

<div style="font-size:10px">
Then, at the very end of your code, add this:

</div>

That should help you. You should be able to control a lot of what you're entering that way.
Then, at the very end of your code, add this:
By code, I mean text.
Again, success. Again, of a sort.

Now that I've worked out the battle of the Words---"97-2003" vs. "2007"---I figured it would be no problem to post my next article, except for the nagging font-size issue. And I was prepared to try Randy's proposed solution for that.

So I wrote my article on Word 97-2003, cut-and-pasted it in the blog write space---just like I did last time---and hit "Preview". It came up with nothing in the blog write space. When I went back, all the text was still there, so then I hit "Save as draft", and once again, I got that advisory saying that no draft could be saved because there was no text in the write space.

I've learned now to play with it, and try things which, seemingly, would make no difference. So after cutting-and-pasting my text in the blog write space again, I added just a couple of pieces of art, then hit "Preview".

This time, everything was there. And the font was the right size. And I had paragraphs. The only thing wrong was in some places, I had put some extra space between paragraphs, to divide my article into distinct sections, and those extra spaces had disappeared. I got the same effect when I hit "Save as draft".

Nothing I tried would restore those extra spacings to divide my work into sections, so I settled for what I could get, and that's how you see the article, now.

Maybe by the time I post another 99 articles, I'll figure out what I need to do to get it right.

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