Where am I now?

This page is devoted to the blogs of Jemima's Trek. For static-content styles, see the site page. You can skip my history with Blogger and go directly to MovableType.

Blogger

My first blog was through blogger, which I used to record site updates and deep thoughts on fan fiction. A blog is a sort of one-woman wiki. Blogging is a phenomenon all its own - you have to click around the blog circuit a bit to understand. I blog far too much.

My old URL was http://jemimap.blogspot.com. That blog page was based on a blogger template, so it used a table instead of pure style. The stylesheet for it just handles colors, but you may want to pick it up if you're interested in the blog template itself: jp_blog.css. The blog template and archive template are available here. It was a bit like my Classic Khaki MovableType style, but not quite so fancy. The templates are free to all takers, just like the style sheets.

As of the new year (2002), I moved the blog from blogspot to my homepage. I felt I needed a more universal front for my new two-fandom persona, and anything I worked on as much as the blog ought to be here on-site.

MovableType

I got tired of Blogger eating my posts, or being down when I wanted to blog, so I installed MovableType. I just followed the MT directions and everything went well. Later, in a fit of geekiness I made several javascripts and stylesheets for MT. I've expanded the style section of the site mainly to discuss them, though the original blow-by-blow is in my MT category about geek activities, GeekSpeak.

Now (June 2003) I use Irth.net's MT installation instead of running my own.

Basic Stylesheets

Besides my own, I keep the standard MT stylesheets around for use in the style switcher. To see the switcher in action, go to the demo blog and click on the links under the Style header. All the stylesheets are free from me or MT.

The MT stylesheets are easier to download from here than to cut-and-paste from the MT site. You can find them all in the MT directory under styles. (Right-click the links to save them.) The individual links are: Clean, Georgia Blue, Gettysburg, Plain Jane, Rusty, Stormy, and Trendy. Versions are current as of MT 2.5.

My own stylesheets for MT are based on some of theirs and thus don't do anything fancy that might require changing your templates. They are: Classic Khaki, Lavender's Blue, LCARS-1, LCARS-2, and Salmon Roe. The LCARS (Trek computer) styles use Mozilla curved-border style tags, which are currently only supported by Mozilla and perhaps some versions of Netscape. Classic Khaki and Lavender's Blue are color variations on Georgia Blue. Salmon Roe is a color variation of Trendy.

To use any of these stylesheets, log in to your MovableType account, go to your blog, and click on the Templates button. Click on the Stylesheet template under the Index templates section. Delete the text in the large textbox, and paste the text of your chosen stylesheet into the box. Save it, rebuild your blog, and reload one of your blog pages to see the effect.

Styleswitching JavaScript

The styleswitcher on the demo blog page is done with JavaScript. Directions for installing it are on my scripts page.

The most irritating part of the process is editing each of your MovableType templates to include the LINK tags (for the styleswitcher) and the SCRIPT line (for both the styleswitcher and colorswitcher). For full style effect, you should do every template, including the ones you click to edit and the hidden search template. (See below for a list.) There's a lot of clicking, pasting, and saving involved. I ended up linking all the templates to external files and making my own template modules to simplify matters, but even then it was the most time-consuming part of the process.

Technicolor Stylesheet with JavaScript

I have one stylesheet that requires an accompanying JavaScript file, the Technicolor one based on Eric Costello's contest-winning Blogger template. The javascript changes the page's color randomly, yet gradually, over time. To see this trippy effect, check out my sample blog.

I edited Eric Costello's stylesheet and javascript so they would work with the default MovableType templates. You can download the MT stylesheet and javascript file here: colorswitcher.css and colorswitcher.js. (Right-click the links to save them.) Instructions for installation are in the files; so you know what you're getting into, I'll reproduce them here:

To use the colorswitcher.js script, you must have colorswitcher.css as your stylesheet. You can just cut and paste the colorswitcher.css code over what you currently have in your Stylesheet template in the templates section of MT.

Put colorswitcher.js in your main MT directory (where your index.html and other index files are).

Next, add the script to the header of every page, by pasting the following html code right before the </head> tag:

<script language="JavaScript" type="text/javascript"
src="<$MTBlogURL$>colorswitcher.js"></script>
This means going through most of the templates for your blog. As of MT version 2.5, these are the templates I edited to include the line above:

To get color switching in the trackback template, you would have to change the BODY tag from <body onload="window.focus()"> to <body> - otherwise, the trackback window will appear in the default grey and not change. That's really no big deal.

Another template that's no big deal is the search page. You can find the search templates in your MT web directory, in the subdirectory search_templates, and edit them with a text editor. If you don't add the <script> line to the search template, it will appear in default grey and not change. It's a bad template anyway, and will look a little funny. Hopefully it will improve in future MT releases.

Installing MovableType on Freeshell

Since someone asked, I've written up some advice on installing Perl scripts on Freeshell, mainly for people without ftp access. See the scripts page for the full explanation. I'll summarize the issues that come up with MT: there are several options for getting the MT files over to Freeshell, you do have to change the path to perl in the MT scripts, and you probably don't have to use your cgi-bin directory if you'd rather put everything in a single MT directory.


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