Monday, July 21, 2014

Find things in your blog-posts' HTML by using temporary "marker text"

This article shows how to use "marker text" to help find things when you need to edit the HTML code behind one of your blog posts.



When you edit a post in Blogger, to start with you generally use the Compose mode, which shows you the formatted view of how your work will look.

But behind that formatted view, every post is actually written in HTML, ie Hyper-text Markup Language - a type of computer language that uses tags like <h2> or <a href="www.foo.com">  to say how to display the contents.

A number of articles, here and in other blogger-helper blogs tell you how to do thing by changing the HTML for the post. But if you are not used to working with HTML, it can be confusing tryign to fix the part that you need to change.

Marker-text is a technique that you can use to "mark" problem areas while you are still in Compose mode, so that you can easily find them again when you are in Edit HTML mode.


How to use marker-text to fix a problem in your post


Start to prepare or edit your post in the usual way.

Go to the place just before the problem you want to fix or change you want to make.

Add some extra blank lines.

In the middle of the extra blank lines, put a few characters or a word that do not occurr anywhere else in your post. I quite often use XXX - but you can use any letters, characters or numbers, for example PROBLEM JUST AFTER HERE or 12345.

Use the copy function to put the text you added (without the blank lines)into your computer's memory.

Optional: Go to the place just after the problem you want to fix or change you want to make, and add some more text eg PUT IT BEFORE HERE

Switch to Edit HTML mode, using the button at the top-left of the post editing window.

Start the "find" feature in your web browser:
  • ctrl / f in Chrome
  • ctrl / f in Internet Explorer

In the search box that opens, use Paste (ctrl / v) to put the exact marker text that you entered into the Find box, and press enter.

The post-edit window will scroll to the place where your marker text is, and it will most likely be highlighted.

You have now found the place where you need to work, so you can now make the HTML changes required.

Once you have fixed all the issues, switch back to Compose mode using the tab in the top left hand corner, and remove all the marker text and extra blank lines that you added.


Good Practise

You will be removing the marker text before you publish your post.

But just in case you accidentally click Publish before you mean to, only use text that would not be embarrassing if some of your readers accidentally see it.

Some RSS readers will see the contents of your post as they are when you first hit Publish, even if you edit them less than two minutes later.)




Leaving your Marker Text in Place

If you might need to find the same place in your post's HTML again, then instead of removing your marker-text, you may just want to comment it out.

To do this, put these characters before it:
<!-- 

and these characters after it
 -->

So it might look like this

<!-- START OF PROBLEM1 HERE -->

Make sure you get the spaces - highlighed in yellow   as well as both of the "-- characters.

If you do this, then you will not be able to see or find your Marker Text when you are in Compose Mode, but you will be able to see and find it when you are in Edit HTML mode.





Related Articles:

How to edit a post you have already published

Using cut, copy and paste in the Blogger post editor

The Blogger-helpers search tool

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1 comment:

  1. I wish you could write an article on how to re-publish an older blog; also, so that the new date appears on it instead of when it was originally published. Presently, the only way I know how to do this is to copy & paste the old article into a new compose mode, then before I publish it, delete the original article.

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