RSS Fixed: With No Help from LibSyn!

Well I got the best news today, the RSS feed for Global Geek Podcast is now fixed and I fixed it!

I went to the site today and saw that we had our first comment on the page, which was great so I clicked on the comment to see what was said. The sight I saw was awful, the side bar was all screwed up! Then Sebastian had the idea that it might be the template that was corrupted in my efforts at HTML (which I am crap at…). So I thought yeah distinct possibility, so we saved the HTML code and selected the same template to use without any additions from me and looked at it and fair enough the comments page was all screwy. Bingo! The template that we had chosen was a dud.

NvuSo after choosing another template I pasted in the HTML and found that the code was different because the style sheet was different! Back to square one. So tonight I have re-coded the page from scratch and I think it actually looks better. The other thing that I did was that I used a WYSIWYG editing program called Nvu; an open source HTML editor. Great stuff really helped. I spent ages by trial and error seeing what different headings and HTML coding worked with the style sheet, then I wrote all the settings down and put everything in that I wanted. So I was really pleased with what Nvu enabled me to do, so have a go of it and support the open source community.

I will say that in my opinion the template that we choose originally should be removed as an option on Libsyn’s site. It obviously has some major flaws and is problematic for new users. The other thing is that I sent an email regarding the RSS problem over five days ago and I am yet to hear a response, other then an auto responder. I know that it has been Easter and all but I thought I might have got a reply today at the latest! The other thing is that as soon as they hear RSS and look at the template they should know that it is a misbehaving template and give advice accordingly. My advice to users is that you need to get a little HTML savy and a try different things other than email first. This is one thing that I am hoping do with Podcast Periodical, give others this advice regarding issues that I have struggled with.

An admission from myself, the original RSS being invalid was due to the fact that I had omitted a full-stop from an email address, but the problem with the RSS not being detected in browsers was a direct result of the Template.

Regardless of how I got here, “here” is a happy place.


So What Makes You Different?

TechnoratiToday Technorati posted the State of the Blogosphere for April 2006. It blows me away to think about these statistics. In summary:

  • Technorati now tracks over 35.3 million blogs.
  • The number of blogs doubles every six months.
  • The blogoshphere is over sixty times bigger than it was three years ago.
  • A new blog is created every second of every day.
  • 19.4 million (55%) bloggers are still active three months after their blog was created.
  • Every day Technorati tracks 1.2 million posts.

Reference: Technorati Weblog; State of the Blogosphere, Part 1

These statistics are truly amazing to say the least. I think that it will be interesting to see if the growth is sustainable as I think that there is an element of novelty in blogging. The other glaring thing to me is with these types of numbers what makes my blog something that anyone else would want to read? How do I set myself apart from all the other blogs on the planet? Is setting myself apart something that I want to do? Clearly some bloggers just want to blog for themselves or to let their family know what they are up to. Then there is the commercial aspect with big companies jumping on the blog idea.

So I am going to keep asking myself what it is that might make this post something someone else would want to read and keep blogging anyway, even if nobody reads it.

I am also pleased that I am part of the 55% that are still blogging after three months, so thats one feather in my cap. When all is said and done I am blogging for the fun of it and while I am having fun I will keep at it.

On another note there are some interesting things happening with in my community. Sebastian and myself have started another blog. It is called Podcast Periodical. This online magazine is not so much one that we want to write as we want others to contribute to it. We hope that the blog fosters community in blogging and podcasting by sharing resources and networking with other like minded people. Personally I am hoping that it will assist people with questions and queries about podcasting and blogging or just understanding what the whole thing is all about.

This is something that I am quite passionate about, just ask the average person on the street what a blog is and you will get various dumb looks. Now ask them what a podcast is and you will get a “what planet are you on look”. So I am hoping that through this blog we can “get the word out” on what and how of podcasting and blogging. Make sure you check out the site and subscribe I am sure it will be something to watch.