How To Style Author Comments Differently

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WordPress author comments. Comments are the backbone of a blog. For a blogger, there are few things better than a nice, long stream of comments. As a reader, flicking through such streams can be as enlightening as reading the post itself. It can also be useful to easily spot the author’s comments, to read what they in particular had to say.

As an example, here on Pro Blog Design, each of my own comments looks slightly different to the adjacent comments. Achieving the same effect on your blog is easily done.

The method described here is specifically for WordPress users. Movable Type users should refer to this article, and TypePad users to this one.

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Adding Effects to the Comment Field

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Designer blog comments. For most bloggers, the comment field is one part of the blog that we really want our readers to see and use. As such, it seems strange that the comments form is rarely any different to the default white design.

Adding more advanced effects to the comments field is easily done using CSS. The method has been explained below, and is followed by a few pointers that you’ll want to remember when choosing your effects.

How To Add Effects

The comments field is treated as any other CSS element. View your page’s source code to figure out the ID of yours. In the case of most WordPress themes, the basic CSS code will be as follows:

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Why Your Sidebar Plugins Don’t Work

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Many WordPress users have been finding that a large number of the plugins they have tried to install in their sidebars lately aren’t working. In most cases, this is purely because your theme is widgetized.

Widgets were originally a plugin that allowed you to easily edit your sidebar content. As of version 2.2 of WordPress, it comes as default. Widgets can be very useful, but they have caused some people some trouble. Thankfully, there is an easy solution.

The Problem With Widgets

The problem is that some people forget about widgets when they add their plugins.

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Dynamic Search Bar Text With Javascript

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Every blog has a search bar. The search bar is a typically boring affair, with a white background and a button saying “Search,” and worst of all, it takes up a fair bit of room in your sidebar. Why not use a little Javascript to liven things up and save space? This effect can be seen in use on the search bar to your right.

NB – This method is primarily for Wordpress, but could be easily adapted to any other platform.

1 – Find The Default Search bar.

The code for your search bar usually lies in searchform.php, or in functions.php if it has been set up as a widget, and will look as follows:

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5 Steps To Test a Theme That Won’t Get You Banned From Google

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Test Themes
Photo by dcJohn.
There are a number of aspects of a theme that can get you banned from Google, and other search engines. Deciphering between safe and unsafe themes is not as easy as just looking for a “Sponsored by…” link.
Through using the methods listed below, you will be able to judge whether or not a theme is safe to use.

1 – Download From The Source

Wordpress themes are often free to download, and sometimes free to distribute. It is not difficult for a site to amass a collection of themes, and add their own spam codes to them. For this reason, if you know the site that the theme originally came from, download it from there.

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Are Sponsored Themes Blog Suicide?

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Sponsored
Photo by -LeeB-
If my theme is sponsored, will I get banned from Google?

In short, no. However, it is entirely possible that other aspects of the theme will get you banned, and even more worryingly for some is that non-sponsored themes can get you banned just as easily.

The fact that a theme is sponsored is rarely important, and should not be allowed to put you off sponsored themes altogether. The possible dangers of downloaded themes are not a myth however. They are very real, and malicious theme owners can do any number of things which could Google will begrudge you.

A Little Knowledge Is a Dangerous Thing

Most bloggers will know that when judging how to rank a site, search engines, like Google, look at links in particular. Many bloggers also know that they don’t judge your site only on the links coming in to it, but on the links going out from it. This is what has caused the commotion about sponsored themes.

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The 2 Methods of Showing Excerpts

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Cut Out People
Photo by Linek
There are many reasons to choose to publish either full posts or excerpts on the homepage. Full posts are very simple to implement. You simply write, then publish. However, if you have chosen only partial posts, then Wordpress users have two different methods which will achieve the same effect.

Method 1: The More Tag

This method is usually the easiest of the two. When you have written your post, select where you would like to make the cut-off between the partial post for the homepage, and the rest of the page, then click the More button (More).

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