Friday, July 21, 2006

Blogs and Goodle Adsense

This blog has become a chronicle of my problems with, going beyond just having my blog deleted.

One of the main selling points of having a blog - and of in specific - is that one can make some money using Google's ad-publishing service Adsense. With no money down, a blogger can get a little change now and again by putting Adsense on his or her blog, provided Google approves the blog, which is not hard if Google has already provided an account based on another site.

In any event, it all sounds great, but the problem - especially most recently if my observations are correct - is that everytime you update, Adsense has to cycle through to figure out which ads are relevant. In this regard, it often returns PSAs or public service announcements, which means you don't get any money.

It is possible that my particular problems with Adsense are a result of having my blogs deleted, as my health blog did not return relevant ads for several days afterwards. Sometimes one entry that is not precisely relevant to the entire site can mess the whole thing up, which makes little sense. In any event, I've been getting a lot of PSAs lately, on both my TBK News and my TBK Health blogs. It's rather frustrating, when one considers that blogging emphasizes posting regularly for the purpose of keeping up one's readership but that having such readership is not of benefit financially since Adsense is not returning relevant ads.

This turn of events is perplexing since Blogger is owned by Google.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Blogger Problem/"Blog This"

For months now, I have had the repeated problem whenever I try the "Blog This" of it not working and of receiving the following message:
Blogger Problem

This server is currently experiencing a problem. An engineer has been notified and will investigate.

Status code: 1-500-5

Please visit the Blogger status page or the Blogger Knowledge Base for further assistance.
Since this problem has been happening repeatedly since March, I highly doubt that "an engineer has been notified," unless he/she never does anything about it or unless the problem is constantly coming from a different source.

In any event, this feature works sometimes, which makes it yet another capricious Blogger problem that nobody seems able to fix.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Feed Won't Validate?

I' ve been trying to add the RSS feeds to my blog to My Yahoo, but I was unable. Yahoo support showed me that my RSS feeds are "invalid," as at the Feed Validator. Notice that the Feed Validator says that "This feed uses an obsolete namespace." This is apparently not a problem directly related to my blog being deleted, as Blogger says that you need to go to Feedburner to create a properly functioning RSS feed for your blog. Unfortunately, that feed conked out weeks ago. So, if I - and probably many other people - want to use an up-to-date RSS feed from Blogger, it's back to the Blogger Help Group...

It's a bit confusing, as Blogger Help says that what it is providing an Atom feed (don't ask me the difference), but even that is apparently "obsolete," as the feed validator says, so it would be essentially worthless.

Even going to Feedburner, once again, does not allow me to add the feeds to My Yahoo, as I get this message:

"We couldn't find the RSS file you asked for"

Confused? Me too.

It would seem to be in Blogger's best interest to just upgrade their feed capacity!

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Another Serious Problem!

I don't know if it's a repercussion of having my blogs deleted, but twice now, once each to both my TBK News blog and my TBK Health blog, something has gone haywire with the template code, and virtually the entire blog disappeared. The only thing that showed up was the main area at the top of the page, along with some of the template code, such as <$BlogTitle$>, except that the <> were replaced by {}, so that it looked like this: {$BlogTitle$}. At least, that's how I remember it, because, frankly, I was in a bit of hurry to get rid of that code and restore my blog.

When it happened the first time, to my main blog, TBK News, I thought I had done something. Looking at the code in the template, it was obvious that my entire side bar had disappeared, with what was left was reading < /div > at the end. If you look at your own template code, you will note that it normally ends with < /html >. Mine had gotten cut off somehow, with the result that all the blog entries and the side bar were completely gone. I believe it may have been cut off right above the tag < !-- Begin #content -- > , but I'm not sure. Other than the heading at the top, what was left was completely wacky, as I said, something like: {$BlogTitle$}. This was the case with all of my blog pages.

In the first case, I was not able to rescue the code, and I had to rebuild the entire sidebar from scratch. Fortunately, once I reestablished the template code, using my other blog's, all of my articles came back, with the proper code.

This time around, I had a window open in which I had just refreshed the blog seconds before, so I viewed the source code, selected it all, copied it and pasted it back into my template. It worked. Phew!

Since it happened twice, in the exact same manner, I am certain I did not do it. This never happened before my blogs were deleted, so I wonder if it was an odd consequence of that deletion. It's possible that it's happened to others.

I got smart and finally went to and saved my blogs, or least the first pages so far.