Getting more out of your visits here

To help make it easier for you to use this site, I’ve added some new features starting with a couple of WordPress plugins:

  1. Subscribe to comments via email. Using the nifty Subscribe to Comments 2.0 plugin, each post now includes a checkbox beneath the comment area which you can set so that you can choose to receive an email notification whenever anyone subsequently comments to that post. Once you’ve subscribed, you’ll also be able to manage your subscriptions via a special page on this site and do things like unsubscribe to certain or all posts, or change your notification email address. (If you do subscribe, I promise not to use your email address for anything nor share it with anyone.)

    A participatory benefit like this, by the way, was high on my wish list when I had my blog at TypePad. It’s also in John Unger’s 40+ Ways that TypePad Could Rock Even Harder list over at TypePad Hacks.

    In addition to email, you can also subscribe to this blog’s comments RSS feed. That’s a standard feature of WordPress, not a plugin. Note that if you do subscribe, you’ll get all comments to all posts.

  2. See the latest comments to all posts. In the right-hand sidebar on the home page, there’s a list of the ten most recent comments to posts showing the name of the commenter and an excerpt of his or her comments, with a link to the comments in a particular post. The plugin is Simple Recent Comments. I’ve actually called this list ‘Conversations’ – that seems far more engaging than just ‘Comments.’

  3. Embedded podcasting. With the awesome Podpress plugin, it’s very easy to write a post and include links to a podcast plus an embedded Flash player so you can listen to it there and then. I’m not sure yet how much use I’ll make of this in my own name (I’m focused on doing podcasts at For Immediate Release) but it’s a very neat addin for WordPress. See my post last weekend for more info.

A plugin I’ve not yet been able to get working on this site is WP-Print, quite a good looking one that gives you a nicely-formatted version of a post ideal for printing (see this demo page by the plugin author). I think the reason it doesn’t work is to do with how some of the PHP code in one of the files in the K2 theme that I use is in a different file to where the plugin expects it to be. I’m still trying to work that one out.

Stephan Spencer has a terrific list of other excellent WordPress plugins.

I’ve also added a new Resources page (new link in the menu bar at the top of the page), an entry to some of my articles, reviews, case studies, presentations and downloads which address key elements of social media and organizational communication. What’s there now is just a start: I’ll be adding to it over time. Feel free to grab any of this if it will be helpful to you; just note, please, the conditions of use as described in the Creative Commons license on this site or as stated in an individual document.

If you find any or all of these additions useful (or not, even), do let me know. Anything else you’d like to see in this site?

[23/3/06] Just added a new one to the comments box on a post – Comment Quick Tags. This lets you do things in your comment text like add formatting and adding a link by highlighting the text you want to make as a link and then clicking on a button which pops up a dialog where you can insert the link. Simpler and easier than typing in the ‘a href=’ stuff by hand. Not sure I like how the tag buttons are displayed – a bit chunky-looking for my taste. Need to see how I can change the style of them, probably in the CSS somewhere.

[Technorati: wordpress plugins, wordpress]

Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. Dave Briggs

    Hey Neville

    How do you produce those nifty Technorati tags at the bottom of your posts? I have tried the Ultimate Tag Warrior plug-in but it over complicated things to an absurd degree for my liking!

    The comment sub thing is very cool. I’ll have that one!

  2. neville

    Dave, the Technorati tags are produced with my offline editor, currently ecto for Windows. It has the ability to add tags such as those in this post. Otherwise I’d have to do do it manually.

    You do mean that, right, and not the ‘add to delicious’ and email this’ tags? Those tags are generated by FeedBurner.

    The comment plugin is very good, I agree. Simple yet valuable.

  3. Dave Briggs

    Yeah, I meant the tags in the body of the post. Have never used Ecto – I use Blogjet occasionally and find using an offline editor can be liberating. Have you tried Qumana? That too has the option of adding tags to posts.

    There must be a simple way of doing it within WordPress somewhere. As I said, Ultimate Tag Warrior did my head in.

    I use Feedburner for my feed now, too. A great service.

  4. » Blog Archive » Tagging

    […] Then Neville Hobson, who is clearly the King of WordPress plug-in recommendations, put forward the suggestion of Simple Tags – the title of which was music to my ears. It works beautifully – simply by adding the tags at the end of the post surrounded by the word tags in square brackets – like those you’d use on most forum systems these days. […]

  5. Dave Briggs

    Neville – am playing around with K2 on a new blog I am setting up. How do you go about inserting a header graphic like yours? It doesn’t seem terribly clear from the header template.

    If you could let me know that would be great!

  6. neville

    Dave, to add a header graphic, you need to edit the style sheet you plan to use for your customization of K2.

    So for this blog, my custom CSS includes this text in the section on page structure:

    #header {
    padding: 0;
    margin: 0;
    position: relative;
    height: 200px;
    background: #38C url('main/header2_780x200.jpg');

    The dimensions of the header file are standard K2. So you need to make the graphic exactly those dimensions: 780 pixels wide by 200 pixels high. You can do different dimensions; if you do, though, there are other elements you’ll need to change elsewhere in the theme. Plus changing width can play havoc in how the blog displays in IE.

    Does this help? Also check out the K2 forum – some very smart people there.

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