Since I moved the blog to this new site I have been changing things around and playing with the way it works. While it is still not where I want it to be, I think the visuals are coming quite close. However, one of the biggest problems is the amount of spam comments. I introduced various plug-ins to attempt stopping the problem, but they have just created more work for me. My last two solutions seemed to work best. I installed an invisible captcha that detects spam and prevents it from posting by trapping it in a spam comment folder. For the most part this was successful, but some still slipped through. So I made it that no comment could go through without my moderation if it included a link to anything. This also worked, even though it prevented actual readers from immediately submitting comments that contained useful links. But the spam folder constantly needed to be emptied (and there is not an “empty all” button). It was terribly time consuming, and if I didn’t keep on i,t the number of spam comments I got was slowing down how my blog functioned on the back end of things. Just this last week I got 104 thousand spam comments which required manual deletion. Ugh.
Because I simply do not have time for this, I have done what I was really trying to avoid doing – installing a captcha. Well, considering that the majority of you find other ways of communicating your comments to me outside of my blog, I figure this will not upset too many people.
So, there it is… captcha. If this works, I can remove the link restriction. And for the few of you who do comment, I decided to make it fun and install the kind of captcha that has you solve simple math problems when posting. I figure that should give you something to do, and simultaneously prevent people who can’t solve simple math problems from commenting on my blog. All problems solved.
I have not had a whole lot of time this week, but I have been working on the blog, or at least experimenting with different things. I realized the whole “tabs” thing is not as amazing as I may have thought, and quite the project. It will still happen, but may take longer than I originally anticipated, especially with my schedule these days.
Yet while I have been working on all these other features, a rather annoying problem has presented itself: spam comments. I used to get the random spam comments on the Blogger site as well, and they would be flagged, awaiting approval. I would only get one or two a month. This site posts a lot of the spam comments before consent, and I have to constantly go in and manually delete them. Yes, it annoys me that they are there. This too would not be a huge thing, except I am getting upward of 300 spam comments per day.
I have been trying out different plug-ins to curb this, and the first few did almost nothing. I knew what would *really* work, and Tanya mentioned it as well, CAPTCHA. But I hate those, and I know a lot of other people do as well. However, considering that about 99% of my comments are made either privately on Twitter, via email, or on Facebook, and it really wouldn’t be noticed by many, I was beginning to sway towards installing it. Luckily, this last plug-in seems to have helped. I will have to wait and see.
P.S. Before anyone suggests Akismet, yes, I know they are wonderful and would solve every last one of my spam problems, but for now I am trying to not use them.
I have said multiple times I would do it. It is done. My new blog is here! I would like to say it is ready to go, but really, it is not. After I imported all of the posts and comments from the Blogger site, I had to go into each one and reformat because the entire import was just a data dump, and it was all a jumbled mess. I think that end of it is more or less taken care of. The site itself is as good as I could get it in the last week or so, but still not entirely what I want. Unfortunately, what I want requires me to actually know what I am doing.
It is very much still a work in progress, and I will be tinkering with it over the next month or so (if not longer). I am in the process of making it pretty, but I also want to make it readable and functional. A few years ago I had my old blog set to a black background with white type. Several people complained that on the longer posts, the contrast gave them a headache and it was hard to read, so I implemented the white background – everyone was happy.
Now I am experimenting with the grey background, which I feel works well. But I want to hear how it looks on your end (not just the background, but the entire set up). I have looked at it from my phone, my laptop, and my work computer, and so far it appears okay. But I want to know how it looks on different devices with different settings. Does anything not translate well?
Also, if you will notice, I have two whole tabs at the top! Yes, click on them, look at the tabs (they are amazing, and I am obviously overly excited about having tabs). Once I figure out how tabs work, there will be more. However, that may take a while… In the meantime, enjoy!