Displaying Blogs

The Blogs app in Site Administration lets you add, manage, and configure your site’s blogs. You can then display those blogs by adding a separate Blogs widget to a page. Adding the Blogs widget to a site page creates a shared blog for site members. Adding the widget to a user’s personal site (dashboard) creates a blog just for that user. The widget works the same way in both cases. And of course, you can scope a blog to a page to produce a blog instance for just that page.

To add a Blogs widget to a page:

  1. Navigate to the page.

  2. From the Add menu (Add), open WidgetsCollaboration.

  3. Drag a Blogs widget onto the page.

By default, the Blogs widget lists abstracts of the site’s recent blog entries. The listing shows each entry’s cover image prominently. Each abstract in the listing also shows the number of comments, thumbs up/down ratings, and links to share the entry on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other social networking sites. Clicking a blog entry lets you view its full content, where you can also comment on the entry.

Figure 1: Fancy a lunar spelunking trip? This blog entrys abstract lets you know what youre getting into.

Figure 1: Fancy a lunar spelunking trip? This blog entry's abstract lets you know what you're getting into.

There are several display options that let you configure the listing to look the way you want. To configure the widget, click the Options icon (Options) in its title bar and select Configuration. The display settings are in the Setup tab:

Enable Ratings: Whether readers can rate blog entries.

Enable Comments: Whether readers can comment on blog entries.

Show View Count: Whether to show the number views for each entry.

Social Bookmarks: The social networking sites that users can share blog entries with. Only those in the Current column are displayed via the share buttons on each blog entry. To move social networking sites between the Current and Available columns, select the sites and use the arrows between those columns. Similarly, use the up/down arrows beneath the Current column to reorder the sites as they appear on each blog entry. For more information, see the social bookmarks documentation.

Display Style: The display style for social bookmarks. Inline is the default and displays the social bookmark icons in a row. Menu hides them inside a single share menu.

Maximum Items to Display: The total number of blog entries to display on the initial page. You can select up to 75 to display at once.

Display Template: The overall appearance of blog entries in the listing. Abstract is the default, and is shown in the above screenshot. You can also choose the following:

  • Full Content: Displays each blog entry’s full content.
  • Title: Displays only the blog entry’s title.
  • Basic: A stripped-down version of the Abstract, with less text and no cover image.
  • Card: Displays each blog entry in a card-like rectangle that shows the cover image, title, author, post date, and a few lines of text.

To select a different widget template or create your own, click Manage Templates. For more information, see the documentation on widget templates.

Figure 2: The Card display template makes your blog posts look like fun little trading cards.

Figure 2: The Card display template makes your blog posts look like fun little trading cards.

Enable Report Inappropriate Content: Whether to let users flag content as inappropriate, which sends an email to administrators.

Enable Ratings for Comments: Whether to let readers rate blog entry comments.

Show Related Assets: Whether to display related content from other apps/widgets in blog entries.

There are also other tabs in Configuration:

Communication: Lists public render parameters the widget publishes to other widgets on the page. Other apps/widgets can read and take actions on these. For each shared parameter, you can specify whether to allow communication using the parameter and select which incoming parameter can populate it.

Sharing: Embed the widget instance as a widget on any website, Facebook, Netvibes, or as an OpenSocial Gadget.

Scope: Specify the blog instance the widget displays: the current site’s blog (default), the global blog, or the page’s blog. If the page doesn’t already have a blog instance, you can select scope option [Page Name] (Create New) to create a page-scoped blog instance.

When you finish setting the options, click Save and then close the dialog box.

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