After 30 Days of WordPress, Learn HTML

Who’d have thought the customization aspect of WordPress.com (yes, the FREE one) could be so… addicting.

I can barely make time for school, let alone a decent post, after applying this new theme. And to think I simply implied the extent of customization from the word ‘free.’ I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface.

On the exterior, WordPress.com looks relatively simple. At a glance, the Dashboard can even appear entirely blog-oriented. But, what I failed to understand until recently, is that every basic element of a website is present (to some degree) and accessible to the novice blogger.

This is news to me.

The elements of a free WordPress blog are themselves very simple. It’s clear that WordPress.com aims to make starting and maintaining your first blog an effortless experience. And effortless it is!

To my knowledge, a blogger can go from concept to their first published post within minutes; truly an awesome service.

What remains unclear to the first time blogger is the ability to combine these elements as they increase in number. Combining Posts, Pages, Links, Menus, and Widgets, with a tad of basic HTML, to create more than just the average blog, requires a better understanding of the role each must play.

Experimentation led me to discover several ways of creatively combining elements to achieve desired effects. Most notably, I found the ability to add additional HTML code, to nearly any text, useful in making subtle, yet distinctive changes in my blogs appearance.

However joyful the discovery, it has only fueled my desire to self-host. WordPress.org is incredibly attractive. The ability to edit fonts and the color palette, two aspects that play such an instrumental role in overall appearance that you must pay for them separately, is undoubtedly the biggest drawback to a free WordPress.com blog.

All of this my opinion, of course.

Summary: Learn the basics of HTML. It’s almost too easy to comprehend and, most importantly, you’ll have no excuse for an ugly blog.

 

Featured Image: 10 buenas practicas para escribir código HTML Photo By [infocux Technologies Link to Flickr]

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I’m Lovin It

It’s been a while since I’ve had time to sit down and write something worthwhile. The past week was nothing but tests and homework leaving me little time to do anything extracurricular.

I’m trying a new theme and will hopefully find a good way of organizing content here in the next week. I want to continue blogging as normal, but I’m looking for a way to separate my somewhat personal blog and the information that I plan to gather.

So far I’m thinking most of the navigation should be centered towards finding major articles and subjects rather than a live blog feed. As a result, I’m in the process of switching several posts to pages. I’m thinking the more informational pieces will be on pages rather than posts.

I’m still pretty new to customizing WordPress.com to the fullest extent, but I’ve really been considering going self-hosted just so I have full CSS control. I’m a perfectionist when it comes to layout and design, and would rather have complete aesthetic control over the way content is arranged.

However, I think I’ll hold off a while longer just to see if there’s enough promise in this before making a larger commitment. After all, I’ve just now been back for a month.

In the meantime, I’m hoping to get back to publishing at a normal rate. I’ll continue to tweak the site for some time until I get it right, but don’t be surprised if WordPress.org woos me away.

Any random advice for balancing an informational and semi-personal blog?

 

Featured Image: An Open Invitation Photo By [Quinn Mattingly Link to Flickr]