Sunday, 3 March 2013

Simplest Related Posts Widget for Your Blogger Posts

I came across the following script codes as I looked for a Related Posts widget to use, I said "Whoopee !"

I have looked at many Related Posts widget, but none as simple as this to install. Many require you to add script codes into the template. This one doesn't. You only need to add the above codes to your Text/JavaScript widget in Blogger.

Some third parties widgets like LinkWithin, nRelated, etc even require registrations and so forth. I always opt for the simplest solution to a problem. Life's already too complicated without adding more complexity.

This code clearly shows that it puts a list of Related Posts at the end of my posts. Imagine the surprise I got when I end up with a list of Recent Posts at the bottoms of my posts !  It really stumped me.

If you have already successfully installed the Related Posts with the above codes, congratulation! Read no further. But if you have the same bewildering problem that I described above, read on...

I thought I'm not alone having this problem, so I like to share my experience on how I finally solved it to save others the trouble.

I asked the authors (yes, it's plural) where I copy this script to explain this discrepancy. None came back with a reply. So I realised I was on my own. I did some research and found out that this Related Posts widget also can act as Recent Posts from this website.

In point 4 under "Old Features - v1.0", it says, "4. Can work as recent posts widget too."

But it falls short on saying under what circumstances does it work as Recent Posts or Related Posts. Not very good documentation.

Well, the mystery why I end up with Recent Posts was solved, but I'm still need to find out how to get my Related Posts.

Back to more research, and then I read somewhere that if the post labels are missing, then the Related Posts widget will simply work as a Recent Posts widget. This makes sense except the part that says "if the post labels are missing".

One glance at my sidebar will confirm that my post labels are all there. And then it struck me. In a way, my posts' labels are indeed missing. Apparently, the Labels you see at the sidebar are different from those that appear on the bottoms of blog posts.

To show the Labels at the bottoms of posts, you need to tick the "Labels" box in the "Blog Posts" page element. I did it, but the labels didn't showing up. I knew about this problem, but I ignored it. I figure nobody really look at the Labels in the bottom of my posts. I certainly don't.

In fact, come to think of it, "Labels" isn't the only thing not showing up. I also checked the "Reactions" box in the "Blog Posts" page element as well, and that isn't showing up either.

So I reckon that if I could solve the problems of missing posts' Labels, I will solve the problem with the Related Posts widget. More research, and I eventually found the solution, and it's very simple. Simply perform the following step:

1.Go to the Template | Edit HTML tab.
2.Click the Revert widget templates to default link.
3.Click OK in the confirmation message

It worked. Everything works! The posts' Label and Reactions, as well as the Related Posts show up correctly at the bottom of my posts.

Indeed, in static pages where there're no post labels allowed, it shows Recent Posts, instead of Related Posts as it's intended.

However, the widget isn't free of hiccups. For example, sometimes in the list of Related Posts contains the same post that bears the Related Posts list. I hope they fix that bug. Well, I don't mind that little hiccup.

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