Using WordPress

Starting again with WordPress.com

Haven’t done any WordPress.com admin for years – so I’ll use this post to keep track of what I find out, while trying to reconfigure the site to fit what I’m looking for

Hiding all but one of my sites

I was able to get a list of all my sites (I set several different ones up in the past, to try out different kinds of content, and to be used specifically for collecting social media feedback in connection with specific (un)conference sessions.) in one of the admin windows (not yet sure how to refer to the different views/dashboards…)

Here I could visit each site, and in their settings panels switch all but this one to "private".

Setting a static front page

Followed these instructions from WordPress.com support, and it worked fine.

Working out how to add content using Markdown

This page from WordPress.com support describes how to do it.

I go to WP Admin dashboard (in some of the lefthand admin menus there’s a link to it)

I go to Settings->Writing and enable using Markdown.

Then it really seems to be as simple as typing using markdown, and it is displayed appropriately.

BUT NO – it wasn’t as easy as that – sometimes when I opened the page in the WordPress.com "Visual" editor, it showed it to me in Markdown, sometimes it was converted to the WYSIWYG formatting, and then I would have problems re-opening the page in my browser.

So I followed advice I read elsewhere, and now am writing the markdown locally, converting it to HTML using pandoc, and then copyting the resulting HTML into the HTML tab of the WordPress.com page editors. Seems to work fine – it’s how I did this page.

Differences between posts and pages

Difference is described here in the WordPress.com support site.

Adding categories to pages

So, according to this post, one of the differences between Posts and Pages in WordPress is that Pages are not, by default, associated with Tags or Categories.

I wanted to create pages with Tags/Categories, so I could have a menu item that was a link to all the "Using XXX" (where XXX is some kind of software) posts I make. I wanted these distinct from the completely-different-purpose content I’ve been putting in my blogs, in particular I expect the pages will be regularly updated, rather than Blog posts I expect to leave as they are.

There is a plugin – although I notes that’s for WordPress.org so perhaps not for WordPress.com… – that will allow putting Tags and Categories on Pages.

But experience has taught me that I’d rather not use plugins (so I’m not stuck with having to use something no longer updated, broken with current WordPress etc.) so I’ll stick to using Posts for this content 😦

Setting up a top bar menu

In the WP Admin dashboard Appearance->Menus I created a menu, and it appeared at the top, which is what I wanted. There’s clearly plenty to learn about maybe using different themes for controlling appearance and location of menus, but I’ll leave it for now.

Setting up a page to show all my blog posts

  • Themes->Customise
  • Customizing->Static Front Page
  • Posts page -> Add New Page
  • Entered a name for the page "Blog"
  • Save and Publish
  • Then "Customizing"->Menus
  • Go to the menu I want to put this in (Top Menu)
  • Add an item "Blog" type "Page"
  • Save and Publish

Couldn’t find this info anywhere else on the Interweb – perhaps I’ve just been using the wrong search terms?! Whatevs, at least it now finally works for me!

Deleting/removing categories

In the process of trying to create a page to show my blog posts, with posts added to it automatically, I had tried to tag all those posts with the same "BlogPost" category, and then create a category page that showed them all.

It didn’t work in my hands, but then I was stuck with a category I didn’t want to have.

It took me quite a while fiddling around the site to try and remove this category, but didn’t find a way to.

Thankfully, I read here https://en.support.wordpress.com/posts/categories/2/ how to do it – the option can be found in the WP Admin section, going to the Posts->Categories page in the dashboard and removing/deleting it there.

Finding out who’s following me on WordPress.com so I can follow them back (2017.06.09)

I struggled a while to work out how to do this.

Found the answer in the WordPress.com support pages

  1. Go to "My sites"
  2. Choose "Stats" on left menu
  3. Choose "Insights" (near top of the screen)
  4. Near bottom on right hand side you can see who follows you, follow links to their blogs, and follow them back easily.

Yay!

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