Posted:
Blogger in beta initially launched without a few features -- it's still a beta version after all -- and it turned out that one of the ones folks missed the most was having an Edit HTML view for their templates in the new Layouts system. I can sympathize with that myself. Complete template control was one of the things that originally made me choose Blogger over the other available options almost four years ago (and yes, that was before I worked here). That kind of personalization and customization is important to us here at Blogger, so I hope no one thought this feature was gone for good.

I love the fact that we've got such cool new ways to just drag 'n' drop parts of your template around, and change fonts and colors with the click of a mouse. And that "shuffle blog colors" option can keep me entertained for hours. But still, there are times when you really just want to muck around in the code and nothing else will do. So for those of you who feel that way, have at it! Edit HTML is now available for Layouts.

One quick warning before you all dive in, though: The new template language is completely different from the old one. So even if you're used to working with classic templates, you'll need to learn some new tricks to directly edit the new templates for Layouts-enabled blogs. We've got some starter documentation on it, with more to come later. Personally, I recommend making a test blog to experiment on while you learn how it all works.

Have fun!

Posted:


I'm saddened to have to do this again, but today we're saying our collective goodbyes to Jason Goldman, Mr. Goldtoe.net, who's been Blogger's phenomenal Product Manager for the past three and a half years. There's a blank line in title above, because you could fill it in with any aspect of Blogger's evolution at Google and be assured that Jason played a significant role in its development. Fortunately though, Blogger's future continues to be incredibly bright and we're looking forward to moving out of beta and into the exciting times beyond!

Good luck with with all your endeavors Jason, and thank you for all your time, energy, insights and the eternal entertainment.

-Eric and the Blogger Gang

Posted:
On this day in 1999, Pyra Labs launched Blogger which Ev announced on his own blog. As you can see, Blogger was quite the looker back then.

From those humble roots, a bloggerish forest has grown. And a lot of what we continue to build today is informed by the philosophy of the original Pyra team.

For example, the idea of control. One feature of the new beta is the new photo removal tool. Anytime you go to delete a post with a photo, we'll show you the images associated with that post and ask whether you want to keep or remove them from the web. Handy.

In any case: Happy Birthday, Bloggers! Here's to 7 more.

(Oh, the birthday logo is a dog because of that whole "1 human year = 7 dog year" thing. And there should be more dogs in birthday hats, don'cha think?)

Posted:
Thanks very much to everyone who has submitted feedback thus far on the new Blogger in beta! I wanted to give an update on: migration, login problems and more features.

1) Migration

The biggest thing we've heard thus far is "When can I get it!" Believe me, we want to let everyone move over to Beta as quickly as possible. While we continue to increase the number of eligible users, we are doing so in an incremental way.

This is important because our highest priority is protecting user data during the migration process. By taking the approach we have, we've been able to fix bugs before they affect larger numbers of users. As it stands now, only a very small percentage of users have been affected by migration issues and we have fixed most of those problems. If you have experienced a problem related to migration, let us know and we will fix it (and don't worry your blog posts are safe!)

2) Login trouble

Rather than migration errors, the biggest problem we've seen thus far is folks who have tried to log into Blogger and are concerned because they see an empty dashboard. In almost all cases, this is because users are unknowingly being logged into the Beta instead of the current version of Blogger. The login box on www.blogger.com now accepts Google Accounts; by using the auto-complete function of your browser's password manager, you may be logged into Beta instead of the current version of Blogger.

It's important to remember, if you get logged in and see an empty dashboard, check the address bar of your browser to see if it says beta.blogger.com. If it does, you'll need to log out and go to www.blogger.com. Be sure to enter your current Blogger username and password at www.blogger.com and you will see your current list of blogs.

If you've forgotten your current Blogger username and password, you can retrieve them using our forgot password page.

3) More features

A lot of folks have been wanting to use new features like Labels but with their existing template. Or there are folks who are looking for more fine-grained control than offered with the new Layouts system.

Fortunately, it's always been part of our plan to introduce a new Edit HTML system for Blogger in beta. This system will not only let folks have the degree of customizability they desire, but it will let you create templates that are customizable with the Layouts system. Right now we are finishing the first version of this system and will be introducing in the "days not weeks" timeframe.

We are also going to be adding FTP support to the new version of Blogger which will allow open up migration to our existing external users. As we've noted in the migration documents, some of the new features rely on the new dynamic serving capabilities of Blog*Spot. We won't be able to support all of those features for our FTP users. We do intend to continue to support FTP and also come up with ways to make it possible and desirable for those folks (which includes me) to come back to Blog*Spot.

Finally, I wanted to point out a feature of the new Blogger in beta that's available today, but hasn't been much remarked on in the many reviews of the new app: updated spellcheck. This is not surprising, as our existing spellcheck is so cumbersome that many folks are probably conditioned not to use it at all. But now our spellcheck is powered by the same great experience users have been enjoying in Gmail. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Posted:
Alongside yesterday's Blogger Beta launch comes some great news for Blogger API developers — Blogger now has a Google Data API! This means:
Please post any questions/problems/etc. to the bloggerDev/Data API discussion list, so we can make sure to fix any bugs as quickly as possible — thanks!

Posted:

Today we're launching a new version of Blogger in beta! You've been asking for ways to do more with your blog, and you can with this new release. With the beta you can:
Take a look at the tour to see all the new things you can do (well, a lot of the new things ... they didn't all fit in the tour).

As we release this version, we're limiting the number of people who can switch over. (You'll see a link on your Blogger dashboard when you are able to move.) Eventually, of course, everyone will be able to transition their blogs to the new version. Thanks in advance for your patience as we roll it out.

If you can't wait, you can create a new account on the beta now and make a new blog to test out the new features. Because the new Blogger uses Google Accounts, you can use your existing Google login, or create a new one. (Later, you'll be able to merge your current and beta accounts, and have all your blogs in one place.)

We'll be posting more about the new version in the coming days, but for now, we really want to know what you think. You can post on the Blogger Help Group or via or feedback form.

Posted:
A while back we mentioned that we've been working with Sony Ericsson to incorporate blogging into their new generation of cameraphones. Well, the k800 has started to hit the market and our friends in Sweden have a helpful graphic to explain how it all works.

Check it out!