Posted:
by Noah Fiedel, Blogger Tech Lead

Five weeks ago we rolled out Auto Pagination, a major milestone in our efforts to make Blogger faster for you and your readers. We are very happy to report a ten percent overall decrease in page loading latency across all Blogger blogs and a twenty-seven percent decrease on archive pages.

Just how significant is a ten percent latency reduction? It's not often that software engineers get to save lives, yet in just the past five weeks we’ve saved eight human lifetimes spent waiting for pages to load! Every week saves an additional:
  • 1 Million Hours
  • 114 Years
  • 1.6 Human Lifetimes
Some of you have expressed concern over the change in how Blogger displays your blogs. Without addressing each individual case, the vast majority of blogs negatively impacted were not actually blogs, but were using Blogger as a kind of free web host. As today’s post makes clear, Auto Pagination has had an extraordinarily positive impact on how blogs are consumed — blog readers are spending less time waiting for pages to load and more time reading the posts you work so hard to write. (By the way: if your pages show fewer posts than you would like, we recommend using After the Jump to ensure that your readers can see more posts per page.)

If a ten percent improvement has such a major impact, what else can be done to speed up your blog? One area we’re looking at is third-party JavaScript. We remain one of the few blogging services to allow users unlimited ability to add JavaScript to their pages — but that flexibility comes at a cost. These JavaScript widgets often add several seconds to page loads — even on fast Internet connections. We’ll talk more about this in a future post; in the mean time, you can try out Google’s Page Speed to identify what might be causing a page to load slowly.

As always, thanks for using Blogger!

Posted:
by Siobhan Quinn, Blogger Product Manager


We’re thrilled to announce that the Blogger Template Designer has launched to Blogger in Draft, our experimental playground where users can try out Blogger’s latest features. The Template Designer brings a new level of customization to your blog. Take a look:





In the Template Designer, you’ll find:


  • 15 new professional templates to start from (and more on their way)
  • Custom blog layouts with one, two and three columns
  • Hundreds of professional background images from iStockphoto
  • Customizable colors, fonts, and more!
We have more details and tips in our Blogger Template Designer post on the Blogger in Draft blog.




We worked with iStockphoto, the leading microstock image marketplace, to put together a great collection of beautiful images and patterns to use as backgrounds on your blogs. The photos are stunning, and are free to use on your Blogger blog.

That being said, today’s launch is just the beginning. We’ll add more of our own designs over the coming weeks and months and, through the new Template Design Group, we’ll be working with members of the Blogger design community to bring their templates into the new Template Designer.



Help test drive the Blogger Template Designer by logging into Blogger In Draft, and learn more about the new features in more detail on the Blogger In Draft blog.

Posted:

Blogger and Google Reader are throwing a party at South by South West and you're invited! We'll be debuting a very special feature at the party, so come celebrate with the Blogger and Google Reader teams. Drinks, food, tunes, swag, and good times will be in full effect.

Party Details
Blogger & Google Reader Party

Sunday March 14 @ 8:00PM
Six Lounge, 117 W 4th St @ Colorado


Remember to bring your SXSW Interactive badge. See you there!