Another dot in the blogosphere?

Posts Tagged ‘wordpress

Over the weekend, I received strange comments on a few of my old WordPress entries.

They were all from other WordPress-hosted blogs written in Cyrillic font. This is probably not new spam, but it is spam all the same. Bloggers beware.


After months of allowing a simple editing interface, WordPress forced its new editor on its mobile app and the Web. I am disappointed because I cannot rely on my favourite search of CC-licensed images, ImageCodr, as easily as before.

ImageCodr searches Flickr photos that have been labelled with any of the CC-licenses and provides HTML that can be copied and pasted into other websites. This used to work with the simple editor in WordPress.

Now I get this error message — This block contains unexpected or invalid content — when I try to embed HTML generated by ImageCodr. This happens if I add a new block -> embed -> choose embed as HTML.

Thankfully I can avoid this by a) ignoring the message (it still seems to embed), b) selecting custom HTML instead, or c) using some other external image source.

The last option is Pexel and Google Photos. I experimented with the Pexel source yesterday. I used images in shared folders in my Google Photos to embed all the screenshots above.

All this is a matter of getting used to the changes. However, I also think that the embedding is slower and less direct. It also feels like I am operating remotely on a patient — I cannot actually see and feel the HTML that this reflection is built on.

WordPress emailed me a year-in-blogging report. Here are the highlights.

Two of the top five were not strictly about education. They were about getting prepaid SIMs overseas.

Only one of the five (the last one) was something I wrote about in 2015 in response to the Kinabalu tragedy. Are my best edublogging days behind me?

Is there a social or “new” media platform that does not offer year-end reviews?

YouTube has its now traditional rewind video.

Video source

I avoid Facebook but another YouTube video informed me of personalized 2014 reviews there that did not fare too well.

Video source

Google+ Photos autoselected photos that were supposed to represent my year in a slideshow. The algorithm seemed to select only photos with people and were the least representative in my opinion. They can cite data all they want; they do not represent emotion.

Not to be outdone, WordPress informed me that I missed just three days this year in reflections. I was very ill for a period in August.

My five most read entries for the year were a mix of old and new:

The top five referral sites to my blog were Twitter,, Facebook, Google+, and NIE.

My blog attracted readers from 145 countries with the top three being Singapore, the USA, and Australia.

So now what?

I started this blog in 2008 and grew to blog daily whether or not anyone was reading. I developed this habit when I blogged on behalf of my then unborn son in 2003.

Video source

I plan on keeping that habit up just like the way the guy in the video took a photo of himself every day for 12 years.

I wonder if I can replicate that stare in writing…

This blog normally get a spike of views during or right after conferences. So I expected this week’s spike to be related to the my talk and panel at Educon Asia’s 6th Higher Education Summit.

Instead, something I reflected on two weeks ago took top spot this week and cause the spike, The pedagogy of Twitter chats.

It takes just a handful of tweets from a few regular readers of this blog to draw in the normal numbers. At last count, that blog entry had 21 tweets. Obvious cause and effect.

It has also been a month since I have started monitoring my Twitter dashboard.

The small rises seem to be associated with tweet chats I participate in.

I have a Twitter-based reach of about 27,000 to 28,000 per day. The day seems to be optimized to US time and it is tempting to repost tweets to suit that time zone.

I have already noticed that readers of my blog originate from the US when I check the blog stats in the morning. Later in the day, the readership shifts to Singapore and the region.

But the anglosphere is already saturated with edubloggers. Perhaps I should just focus on what I can do here.

I am not sure if it is the template I am using or if WordPress changed something a while ago.

This is what the social media bar on one of my entries looks like. It might have changed since I last screencapped it.


I used to be able to click on the Facebook button to find out exactly who was sharing my thoughts on their Facebook wall. Now I cannot.

I do not think that the stats dashboard in provides such fine-grained information. I wish it would.

As much as I dislike Facebook, I would like to know how people are using my blog entries there. Are they used responsibly? How are they generating conversations that I am not aware of?

I use the social media tools contextually. I largely ignore Facebook for its navel-gazing, food-snapping, and outright bitching. I adore Twitter for allowing me to filter and form a personal learning network.

I am not sure if I should return to cross-posting on Facebook so I can monitor the traffic there. WordPress used help me with this, but not any more.


Video source

This is going to be an exceptionally busy week for me.

I have one more consultancy gig to do and the semester begins early for me. And that is just the teaching load which, nowadays, is the lightest thing I carry.

But I keep reflecting and curating, and as I do, I am aware how important it is to backup what I have online in WordPress and Delicious. The process is straightforward in WordPress but not quite obvious in Delicious and I illustrate how to do both.

I should point out that I made the video in advance. I used Delicious and Diigo differently even though they afforded similar features. I have since migrated fully to Diigo ever since Delicious suffered log in and availability issues.

In case you are keeping count, my first video was recorded with desktop webcam, the second was a pool interview with laptop webcam, and the third was a voice-over screencast in Minecraft Pocket Edition using an iPad mini. The current one is a desktop screencast with Screencast-O-Matic.

Next week I share something about Twitter via a multitasked screencast via an iPad. In August, I share Google Hangout interviews with edu-preneurs!

I will be overseas and on vacation this week. But I will continue to blog with my netbook and as long as I have wireless access. I could also “blog” if I used a new service. allows you to blog with blogging. The service automatically creates blog entries based on keywords that you specify. This might seem like a good idea for a “lazy” blogger, but I think that it is a great tool for automtically gathering information based on topics of interest!

First it was WordPress blogs and then LiveJournal blogs. Yahoo! Tech reported that both were hit with denial of service (DOS) attacks over the weekend.

I did not experience any problems, but that is likely because 1) I avoid blogging on weekends, and 2) WordPress has always been relatively slow for me!


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