January 4, 2011

You learn something new every day...

While working on making changes to our airplane blog yesterday, I was running into some trouble getting the blogger website to do what I needed it to.  I can use it just fine within the confines of what it has to offer, but I wanted something different than that and didn’t know how to make it happen.  My tech-savvy husband and I had an email exchange through the afternoon in which he tried to share with me a couple tricks to fix the problem.  Although I don’t speak tech, he is fluent in both it and in Laura, so he was able to tell me precisely what to do.  Some of it worked, and some of it didn’t.  I could follow his directions, but without him being there to see the effect himself, he had to guess as to what suggestions to offer.
Trying to be helpful to me for both the airplane blog and this one, he sent me a PDF about writing in HTML.  Acronyms scare me.  I kind of know what a PDF is, though not what it stands for, so I opened it.  In it some other tech-savvy guy informs bloggers about writing their HTML code.  Huh?!?  Not knowing what HTML stands for, nor what it really is, and certainly never having realized it was something I was working within, I scanned the document and found something I could understand.  Following the parts of what this guy said that resembled English and seemed at all familiar, I was able to make the words "Empennage/Tailcone" turn bold.  In the main text of the blog, it's a click of a button.  But in those side and bottom sections, which is what I was working in, you apparently have to tell it what to do by spelling it out in some foreign language.
I’m still not sure what on earth HTML is or how it really works.  Joe sending me that guide was a bit like landing at an airport in Italy when I thought I was going to England, and having someone thrust a pamphlet of basic Italian survival phrases into my hands and wishing me a buon giorno as they walk away.  Though I have a vague familiarity with bits and pieces of Italian, I’d have to study the pamphlet at every turn, never really knowing what I was saying and just hoping I didn't inadvertently insult someone.
In my HTML situation, whatever that means, I will just follow the steps for now, and hopefully in time learn what it is I’m doing.  Taking the plunge into an unfamiliar technology-based situation pretty well describes when I got started with blogging in the first place.  Maybe there’s hope for me yet.  Ciao!

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