The one thing that might confuse you a bit is how different web browsers offer different toolbars when you write a post. There’s also a setting in the Users > Your profile section of the Dashboard that affects whether or not you see an editing toolbar.
This post continues from Newbies guide to blogging (Part Three). It was first published October 2006, so some details may be a bit dated.
There are three ‘formats’ for the blog post entry box:
- visual rich editor (gives you buttons such as ‘bold’, ‘list’ and so on).
- quicktags (gives you buttons for HTML codes).
- plain (you can enter HTML, if you like).
The visual rich editor
If you don’t know anything about HTML, your best choice is probably the visual rich editor. To make sure this is turned on go to the Users > Your profile section of the Dashboard, scroll down to the Personal Options section and ensure the box to Use the visual rich editor when writing is checked, as shown in the first Screenshot.
Now, if you’re using the right web browser, you can easily select a word or phrase and click on a button on the toolbar to format it.
The second screenshot shows that I’ve selected the word ‘favourite’ and am about to click the ‘b’ button to make it bold.
Safari, Firefox, Internet Explorer
The other screenshots show how three different web browsers handle the Visual rich editor. Safari just doesn’t show it, Firefox (and Flock, a Firefox derivative) and Internet Explorer for Windows do. [Update 2009: later versions of Safari include the Visual rich editor.]
Whether you’re a computer geek or not, you will also find the recently published book, WordPress 2 Visual Quickstart Guide (affiliate link), extremely useful. In 304 pages it provides simple step by step instructions, with plenty of screenshots, for both the free WordPress.com blogging service and for anyone who wants to set up a WordPress blog on their own web server. The book was written by Maria Langer, author of more than 60 books for Mac users, and Miraz Jordan, writer. ISBN: 0-321-45019-1.
This article includes Windows screenshots (made on a Mac running Parallels software). This article was first published in Macguide magazine Issue #29 September / October 2006 and has been modified from the original.