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John T. Unger

Contact John T Unger at TypePad Hacks

John T. Unger March 2, 2006

Contact John T Unger at TypePad Hacks
Mobile: 231.584.2710 Skype: johntunger

Hey, I love to connect with people—That's why I blog in the first place.

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More Like This: Info


Marcy says:

Why are the features in Typepad's Mixed Media layouts so limited? I'm getting responses from tech support that merely tell me to switch over to the Classic Layouts.

This doesn't work for what I'm trying to do with my site but so far I cannot change the order in which the categories appear, add an interactive calendar, or add any widgets.


I'm think of moving to another space if I can't figure out how to tweak my page.

parker says:

How do I integrate a typepad blog into my website. I dont want it to go to an another site, rather I want it to be seamless. Is there an integration guide that you can point me to?


john t unger says:

Hi Parker,

there are instructions on how to integrate a typepad blog into a website here:


BusBoy says:

Hi John,

Well after getting a lame response form TypePad support I googled my frustrations away... and here I am! I have a question that most likely has already been answered but you said ask it in public as it may actually not have been asked sooooo...

First off I am NEW to blogging... 7 days and counting... but, I really want to get into it but the layouts of some of the templates are killing me. I am a "Pro" subsciber and I am not sure yet if that equates to "sucker" yet but I thought i'd throw that out there in case it mattered on what I need to do.

I am trying to get FULL page layouts for my blogs... I am by far no CSS wizard and the response I got from CS on TypePad was discouraging at best when i posted the question to them. I am using a mixed media format which from quickly looking over you blog here may have been a mistake! Anyway... can you help me out or point me to an idiots version on instructions on widening your typepad blog.

thanks john... excellent site that I plan to make more use of in the future


john t unger says:

Hi Chris,

Nope, you're definitely not a sucker for choosing the Pro level subscription… Pro will allow you to get in and modify the code that creates your templates so that you can get your blog looking exactly the way you want it. I suggest creating a test blog where you can try out different styles etc before applying them to the blog you are using now.

Sadly, though, you won't be able to edit a mixed media layout. The mixed media layouts are more limited in the changes they allow. The idea behind them is to create a layout that's "ready to go" for users who don't want to code.

What you'll want to do is start from a basic template and recreate as many elements of your existing design as you can in the design wizard, and then start editing the code in advanced templates after you've set the basic colors and layout options. Setting the width for your text block is easy to do in the design wizard even without resorting to advanced templates

I took a quick look at your blog, and the only element that you might find tricky to bring in under basic elements is the recent photos block in your sidebar. You can easily add a list of photo albums from the design wizard, but to get individual photos you'll need to use some javascript in a notes typelist. I'll see if I can dig something up that would do that (but it'll take some time since I'm already massively behind on releasing some other hacks, etc. Let me know if you find one first.)

BusBoy says:


Thanks for the rundown on what I needed to do. I do apprieciate the time to respond. Dont worry about digging something up for me... Get those Hacks out you're behind on as once I am where i need to be on design issues I will more than likely want to "Pimp my Blog" with some of the Hacks I have seen here.

Again thanks for your time!


adrian says:

Hey John,

Great site. I'll be coming here often I think as I get my orgs blogs running on typepad.

FYI though as I navigate around I keep getting "stack overflow at line 0" errors when I click on links. Don't know if it is related to those rollovers which say "1 Click Today" (which I have to say are a tad annoying anyway -- although not as annoying as the error popup!).


john t unger says:


Thanks for mentioning that… I hadn't seen it myself but will try to figure out what's going on. What browser are you using? That might help me figure out what's going on.

Ann Ray says:

Hi John,

I'd love to see a hack for sub-categories. In the meantime, I'll try hard coding it via custom templates--hopefully without too many static bits (blech). I'm afraid to dive into the whole custom template mess, but your blog looks like it'll be a great help!


amy says:

Hi John - I have a technorati / domain mapping question for you which I can't seem to get resolved.

I recently claimed my pro level Typepad blog with Technorati and have been tagging each article, in addition to having installed the Techorati widget.

Now, for branding purposes, I would like to map my registered domain name to the Typepad .typepad.com URL.

How does this impact Technorati and what do I now need to do?

Do I need to delete the Typepad claimed blog and then claim in its place and install a new Technorati widget? Or do I need to install a second widget?

What URL is pinged - the typepad or domain mapped URL for the site and each article?

I asked Typepad and the customer support said to register both. But that doesnt make sense because what exactly is getting updated and indexed?

Thanks in advance for your advice.

Mike Schinkel says:

Clicking a button on your menu bar gives "Stack Overflow at line 72" popup window...

john t unger says:


I think you should ask Technorati's tech support team to be sure, but here's what I'd guess:

When you map a domain to your blog, the original typepad URLs continue to exist, you just don't see them. For instance, the page you're reading now can be found at either of the following URLs:




What Technorati tracks is links to pages that use your blog's URL. If a person searches Technorati for typepadhacks.org, I think that it would only bring up links to pages with that domain.

But if they do a search for links to http://johntunger.typepad.com/typepadhacks, I think it would bring up all the links to my blog. So, you should be able to use your original technorati claim even after mapping your domain.

But that's a guess.

My suggestion would be to claim your blog under *both* URLs and then compare the links Technorati finds for both of them and see which brings up more links. Remember that it'll take a while (sometimes a really long while) for Technorati to process a new claim. You don't have to display the widget for both claims on your blog in the mean time. I'd just show the one you already have and replace it with the new one when the claim is fully processed.

If Technorati gives you a different answer, please let me know what they say on this.

john t unger says:

Ann Ray,

I'll put the subcategories on the list. I'm not really sure if it can be done with templates and CSS, or if it would require code on the back end in the actual TypePad App, but I'll think about it.

It is on th elist of requested features already and has come up several times, so perhaps it will get integrated into the app at some point!

john t unger says:


I've just heard that from another reader. It's due to a bug in explorer...

I removed some javascript code from the blog last night that *may* have been what was causing it. Would you be willing to check it again now and let me know if you're still getting the error message? I don't have any way to check it from here in windows with explorer.

And is there anything I can do to convince you to switch to Firefox? It's *so* much better and more secure... I try to make the site as compatible as I can across all browsers but IE is just a nightmare sometimes!

Thanks for the note and do let me know if it works better now,

Chris Ray says:

I'd like to add a forum to a Typepad (Plus) blog but I can't find a plug-in of this kind - at least one that doesn't involve a fair amount of coding (not my forte). I would like to keep the look/feel consistent but it's not a requirement. Any ideas?

Random Good Stuff says:


this is Juergen from Random Good Stuff ... and I decided to give my blog a makeover.

Any of you know a good forum or site where I could hire someone?


Liz says:

Hi -- how can I display "classic" posts in my sidebar, and not just a list of the 10 or so previous posts? Can I choose which ones to display?

Liz says:

Hi -- hope the non-nicotine thing is working out...

How can I post a photo in a sidebar, and have it link to text?

Also, re: Juergen's post about makeovers -- Typepad designers are awfully hard to come by. The few that I have contacted have not returned emails at all. Any suggestions?

Sonny says:

Hi John,

I've been messing around with a free CSS template I found online. I'm just trying to figure out the basics of redesigning a blog page. As you'll see, I managed to change it aroudn to the template I got but the Test Post that typepad 'requires' you to post so that you can view your blog, is 'stuck' at the top left of the screen and I don't know how to get rid of it.

Sorry for my ignorance! I'm sort of knowledgeable on CSS/HTML but I find it hard to adapt that knowledge to TypePad's Pro Level program.

Thank you for any information you can provide!

Sonny says:

Ok update - after much research i figured out how to remove the post header and post name links.

However, with a fill in comment box that is 'live' on the homepage - how can i specify where those comments go??

john t unger says:

Hi Sonny,

Wow. I like the contact box you've got there in the sidebar… But that's for email, not comments so you would not be able to direct it to post comments on the blog. Still, it's a great idea!

Sonny says:

Thanks a lot John,

One other question - i'm still trying to understand typepad and css for that matter, i've tried including the comments link on my post but I don't know how to direct it to the same layout and showing next to the sidebar. When I try to do so the comments appear at the very top left of my page, correct layout however. Thanks again for your help John, I love your site, it helps so much!

john t unger says:


Comments are tied to the individual post in TypePad, so the only way to display the entire comment is to visit the post where it was left… But, you can display a list of recent comments in your sidebar (showing just the commenter's name and the name of the post with a link to the full comment.

You could probably use the code for the recent comments list elsewhere on your blog by putting it in a notes style typelist and then dropping the typelist include code in another section of the blog.

The code for the comments form can be found at the bottom of this article on TypePad's Knowledge Base. Just above it id the code needed for displaying a list of recent comments. If you get the result you're looking for, let me know so I can check it out.

john t unger says:

Chris Ray,

At this time, there's no way to include a live forum within a TypePad blog… Your best bet is to choose a hosted forum solution that allows you a fair amount of control over the layout and link to it from your blog. If the forum allows you enough design control to match your blog, then I'd recommend linking from a top level menu like the one I have here (though that would require a pro account). If you can link out to it from a menu and style the forum the same, most people will feel like they didn't really leave the site.

As for which forum to choose, I'm not the guy to ask. But people seem to like PHPBB.

Simon Lester says:

Hi John,

I am running multiple blogs with typepad pro, and would like to find a way to display the full posts of two blogs on the same page. Ideally, I would like to have one blog displayed in one column, and the other blog displayed in another column next to it. Can you think of any way to do this, or to do something similar?

Thanks for your help,


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