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John T. Unger

More TypePad and Feedburner Integration, Plus New Features from Both

John T. Unger June 24, 2006

Earlier in the week, FeedBurner released a bunch of cool new features as a result of their third Hackathon. One of the best things about these guys is that they never just rest on their laurels… they're into it! Despite having one of the most useful services out there for bloggers, they just keep trying to grow and improve. There's a full list (almost) of the new features on their blog. Most of the new features are additions to their FeedFlare service, which in the past would have meant that it was stuff you could only use if you were using advanced templates. But the most exciting news is the one thing that wasn't mentioned in the post:

You can now use FeedFlare on TypePad blogs running on basic templates! Instructions are here for both basic and advanced template users.

I knew this was in the works, but haven't seen a mention that it was live on either FeedBurner or TypePad's blogs. I found out that it had gone live by looking at another one of the useful new things listed on FeedBurner's Hackathon post: the FeedBurner Help Platform.

I just tested it out in basic templates, and it's so easy it doesn't seem real. The biggest reason I moved to advanced templates in the first place was to add the kind of functions that FeedFlare provides… I'll probably still stick with advanced templates for most of my blogs due to the other things I've discovered can be done, but this goes a long way towards making it possible to create very professional looking blogs without having to mess with your code. I'm geeked! Do go check out the other additions to the service once you've added FeedFlare and browsed the Help Platform… There's some cool new stuff.

TypePad also added a small flotilla of new features yesterday that are pretty exciting. My two favorites are the following:

Bulk actions on posts. We've updated the List Posts screen to now support bulk actions on posts. You can set comment status (open or closed), TrackBack status (accept or don't accept) or assign categories on multiple posts at once. Look for the "More actions..." drop down at the bottom of listing screen.

This is a pretty big deal! Being able to (finally) modify trackback and comment settings for older posts is one of the most requested and most difficult to hack issues I've dealt with since starting this blog. The categories settings are a nice bonus to this feature.

Feature a post. Have an important announcement for your community? Starting a new blog and want to introduce first time readers to your topic? Just want to put a permanent shout out on the front page? You can now pin a post to the top of your blog's home page by marking it as "featured." It's easy to do -- read how in the Knowledge Base article. (And for those of you taking advantage of Custom CSS, we assign a special classname to that post, so that you can style it differently from the rest of your posts...)

I was afraid that when this one went live it would make unnecessary one of the hacks I've been working on for a while now, which is a way to add a text area at the top of each page below the header… Actually, I think it's a great idea and is one of the things I've long wanted to see from TypePad, but by doing it as a post rather than as a section of the page, this will be limited to index pages rather than individual posts. So if I can figure out the last little details on the hack, I'll still post it. In the meantime, I think this is a valuable addition to the options for TypePad Bloggers. I'd still like to create the hack for individual pages because so many readers come in for the first time on older posts.

You can read about the rest of TypePad's new features on their post at Everything TypePad.

Kudos to both FeedBurner and TypePad for continuing to make their service ever more useful! They're both working really hard these days and I think it shows.

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More Like This: Basic Templates , Blog Tools , News , Six Apart , TypePad , TypePad Hacks

Comments

Robert Gale says:

Now that you can switch on or off trackbacks on multiple posts, do you think it be possible to turn off trackbacks on far older posts. I have around 12,000 posts and trackbacks were switched off around 7,000 posts and would love to be able to switch off trackbacks on those first 7,000 posts.

Ric says:

Congratulation John! I am in very little doubt that this blog has given SixApart a lot of impetus and direction toward these changes. I'm sure you're not the only thing pushing them, but it seems that a LOT of what has been discussed here has shown up in TypePad soon after.

sergio says:

I've been trying to figure our how typepad is doing the whole feature a post because I want to be able to do this but in an advanced template. I noticed that they have a new module called "entry-list-sticky". Anyone heard of this or have code for this. Its not in their knowledgebase.

john t unger says:

Robert,

Yes, you should be able to turn off trackbacks for posts all the way back to the beginning… but with 12K posts, it's going to still take you some time to select and batch-process themn all.

Ric,

Thanks. I don't know that I can take too much credit… I've talked a lot with people at TypePad since starting this blog and they're serious about making constant improvements. They do read the blog, and they *are* paying attention to comments from readers. It's probably worth noting that Michael Sippey took over as GM of development around the same time as I started this project. I think he deserves serious kudos for a lot of the changes that have happened recently, but the whole team is working hard over there.

Sergio,

You don't need to be using advanced templates to take advantage of the sticky post feature… it works with both advanced and basic template blogs because it doesn't require template changes to use.

the Knowledge Base article on sticky posts is here.

sarahintampa says:

I am soooo happy about the "multiple actions on posts" thing...I can't even tell you!! Love the sticky feature too!

and digg v3 now works with typepad...it's a good day! :)

Heather Bailey says:

Any idea how to have feedburner ignore visits from my computer? I'm really glad for this feature on SiteMeter. I've had a frustrating time finding info over at feedburner, so I'm hoping you can help :-) The other question I can't find an answer to is how to make feedburner stats private. Two seemingly simple questions. Help!

john t unger says:

Hi Heather,

I don't think there's any way to have feedburner ignore visits from your own computer, although I'm not sure that it's too big an issue really either. They only monitor RSS readers, so if you visit your blog in a browser they will not be tracking those visits at all. If you are subscribed to your own feed in a feedreader of some sort, just subtract one from your subscription stats and you'll be fine.

As for making stats private, they basically already are. You can only view the full stats if you arre logged in on their site with your username and password. The little chicklet counter that they provide for the sidebar of your blog *does* display the number of readers but you can easily turn that feature off on their site or remove the item from you typelist.

Jose says:

Hey Jon,

I had a featured post that I lost after adding the FeedFlare code in my advanced templates./ I think it had something to do with the after I edited it because it had <..."entry-list-sticky"...> originally and after I removed the *sticky* my blog published without error (i did get error when *sticky* was left in) however it removed my ability to add a featured post. Is there any way to get that back? Please help.

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