Sunday, September 14, 2008

Badges? We Don't Need No Stinkin' Badges! Or Do We?

Well, being a genea-blogger and seeing all these neat blogs with their "pieces of blog flair" cascading down their sides bars, you knew that we'd eventually have to tackle this subject.  And that we'd have to use that oft-uttered line about badges.

So, here is how you can turn any image, even that of your maiden aunt Gertrude wearing a lampshade during last year's lutefisk festival "after party," into a badge.

1.  Locate the image that you want to be your badge.  If this is a carnival badge, such as the badge for the Carnival of Central and Eastern European Genealogy, go to Jessica's Genejournal.  Place the cursor over the image, right-click (or press Shift and the F10 key) and the shortcut menu appears:

2.  Select Save Image As (or some variant - your author is hampered by Windows Vista - your results may differ if you are using Windows XP, or Windows 3.0 like some unnamed geneabloggers . . ).  Save the image to a location on your computer.

3.  Also note that when I place the cursor over the badge on Jessica's blog, the link to the Blog Carnival website appears in the lower left-hand corner of the browser.  You can use this URL for the badge linking or select your own - we'll discuss this in a minute.

4.  Open the Dashboard of your blog in Blogger and click Layout

5.  Click Add Gadget.

6.  In the Add A Gadget pop-up window, scroll down and select Picture.  

7.  In the Link field, enter the URL to serve as the underlying link for the badge.

8.  In the Image section, click Choose File.  Note:  I often avoid directly linking to an image on another website for two reasons - first, this will lead to increased bandwidth on the website hosting the graphic and second, the graphic may move or be renamed on the website.  It is better that I should host the graphic on my blog or website.

9.  In the Open dialog, locate and select the image, then click Open.  The image will appear in the Configure Image window.  Click Save.

10.  Click View Blog.

11.  The badge will now appear on your blog.


Colleen said...

Thanks Thomas. Now, how do I change the size of the image/badge? I made a post with the logo for the upcoming Family History Expo in Mesa but it's way too big and I can't figure out how to make it smaller, either in the post itself or in the sidebar as a badge. I couldn't find in the html code sizing options to change, like I would normally do in the old Template format.

Thomas MacEntee said...

I believe you need to change the image size before you upload it. Most of the badges that footnoteMaven creates for COG and other carnivals are 240 x 320 pixels. Your badges should be no larger than this.

You would need to use Microsoft Photo Editor which comes with Windows 2000. Microsoft Picture Manager which comes with Windows XP and Vista has a resize function which lets you do this.