The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

2 November 2002

More tweakage

After one or two false starts, I am phasing in the Trackback system. For most people, this will make no difference, inasmuch as scarcely anything here is ever linked by anyone, but there's a lot to be said for keeping up with the Joneses. (No, Quana, this is not directed at you.)

The really detail-oriented readers will notice that the shade of blue used for links has varied substantially in recent days. Do not adjust your monitor. I think I'm going to keep this one. And yes, the left-hand column is slightly lighter than it used to be.

Before you ask: No, I'm not putting in a WeatherPixie. Actually, I've already done one, for the perfunctory page I keep at AOL for the benefit of chatters, and while it would be absurdly easy to copy the code over here, I figure my load times are long enough already. Rumors that I would recode the Pixie to look like Susanna Cornett are unfounded and have no basis in fact, and what's more, they aren't true, either.

I am trying to think of a better way to organize the blogroll without getting a third-party application involved. Suggestions are welcomed.

Posted at 1:08 PM to Blogorrhea


About four hours after I posted this, I got a Trackback ping.

Geez, if my predictive skills are this bad, I probably should stay the hell away from the racetrack - or else confine myself to betting on nags that look like they can barely make it out of the starting gate.

Posted by: CGHill at 5:38 PM on 2 November 2002

Try as I might, the concept and purpose of TrackBack continues to elude me. Enlighten me, O Wise One!

Posted by: DavidMSC at 3:52 PM on 3 November 2002

When you click on a TrackBack link with an actual positive integer beside it (as opposed to the zeroes which prevail here), you get a listing of other blogs which have linked to this item.

Why would you want this? An excerpt from the MT manual:

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Imagine that you write about a movie you just saw in an entry on your Movable Type-powered blog. Another MT blogger reads your entry, and wants to write an entry referencing your original post. He could just comment on your blog, but he'd like to keep the post in his own database and host it on his site. Using TrackBack, the other blogger can automatically send a ping to your blog, indicating that he has written an entry referencing your original post. This accomplishes two things:

On your site, you can automatically list all sites that have referenced a particular post, allowing visitors to your site to read the response on the other user's blog.

It provides a firm, explicit link between his entry and yours, as opposed to an implicit link (like a referrer log) that depends upon outside action (someone clicking on the link to your entry).
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This is the most common, though by no means the only, use for TB. If someone draws half a dozen TrackBacks, you can open the TB window and see links for the six blog entries that refer to that posting. Very handy if you want to see what kind of response you're getting.

Posted by: CGHill at 4:03 PM on 3 November 2002