Setting Up My WordPress Blog

Pretty much anyone can install WordPress on their host’s server and be blogging pretty quickly. As such I won’t go into the details of that process as it is well documented all over the web. My focus here is to highlight some cool things and share some customization and testing tips that only experienced webmasters are likely to already know.

Unless you’re happy blogging using WordPress right out of the box using its pre-installed themes, you’ll likely want to do some customizing at least with respect to layout. I can’t emphasize this enough, plan out what you want and document the steps to get there. I recommend a plugin called to-do-list. As I see things that need changing or fixing, I make an entry and if it’s time sensitive assign it a due date. Having my to-dos in my admin area is so much more efficient than using Outlook or some other external task manager.

Another time saver is when you’re customizing your layout, don’t bog yourself down trying to get content posted just to see if the layout is right. Instead use Lorem Ipsum placeholders to test your layouts. Install a custom CSS plugin and learn some basic styling code. I use Add Custom CSS which allows me to modify styles site-wide or optionally per post or page and eliminates the need to modify the theme style sheet which would break when updated. Finally learn to use the browser’s inspector to determine which selectors you need to modify to change the style. I use Firefox’s inspector though Chrome’s is equally useful.

Kathleen Marrs, Ph.D.
Kathleen wants to live in a world filled with open books, open source, open hearts, and open minds in which diversity is embraced and creativity flourishes. A long time CPA turned online professor, Kathleen’s life was transformed upon completion of her dissertation An Investigation of the Factors that Influence Faculty and Student Acceptance of Mobile Learning in Online Higher Education.Her statistical analyses was called ”pioneering” by her committee chair Dr. Marlyn K. Littman and brought Kathleen full circle back to her number-crunching roots inspiring her to earn a second master’s in Business Intelligence.Kathleen plans to continue her studies of contemporary issues related to teaching, learning, and technology and loves to help undergrad and grad students achieve their academic and professional goals. As a lifelong learner she also plans on continuing her quest to understand the problems posed by mobile and micro learning formats and find innovative ways of helping people maximize the benefits these emerging technologies afford.

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