How to Embed a Google Doc in a Blog Post

Ahem! Announcing a temporary break in crafty type stuff for a techy post!! We will return to the regularly scheduled material shortly!! :)

We are big fans of Google products and open source software in my family.  (FYI open source means that the “code” behind the software is available to anyone, and can be modified and redistributed.  This means that it is FREE! Examples are Libre/ Open Office, Inkscape, Gimp, etc. that replace pricey word processing and editing software. It’s awesome.) I especially love Google Docs (not technically open source, but still free if you have a gmail or google account), and I use it for tons of stuff, including sharing many of my patterns which are free here on the HSHb blog.  My little brother Tayler made my day last week when he casually mentioned that he figured out a way to embed a google doc in a blog post.  Wha?!  For those of you who use blogger, you know that there just isn’t any good, easy way of embedding documents right into a post, which is frustrating.  Anyway, Tayler graciously agreed to write a tutorial on how to do it, which I was eager for, so I have something to refer to next time I want to share a pattern here! :)  So thanks, bro!

Hey everyone! I’m Rochelle’s little brother, Tayler. We were talking the other day, and I mentioned that I had figured out how to embed Google Docs into my portfolio blog, and she mentioned that she hadn’t been able to figure that out before. So here’s the tutorial for the not-so-obvious way to embed your google docs into a web page, blog post, etc.


Step 1
When you are within the Doc that you want to embed, go to File>Publish to the Web


Step 2
Click on “Start Publishing.” Leave the checkbox checked, it makes it so that if you need to make changes, you can, and you won’t need to go through this process all over again.
Step 3
A box will show up asking if you really want to publish it. Click OK. This box will show up after that. You will want to copy the embed code in the box.


Step 4
Here’s the more technical part. In whatever publisher you’re using, go to the HTML, and paste the embed code. Before you save it, there’s one more step. The code as is will give you a tiny little box that won’t show the entire document. To fix this, you have to add a little coding. DON’T WORRY! It’s really easy. The code below is similar to what you will have.
<iframe src=”https://docs.google.com/document/d/1sv8C2GRvQkERBJfbu5upep5TLQs9lU3Yctirx8CwRTU/pub?embedded=true”></iframe>


Here are the changes you need to make:


<iframe width=“100%” height=”500”
The numbers in the quotation marks can be adjusted to fit your needs. They represent pixels. The 100% means that however big the publishing area is, the document will stretch to fill up the entire width. You can do it with the height too.


Embedding a Word Document or PDF file that has been uploaded to Google Drive


These Steps are much simpler. If you have uploaded a PDF or other file to Google Drive, just open the file in drive, and click File>Embed Link.
This box will show up, and all you need to do is copy and paste the embed code. You’ll notice that the width and height values are already there, and you can still change the numbers in the quote marks as desired.

 

One last thing- make sure that your sharing options are set to at least allow people- anyone who has the link to view the document, otherwise no one will be able to see your document (this applies whether it’s a Google Doc or an uploaded document).
Thanks Tay!  You’re awesome!  I will totally be using this in the future, and I hope this will be helpful to some of you readers/ bloggers too!

Migrating your blog feeds? Check out Feedly.

If you have been using Google Reader to collect and read blog feeds, you know that it is about to disappear (Google Reader will be unavailable after July 1st).  Wah.  (I am a fan of most of Google’s products, and this was no exception.  Are you in the same boat?)  Maybe you’ve found a new feed aggregator, or maybe you’re in denial that your favorite reader is going to its final resting place. Maybe you’re going to wait until 11:59pm on June 30th to migrate your blog feeds because it’s too hard to think about importing each blog you read one at a time to a new reader.

So… that was almost me. But after hearing about Feedly from a number of different sources, I decided to just take a look. I was won over by the seamless, 1-click migration of all my feeds from Google Reader.  Wahoo!  I also think all the layout options are nice and it is a little more user friendly as far as adding and managing content.  It all transfers over to your smartphone too, if you install the Feedly app.  So all is not lost, my blog- reading friends!

If you’re looking around for a new blog reader, you might want to give Feedly a try (no, I don’t get paid for saying that- I just like to share solutions that work for me!).

Watermarking Your Blog Photos (After Publishing)

Photo watermarked after original publishing on blog

If you blog, and your blog is public to anyone on the web, you probably know that you should be watermarking your photos to offer them a bit of protection from… well… plagiarism.

But what if you’ve been blogging for years, and somehow watermarking just wasn’t a priority?  Now you’re looking at hundreds (at least) of photos that need watermarking.  It’s overwhelming and altogether impractical to think of going through and editing each and every photo and re-uploading it into each post.

That has been my dilemma for quite some time, but after Picnik went away (RIP, Picnik), Google integrated some of the Picnik functionality with Picasa Web Albums, and the result is that you can edit photos that were uploaded long ago, and they’ll be automatically updated on your blog (and any other blog that might be hotlinking your photos) without having to re-upload anything, if you save it correctly.  I’m going to show you how to do that.  The only downside is that there is no way to batch-edit that I am aware of- you have to pick and choose which photos are most important to watermark, and do them one at a time, a little at a time until you’ve finished them.

This tutorial is for bloggers who use Picasa Web Albums to host their images (i.e. instead of uploading photos from your computer straight into your blog post, the images are stored in Picasa Web Albums and embedded into the post by the URL generated by Picasa).  Also, I use Blogger, so I can’t speak for how well this works on WordPress or Typepad blogs, or for using a photo hosting site like Photobucket.  If anyone tries it with another photo hosting site or blogging platform, let me know, and I’ll post those results.

On to the tutorial:

Here is a screenshot from a post I did a couple of years ago, and I had not watermarked any of the photos.  I really didn’t feel like I needed to watermark each and every one, but I wanted to do the first photo, shown above, and the last photo, shown below.

First, I went into my web album where I was storing my photos for this post, and I selected this photo.

Second, I went into the “Actions” dropdown menu and clicked “Edit in Creative Kit”.

Once in the creative kit, I clicked text.

In the text box at the top left I typed in my blog URL and clicked the font I wanted to use, then clicked “Add”.

The text was added, and I had the opportunity to re-size it and choose the placement.  Then on the menu that pops up while the text is selected, I used the slide bar to select the amount of fade I wanted.  Depending on the colors and exposure in the picture, 40%-70% fade is the range that typically works the best.

Once the watermark is in place, click “Save to my album” in the top right corner, then when the “Confirm Photo Replace” popup comes up, you must click “Replace”.  Obviously, if you haven’t yet published the blog post, you could click “Save a new copy” if you wanted to preserve the original for some reason, but replacing the original is the only way to update the photo in your already- published post without re-uploading the photo and re-publishing the post.

Within a minute or two, the photo will be updated on the blog.

As I mentioned before, replacing the original photos with watermarked ones in this way will not only automatically update your own blog posts using those photos, but any other site which is hotlinking your photos (that is that they are displaying your photos by copying your photo URL and inserting it into their own post, or just straight out copying the html for your whole post… this will not work if they have copied your original photo to their own computer and uploaded it themselves) will be updated with the watermarked photos as well, hopefully regaining you some lost traffic.

I have to mention that watermarking is not the most foolproof way of protecting your photos, but it probably is the easiest and most time-efficient deterrent to photo- swiping.  I think when it comes down to it, nobody wants to be the photo/ blogging police- after all, most people are well intentioned, and/or perhaps aren’t up-to-date on their blogging etiquette.  In these circumstances, sometimes the best thing is to do… nothing (except watermark your photos- ha!).  Do you agree?  Disagree?

New Things Around Here

A new color scheme…

A new Twitter account and button…

A new site badge (that actually works- check out the right sidebar)…

A new page (“I believe“)…

And a new policy…

This new policy will be explained in more depth on its own page soon for those with questions.  Until then, just shoot me an email!

Tabdump Tuesday

Well, funnily enough, after my post on escaping household clutter, I realized that my computer is fairly cluttered.  I have to admit, I am pretty hard on my computer; I usually have anywhere from 3-7 programs open at a time, and my browser(s) usually have… um… dozens of tabs open collectively.  Pinterest has actually helped this somewhat, but not everything I am interested in is pin-able, or even pin-worthy.  So today is tabdump day!

Here’s what I have been reading/ musing over recently (in no particular order, and no implied endorsements):

Know Your Stuff (free online home inventory software for insurance purposes etc.)
Is Preeclampsia Preventable? YES! by Banned from Baby Showers
Eat Your Sunscreen? by Wellness Mama
My Brightest Diamond singing ‘I have never loved someone’ (a lovely lullaby)
Tutorial: Land of Nod inspired Floor Cushion by Living With Punks

Happy Tuesday!

Design Update and a Meet and Greet!

 Howdy, friends!

We’ve had a few changes around here, and I’m excited to share them with you!  If you are following by RSS or email and haven’t had a chance to check out some of the new features, come on over and let us know what you think!

First, a new blog design!  Yay for not using a generic template!

Second, streamlined options for keeping in touch! Just click the button that best meets your needs.

Google+, Facebook, RSS, Pinterest, and email subscription buttons

Third, a Meet and Greet link party!  We would love to get to know our readers better and we know there are many of you out there who read but aren’t the commenting type.  So, we’d like to invite you to link up a page or post that introduces you in a nutshell.  We aren’t picky- anything that helps us get to know you better would make us happy. (By the way, you don’t need to have a craft blog… any blog will do!)  You can enter your link and thumbnail below, and this link party can be found permanently on the Meet and Greet page in the top menu. (Incidentally, if you are the curious type and want to get to know more about us, our intros are on that page too.)

There are a few more changes on the way, and I’ll share those when they are ready, but for now, I’m excited with the changes we’ve had so far!  Of course, many things will stay the same.  We still have our Projects and Tutorials page and a Freebies page in the top menu bar.

The intent of this blog is still to keep track of our projects, chronicle the homemaking learning process, and share what we have learned with our dear readers!

Meet and Greet Link Party!

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Pinteresting

A few months ago I jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon.  Like everyone else, I’m hooked, but what a way to surround myself with beautiful things!  Many of you are probably already using Pinterest, but for those that aren’t, and wonder what it’s all about, it is basically an online catalogue of things you like.  You bookmark, or “pin” things onto your designated pinboards, and then it is accessible from anywhere.

No more worries about that project link you bookmarked on your browser, with no way to retrieve it (and at that critical moment when you’re away from home, trying to show your crafting buddies just what you’re talking about).  You “follow” other pinners and get a picture feed of what’s most popular in any given category (fashion, DIY, sewing, decorating, photography, humor, etc.) and when you find something new and amazing, you “pin” it with the pin marklet button that you download onto your toolbar.  I’ll be honest… it’s definitely habit forming (as if anyone needed more reasons to waste time on the internet).  But if you like crafty and DIY projects, it is a mine of creative deliciousness.

Need proof?  Here’s my “Baking Lovelies” pinboard (doesn’t it just make you want to jump up and preheat the oven?)

And this is my “printables” board where I keep track of all the awesome graphics people share for free personal use.

A girl’s gotta have dreams, right?  So I’ve pinned myself a virtual luxury home under “my someday home”.

A cool feature of Pinterest is that if you want to follow only selected boards of a pinner, you can follow only those boards you’re interested in, and skip the rest.  Also, you can invite friends on Pinterest to collaborate with you on specific boards. Now, if you’re a curious sort, and wonder how many people are following your specific boards (not just your total number of followers, but how many people are following your board “Best crafting “mistakes” in the universe”), you can tell by clicking on the board and checking on the top right.  Below is an example.

“Sensational Centerpieces” is a pinboard I started a couple weeks ago when I was brainstorming for the centerpiece for the luncheon honoring women battling breast cancer which I posted about earlier this week.  As you can see on the left, Marissa and I are the contributors, and on the right, 42 people started following this particular pinboard.

So you found something you want to remember on a website?  Pin it.  Decide on the picture you want to pin to remember what the web page is.  Make sure you aren’t just on the general web or blog home page, but on the specific page for that post.

Now, here is a little optional tip that speeds things up a bit- highlight the text of the title, or some explanation that is already listed next to the picture (see below).

Click the “Pin It” button on your toolbar…

…and whatever you highlighted will show up in the description box.  You can of course skip the highlighting step and just type in whatever description you want, but this makes it go a little faster.  You choose your pinboard and click the red “Pin It” box and you’re done!

Do you have a Pinterest account?  What do you like most about it?  What drives you crazy?
(Want to follow me on Pinterest?  Click the red button on my sidebar.  Don’t have an account and would like an invite?  Email me at rochelle@homesweethomebodies.net)