Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Tuesday’s Tip, My Current Plan for Backing Up Reflections, I Think - -

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

(This post could also be titled, "Tuesday’s Tip, My Love/Hate Relationship with Word", and originally, it was!)

I have been looking for a way to save my blog posts. I do download, or back up my blog periodically via the blogger program, not frequently enough, but, I have done it. That will allow me to restore it, if necessary. I hope I never find out how well that backup/restore thingy works. GULP!

I have looked at several of the online methods of backing up, like Blurb, a book publisher. Many bloggers use this web site, and they say it makes beautiful books, however, I was not looking to PRINT.  What I really wanted was to have a back up stored on my computer.  I want the resulting files to look similar to my original post. If you use Blurb, but do not publish, you are allowed to download the file, but, each page has a prominent shadow placed there by Blurb (or it did when I last tried it a few months ago). They do that so you cannot take to your local corner print shop. Protecting their product, totally understandable.

I have tried BlogBooker as well, no shadows here, and it was pretty easy to use. The formatting was off a bit, the comments were transferred with each post, you can do a month or so at a time. It downloads as a PDF file. Of the most concern for me was the fact that paragraph spacing disappeared, a big time issue. Hey, a gal just has to have her paragraphs in place!

I have tried screen captures via OneNote, and have to say that was disappointing as well. It has been a while since I tried it, it was cumbersome and I was disappointed in the results, so, I moved on.

I have just learned of Tabbloid, which will deliver your blog posts to you in PDF format. I tried a test, and here are a few observations, first, it seems to publish in landscape, not portrait, therefore you get columns, not a deal killer, just interesting. My font choice is not maintained, this may or may not be an issue for you. You can choose to have a daily or weekly delivery. Comments are not included, if that is important to you, that is an issue. I must say, the test post is quite attractive, background entirely white (mine on Reflections is a buffy color). If you subscribe to two or more blogs, all will arrive in the same PDF file/email.

Even though I may use Tabbloid in the future, I have all those prior posts to deal with tho, about 650 of them. So, what other choices do I have?

My friends all know how I feel about Microsoft Word. To say I have a hate relationship with it, is, well, a small understatement. I refuse to use Word unless it is a dire situation. (I think I may have climbed or tumbled to that plateau in this use/case.) On the other hand, for the most part, I love, love, love Word Perfect, been using it for years and have had great success with it, publishing any number of books and projects with it.

I don’t remember how I discovered this - - thanks to my leaky ole brain cells - - but, I found I can highlight my blog post by dragging the curser, then click “copy” and “paste” it directly into Word. (When I try this with Word Perfect the results are less than satisfying, no photos, formatting disasters, WP just does not measure up to this challenge.) In Word, the photos look pretty good, and my formatting for the most part is maintained, including my font of choice, and, my paragraph breaks/spaces are maintained.

After a few minor adjustments to any given post, I can then print each to Adobe, and save to my hard drive. Saving to Adobe format reduces the size of the stored file. I can, with Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro take the individual posts and link together, month by month, forming a book(let) of sorts for each month’s posts.

I can even link the monthly booklet to my family history data base, RootsMagic - - yes RM will store and open PDF files. Or, I could link individual posts back to the person I wrote them on inside RootsMagic using the Multimedia area. Now, that is an idea I must investigate further, ya - -

Me thinks this may really work for me - - - might take a while to grab all 650 plus, but, a few at a time - - - and, I need another project so badly, never enough projects, are there??

*Note, please, as my first disclaimer, your results may differ from mine, both my copy of Word and Word Perfect are older versions. For the most part, I use Word Perfect and am happy with it, but, in this case - - NOPE! And it hurts me tremendously to admit same! LOL

** Standard disclaimer (my second) applies here, Blurb, BlogBooker, Tabbloid, RootsMagic, Adobe, OneNote, Word and Word Perfect are all trademarked names, they own their own copyrights. No one gave me one penny or one pat on the back for writing this post. All observations are mine and just that, my observations, my experiences and my opinions.

***Graphic courtesy of Clipart Graphics free clipart now

****While writing this post, I did indeed subscribe to Tabbloid.  My first email arrived just a bit ago, containing FIFTY (yes, 5-0) posts from Reflections and Reflection's Flora and Fauna, the file is 10547KB in size.  I signed up for one email a day, can't wait to see what comes in tomorrow's email.  I opened the file, and the end product for two blogs will not work for me. Oh, well, it was worth a try. 


Linda McCauley said...

I've tried everything you mentioned but it never occurred to me to just copy and paste to Word. I probably could have done the work in less time than I've spent playing around with all those other things.

Thanks for the idea. I'm off to give it a try.

Michelle Goodrum said...

I am so glad you wrote this post. I had been thinking of giving Tabbloid a try and probably still will take a look at it.

It hadn't occurred to me to copy and paste my posts to Word as a backup. Duh. And it never would have occurred to me to save them as a pdf and attach them to people in my data base. Wow! That is a fantastic idea. Keep them coming :)

Barbara Poole said...

You have so much information here, I need to read it twice. Guess I have a project ahead. Once again, very useful information Carol

Greta Koehl said...

Oh, duh, I write my posts in Word (which I also hate, especially now); never tried copying them back with pictures ... I wonderful if Pages will do this? Will have to do some experimenting this weekend.

Becky said...

Good info Carol. I like the idea of saving it as a pdf file.

I've always written my posts offline (originally using Word97 but now Open Office) and inserted the photos into the word processing document. In the process, this creates a backup of the post because I keep the original document in a "posted" folder on my hard drive.

Once the post is up on the blog, I add the url for that post to the word processing document. This also allows me to reference that post while I'm working offline. The title of the document on my hard drive begins with the date of the post (i.e. 2010-1005) and then the title of the post.

I also use the blogger backup option - like you, hoping that I never have to find out if it really works!

Southwest Arkie said...

Thanks for some great ideas Carol. I've been wondering the same thing- how to save my posts, but wanted something quick and easy. I like the copy & paste idea and will try that.