Frequently Asked Questions

This site is hosted on WordPress.com, so has all the advantages of being part of a domain that has over 6 million sites, with a further 9 million active installations of the WordPress.org software worldwide.

Answers to a few questions about the site:

How do I add a comment?

Why are some comments nested?

Why is my comment being ignored?

How do I add formatting to a comment?

How do I add a link to a comment?

Where does the avatar beside my comment come from?

How can I get my own avatar?

How do I use emoticons?

How do I contact the editor?

What does the search widget in the sidebar do?

What are the links at the bottom of each news item?

How do I add a comment?•••• Back to top of page

There are two different ways in which you can add a comment:

1. At the bottom of each post, in the section headed “LEAVE A RESPONSE”, there are several boxes. Complete these as follows:

Name: Enter your name as you wish it to appear on the comment.

Email: Enter you email address. This does not appear on the site, but it enables you to receive notification via email of any follow-up comments and it enables me to get in touch with you.

Website: This is optional. If you have a website of your own you can insert the address here to enable others to visit.

Your response: Enter your comment in here. If you wish to use formatting, please see the appropriate FAQ.

Notify: Select this box if you wish to be notified of follow-up comments via email.

Submit Comment: Select this when you have entered all the details above.

2. If one or more comments have been previously entered on the post then you can reply to one of them by selecting Reply. This opens up a set of boxes. Complete these as described in paragraph 1 above. Be careful to select the comment to which you wish to reply rather than one of the replies themselves. All replies are indented one level.

Why are some comments nested?•••• Back to top of page

Any replies to a comment are indented by one level, replies to a reply are indented two levels, and so on. Up to ten levels are allowed, which should be more than sufficient.

Why is my comment being ignored?•••• Back to top of page

The first time you post a comment, it has to be moderated. Some sites require all comments to be moderated, but here all comments are published immediately as long as you have a previously approved comment. Approval is linked to the email address that you provide, although this address is not displayed on the site.

These restrictions are in place in order to protect the site against malicious comments. You would be surprised how often attempts are made to post spam containing unwanted links. Any comment containing two or more links is automatically designated as spam.

How do I add formatting to a comment?•••• Back to top of page

The process for doing this uses standard html code and combinations are allowed:

italics <i>italics</i>
bold text <b>bold text</b>
underline <u>underline</u>
bold underlined <b><u>bold underlined</u></b>

How do I add a link to a comment?•••• Back to top of page

To insert a hyperlink, just use the standard html code:

Link to this site <a href=”http://bigdave44.com”>Link to this site</a>

All parts of this code are important, for example if you omit the text, then there will be no way of selecting the link.

Where does the avatar beside my comment come from?•••• Back to top of page

The avatars are automatically generated from the email address that you provide. If you would like your own avatar, see the next question.

Can I have my own avatar?•••• Back to top of page

Yes you can. All you need to do is to sign up for your own WordPress account here. During this process you will be offered the chance to start your own blog, and it’s all free. Once you have an account, you can upload an avatar of your own creation, which will appear on any WordPress blogs that you use.

How do I use emoticons?•••• Back to top of page

Many standard emoticons, or smilies, are automatically changed into the equivalent graphic. Note that, in order to be converted into an emoticon, a smiley must be preceded by a space. These emoticons are supported on this site:

emoticons

How do I contact the editor?•••• Back to top of page

You can use the form on the Contact page.  Any comment made on a particular post will be automatically emailed to the author of that post.

What does the search widget in the sidebar do?•••• Back to top of page

This works like most search engines, except that it only searches this site.

What are the links at the bottom of each news item?•• Back to top of page

One or more category and a number of tags are assigned to each news item. The categories can be selected from Announcements in the sidebar, but they also act as tags. WordPress provides some powerful facilities for searching across sites, and if you select one of these tags you can see all other sites that have posts assigned to that tag.

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