I really like the related post plugin that I have for the simple reason that people can read more of my thoughts on a given topic without having to hit the search box.
When I first installed and started using the plugin, I placed the text right below the post, and people could find it easily if they got to the bottom of the text. I used some basic html <ul> <li> tags to signify the thing, and though it wasn’t that pretty, it did the job.
After looking around a few other sites, I liked it when the related posts were more prominent or off to the side. Since I couldn’t come up with a good quick way of placing the related posts under the image (without doing it manually (ugh!)), I thought I’d put it over in the sidebar when you’re looking at individual posts. I installed a tracker on links and found that some people found it over there, but not that many.
So, I started to look through code again to try to get it to place itself on the left hand side at the bottom– but I still didn’t want to have to modify posts. So, I started playing with “float:left” and looking around for another tag. This took me to all sorts of pages trying to explain to me everything from relative to absolute positioning, how to find the bottom of a tag, and by this time I could start typing the Gettysburg Address and you’d never know it.
Suffice it to say, I started to look at other people’s pages, and here’s the tip:
When you can’t find what you’re looking for specifically, start looking around at other sites and see if you can find something neat or that does what you want it to do.
The examples of code that I was finding just wasn’t cutting it. To try to find something like it, I looked at an article at MSNBC.com. I found their related articles thing, and looked at what they were doing. I examined their style sheet, and patterned mine after theirs. Go ahead, take a look at their site, I’ll wait.
There’s nothing against copyright in checking out someone else’s HTML and pattering your look (as long as it’s basic stuff) off of some element of theirs. If you are copying their logo or entire site look then you’re probably going to get into trouble.
Well, that’s it for today… Check out these great related posts!