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Picture of Doodle - a 
black cat

Welcome to Doodlecat, where we enjoy the pleasures of life (with a slight bias towards the outdoors). This page is regularly updated with news and views plus information about any additions or changes to the various parts of the site. It acts as Doodlecat’s Blog too, so the odd rant considered opinion may pop up from time to time.

I would love to be able to say that Doodlecat is all my own work, but it isn’t. Much of the outdoors content is courtesy of the splendid people who participate in the annual TGO Challenge (there is a section entirely devoted to this unique event) and many others.

To help in tracking down that elusive morsel on Doodlecat, the search facility under the title bar above is tailored to help you find it, either on this home page (Doodlecat's Blog) all the rest of the site (Main Site) or – if all else fails - the internet!

So have a rummage around the old cat basket and enjoy your time with us!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Walking backwards

It's been fun to dip into the various TGO Challenge reports that are popping up on different blogs. Just goes to show how one event can produce very diverse experiences for the individuals involved. However it's becoming a slightly disjointed affair, as I have the same problem as these chaps.

In the past I have added links to some of the stories, but with more and more appearing on blogs, they are back to front, so if you start with the latest post you find yourself walking backwards across Scotland! Plus, as well as being back to front, they are broken up by posts about other things.

With Wordpress it is possible to add some static pages, a quasi website, where a story can be writen up as a separate entity.  Blogger, as far as I know, doesn't offer this facility, but a label will neatly link all the relevant posts together - you'll still be walking backwards, but we'll cure that later!

So, bloggers, how about a) creating a label for your posts and - here is the clever bit- b) when you've finished your epic, change the dates on each post so that they appear in the right order. That way I can link to your label - like this. That link is to Alan Sloman's account, and as I write it is still back to front, but once that's changed it will be a logical and readable account that anyone can bookmark for future reference.

How do you change the dates on your posts? It's easy - just go to "Edit posts", select the post whose date you want to change, click "Post Options" at the bottom of the page and over on the right you will see the date and time - which you can alter.*

If you want to publish a series of posts at the same time, you can use the same facility when writing up your account to  have Blogger publish the posts at a pre determined time in the future - just click "Post Options" before you publish the post, and the scheduling option is there.

So there you have it - an easy way to keep your wonderfully written account both readable and permanently accessible, and I can direct Doodlecat readers to have a look at it as well.

Oh, and by the way (koff, ahem) my 2011 TGO account is now on line HERE.

*I don't know what happens with Wordpress, but if you're not using static pages, I guess something similar can be done

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Blogger Gayle said...

Okay, so I confess that I have been a bit tardy in sorting this out (not just for the TGOC but for the LEJOG, TGOC2009, K2CW and EtoW...). Thanks to your reminder, I have now created an index (in the correct order!) for this year's TGOC and interlinked them all, even though I haven't gone as far as to label them or to change the post dates.

July 6, 2011 at 9:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

best to put all the posts on one day ordered by time - say 5 min intervals. PP

July 7, 2011 at 8:29 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

Ah, but Gayle, you are a super organised blogger! Putting those pdfs on Google docs is a great idea - as is putting links from page to page on your TGO (I didn't think to mention that as an idea, although all the stories I publish use that device. Doh).

It all makes life so much easier for a simple soul like me.

I still love your opening stats, like "Ravening dogs - three". Makes you want to read on just to see how you survived ;-)

July 7, 2011 at 11:02 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

PP - yes indeed. There are a hundred ways of making narratives readable by the chronologically challenged.

July 7, 2011 at 11:04 AM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

"but once that's changed it will be a logical and readable account ..."

My account.. logical... reasonable...? That'll be a first then... I will have a try at the date thing... I am not sure I understand it though... Surely they will still be in the wrong order?

July 7, 2011 at 10:23 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

Hmm - That was a nightmare: Editing the post just to change the time stamp has completely screwed up all the typefaces and formatting on the blog.

Trying to re- edit them in Live Writer (where they were originally written) makes no difference either - they are now totally knackered.


I shall now try to go back and re-write the posts to get them to look as they should be - luckily I only tried it on the last two posts of the Challenge....


July 7, 2011 at 10:54 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

Seriously - if you write your blog posts using Windows Live Writer (a lot of bloggers do, as Blogger is notoriously difficult when handling pictures) do not go back and use the Blogger editing tools - they totally screw up the fonts and paragraphs.

I have just spent a happy half an hour re-writing the two posts to get them back into shape again.

July 7, 2011 at 11:33 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

OOOOoooo-er - and there was me thinking it would only be the american date format (month first) that would confuse folk!

I can't see how the date change would affect the styling, but maybe it's best to experiment with a couple of old and ancient posts as a trial first.

But it works OK for me, 'cos I tried it out first on this post by moving it from November into December.

I blame Mr Gates ;-)

July 8, 2011 at 10:08 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

I think I see the problem, Al. When you press the 'publish now' after changing the date, the whole post is republished by Blogger, probably with your chosen Blogger settings superceding the Livewriter styling.

Not sure how to deal with this - obviously you can order posts with Livewriter for future publication (see this article) but not past ones - at least not retaining the styling.

Help needed for the Livewriter crowd - is there a geek in the house?

July 8, 2011 at 12:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent Challenge writeup, Phil! I enjoyed every word, and also the photos. I particularly liked the flower pics, and the one of the ancient farm machinery on Day 12(ish). Great stuff, thanks :)

July 8, 2011 at 2:17 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Ta missy!

High praise from the one wot started it all, although I have to confess that when I look at my prose it's a bit ... prosaic, and my walking stories ... pedestrian.

Sigh :-(

July 8, 2011 at 7:35 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

I have so bound up in the minutiae of trying to sort out the dates of posting that I have completely failed to add my appreciation of your excellent account!

I am not worthy...

A crackingly good read Phil.

(now, back to sorting out posting stuff - have been crawling all over Gayle's blog to see how she has done it...)

July 9, 2011 at 4:57 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

Good grief!

I think I have managed it!I tried it on one of my Challenges with the least number of posts (2008). It needed a bit of work to hack around the fonts etc (but I think I have found a quickish way of doing this now) but I have managed to order the write up in the easy to read date order for each link:

Try Alan's TGO CHALLENGE 2008 to see if it works...

July 9, 2011 at 5:42 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

I have found that the easiest way to sort out the date thing is to edit entirely in Blogger's own edit facility. So - Don't Use Live Writer to edit, even if they have been written using Live Writer.

As the pictures are already in their right places you only have to play around with the text to get it how you want to see it.

It's a bit of a faff, but I have now managed to get the posts in the 'right' order for TGO Challenge 2009 as well.

You can find it HERE

July 9, 2011 at 7:18 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Well done Sir! And splendid reports they are too.

Shortly to be included in the Doodlecat lexicon :-)

So many more people will see my 2008 belly :-(

July 9, 2011 at 8:02 PM  
Blogger Andrew W said...

OK, for the chronologically challenged, I will after the next 3 days put mine out in it's entirety in the correct sequence.
But doing it on the blog, has highlighted some errors in my account (not the fictitious one).
Anyway, I am off for yet another hernia Operation (I'm falling to pieces) tomorrow, so if I survive I will post days 12 to 14 later in the week, and if not then you will never know!

July 10, 2011 at 9:37 AM  
Blogger Andrew W said...

Oh, and I really enjoyed your write up as I always do Sir.
Although I struggled a bit with the chronological sequence, it was all a bit forwards!

July 10, 2011 at 9:49 AM  
Blogger Louise said...

I was on holiday when you published your account and it's taken me a while to happen across it, somewhat accidently, but I really enjoyed it!
As for the technical bit, you lost me. I'll have another look when I've finished the housework. Maybe...

August 18, 2011 at 9:42 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

Glad you enjoyed it Louise - writing it down kinda cements the memories I find, although that'a possibly not always for the best!

August 19, 2011 at 1:45 PM  
Blogger Phreerunner said...

Good thinking, Phil. The key is to post an index as the final post under a label for a particular trip, eg TGOC 2009.
Then put links on the foot of each page to the next page and back to the index.
It seems to work, but it can take ages to get round to doing it, as you'll also want to place links to slide shows, and the far too many photos need editing, and there's not enough time, because of hundreds of unread items on Google Reader, and the packing needs to be done for the next trip....
Will you (I suppose I mean 'I') ever catch up?
I doubt it....
Have fun

August 23, 2011 at 11:21 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

November 7, 2011 at 2:19 PM  
Blogger Alan Sloman said...

Afternoon, Captain!

Just a thought: Is there any way that you can enable comments to be left on each of the TGO Challenge reports held on Doodlecat?

I have spent many happy hours in here reading them - and a lot of hard work has gone into their preparation. I am sure that Doodlecat's readers would love to leave some comments on each of the reports.

What do you think? Can this be done? (I seem to recall the front page being done in 'Blogger' and I am not sure about the report pages...)

Anyhow - I for one would like to thank everyone who has written them! I keep coming back, especially as routes are now uppermost in my mind for next year!

(Sorry about the deleted comment above - that was me adding in missing words and spelling and the like...)

November 7, 2011 at 2:21 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

No Sir! We have a blog for the interactive stuff.

Glad you enloy them though. The season of peak readership is almost upon us ... I wonder why?

November 8, 2011 at 9:58 AM  

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