Category Archives: Uncategorized

Happy first anniversary for The Askblog List!

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It’s been a year since The Askblog List opened! And we survived! Yay!

To celebrate this occasion, I want to do something special for everyone – all the artists, writers, mods and muns – who’ve stumbled upon this little website and stuck with it up until now. I can’t promise specifics just yet, and I can’t say just when it’ll be done, but I hope it’ll be a nice surprise when it is.

In the meantime, have an internet cupcake! They’re completely free of nuts, dairy products, and horse radish, although they may contain, for whatever reason, traces of envelopes. *shrug*

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What can we say? The caterer’s a little clumsy, but her heart’s in the right place.
 

Thank you, askbloggers – I really couldn’t have done this without you!

–Mark Kéy-Balchin

Update: Forgotten passphrases, login page polish, automatic vote resets, and some other stuff

Hiya! It’s been a while, hasn’t it?  ^^; I’ve been a bit busy over the past few months, but now I’m back with a new update!

While this update doesn’t include the new feature I talked about last time, I thought I’d ease back into this with a nice small update to get the ball rolling. (Next month I hope to roll out at least a couple of new features – but I’m getting a bit ahead of myself there. ^^;)

New forgotten passphrase page

No more searching around your noggin if you can’t for the life of you remember the passphrase you signed up with! With this update there’s the new Forgot Your Passphrase page, accessible from the Login page.

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Links (and tweaks) for the Welcome page

I’ve rewritten the Welcome page that you see when you log in to The Askblog List.

The most important update to the page is new links to your Favourites list and Settings page, so you don’t have to go back to the home page and click your username to access these pages. Other than that, I’ve reworded the link to the home page so it doesn’t imply it’s leading to your Favourites list (^^;) and changed the title so it’s not taking itself as seriously as before.

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Old login welcome page at top, new one at bottom.

Polish for the Login page

The login page has also gotten a few changes. The most noticable is the increased size of the text boxes and the login button – the difference in size in the old page clashed quite a bit.

I’ve also reworded the “Or enter your verification code” line to make it more clear that it’s the thing you need to put the code that comes with invites into.

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Old login page on the left, new one on the right.

Last of all, the Askblog List logo now links to the home page like every other page on the website. 🙂

Vote records are now cleared automatically

The Askblog List now automatically clears vote IP records every day (rather than relying on me to do it manually). No more relying on my poor human brain to remember to reset it manually, thus delaying the ability for you to vote again!

(Technically I actually pushed those changes at the beginning of the month, but I still count it as part of this update. For reasons.)

Small tweak to the HTTP cache commands

In the last update I added commands to the website that tell ISPs to serve pages on the Askblog List directly, instead of using proxy servers to cache content. This update includes a small tweak to those commands so they only apply to website pages and not images or other content.

Updates to the Invite tools in admin settings

The Invite Tools in Admin Settings have gained three new features (that I’ve only just gotten around to implimenting. ^^;) First, the revolutionary new ability to reject (that is, delete) invite requests  without going into the database (something that will only be used for spam, rest assured!) Second, the ability to resend an invite with a single click (without manually copy-and-pasting one together in an email client) for when your first invite code gets stuck in the mail or something. And third, the invites management page now displays invite codes alongside the invite email address, so I can send you them even when you’re not getting any emails from the website (again, without having to delve into the database).


 

If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading! I’ll see you next month – I’ve still got a couple of interesting things planned. Ciao!

Mark Kéy-Balchin


Changelog for 29th Jun 2015 update:

[+] Added Forgot Your Passphrase page.
[*] Reworded Welcome page and added links to Favourites and Settings pages.
[*] Increased size of User and Pass textboxes and Login button on Login page.
[*] Reworded “Or enter your verification code” line on Login page to make it more obvious the verification code in question is from an invite.
[*] Changed invite email to reflect the new wording of the invite verification code link.
[*] Changed HTTP headers so that pages tell ISPs to avoid using transparent cache proxies when visiting this website.
[*] Added scheduled reset of vote IP records for every day.

Admin tools
[+] Added Reject Invite tool.
[+] Added Resend Invite tool for invites which have already been sent.
[*] Invite verification codes are now displayed in the Invites table on the Invites Management page.

Thanks everyone!

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I just wanted to give a big thanks to everyone who signed up last week! Everyone’s invites should either have arrived already or should arrive by the end of the day (remembering that we’re in New Zealand, so you guys in the opposite half  might have to wait until tomorrow.)

We especially want to thank the mod of Ask Autumn Leaf for their rocking (and completely unexpected) post about the website, which made us feel really super happy about starting this whole thing in the first place! Seriously, I’m just relaxing in a cloud of happy feels right now. 😀

Just a reminder: send any administration or account enquiries to admin@askbloglist.com, and any feedback or bugs to feedback@askbloglist.com. Cheers!

–Mark Kéy-Balchin

Details on askblog categories

For launch we decided on a list of six fandom medium categories (with 17 works represented with their own subcategories) and six OC genre categories that we thought would be well represented out there in the world of askblogs.

We feel we’ve chosen a balance of fandom-based and genre-based categories that we feel will cover most of the bases. [Unfortunately, there were a few fandoms that we wanted to use but had to be left off the list because we couldn’t find enough askblogs for it! 🙁   ]

If you think there’s a category we missed, you can always give us a shoutout by clicking on the Feedback tab at the left of the main page, by commenting on this blog, or by sending us an email at feedback@askbloglist.com. As we go, we’ll be adding categories when enough askblogs appear for a certain group, and merging categories that don’t make sense any more because of a lack of popularity.

Fan blogs

The launch fandom-based categories are as follows:

Animation

  • My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic
  • Avatar The Last Airbender
  • Lilo & Stitch
  • Marvel Animated Universe
  • DC Animated Universe

Comics

  • Marvel
  • DC
  • Homestuck

Literature

  • Harry Potter
  • Lord of the Rings

Live Action

  • Doctor Who
  • Star Trek
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe

Video Games

  • Portal
  • Bioshock
  • Final Fantasy
  • The Legend of Zelda

Other

Some fandom categories have subcategories for specific characters as well, so you can drill down to, say, all the different versions of Pinkie Pie, or GLaDOS.

Each section also has an “Other” subcategory for works without their own folder. 🙁

Original character blogs

The genre-based categories are only for purely original characters – that is, no fandom affiliation whatsoever. Fandom-based OCs go in their fandom’s appropriate category (and some even have special subcategories for OCs.)

The original character genre categories are as follows:

Adventure, Action, Horror, Fluff, Slice-of-life, and Other OCs.

We hope you use these tools to your best advantage!

Mark Kéy-Balchin

Askblog resources, advice and help

Hiya, it’s Mark! Hope you’re having a happy new year!

We want to be as helpful as we can to newcomers of the askblog world. (That is, after all, why we’re making this site!)  So we’ve decided to make a list of places you can turn to for help.

If you know of any others, please tell us in the comments below!

General

Askblog 101 – Answers questions about making askblogs, occasionally posts articles, promotes new askblogs, and reblogs prompts.

Roleplay Guide and F*** Yeah Roleplay Advice – while these are focused on roleplayers, a lot of the advice can be also applied to askblogs. The latter in particular also answers questions from and gives tutorials about askblogs as well as roleplaying.

The Creepypasta Ask Hub – While the main purpose of this blog appears to be to collect a list of creepypasta askblogs, it also answers general questions about askblogs.

Guides

Tips For Creating Your Own Tumblrpony Blog by The Tumblrpony Wiki

Creating An Ask Pony Tumblr by The Pun Pony Project

Pony OCs – Where Do I Start by /r/MLPOC

Writing

Prompts and Pointers – writing tips and prompts.

/r/WritingPrompts – similar to the above, but on Reddit. :p

/r/whatstheword – For when you can’t think of that, uh, collection of letters separated by spaces or punctuation used to convey meaning? Oh, right, word!

/r/AskFictizens and /r/IAmAFiction – these subreddits allow you to roleplay as your character, to kind of get a feel for them. In /r/AskFictizens, one posts a question to the subreddit, and the rest answer in-character. In /r/IAmAFiction, one posts a short description of their characters, and the others ask questions about it. Note that both are purely original characters only.

Guides

Writing Guide by FimFiction‘s Ezn and Writing: A Manual for Story Creation by De Writer, although focused on fanfics, are worth looking in to because they also cover story mechanics, terminology and tips for planning out a story, which are applicable to both story-focused, ‘plain’, and text askblogs alike.

Visuals

/r/comic_crits – a subreddit for constructive criticism of sequential art (useful for story askblogs.)

/r/learnart and /r/drawingschool – two subreddits for learning how to art and for getting constructive criticism.

Face Claim Helpers – this blog is for helping roleplayers or askblogs with face claims, which is when you use photographs of someone as a stand-in for your character.

/r/MLPDrawingSchool – a reddit for constructive critique of pony art.

MLP Constructive Critiques – a Tumblr blog for getting critiques about pony OC character designs, with a specific focus on how close to ‘canon’ designs are. (Also read their No-No Guide for a discussion on common pitfalls.)

/r/RateMyOC, /r/ponycreator and /r/mlpoc – subreddits that specialise in discussing pony OC characters.

HTML

The HTML Masterpost by ask-wiggles

Finding and Sharing New Askblogs (and Promoting Your Own ^^)

General (apart from us, of course! :p)

/r/Askblog – a reddit for submitting askblogs to!

Ponies

TV Tropes Ask A Pony list – a list of the major pony askblogs.

Tumblrpony Wiki – You can create a summary page for your pony askblog here, and look for others too.

OC Art Challenge – People submit other people’s askblogs, and then others submit artwork of it. You are not allowed to submit your own OC.

Pony Confidential – a site that posts light-hearted ‘rumors’ about pony OCs.