2. About Links & Files

[After removing server-level login from the blog, I have been able to simplify the process of making links, and have edited this page to reflect these changes. ECK 7/23/09]

You can link to files from posts. First, from the post editor, select some text which will serve as the link title. When you’ve done this, you will notice a little button with the image of 3 chain links come to life just above the edit box. Click on it. The first question is, what URL do you want as a link? If the file is a web page or other resource with an associated URL, simply fill in the information. However, if it is a local file you want your reader to reach, you must do a small amount of preparation.

You will need access to a Macintosh running OS X to do the following. Log onto PeoplesFiles, and select the directory called “blinks”. You will now have an icon on your Desktop which acts as a server volume, and you can drag any file of interest into it. Very important: To make links to these files, the file names cannot contain spaces, tabs or most punctuation marks! Numbers, letters, dots (“.”) and the underscore mark (“_”) are OK.

Returning to the URL request window floating above your post editor, enter blinks/filename into the URL field, where you make the appropriate substitution for filename. If the file is formatted as an HTML file, the link will open it as a normal web page. If it ends in .pdf, it will be opened by your favorite pdf viewer. If it ends in .doc, it will be opened by Microsoft Word. You get the idea. Text files will be opened by the web browser you are using, but long lines will not be wrapped.

The target request simply wants to know whether to open your file in a new window or not, assuming that the browser is going to be opening it at all. The title field will give the browser screen that title at the top, and the class field allows you to show the file with certain constraints. None of these options are required and all can be ignored.

For those of you with no access to a Mac, all is not lost. If you have your own website, you can up load your files to the site and then link to them through the URL (http://my.site.net/myuploads/filename). For instance, any of you with MyUCDavis, FaceBook, MySpace or AOL accounts can take advantage of this.

Eric Kofoid