Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Archived blog pages: two flavors

There are two kind of archived blog pages, functionally similar enough that I described them together.

There are relative archive posts, reached by clicking the "Older Posts" link at the end of a page.

There are absolute archive posts, reached by clicking a month or week or year in the archive gadget (if installed in the sidebar).

Both hold older posts in Blogger's standard reverse order, most-recent first. Both let you navigate to older and newer archive pages, if any exist.

Here's how these similar pages differ.

Unlike the absolute archive pages, which have a fixed url, the url for each relative page is dynamically generated based on the page from which the page is linked. The url

YOURBLOGNAME.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2010-10-02T10:09:00-04:00

(for example) specifies a blog page that begins from October 2 2010. (The "T10:09:00-04:00" is the time.)

However, if YOURBLOGNAME has the archive gadget installed in the sidebar, clicking on the month of October 2010 links to something like this:

YOURBLOGNAME.blogspot.com/2010_10_01_archive.html

Think of the relative page as being "the next (or previous) bunch of posts" relative to the open page, while the absolute archive is "all the posts of the specified month (or week or other archive period)." It is not a tremendous difference in practice.

If you have gone to Settings > Posts and comments > Show at most and specified a maximum number of posts post per page, this setting will apply to relative archive pages, but not to absolute ones. Note that this setting does not override Blogger's size limit, which applies to every page.

One other peculiarity: you can only click to an absolute archive page from the archive gadget. At the bottom of the absolute page

YOURBLOGNAME.blogspot.com/2010_10_01_archive.html

clicking the Older or Newer link will take you to a relative archive page, not the next absolute one.

You can, however, make your own link to any archive page from a post or gadget.

Finally, there is a third kind of archive page, a dynamic archive page limited by label. This variant of the dynamic archive page presents the archive of a label-search page: "older posts" limited to a particular label.
« Archive pages, part 1 Index Label-search pages »

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