Over the past few days, I've been working on a mashup of recent Blogger comments and IntenseDebate comments. In case you're unfamiliar with IntenseDebate, it's a neat commenting system that you can install into your blog in a few simple steps. It comes with many features not found in Blogger, like threaded comments/reputation/comments export and import, and supports quite a number of blog platforms.
BIcomments - Recent Blogger + IntenseDebate CommentsHence I created a mashup of Blogger and IntenseDebate comments using Yahoo Pipes. It takes both comment feeds, mixes them up a little and spits out a nice and proper feed so that you can use it in Blogger.
- Shows latest comments from both Blogger and IntenseDebate. It can also be configured to display either Blogger or IntenseDebate comments.
- Number of recent comments can be customized. Note that Blogger displays a maximum of 5 items in a feed.
- Length of comments can be customized. If a comment exceeds your chosen length, an ellipsis will be appended to the end of the comment. Note that three dots are actually appended instead of an actual ellipsis. :)
- Returns a feed. In Blogger, a feed is dynamically included into your blog as HTML, so there's no client side processing.
- CSS styling. As a feed in Blogger is essentially HTML, you can style your recent comments with CSS.
- Profanity Filter. A portion of the profanity will be replaced with asterisks.
BIcomments HowtoThe design of BIcomments makes it very flexible and user-friendly. New users will like its simplicity, while advanced users will be able to change and mold it to their liking.
- How many characters do you want the comments to be before they cut off? - quite self-explanatory. As I've mentioned, comments exceeding the length that you enter will be cut off and an ellipsis appended to the end of the comment.
- How many comments do you want listed? - again, self-explanatory. For Blogspot, 5 is the maximum that you should enter, since Blogspot will display no more than 5 comments.
- Enter your Blogger comments feed url - Leave this blank to show only IntenseDebate comments in your feed. Otherwise, stick your Blogger feed URL here.
- Enter your Intense Debate feed url - Leave this blank to show only Blogspot comments in your feed. Otherwise, stick your IntenseDebate feed URL here. You can find it in your Dashboard under the last 5 comments section.
- Login to Blogger and click the Layout link.
- You should be in Page Elements now. Click Add a Page Element.
- Look for Feed and click Add to Blog. A window should appear asking you for a Feed URL. This is what we'll be getting in the next few steps.
- Visit the BIcomments page and configure it the way you like (as mentioned above in Configuring BIcomments).
- When you're done configuring your feed, run the pipe and look for more options (under Use this pipe). Click Get as RSS.
- Copy the URL of the RSS feed in your location bar and paste it into the Feed URL box in step 3. Click continue.
- Configure the feed options and when you're ready, click Save Changes.
The result and some thoughtsFor a preview of how it could look like on your blog, just take a look at it in my left sidebar. :) I did some minor transformations and spiced it up with CSS so yours might look quite different. :P
Just a day after I wrote this, Yahoo Pipes implemented a new feature that allowed me to extract the post title using a (fairly) complicated method I've worked out. Hence BIcomments is out of beta and in its first (and likely to be final) release. :)
If you've got any questions, comments