Update: Please note that this is an old post written before Blogger Beta (now out of beta and referred to as New Blogger for want of a better name) was introduced. With New Blogger, Labels was introduced and labels is just the same as the Categories referred to by other blogging platform. Labels is an easier, automatic replacement of what had been described as Categories in this post. Refer to new labels for old classic Blogger template
What are categories. Basically it is a way of organizing your posts so that it can be easily found by categories or types. It may as well be called post directory or something.
Blogger is free and nice, but unfortunately has some shortcomings. One of them is the lack of a provision for doing categories. There exist many methods for doing categories and most of them involve tempering with the template. Here is one simple, straight forward method for doing categories for Blogger that doesn't require one to make any changes to the template except adding some hyperlinks to it. I got the idea for this method from the website "I want to be a millionaire".
First, you have to create an account for del.icio.us. Even if you already have a del.icio.us account, it is advisable to create a new one specially for this purpose. If you are not familiar with del.icio.us, you can read more about it here: "Introduction to del.icio.us". You will then have to tag each INDIVIDUAL post page (permalink) in your blog with the name of category (single word) to which you want the post to belong to. If it is a two or three word category, use underscore or hyphen to link them into a single "word". The categories that I intend to use for this blogs, are for example, Introduction, Basic, General, Blogger specific, etc. You can tag the post with more than 1 tag if you wish. For example, a post that is both basic and specific to Blogger can be tagged with the tags basic and blogger-specific. (Note: To get to the individual post page, click on the link in the PREVIOUS POSTS or the ARCHIVES section or click on the permalink (represented by a time stamp) at the bottom of the post in the index page).
Now all you have to do is to add this to the sidebar section of your template:
replacing the tagpage URL with the actual URL of your tag pages. For example, the del.icio.us account I created for this blog is bloggertricks and I have created 2 tags - general and blogger-specific. So the URL for tagpage1 is http://del.icio.us/bloggertricks/general and the url for tagpage2 is http://del.icio.us/bloggertricks/blogger-specific. The codes I will add to the sidebar section of the template will be
If you have more categories, just add more hyperlinks.
(If you don't want to type the tagpage url yourself, just log into your del.icio.us account, then at the top-right hand corner, click on the tag and you will be taken to the tagpage. Just copy the url from the address bar)
Once you have these in place, and as you add more posts, all you have to do now is to tag the posts with the appropriate category and it will be classified in place accordingly.
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