revision99 is now set up to display gravatars.
Gravatars are pictures that represent you the blogger or commenter. Not necessarily a picture of you, although it could be. But it could just as well be a picture of a fire truck, or a symbol, or an electric guitar. Think of the profile picture in Blogger, and how it shows up on your blog and in any comments you make to other Blogger members on their blogs. Gravatars are like that, only they work outside of Blogger. Like here on revision99, or on any blog that uses Haloscan for commenting.
Since a picture is worth a whole bunch of words and I seem to be having a hard time explaining this, I’ll make a comment on this post, and you can go look at it and see my gravatar. Then you’ll understand what I mean.
So if you have already signed up and created a gravatar for yourself, when you comment here your gravatar will appear near your name and comment. If you haven’t already signed up (and you know you want to, because it’s fun), go to gravatar.com. All will be explained to you.
Take a picture of yourself. or use one you already have, or create a tiny piece of artwork. When you sign up at Gravatar you can then upload the image and soon you, too, will have a gravatar! A few tips: Don’t do what I did and sign up with an email address different from the one you type in when you comment, because your user ID is your email address. Your email address is what links you to your gravatar, so you have to use the right email address. That took a few weeks for me to figure out. Also, make your artwork square, because they have to be square, preferrably 80 by 80 pixels, but it will be shrunk to that size, so that’s not as important as making it square.
There are avatar creators out there on the web – sites that allow you to make an avatar for yourself, no artistic talent required. Try Mess Dudes, for example. If that one doesn’t float your boat there’s a long list of other such sites here.
Or maybe I should just say “Gravatars are now supported on this blog.” If you know what they are, that would be enough. If you don’t know what they are, chances are you don’t care anyway.
Thanks to Skippy at Skippy.net for the gravatar plugin.
UPDATE APRIL 28: I forgot to check these gravatars in Internet Explorer. Now I see that IE displays an ugly red “X” if you don’t have a gravatar. I use Firefox so I didn’t notice until now. I’ll have to see if I can do something to make that look a little nicer, and not so, you know, accusatory.
UPDATE DECEMBER 20: As explained in this post, I’ve disabled Gravatars until further notice.