It being a rainy day here, and just a few hours until Spring begins, I’ve decided to do some site work. I’ve got some plugins to update, then the main site. I hope this fixes a few things that bug many and makes it perform better. I expect we’ll make a few more enhancements early Spring; more on that when appropriate.
One issue that many folks have reported in the past few days is RSS not working. This seems to happen every few months, so let me explain how things are setup in hopes that it helps those so afflicted.
RSS feeds from Balloon Juice are an automatic part of WordPress; we host a URL at https://balloon-juice.com/feed/ that is our RSS feed. It is not a service we pay for or otherwise configure – we host a URL, which is automatically served by the same WordPress engine that powers the main site.
There are many RSS readers and services that folks use. These point to our URL and give you the results. Should your reader or service not have updated content, the first thing to check is that URL, in FireFox (as it has a great RSS feed reader in it). If it shows current content, then the problem isn’t on our side, it’s you or your service.
Some users have reported that removing the Balloon Juice feed from their reader, then re-adding it, makes it sync properly again. One user had to do that twice to succeed.
If I could figure out why this happens, or what triggers it, I’d love to nail this down. So, should this happen to you, please let me know via the contact form the last post that shows up for you. I suspect there’s a character in some posts that throws things off, and perhaps I can figure that out with user help.
That all said, a few weeks ago I posted about site issues and have not followed up on anything that was mentioned. In my defense, I’m not really working for myself these days as I’m dealing with my mother’s affairs and getting used to the new life/new normal. So I’ve worked on tech things when I’ve had the time and brainpower bandwidth to fully engage with things. I’ve found that working on site issues when tired and semi-braindead is a recipe for bad things, so caution has been my lantern.
So today I’m not overpromising, but I will work through outstanding suggestions and issues as time permits after I do the main stuff today. And I’m scheduling a few hours later this week to continue that work.
On that note, I’m going to kick off some plug-in updates then get a cup of tea.
Alain the site fixer
Thanks, Alain, for that masterful explanation. Your mastery of this topic is clear!
Thanks. This happened to me a few days ago (I use Feedly as a reader), and I don’t recall the last post that it fed me. But I’ve re-added the site, and it seems to be working again. If it does happen to me again, I’ll make an effort to remember the last one it showed me!
Thanks, Alain. Enjoy that tea!
Happy Spring (upgrades) to us.
Major Major Major Major
Thanks Alain. I get IFTTT alerts for new posts, and I’ve noticed it dropping some balls; I’ll try to get you a list of which posts.
Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.)
I hate these new fixes. Whatever you’re doing to “make things work better” is awful. I liked it the old way, whether it worked or not. Also, these fixes are ugly, and they make me sad. Bigly.
@Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.): someone needs to adjust the onion on their rope belt.
@Albatrossity: I use feedly as well, and I didn’t have any problems. Feedly does update feeds with a short delay for those of us using the app for free though.
My mother died a year ago today, and I’m surprised how hard the anniversary has hit me. When you talk about dealing with your mother’s affairs and adjusting to the new normal, I understand. Both those activities sometimes seem like full-time work. Best wishes, Alain.
@Alain the site fixer: Yeah, that guy seems to know what he’s talking about :)
I use Feedly. The Balloon Juice feed has not been updated there since the post entitled “On the Road and In Your Backyard” was published on March 16. Deleting and re-adding the feed has no effect – no posts after this one appear for me.
I use inoreader, I had to delete and re add my feed a few days ago. The feed history shows 2 feeds for balloon juice. One died four days ago, appropriately stuck on the ratfvcking post, the next post up that didn’t show was “friday morning open thread: Who’s going to #Marchforourlives?” The last sucessful poll for that feed address was on Thursday March 18 at 22:22. The timestamps seem to be PST currently not adjusted for DST,
borked feed xml url: https://balloon-juice.com/?feed=rss2
working feed xml url: https://balloon-juice.com/feed/
I see that once again I can’t follow instructions. I’ll email Alain via site contacts.