Monday, June 1, 2020

Google Lemonade: URL links are still being destroyed

Google has given me some more lemons, so I'm making some more lemonade. (Spending my time dealing with Google bugs rather that writing about what I want to write about.) 

Google seems to have fixed a couple of problems that I had considered a showstopper, so I tried using the new version again. The problems that appeared to be fixed:
1) changing the link in a URL when I copied it. All of the links got changed to Goggle's URL of the blog edit.
2) inserting photos at the bottom of the post instead of where I had placed the cursor.

I did over a handful of photo inserts, and all but one were placed at the cursor. There was one that got inserted at the bottom, but I could not determine what was "special" about the one that failed. The insertion performance has improved from about a 30 second delay to about a 10 second delay. (The delay in the old version is low enough that it would be done before I could start the stopwatch app on my phone.)

But the motivation of this report is discovering that it changed the link in some URLs. The only reason I found it was that I wanted to go back to a post to click "Like". When I accessed the URL's edit window, it showed instead of! The second URL I checked had the same "damage." So now I began to panic about how many more got URLs got corrupted.

I went back to the old version since it is becoming obvious that the new version is not Beta quality. Then I displayed the HTML format of the post and searched for "blogger". I found two occurrences.

All of the changed URLs were ones that I added today with the new version. And not all the URLs that I added today were changed. I have no idea what was "special" about the ones that got corrupted. And since I'm not being paid to test this software, I'm not going to try to figure out what went wrong. 

The severity of this link changing bug is significant enough that I was motivated to read the backup help I noticed in a sidebar of the search help. After going back to the old version and backing up one of my small, auxiliary blogs. I tried doing a backup with the new version.

Clementine (unfair test): the old help is not valid for the new version.
Lemon (something that needs to be fixed before the old version is removed): I accessed the help info in the new version, but it was the old help screen. The help procedures need to be changed to reflect the new reality.
Orange (time spent on a learning curve): Since RTFM (Reading The Fine Manual) did not work in the new version, I tried guessing and goofing how to backup. It took me a while because there are now a lot of Settings, but I did find it under Manage Blog. The resulting .xml file was the same size as the one generated by the old version --- 6.75 MB. And eyeballing the first part of the two .xml files, they looked the same.  The backup size for the main blog is 56.1 MB.

Grapefruit (a change for the worse that I'm not optimistic about being fixed): In the old version, when you looked at the HTML, the post was flagged as changed even if it wasn't. In the new version, it is not flagged as changed even if it is. I learned this the hard way because I made a bad change to the HTML. No problem, I thought, I'll leave the page and when the popup asks me if I want to keep the unsaved changes, I'll just say no. Unfortunately, I never got the popup! My bad changes went into my post! Fortunately, I found the badness in a URL when I was fixing the URL so the badness got removed from the post.

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