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title: Getting Started order: 40

This page will help you get started with Telegram! Yay!

Blogs Posts

If you want to write a blog post, just save the file in the _posts directory. For example, put the following text in _posts/

title: Hello World
date: 2012-07-20

## Hello World

This is my first blog post.

I like Telegram because:

* It's simple
* It's got nice templates
* I control my content

If you're using Dropbox to store you files, go to the Telegram control panel and click the "Refresh Site" button.

If you're using GitHub to store your files, commit the files (git add _posts; git commit -m "stuff") and push to GitHub (git push).

It will take a few minutes for Telegram to update your site, but once it's updated, you should see the blog archive page and your blog posts listed on your home page.

Extra Info

Extra Info is stuff in each page that gives Telegram rules for how to display the page and how the page fits into the overall structure of the web site. There's a list of Extra Info on the How To… site. Extra Info is also called Properties or Meta Data.

The file contains some Extra Info global to your web site.

blog_root: /blog_posts
site_title: My Blog


This file contains _Extra Info_ about your site.  You can
put information in here like which directory you want your posts in
and that sort of stuff and the information will be part of every page
in your site.  But this page will not be part of your site.

The blog_root Extra Info defines what directory to put blogs posts in.

The site_title Extra Info is used to define the name of the site.

You can change these values and see what happens.

Note that because the file has a filename that starts with '_', it will not be output in the resulting web site.

Changing the Template

If no template is present in your set of files (a template is at least a /templates-hidden/default.html file), Telegram loads an external template.

By default, the external template is the Git repository at You can see default template project on GitHub.

If you want to change the template, add the following Extra Info line in any of your files (although, because it's global, the best place to put it is in


Adding Pages

To add a page to your site, create a Markdown or HTML file and put it in your project directory and update your site.

If you include the menu extra info, the page will appear in the menu and if you include and order extra info, that will be the order that the page appears in the menu bar.

Adding stuff to the template page

By default, the Telegram templates include the /templates-hidden/include.html file. You can put stuff in this file that changes the way the page is rendered and even add stuff to the page.

Here are a couple of helpful lines you can include in that file.

Change the footer:

<span data-lift="xform" data-css="footer *">(c) 2010-2012 David Pollak</span>

The above line uses the xform snippet which selects the HTML nodes in the rendered page using the rules in the data-css attribute and then applies a transformation to the selected nodes. The footer * rule says, "find all the <footer> nodes and replace the contents of the footer nodes with this HTML." The result will be to put <span data-lift="xform" data-css="footer *">(c) 2010-2012 David Pollak</span> into the footer.

Make the template a 2-column template where the left column is 5/8ths the width and the right column is 3/8ths the width:

<span data-lift="xform" data-css="#main_content_place [class+]">row</span>
<span data-lift="xform" data-css="#left_side [class+]">span10</span>
<span data-lift="xform" data-css="#right_side [class+]">span6</span>

The first line selects the element with id main_content_place and appends row the the class attribute. The other lines set the span width of the left and right columns.

Add a Twitter feed to the right side:

<div data-lift="xform" data-css="#right_side *+">
    <span data-lift="twitter?user=dpp"></span>

Transform the right side by appending the nodes to the current content of the right side (the *+ operator). The <span data-lift="twitter?user=dpp"></span> element invokes the Twitter snippet with the user dpp.

Add Google Analytics to the page:

<div data-lift="google_analytics?id=abcdefg"></div>

Note that the Google Analytics snippet uses the tail snippet so that the actual Google Analytics JavaScript code appears on the bottom of the page… just before the </body> tag.

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