Can I add random quotes to my blog or website for FREE? ~ Ask The Admin

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Can I add random quotes to my blog or website for FREE?

The title of this question here is a little misleading because you can use this little web app to serve lots of stuff besides quotes, like random ads or words of wisdom.

Get your geek on and swap out scripts and images galore!

Originally we used the free RandomQuote ASP generator to feed our geeky quotes in our sub header above. Have you seen it before?

Pretty cool stuff huh? Now what if I told you the Busted Tee Shirt Ads on the right bar were also served up by this generator?

Result: Different ad and quote ,out of our database, on every refresh!

After tweaking, pushing, prodding (our coder not the program) this proved to work very well and we have been very happy with the results. But after a while we realized that this handy little random generator, complete with a very aesthetically pleasing back-end editing system, (pictured to the bottom) would be perfect to randomly feed out anything our geeky little hearts desired.

You'll see a different quote, different ad on every page load, and all the same geeky love in front and behind it. You'll need an .ASP compatible web hosting plan at the very least to get started. Don't get scared - all this means is that you need a web hosting plan on the side but it doesn't necessarily have to point to your site. Just a server that supports ASP. This is because the files need to live somewhere on a server with Microsoft extensions. It also needs to give you a few MySQL Databases to make this easier but you can also pull it off with a connection to an Access Database, and with some basic ASP knowledge you can probably modify it to work with an Excel file as a data source as well.

The first thing you need to do is go to here and snatch this free package called RandomQ from Expirion.Net:

The directions are fairly simple. Here's the skinny:

  • First copy the files/folders to your (ASP Compatible) web server.
  • Then modify the config.asp file to point to your database and give it the correct credentials to do so. Refer to your web hosting control panel to see various details about your DB - you'll need that info to put into the config.asp file.
  • The package comes with a convenient little script that creates all the necessary tables/columns when run against your database. Your DB will need this structure to properly communicate with the application.
  • Now open the index.asp file in the /admin folder in your RandomQ directory to see if any errors arise. If they do arise, the problem is most likely with your config.asp file. Be sure it points to the correct place and that the credentials are correct. Next be sure the tables were created properly by browsing thru the database using the web interface usually provided by your web hosting service. If it's not provided you'll need to get into some of the graphical database management proggies, provided at, to connect to and be able to view your DB data.
  • Once you get the inc_random.asp file to display properly and you can login successfully to the /admin/index.asp file, your in business. All in all, barring any technical issues, this whole process should take no more than 10 minutes.

  • Now you have to get the inc_random.asp file to display on your blog, so the only way to accomplish getting information to be displayed cross-domain is with the use of an html iframe as follows (we've removed the html open and close brackets so the code won't get munched by blogger's server and you'd still be able to copy and paste the code for your own evil doing):

iframe src="" vspace="0" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" hspace="0" frameborder="0" height="40"scrolling="no" width="100%".

Make sure you close your open Iframe tag with a /iframe

Now the fun part - put in your data by logging into the RandomQ admin console and get to steppin!

Which of our quotes do you like the best? Got any ideas?

Damn son!! Let us know in the comments! Why are you all quiet and shit?

Oh and thanks to Mike aka Commodore64 for his assistance on this article and a great find on the application as well as implementation of it.