gr + avatar != grave avatars OR growling avatars OR robot

so it’s been bugging me for a while.  why is it that in the comments of my posts, there are avatars (or generic, blank avatars), but no way to use/change/update/upload your avatar?  i even poked around in the user preferences in the blog several times trying to find where “upload avatar” was located, to no avail.

finally, i stumbled on — literally stumbled, i have no idea how or where i found it and i can’t find it since — the source of wordpress’s avatar implementation.  wordpress uses Gravatar which stands for Globally Recognized Avatar.

aside from sounding like some kind of lost Transformer (in actuality, Gravitar is a long lost Atari arcade game), Gravatar-enabled sites allow you to use a single avatar across the board without the need to re-enter all your profile info, upload a picture, etc.  now, to date, WordPress (well, and Gravatar) is the only thing i’ve found using this.  however, it’s a neat idea.  having a centralized location for all your profile info is a good idea for that matter.  one place to register and then you can use that account (it verifies by your email address) across the board for everything.  sort of like the failed Microsoft Passport theory, except, you know, functional.  of course, Gravatar suffers from the same flaws of Microsoft Passport, which was participating sites…

anyway, i created my gravatar account and got my pic uploaded and voila, now my comments have an avatar.  so make your own gravatar accounts, people, because i’m sick of looking at those empty avatar shells.