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Archive for the ‘WordPress Tips’ Category

Tip #9 : Use trackback auto-discovery

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on December 18, 2007

When building WordPress themes from scratch it is easy to forget about things that “just work”.  One of such things, often forgotten by newcomers to WordPress theme development, is trackback auto-discovery – a really tiny bit of code, which is not visible to a naked eye (an eye without HTML source that is).  Trackback auto-discovery provides a specially formatted HTML code for other content management systems to find a trackback URL in your post.  Gladly, there is a Codex page that covers trackback_rdf() function.

Posted in Documentation, Themes, WordPress, WordPress Tips | 24 Comments »

Tip #8 : Read WordPress Digest

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on December 3, 2007

If you don’t have a lot of time to follow WordPress development news, just read to this one blog – WordPress weekly digest.  One short post per week, with a summary list of what changes went into trunk.  Occasionally, there are also brief explanations like this one:

 The last change means that the next time you login the value stored in the database will change – this means that if you do upgrade passed this point reverting back to an old version will invalidate all users passwords and they will need reseting. Therefore it is a good idea to backup up your users table before updating to the latest trunk.

Posted in WordPress, WordPress Tips | 12 Comments »

Tip #7 : WordPress constants

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on October 5, 2007

ABSPATH is one of the most known WordPress constants. It holds filesystem path to WordPress installation and is often used to construct filesystem paths relative to WordPress. But what other constants are there in WordPress? The answer is easy to get than it might seem. You can see a full list here.

(Thanks to Benedict Eastaugh over at wp-hackers mailing list for the above link)

Posted in WordPress Tips | 12 Comments »

Tip #6 : Enhancing WordPress administration

Posted by Karthik Kastury on September 26, 2007

This tip has been written by Karthik Kastury from dailyApps.net. dailyApps showcases the best of the Apps for different platforms and is a must read for all you software junkies out there. You can also find a host of tips to improve your productivity with review of various services and apps.

If you are a long time WordPress user like me, you surely know the obvious limitations that the WordPress backend has. There are far too many distractions in the Compose Section where you write the posts. Presence of Controls that you never use could become a nightmare to manage so it would be best if you would just remove them and use a stripped down version of the Compose Screen to manage your workflow better.

  • Get Rid of the Clutter

As I mentioned before there are far too many items in the compose screen that I normally don’t use. There is stuff like Password Protection, Excerpt, Custom Fields, Discussion Options, Bookmarklets, Author controls etc. which I am sure majority of WordPress Users don’t really use. So if you are one of them go ahead and add Clutter Free to your ever growing list of WordPress plugins.

Once you have activated Clutter Free go the Users Sections and select all the options that you need. Save the settings and “Boom!” as Steve Jobs would say, your Compose screen now loads a tad faster.

  • Disable the Rich Text Editor

When it comes to the Rich Text Editor things are definitely easy for the average to publish a new post. But in case you are a power user like me then you would want to Disable the Rich Text Editor Screen that has a few annoyances, such as being slow and standing in the way of embedding code provided by Youtube and other services.

I would put my money on the Simple Text Editor that is extremely powerful in terms of what it can do. To disable the Rich Text Editor follow these steps. Go to the Users Section in your admin. Scroll to the bottom and uncheck the option that Says “Use the visual rich editor when writing”. The only Downside is that you will have to learn some basic HTML before you can use the Rich Text Editor.

  • Make QuickTags Smarter

If you are long time WordPress user you will know how useful Quicktags really are (Quicktags are those buttons with tags at the top of the editor). Just about anything is possible with Quicktags. The default WordPress install comes with a few quick tags like <strong>, <li>, <ul> etc. But you might want to add a few more tags to this list so that you don’t have to type them over and over again while you are writing your post. I have some more tags in my Write screen like <span> which I regularly use.

If all the talk above sounded a little too geekish for you. Here is the simplified version of what you have to do. Just download the WP-AddQuickTag plugin and install it. Select Add Quicktags under the Options menu and add all the tags that you wish to include. Note that you need to have Rich Text Editor disabled to make Quicktags work for you.

  • Install Greasemonkey

If you are a Firefox User you definately should install Greasemonkey. There are many scripts that can improve your workflow. One of the scripts that I am using is Akismet Auntie Spam which changes the skin of the Akismet spambox page for WordPress admins and allows to download all spam at once, compress spam to make it more scanable and completely compresses obvious spam. Turns checking spam into a 10 minute per week activity.

  • Install WP-Admin Tiger 3.0

The default layout of the WordPress Admin can be confusing at times. It shows all signs of being extremely cluttered. You have to click through a maze of buttons to do something, and the most important thing surely is that it is not really good to look at. In case you are one of those who have got bored of the default layout for WordPress Admin then its time for you to download WP-Admin Tiger 3 that completely changes the look and feel of the WordPress admin.

If you like this post please consider subscribing to the dailyApps feed. You will find dailyApps an enjoyable read. And yeah make sure you tell me if these tips have helped you or not..

Posted in Menu, Options, Plugins, Themes, WordPress, WordPress Tips | 33 Comments »

Tip #5 : Taxonomy in WordPress 2.3

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on August 27, 2007

The upcoming release of WordPress 2.3 introduces a new way of tagging and categorizing posts and links.   It replaces the old way of categories and should provide enough flexibility to replace a whole bunch of plugins.  Or, at least, make those plugins much simpler.

This new feature required a few changes in the WordPress database scheme. Gladly, Ryan Boren has posted the description of changes in the database structure.

Posted in Database, WordPress, WordPress Tips | 15 Comments »

Tip #4 : WordPress cheat sheets

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on August 22, 2007

There is an excellent collection of WordPress cheat sheets at Kahi’s WordPress notes.  Cheat sheets provide a simple way of getting an overview picture of one specific topic, as well as to quickly find a name of a function or a variable.  The best thing about cheat sheets is that you can print them out, fold, and put on your table, so that a quick reference is just a look away.

If this type of documentation appeals to you, Lorelle has a whole bunch of cheat sheets for all things related to WordPress development – HTML, CSS, PHP, SQL, etc.

Posted in Documentation, WordPress, WordPress Tips | 12 Comments »

Tip #3 : Under Construction

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on August 20, 2007

It is often desired to have a final version of the project on the production server for testing purposes, but so that nobody other than site administrators could see things. Also, once in a while, one needs to have a “Site under maintenance” page, even if for just a little while.

There are, of course, many ways to achieve the desired effect (e.g.: using a custom theme or an index.html preceding index.php). But probably the easiest and the most “proper” is by using Maintenance Mode Plugin. It provides a number of options to customize the displayed message, as well give visitors a hint of when it is better to come back. But what is more important, it allows logged in Administrators to see and use the web site like usual – invaluable for testing, as well demonstrations of a ready project to the client.

Posted in WordPress Tips | 26 Comments »

Tip #2 : Scheduling tasks with WordPress

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on August 15, 2007

Since WordPress 2.1 there is a way to schedule tasks from within WordPress (as opposite to using external schedulers). It is quite useful for doing systematic backups, cleaning user databases, importing data from other resources into your database, and things like that.

Glenn Slaven wrote a nice article – “Timing is everything: scheduling in WordPress” – explaining how to use this feature. If you read it through, tried, and failed to make it work, there is a Cron Demo plugin, which should get you started.

Posted in Plugins, WordPress, WordPress Tips | 7 Comments »

Tip #1 : Lorem Ipsum – the king of test data

Posted by Leonid Mamchenkov on August 14, 2007

(With this post I’m starting a new category – WordPress Tips. It should carry small posts which make a life of WordPress hacker easier. If you have a tip, please let me know. )

While developing WordPress sites one often needs some test data. Sample blog posts, pages, comments, and thinks like that. When done manually, one often uses “this is a test” or “blah blah” sort of things. These are often too short, and longer version take too much time produce. There is a better way. It’s called “Lorem Ipsum“.

There are several tools online which generate Lorem Ipsum texts for you. However I found that Dummy Lipsum Firefox extension works best for me. Install it, restart your Firefox, right click over any text area, and select “Insert Dummy Lipsum“. Here is a sample of what you’ll get.

Aenean et risus eu purus porta aliquam. Proin rhoncus ornare elit. Donec leo dolor, posuere quis, mattis sit amet, pharetra id, pede. Proin nonummy vulputate augue. Cras mollis pretium pede. Sed consectetuer eros feugiat velit. Pellentesque elit. Curabitur nec dolor mattis sapien imperdiet mattis. Nam interdum ipsum. Sed tortor lacus, feugiat non, sollicitudin quis, interdum vel, purus. Proin ultrices ligula vel augue. Proin augue arcu, accumsan porta, fermentum sed, aliquam vitae, magna. Donec mauris metus, blandit a, egestas vitae, feugiat quis, risus.

Posted in WordPress Tips | 27 Comments »