Tag Archives: tips

helpful advice

WordPress News: How to use GIT for WordPress Development

Do you like Time Travel? Do you also like saving your work files? Well now you can do both at the same time by using Git to save your files while keeping track of each change, to each file along the way. Once you’ve saved (committed) a file in the project, the old version is saved forever allowing you to travel back through time to make changes or revert back to old files when needed.

Imagine your just uploaded your beautiful new custom theme to your WordPress site and you realize that you forgot to save your old CSS file and you’ve just overwritten the old one on your web server. You now have no way to revert back to your latest version of the old layout in case you have problems with browser compatibility in the new layout.

Git is a very powerful version control system that allows you to keep track of all your files during a project so losing file version along the way will never happen. This requires a few extra steps during your saving process, but it has saved the skins of many programmers from all over the world every day. Now, we should all try to save backups of our projects and files to protect from data loss and keeping old versions. Git takes that idea but saves each version of that file since it was created. It also protects someone from editing a file at the same time someone else is, preventing overwriting of each others new version.

Let’s take a look at the Git structure to get a clear picture of how the system checks out and references each file.

Git file reference structure
Git file reference structure

This table shows us how Git associates each file to the master project. Each time a change is made, a “snapshot” of the entire file structure is made. This allows us to see our project in front of us, while old versions are saved and hidden from view unless we physically use our time travel capability to revert. Additionally, if no changes were made to a file in a new commit, the old version will automatically be referenced instead of uploading the unchanged file into the project commit. These basic features are why Git is so powerful and efficient, that might explain why 42.9% of professional software developers reporting that they use Git as their primary content version control system.

To learn more about Git the features and the benefits, please refer to these links from which this article was sourced.

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Web Accessibility: Lists

Why should we use lists? Why are lists important to web accessibility? How do are lists need to be structured in compliance with web accessibility laws?

Using ul, ol, and dl elements for defining list content ensures users with disabilities can easily distinguish a list from the rest of the content and move between items of a list and between lists themselves. You should write link text that clearly communicates the target of the link making navigation easier for all users. Using link lists also makes it easier to find and update links on web resources.

According to the Web Accessibility Guidelines (WAC), website designers and developers are required to: Continue reading Web Accessibility: Lists

WordPress.com Site Stats Help You Track Visitors to Your Site

They love you. They really love you! Or do they? How do you know? Site Stats.

Site Stats is a feature of WordPress.com and Jetpack WordPress Plugin that gives you information about your WordPress site visitors and statistics.

WordPress.com Site Stats tells you how many visits your site is getting, where in the world those visitors are located, which posts are the most popular, who is referring your site, tags and category data, top authors, and more. Continue reading WordPress.com Site Stats Help You Track Visitors to Your Site

WordPress Words: Blockquotes

A blockquote is an HTML tag for designating a section of quoted text.
WordPress 24-Hour Trainer by George Plumley

Blockquotes are used for text both on the web and printed material. You use them to surround the text of material you are bringing into your article that is written by someone else that you are quoting.

As the reader reads through a web article, they must identify clearly the difference between the original content and copied content.

There are two ways to quote from other sources. You may add the information in quotes, just like in traditional media such as how Lorelle VanFossen explains that it’s important to “learn how to link and quote from published material to stay safe and on the right side of International Copyright Laws.” That example includes a link to the source and the quoted content within quote marks, identifying it as content not in the author’s words.

In a blockquote, the citation link may come before, after, or within the blockquote. Here are examples. Continue reading WordPress Words: Blockquotes

Domain Name Services: Postman of the Internet

Domain Name Services (DNS) is a service which exist to help us humanize the addresses of networked resources. Humans remember words as a whole easier than numbers representing octal based Internet Protocol addresses of those same networked resources be them across the Wide World Web or just an arms length away on our local network.

That was a mouth full. Essentially through DNS you can type in a URL into your favorite web browser and through the process of name resolution your system contacts a server acting in your behalf to find the correct IP address that matches the human oriented address you type in.

Sounds simple but a lot of chatter between various servers near and far may happen just to pull up that favorite site that you wish to view. First your own system will see if it has the particular IP/URL pairing locally in it’s own tables. On your computer this information will be kept in a host.txt file and depending on the operating system the location varies. Continue reading Domain Name Services: Postman of the Internet

Creating a Static Front Page

Creating a Static Front Page isn’t just fun and innovative it also makes your blog look more like a professional website and less like a “blog”. Static front pages give all your readers and visitors the same welcome. Be it an announcement, how to get around or what your site offers, one thing is for sure, it is informative and it is direct. You can have your site be purely static or you can make it a hybrid blog and also include a “blog” page. Both have their own pros and cons. Continue reading Creating a Static Front Page

Write Your About Page in 5 Steps

Congratulations! You have written something that has inspired your reader to say, “Wow! Who is this author? I want to know more!” Now you just need a fantastic biography for your About page so your readers can get to know you.

5 Easy Steps to Biography Awesomeness

Your About page should be an introduction to you. It should tell your reader about who you are and why you are an authority on your specific topic.

Your About page should specify your background, training, and overall proficiency on your subject. It should spell out for the reader why it is that they should listen to you.

If your website is professional in nature, you might want to take some time to consider branding before you write your biography.

Continue reading Write Your About Page in 5 Steps

Become a Better Web Writer: Quick and Essential Tips

A few important guidelines are all you need to transition from writing for print to writing for the web. This collection of tips will enhance your web writing skills, attract a larger audience, and keep readers on your site longer.

Write Catchy Titles

A catchy title is a sure way to attract an audience. Without a good title, potential readers will never click on the link to your article in the first place.

Ensure that the title is:

  • Brief
  • Clearly states its purpose
  • Creates curiosity in the reader
  • Properly capitalized (this is partially a style choice)

Brainstorming titles until you find a title that sounds perfect is a great technique. Don’t overlook this step. Continue reading Become a Better Web Writer: Quick and Essential Tips

Rant like a Rock Star

Modern society downplays the importance and legitimacy of a good rant, and they forget that even Shakespeare was a fan of the rant. The first known use of the word rant was in 1601. Today rants are widely seen as annoying, self-indulgent complaining, and are not generally recognized as important or legitimate pieces of writing.

There are 3 types of rants found in web publishing.

Continue reading Rant like a Rock Star

How to Write Post Titles in WordPress

Post titles can be a great way for people to find your post, it can attract people through search engines, that is if they are used properly.

Post Titles and Themes

Most Themes restrict post title length to two lines, however this might not be the case for all WordPress Themes. If you would like to write long post titles, test out multiple WordPress Themes an check the single post pageview as well as the front page as they may look different.

When looking for a Theme for your site it is advised to look at every aspect of the Theme, and not just the home page, there might not be support for some headings, or there may be issues with images. Continue reading How to Write Post Titles in WordPress

What’s on the WordPress Kitchen Sink?

Many of you may be wondering “Whats the WordPress Kitchen Sink??” But after I tell you, don’t be too disappointed if you already knew what it was.  The Kitchen Sink is located on the Visual editor for Posts/Pages. This is a picture locating where the "Kitchen Sink" is.

Now, upon clicking this icon, it will bring up more options to edit your Post/Page. Continue reading What’s on the WordPress Kitchen Sink?

Taxonomy: Tags in WordPress

Do you know how to use tags properly when making a post? Tags are easy to use and a very powerful tool. They pick out topics that pertain to the post they correspond with and guide your readers to related topics. They are not, however, to be used like categories, which are similar in definition but are used much differently. Tags are your site’s index words. Categories are the table of contents.

How would you handle your posts if you had a blog about, lets say running marathons. At the very least you would have three categories…training, stories, and community. Within these three categories you could easily separate advice you have to give from the stories from past marathons and still have a space to post about what’s happening in the running community. Continue reading Taxonomy: Tags in WordPress

The Art of the Screen Capture

What is a Screen Capture?

A Screen capture, which is also referred to as a screen shot, is the act of capturing what is displayed on your computer screen and saving it in an image format.

There are many ways to take screen shots, from basic button combinations on  Windows and Macintosh  systems to multiple different screen capture programs that are available to download for free. Continue reading The Art of the Screen Capture

Creating Clickable Images

There are many locations where clickable images are a valuable tool, such as front page images, icons, photo galleries, image information, etc. There are multiple ways of going about this process. I will be discussing how to add clickable images to your content posts and pages and also how to add them to your widgets.

Before I explain further, be sure that your image file is either your original image or is royalty and copyright free. Some copyrighted images can be used with proper citations depending on the owner’s specifications. There is also plenty of public domain photography available for your use. Also make sure that your image file has a distinct name like Purple Flowers, instead of a default title like IMG_2345, before uploading it into the media library.

Continue reading Creating Clickable Images