archive for the ‘Web Development’ Category

Better WordPress Security by Bit51

June 10th, 2013
Better WordPress Security by Bit51

For almost two years I’ve been relying on the G5 firewall from Perishable Press, but I’ve come to believe an .htaccess blacklist is simply not enough. Part of the problem is security flaws inherent in the default WordPress installation, such as:

An admin user named ‘Admin’ table prefix is wp_ revealing header information users can choose a non-secure password

Better WordPress Security can change the username Admin to something else.…

Responsive Comment Forms

May 29th, 2013

After you make the front page of your theme responsive (see my previous post), you need to check the other templates. And one area that might break your theme, and resists the simple CSS-media-queries method, is the comments form, typically loaded on the single post template. That’s because forms tend to have fixed widths, and whats more, the width is defined with inline HTML, or at least its defined that way by default in the WordPress comments template.…

John Howe, Content Writer

May 25th, 2013
John Howe's WYRIWYG

I re-designed John Howe’s personal site for him.  He was planning a move to Florida when he contacted me, wanting a re-design of his old static website, and conversion to WordPress. He also wanted a ‘Florida’ look and feel, so this is what we came up with. It uses the border-image property to give smooth shaded and rounded borders, and it loads a handwritten font.

We discussed his domain—, and whether he should change it.…

Minimalist starter themes for WordPress

May 8th, 2013
My two favorite starter themes for Wordpress are Toolbox and Handcrafted WP. I wrote this post to say why you might want a starter theme, even though you don't always need one. These two themes are my favorites because they are the simplest HTML5 themes I've found.

putting a loop in your sidebar

April 26th, 2013

The simplest way to put a loop in your sidebar is with Justin Tadlock’s sweet plugin Query Posts. This lets you use the query_posts function, with all of its options, in a widget.

However sometimes you might need a loop that does something unusual. I had a client who has a category of posts with natural history photos from near his home. He wanted an image to pop up, randomly selected, from the category.…

Does your slider make the text flicker?

April 24th, 2013

I see this on lots of sites. Flexslider causes it. Every time the slider moves, text on some other part of the page flickers—on Safari. As far as I know, this is a Safari-only issue. The solution, fortunately, is a little CSS:


Just put this on whatever is flickering. It also fixes the annoying lines that grow around the ‘navigation spots’ in Safari.…

Responsive web design: a list of methods

October 15th, 2012

Responsive web design was the biggest web design buzz-phrase of 2012, and I’ve spent much of my summer working on the best, and fastest, ways to make a site responsive.  What I found worked best was all based on three ideas:

breakpoints in the stylesheet device-specific conditional PHP high resolution, or resolution independent graphics for retina screens

The breakpoints are the simplest. You can make a pretty good responsive site with just CSS breakpoints.  …

website testing

October 2nd, 2012

To build websites you need an assortment of testing platforms.. a smartphone, a tablet, and preferably more than one size computer monitor. I’m a mac person, so most of my testing is on apple gear. I use a PC set up in Parallels, a virtual machine, on my mac for testing on PC browsers.

I have:

a 1680 x 1050 display on my primary working machine Windows 7 running on Parallels, on the primary machine a 1366 x 768 laptop an iPad — version 3 an iPhone 3

On my computers I have a selection of browsers: Chrome, Firefox and Safari on the mac, and IE, Firefox and Chrome on the PC.  …

WordPress Security

June 26th, 2012

I’ve been going through all my websites and installing Jeff Starr’s: 5G Blacklist. It is pasted into the .htaccess file at the server root. The blacklist is a list of known malicious entities that are constantly attempting to break into websites.  It is formatted in some very clever GREP code that attempts to filter out all malicious server requests, and allow all legitimate ones through.  That’s not a simple task.  …