Aug 14, 2008 by Matt | Posted in WordPress
Have you ever wished you could have your oldest posts continually pushed back to the top of the stack, in order to highlight old articles from your archives? It’s not something I would do myself, but apparently there are some who would.
HackWordPress.com has a post on how to do just that, and an example scenario of why you would want to.
Personally, I don’t like the idea of mucking around with the time stamps like that, it’s…odd. What I would do instead, is have a section in my template that would pull older posts and display them. Maybe five random linked headlines that are older than 6 months? With the $wpdb class, you can work some WordPress magic and do whatever you want.
Though, as I said earlier, there are probably some people who would want to do what the plugin makes possible.
Jul 10, 2008 by Matt | Posted in Featured, WordPress
After a few months of planning and work, I’ve finally released my new WordPress plugin. I’d had the idea sine around the time I started selling 125×125 ads on Webmaster-Source. I thought it was a bit of a pain to hard-code ads in and manually take them down after their run was over. And I don’t like figuring out end dates by counting ahead on a calendar either. That’s why I put together WP125, a WordPress plugin for easy 125×125 ad management.
I built the plugin to simplfy the management of 125×125 ads, and lower the barrier to get started selling them a little. Some of the features include
- Custom ad layout options.
- A widget to drop into your sidebar to make it easier to set the plugin up. Or you can use a template tag if you’re pro-code like me.
- Click tracking.
- Ads are automatically taken down on their end date.
- The plugin can figure out an ad’s expiration date automatically, based off how many days you say the ad should run for (no more counting forward on your calendar!). It took a bit of time and effort to get this feature working, but it was certainly worth it.
Try the plugin out, and tell me what you think. It’s a first release (1.0.0), and it’s barely been out tweleve hours, so it may have some bugs or interface oddities that need fixing. (It’s not on WordPress plugin site quite yet either, but I’m working on that…) Tell me what you like, what needs fixing, etc.
I think WP125 is off to a good start, but I had to shave off a couple features I’d originally planned in order to get it out the door in time for the WLTC WordPress Plugin Competition. Sadly, that means I’m unable to use it on Webmaster-Source to manage my ads. I built the plugin to work the way I figured most people woud prefer, and pushed my preferences to the side for now. I handle my ads a little differently than other people, and it would have taken too much extra time and work to build support for that into the plugin. Hopefully I’ll have the time to include the settings I’d like at a later date.
Enjoy the plugin, and send your feedback along!
Apr 10, 2008 by Matt | Posted in WordPress
Login-Box, by danillonunes, puts a hidden WordPress login in your template, which can be made visible by pressing Ctrl-E (or in some cases Alt-E). Not a bad idea.
I’ve found it much easier to do administrative tasks by putting a login link on Webmaster-Source’s navigation. However, this is kind of dumb, since my users have no use for it. I’m the only one who can register new users, so no one other than me can really login. (I started out allowing registrations, but the spammers decided it was funny to register 20+ accounts per day…) Maybe I should replace the login link with this plugin? Or I suppose I could just bookmark the wp-admin link for easy access…
Back to the plugin:
Login-Box has several configuration options. You can define
- The way the login box looks
- Which key combination opens and closes the dialog
- Whether someone logging in should go to the Dashboard, or back to the page they came from.
I think this plugin would be useful for multi-author blogs, possibly, though for my purposes it’s overkill, I think.
Apr 7, 2008 by Matt | Posted in WordPress
I can’t stand seeing blogs that have a long list of monthly archives in their sidebars (I’m looking at you, prefab Blogger templates!). It clutters the design, and promotes long sidebars.
Blogger users, unfortunately, don’t have the nifty Pages feature WordPress bloggers get (or plugins for that matter), so they won’t be able to enjoy this amazing WordPress plugin.
Smarter Archives, creates a new template tag,
<?php wp_smart_archives(); ?>, that you can put in a custom template, allowing you to build a custom Archives page. I use it here, and ProBlogger does also.
The plugin displays the monthly archives compactly, one line of text per year, so you have room on the page for other things, like a tagcloud, output from the Popularity Contest plugin, etc.
Feb 24, 2008 by Matt | Posted in WordPress
Homepage Excerpts is a WordPress plugin that allows you to add some extra flexibility to the display of posts on your main page. Usually you would have to have all posts displayed in their entirety, have all posts truncated, or Use the Optional Excerpt or More Tag. With the Homepage Excerpts plugin, however, you can say “I want the first post to be displayed fully, but the rest should be shortened.”
The plugin allows you to choose the number of posts to be displayed fully, and whether it should use the Except field or just truncate to a certain number of characters.
Personally, I prefer to manually use the More Tag on my posts, but I’m sure plenty of bloggers will find this useful. To see it in action, visit logo designer David Airey’s website.
Jan 31, 2008 by Matt | Posted in WordPress
Don’t you hate it when you’re reading a blog, and you’re trying to find that post on Page 23, but the only way to get there is by clicking the “Next page” link over and over and over and over…
Don’t do that to your blog’s readers. Use WP-PageNavi.
WP-PageNavi allows you to replace the annoying “Next/Previous” links with a much better pagination solution. The Next and Previous options are still there, but some new numbered links are added. It’s similar to the bottom of Digg.com.
By the way, if you run into a (WordPress) blog that doesn’t use WP-PageNavi, here’s a tip: Just change your current URL to http://www.theblog.com/page/23/. Problem solved.