March 4th, 2013 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
WordPress is a fantastic CMS platform. It is preferred by many clients and therefore as developers we end up using it for all sorts of projects. Sometimes, things go sour though. If you have moved a WordPress site from development to staging to production, you have run into funny problems such as the little red message called: “Upload folder is not writable. Export and file upload features will not be functional.”
November 6th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
So I am pretty new to the whole version control scene. Therefore, I wanted to jump in the wagon with both feet and really start using GIT. The problem was that it is not as easy as people make it sound. I was confused with figuring out what a repository meant, what pushing, clone and all sorts of problems that a beginner may have. And the problem is that the documentation available is also a bit technical and difficult to read. That’s why I wanted to explain it here. Now, my personal challenge was that since I have access to a VPS via SSH, I didn’t want to necessarily pay for a private repository if I didn’t have to. And since I was beginning to use git, I really didn’t need a great account with Github or something along those lines.
The other challenge is that I wanted my repository to be available everywhere but also to be private to me. I wanted to be the only one to access it. The reason is that sometimes I am out of the country, and I would love to be able to simplify the process of working remotely in projects and keeping them on a VPS repository.
October 19th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
Ok so perhaps you have been in a position where you are developing a specific set of functions for a client in Drupal and you are leaning towards displaying some specific information from the database. It could be in a block or it could be in a page. This information would be displayed perfectly by Views (Drupal module) however you are creating a custom table in your Drupal database and of course Views doesn’t know about it.
You may think that since you are doing custom tables, why not simply bypass Views altogether and create a custom query as well. However, you understand that Views gives you great functionality out of the box like a pager, different display options (blocks, attachments, pages, and sometimes even CSV and more). So you decide that you need to learn how to modify the SQL query. Believe me, you could do that, but it would be a long night. So instead of attempting to change the query directly (which sometimes is inevitable) I am going to share with you how to “present” or “introduce” or “let Views know about” your new custom table so that you can use it for relationships within the GUI.
First let me say that you could do this by utilizing the Data Module. However, you have to enable the Schema Module as well and believe me when it comes to database modules, less is better.
October 18th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
If you are a Linux admin and you would like to delete emails from a particular cpanel account without having to do it manually, you would do so directly via SSH.
The problem is that sometimes you want to only delete the emails that have some longevity. In other words, you may desire to delete only those emails that are older than x number of days. So how do you do that? Read the rest of this entry »
September 24th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
Sometimes you may run into a situation where a Mailman mailing list is keeping either public or private archives of your messages and therefore you’ll eventually run into an interesting problem:
Because Mailman has been keeping an archive of every message, image and email content that has been used in the list, that means that eventually that archive will be enormous, or at least big enough to make you want to delete it. How do you go about doing that? You can spend hours trying to find the right answer in Google and testing what works and what doesn’t or you can bypass all that and jump into the answer! Here it is:
July 31st, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
So today’s post is a little bit more technical than usual. But I’m sure that some of our technical readers will get a lot of value out of it.
In the world of SEO everybody is trying to move ahead, gain an advantage. Because of this fact, sometimes some webmasters are willing to take positions that are unethical. Sometimes they manipulate their own websites to get an advantage. However, sometimes they manipulate other people’s websites to take advantage as well. Read the rest of this entry »
May 7th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
Are you ready to design like a pro? Professional web design requires a grid. How cool would it be if you were able to customize that grid to match your needs? Select column width, number of columns and much more…
This script works with Photoshop CS5 only. By purchasing and downloading you acknowledge that you will read license agreement before installation.
Now go ahead and start building professional websites!
To purchase, simply create a free account, then visit the “members content” section from your Dashboard. Once there, click on the “BUY” button next to the Merkados GridMaker Product. Finally click in the “BUY NOW” button and follow the instructions.
April 19th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
So let’s say that you are a consultant, therapist, lawyer or any independent professional that makes a living with one-on-one interactions. Some people call this interactions “consultations”, others call them sessions, but it doesn’t matter what you call them, at the end of the day, as a business owner you have to decide what to charge for them.
Some people like to give the first one for free, as a way of “promoting” their service or expertise, they think, well if the client really liked it then he will come back and then pay for the services. So in this article, we are not going to be talking about those cases. The promotional rates need to be for the purpose of increasing the consumption of your services. Pretty much like that piece of chicken that the Chinese restaurants at mall give you. It is meant to be a teaser. We have in fact, talked about teasers in another post and therefore we will skip this particular kind of rate. Read the rest of this entry »
April 12th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
In this video, Alex Centeno MBA., creative director at Merkados™, explains three ways to gain better search engine positioning. Most of the time, when you hire a professional advisor, they will give you a comprehensive list that can help you increase your indexing and rankings. Of course, this can be overwhelming. So here are three simple easy ways to start in the right path. Read the rest of this entry »
February 14th, 2012 admin Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
CNN Website Critique
What are the components that make a fantastic website design? Is it positioning of items? Is it the color palette? Is it negative space? It certainly is a combination of all these factors and many more. In this edition, we will be doing a 3 minute critique of CNN.com.
The CNN website is great. It has a lot of information and therefore the biggest challenge for the designers is the presentation of that information without extending the homepage indefinitely. The color palette is relevant and pleasant, not distracting. Certainly using a non-traditional grid with gutters smaller than the traditional 20pixels, which helps to maximize the available horizontal space. Three main columns separate content to designate hierarchy effectively. It is well organized and believe me, organization of this kind of website is probably the biggest challenge that a designer could have.
I really like the fact that the logo is used in the center as opposed to the traditional left side. This makes it look more authoritative. Search bar to the right powered by Google (no surprises here). Then we are presented with the navigation bar. This website’s homepage is ultimately a navigation bar on itself. However the designer uses the navigation bar to maintain consistency across the site. One big problem in the main navigation bar is that the Home link is located at the very first position. You may think that this is not a big deal, however with a site this big, I would think that they are interested in people spending as much time as possible in deeper sections of the site. The more involved they get with particular sections the better. In the English language we read from left to right and from top to bottom. Making it more likely that CNN users will start reading the navigation bar and therefore return to the homepage with more frequency than if it was at the end of the navigation bar. Another inconsistency that can be found is the use of bullets at the end of the two last sections: Money and Sports. The bullet usually represents that you can hover and access a dropdown menu. However in this case this doesn’t happen. In other words, there is no real point in having those bullets other than perhaps giving it a bit more of attention. I recommend changing the navigation bar items that need prominence to the left in the hierarchy and remove the bullets.
Finally in terms of color, I personally like the red hue and shades that are being used.Specially because it is not overpowering. The use of color red is very difficult because of its intensity. In this case, since it is limited to the top header then it doesn’t feel overpowering.
I think that the content is beautifully presented. Almost everything is click enabled and you are capable of going directly to the section that you are interested in.
I don’t like the top margin that is being used in the subheadings. I feel like the subheading belongs to the previous news item instead. I know that the designer is already using all caps, different color and font-type. However I still would love to see some top padding or margin larger than the one found below the subheading.
Below the Fold
Below the fold you transition to four columns instead of three. Well defined sections that each have a fantastic and clear heading. Even with the enormous amount of information there is plenty of white space used in this section which makes it easy to read. Sponsored links are somewhat different in terms of styles and therefore at least let you decide if you want to click on them.
Nothing is Poping and moving
I really like the fact that at least in my visit to it, nothing was popping up uninvited. Nothing was moving either, in fact flash wasn’t even present. Not that I don’t like Flash, I do, however in some things I think that static content is better. I don’t like moving objects screaming for my attention, specially if it is coming from advertising. So in this case they have done a great job limiting all that animation in the homepage.
CNN.com has done an excellent job administrating their flow of content. I think that we have a lot to learn from them.