Jetpack for WordPress

Posted in on 30 October 2012 | Comments

I’ve developed and managed a few WordPress websites for myself (and for clients) and recently I’ve been using the Jetpack plug-in. It’s actually a collection of plug-ins that provides additional functionality for your WordPress blog/website. I like it!

Jetpack supercharges your self‑hosted WordPress site with the awesome cloud power of WordPress.com.

Jetpack is made by Automattic, the company behind WordPress, and was orginally only available if your site was hosted on WordPress.com. Now, it’s available for self-hosted sites as well. So, what does it provide? Here are some of the options in the Jetpack package.

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LESS or Sass or neither?

Posted in on 27 September 2012 | Comments [5]

CSS preprocessors like LESS and Sass are hugely popular – and for good reason! Once you’ve picked up their syntax, they can shorten the time taken to write CSS, give you all sorts of useful functions, enable CSS compression, and give you a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Well, perhaps not that last one but you get the idea.

I’ve been using Sass for a few recent projects and I quite like it although it does give me a slight sense of disconnect from my normal working environment. In case you might be wondering why, I use (shock horror) Dreamweaver as my main coding and development environment. I find it works really well, OK?!

So, I expect to use Sass more and more but I’m not making it my first priority. Instead, I want to spend a lot more time making my final CSS smarter by reading more about OOCSS, SMACCS and similar – and putting these into practice. For me and my ‘typical’ projects, I can put a style sheet together quickly enough so the time saving factor of LESS or Sass is not the main thing. It just seems to make more sense for me (at the moment) to focus on making the end product smarter.

Of course, time saving and writing smarter CSS are not mutually exclusive but I think that concentrating on one of these will be better for me. You may have a different process or be at a different development stage – in which case, all power to your elbow! (or something like that). For me though, the OOCSS route looks better at the minute.

Starting a coworking group

Posted in on 30 August 2012 | Comments

This year, I’ve started a local co-working group in Horsham. It’s always a good idea to regularly review an initiative like this. How is it going? The pros and cons. How do I develop it further? I’ve been thinking about these recently so this post is a good opportunity to summarise and assess progress.

Firstly, a little back story…

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Things may look a bit strange round here...

Posted in on 27 August 2012 | Comments [3]

With the release of Textpattern 4.5.0 I’m taking the opportunity to update and modernise this site, both on the admin side and the design/build of the site itself. I may well ‘start again’ with Phil Wareham’s new default theme.

While I expect this to go reasonably smoothly, there may be a few glitches over coming days. Bear with me, but if you see anything that isn’t working, let me know in the comments. Thanks!

Update: I’ve decided to improve the site step-by-step rather than with a ‘big bang’ approach. Hopefully, less disruption that way ;-)

A personal project

Posted in on 11 August 2012 | Comments

I like to run a few personal websites and really enjoy writing articles for these. The articles are not about web-related technical stuff but describe things I get up to in my spare time. I guess this is a bit of a ‘diversion’ for me and one way to get away from my 9-to-5 job as a freelance web developer/designer.

One of these websites is Clive Goes Cycling

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