In yesterday’s post, I mentioned that to scale WordPress you “just cache it.” That’s a pretty big claim to make without any sort of references.
Here’s Peter Chester of Modern Tribe’s talk on the subject from WordCamp LA 2011.
Until last week, I had not touched an RSS reader. My Google Reader list had become completely unsustainable, I always seemed to have hundreds of unread items.
I’ve come to the realized that RSS is a crappy way to read news. I want my RSS reader to be a personalized daily magazine. Something I can pick up at the end of the day and browse through medium to long form articles of interest to me.
Last week I put myself on a new news-free RSS diet. I started a fresh list of RSS sources with one criteria, they need to post no more than 3 times per day or so. This rule excludes all traditional news sources, most “pro-bloggers” and link-bloggers, etc.
So far it’s been working out really well, I’ve got a manageable amount of content to digest every day and I’m finally able to keep up with web comics again, since they’re not being lost in a deluge of reposted stories.
As for real news, I keep up with that on Twitter and Reddit. Easy peasy livin’ greezy.
I still haven’t found a really great RSS reader though, but that’s another post.
When I put on my front-end developer hat, I’m often the last line of defence between the client and an unfortunate typo, bad idea or missed opportunity. I’m the last pair of eyes to examine a design before it hits the development environment. Designers probably hate me for it, but if I see a design choice that doesn’t make sense to me, I’ll mention it.
One of the most common design choice that irks me is customized social media icons. Web designers seem to have an inescapable need to redesign Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, whatever.app’s icons to match the overall look and feel of the site. One one hand, I can almost understand the appeal, these logos can stick out like a sore thumb. On the other hand, that’s the entire point!
Brands like Twitter and Facebook spend massive amounts of time and money tweaking their identity. They spend even more money marketing their brand, getting it in everybody’s face. Facebook’s white ‘F’, Twitter’s blue bird are immediately recognizable. In my humble opinion, if you actually want website’s visitor to notice and use those sharing features I’m supposed to implement, it’s probably a good idea to follow the social network’s brand guidelines. If you want people to share your content or follow the @account, it’s not a great idea to have the social media icons BLEND IN WITH THE REST OF THE SITE!
I’d love to do an A/B test to examine this theory.
Update: I am sorry to report that Tunlr is no longer supporting Netflix. See their blog for more info. If you know of another FREE DNS service please leave a comment.
My friend Ron tipped me off to this free DNS service that allows you to watch Netflix (and other US geo-restricted content) outside of the USA! For free! (Did I mention that it’s free?) These guys are calling themselves Tunlr. I love these services. Unlike VPN services, with these DNS redirects your streams don’t get slowed down by being proxied through a US server. We set it up on our AppleTV and it works like a charm!
Here are the instructions for setting up ATV:
Instructions for other devices can be found on their site.
Edit: I should mention, that if you have a number of devices on your home network that you wish to use to access US services, you’re probably better off setting your router’s DNS to Tunlr.
For one reason or another, it’s often interesting to find out who’s responsible for a website. For example, when I find sites a great website I like to dig around the designer’s portfolio and look at their other work for ideas and inspiration. Example 2, in pervious jobs I’ve had to track down content thieves. Maybe you’re part of a vigilante mob, and need to figure how where to send a bunch of pizza. Whatever.
Due to a whole slew of – perfectly legitimate reasons – it’s fairly uncommon for a website to clearly identify the parties responsible for design, development, hosting, support, etc. It can be a little difficult to figure out sometimes.
Typically when trying to figure out who made a website I take the following steps (in order):
Number 4 was my old pro-tip that made me feel smarter than everyone else online.
Recently I’ve discovered Google Analytics ID databases.
Evidently, there are a number of services that crawl the intertube recording which Google Analytics IDs are found on which sites. ReverseInternet.com seems to be a good one, but if that fails, you can always Google the ID (in quotes).