Category Archives: Wordpress

Considering Leaving WordPress For Jekyll

So, after my 6 year relationship with WordPress, I have been having some strong feelings for another (blog engine). Jekyll does everything that I want my wordpress to do.

  1. Not suck at security
  2. Not be bloated
  3. Not have a sucky post editor
  4. Expense – I have a few blogs hosted on Rackspace and my bill has gotten pretty pricey. I’m hoping to host my Jekyll site on App Engine for frizzle (free).

That’s about it. In case you live in a box (which most of us do since most houses are relatively square) and haven’t hear of it, Jekyll is a new blogging engine written in Ruby. Simply put, you write posts, run a command and it spits out static pages. You just upload these pages to your server (how old skool right?) Now you no longer have a dependancies on any server side language, fancy server configs, etc…

Jekyll has no(minimal) features, no comments, track backs etc… and no built-in SEO. It doesn’t even have an admin (since you are serving up static content). Sounds like a blast right? I’ll blog a bit about it as I make the migration and you will see, it’s going to be great!

I just finished reading this post from Hacker News, which was pretty much the nail in the coffin.

Tweet Press 3.2 Update – Sidebar Widget

I have recently had an overwhelming number of requests for a sidebar widget that displays your recent Tweetpress photos. Well, it’s finally here! The update was actually quite trivial to make. If I had known how simple it would be, I would have made it months ago.

Make sure you update to the latest version: tweetpress 3.2

How to use it
In the WordPress admin, click on Appearance and the Widgets from the sidebar menu. If your theme supports widgets (which is should), you will see a Tweetpress widget in the available widgets list.

Next drag that widget into the sidebar area and modify the settings.


You can configure the title of the widget as well as the number of photos to be displayed. Please comment here or shoot me an email if you experience any issues with it. I’m also open to suggestions.

Tweetpress Plugin Updated

I have just posted an update to my plugin Tweetpress! In case you don’t know, Tweetpress is a plugin I created that allows you to post images to your WordPress blog from mobile Twitter clients instead of a 3rd party service like Twitpic. Here is what’s new in this version.

  • Revert back to WordPress login by default
  • Custom CSS
  • Updated so that the thumbs don’t get a size of 0px when used with SEO images plugin
  • Bug fixes
  • Revert back to WordPress login by default* Custom CSS* Updated so that the thumbs don’t get a size of 0px when used with SEO images plugin* Bug fixes
This update really focused on authentication, I have also updated the about pages for installing the plugin as well as configuring your Twitter client. Here are the important links.

Great WordPress Plugin To Connect Your WordPress Blog To Your Tumblr

Ok, so maybe this is stupid, reposting your own content in multiple areas. As far as SEO goes, it may not be the best idea. However, I really love Tumblr and I really love WordPress. I can’t seem to part with either yet I don’t quite have the time for both.

I put out a quick tweet earlier today (and this is why I flippin love Twitter), asking if anyone knew of a good way to connect WordPress to Twitter. Here are the popular options.

  1. Use Tumblr’s feed importer (suggested by @abrahamvegh). This option requires you to enter your blog’s RSS feed. Tumblr then scans your RSS feed every so often and pulls the new posts. I didn’t care too much for this approach because it’s not instantaneous. I added my feed and it told me that it would refresh in about an hour. After an hour it still didn’t pull my WordPress posts and had a status of queued.
  2. There are quite a few Tumblr WordPress plugins out there. I have tried a few and have seen no success. Until one of my twitter followers (@TheSilber) suggested that I use tumblrize. Tumblrize is a great plugin that worked perfectly right out of the box. It was easy to set up and boasts quite a few options.”Tumblrize posts to Tumblr whenever you hit the “publish” button. It uses Tumblr’s simple API to keep posts in sync; when you edit your WordPress post, it updates your Tumblr post.”

I would highly recommend option 2 if you are planning on syncing your WordPress blog with your Tumblr.

Download Tumblr.ize Here

Would love to hear about some other interesting solutions. Feel free to post them in the comments.

WordPress For iPhone/iPad NSXMLParserErrorDomain Error 64 Resolved

If you have a WordPress blog and an iPhone/iPad, then you most likely have the WordPress for iOS app. If you don’t, you should.

Over the past couple of days, I have been receiving the following error when trying to add my blog to the iPhone app.

After scouring the internet, I found that this could be the result of a few issues.

  • Special characters in a post body that are not supported by NSXMLParser
  • Special characters in a comment
  • Invalid post or comment RSS
  • An error in a theme/plugin file

For me, this turned out to be an issue with the comments RSS feed. I loaded it up in the browser and long behold, even the browser threw an error. But what could be causing this? Turns out, I had left a space in a plugin that I created. This caused a space to be output at the beginning of the comments XML, causing it to error. Notice the space between ?> and <?php below. (Face Palm)

After removing the space from this plugin, I loaded up WordPress for iPhone and it added my blog without a problem.

So, the take away from this is don’t output spaces when you create a plugin.

I hope this post has proven useful for you, I can’t imagine that I’m the only person with this issue ;)

Feedburner Anywhere Plugin Updated

I have updated my WordPress plugin Feedburner Anywhere. In case you are unfamiliar with it, it’s a plugin that allows you to output your Feedburner subscriber count anywhere on your blog.

The Problem: Since Google took over Feedburner, I feel that it has been quite unreliable. A few times a week, Feedburner would return 0 for your subscriber count. This was an issue with the plugin. If the return value was 0 when the plugin pulled and cached the feedburner data, you would look like you had no subscribers.

The Fix: I am now caching the values returned from Feedburner. If for any reason Feedburner returns a 0 subscriber count, the last known value (greater than 0) is used instead.

Download the updated plugin here

If you have any other suggestions for the plugin, please let me know.

Test Version of TweetPress 3.0

So WordPress 3.0 has broken Tweetpress for many people. If you are daring, willing to help, and experiencing issues with Tweetpress, please download the 3.0 test build of Tweetpress and install it on your WordPress blog.

Here are your next steps after installation:

  1. Make sure you add your Twitter username and Password to the Tweetpress settings in your wp-admin and save it
  2. Attempt to post a photo to Twitter using Twitter for iPhone
  3. If it works, you win, let me know, if not do this:
    1. go back to the tweetpress admin in wp-admin
    2. click the log link at the very bottom
    3. copy the text and email it to brandontreb [at] gmail [dot] com with the subject “Tweetpress Log”

This will really help me troubleshoot the issues that everyone has been having.

Thanks!

Download Tweetpress Test Build 3.0

Feedburner Anywhere Plugin Released

Image representing FeedBurner as depicted in C…

Image via CrunchBase

I have just released another WordPress plugin called Feedburner Anywhere.

What it does is allow you to display your RSS subscriber count anywhere on your blog.

You have the choice of using the built-in widget, embedding it in your posts/pages, or a combination of both.

Check out my sidebar for an example of usage.

Download Feedburner Anywhere at WordPress.org

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Dynamically Load WordPress Post Images Like Mashable.com

What?

Have you ever noticed that the content on Mashable.com loads Incredibly fast? Also, have you noticed that as you scroll the images seem to ‘fade’ in? Well, this isn’t due to some crazy h4x0r code written specifically by Mashable Engineers. It’s a simple JQuery plugin that loads the images ‘Lazily’.

The Jquery plugin can be found here and a nice tutorial for implementing it can be found here.

If you don’t feel like hacking it yourself, read on and I will point you in the direction of a great WordPress plugin that handles this automagically.

Where?

Luckily the hard work has been done for you and you can download a WordPress plugin that will automatically add this functionality to your WordPress blog.

You can download the plugin from WordPress.org

This plugin will work for EVERY image on your blog. Even the Gravatar icons of the commenters.

Thats It?

Yep, try it out. Just scroll down on my homepage and watch as the images magically fade in.

Happy Wp-ing!

WordPress Coding: Programmatically Add Post Tags (and other meta info)


I was recently working on a script that imports from a custom blogging platform into WordPress and had some need to programmatically add post keywords.

The script to do this is actually quite simple and can be used to update any post attribute.

Here is the code:

// Create the post array
$post = array(
    ‘ID’ => 5,
    ‘tags_input’ => ‘foo,bar,baz’);     
 
// Update the post
wp_update_post($post);

This will assign the keywords “foo”, “bar”, and “baz” to the post with ID 5. This task seems trivial, however it’s very powerful when you think about automation. For example, you could write a script to scrape a google search for your target keyword and find related keywords for each of your posts automatically. Hrm… plugin idea?

Give it a shot. More info on available parameters can be found on WordPress’ site here

Here are some of the other fields that you are able to update this way:

defaults = array(
‘post_status’ => ‘draft’, 
‘post_type’ => ‘post’,
‘post_author’ => $user_ID,
‘ping_status’ => get_option(‘default_ping_status’), 
‘post_parent’ => 0,
‘menu_order’ => 0,
‘to_ping’ =>,
‘pinged’ =>,
‘post_password’ =>,
‘guid’ =>,
‘post_content_filtered’ =>,
‘post_excerpt’ =>,
‘import_id’ => 0);

Happy WPCoding!