Introducing Jekyll

In the last few months, I’ve been working with Jekyll, a light-weight, Ruby-based, and Markdown-friendly framework for creating static blogs and sites right in your favorite text editor, so I wrote a guest post, “Introducing Jekyll” on the new UW-Madison Devblog. Check it out!

How to create page breadcrumbs in WordPress

Someone at the WordPress StackExchange site was wondering how you could display a list of a page’s ancestors. Pretty much that is the idea of breadcrumbs, so I answered his question using the handy get_ancestors() function.

Hadoop, MapReduce and processing large Twitter datasets for fun and profit

I’m back in school for my PhD, and getting ready to conduct research on a HUGE Twitter dataset on the US 2012 presidential election collected by the Social Media and Democracy research team at UW-Madison. We’ve been brushing up on Python, Hadoop and MapReduce. As part of our training, Alex Hanna, a sociology PhD student at UW-Madison, put together an excellent series of workshops on Twitter (or, as he’s aptly named them, “Tworkshops”) to get us started. Check them out!

Essential Responsive Web Design Testing Tools

A list of Responsive Web Design testing tools you need to try out and bookmark/fave/tweet right NOW!

[Slideshow] – Responsive Web Design: How the mobile web has changed the way we think and work.

On April 16th, Nick Weaver (@nickweaver) and I gave a presentation at the Madison Web Design & Dev Meetup titled “Responsive Web Design: How the mobile web has changed the way we think and work.” Here’s the slideshow of the presentation for your enjoyment!

WordPress: How to display posts within a page

We have all been there: for some reason, you really need to display a list of posts within a page in WordPress (and the list needs to be paginated, of course). Fortunately, there’s an easy way to do it.

Optimizing your web application: Mobile UI performance considerations

In her article “Mobile UI performance considerations,” Estelle Weyl addresses memory and battery considerations when developing web applications for mobile devices. From embedding CSS and JavaScript into your HTML file (GASP!!!) on first load (and storing the code using localStorage), to minding the DOM and what you CAN’T see in the viewport of a mobile phone, this article is full of great ideas. A must read.

“When can I use…”: a CSS compatibility reference

Ever wonder when you can use the CSS rule inline-block, or PNG transparency, and what browsers supported? http://caniuse.com/ has a cool list of these and other rules!

Lesson learned: modifying your permalink structure WILL mess up your traffic data

A small change made to my site’s permalink structure spells DOOM (well, not really, but was pretty annoying =0 ).

WordPress: how to automatically convert custom fields to post tags

Convert your post’s custom fields into tags automatically in WordPress with this nifty script!!!

Testing Twitterfeed…

I’m letting Twitterfeed.com do the leg work… let’s see how it works =)

Web Dev tool of the week: JSFiddle.net

JSFliddle.net is a dream come true: a simple, free testing environment for your HTML, JavaScript and CSS. Perfect for sharing live examples of your code. Highly recommended!

Extend RSS2: a plugin to enhance your WordPress default RSS2 feed

Add thumbnails and custom-field data to your RSS2 feed!

New WordPress plugins available!

As part of my job, I have developed a few plugins to help in the development of sites, so more people can benefit from what was produced during hours and hours of development. Hopefully you’ll find them useful too. Here are a few of them!

How to add the excerpt box for pages in WordPress

Here’s how to enable the “excerpt” box for your WordPress pages.

Lesson learned: You can’t access DOM elements within an external iFrame

That’s right, you CAN’T!

How to use CSS sprites to create custom bullets in HTML

The list-image CSS property can get you far when you want to create custom bullets in HTML, but what about performance? CSS Sprites are a great way to reduce the amount of images you need to use to customize your lists.

PHP – Safely serialize and unserialze arrays

Serializing arrays in PHP is a great way to format their content before storing it in a database. However, if the serialized content has certain characters (such as “;” or “:”)  the resulting string won’t be read correctly by the unserialize() function,  which is a huge bummer. So, here’s a workaround. http://davidwalsh.name/php-serialize-unserialize-issues

My response to Stackoverflow’s ““invalid label” Firebug error with jQuery getJSON” question

“Invalid label” Firebug error with jQuery getJSON