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| WordPress

Websites are never too far from problems. If you run a WordPress website, you will need to spot and fix problems.

WordPress works on PHP. When PHP runs into issues, it reports them to you. This may be helpful to you as the website owner, but these same errors may also be seen by your site visitors.

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| Drupal

Websites will run into problems. Whether you're using Drupal or any other software, there will be problems at some point.

Drupal runs on PHP and when PHP has problems, it reports them to you. 

However, often these errors will appear on your site and will be visible to visitors, as in the image below:

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| WordPress

Having your website hacked can be very stressful but here are some guidelines on how to fix a hacked site with help from the Wordfence plugin.

Often the first sign that your site has been hacked is an email from your hosting company or Google. Hacks are often ‘invisible’ to most users as they insert hidden links into the content of the site.

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A few years ago, setting up an SSL certificate was a slow and costly painful process.

At one point, we were paying over $500 per year for a top-of-the-line SSL certificate on this site. Plus, many platforms had poor support for SSLs.

All that has changed. You can get free SSL certificates now, and web software almost always has great support for your SSLs.

The tricky part of using an SSL certificate is now making sure you aren't loading images or files over http. This will cause your SSL certificate to show an error. Here's the code we used in our .htaccess to push all our site's assets to https.

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| Podcasts

In this episode, we welcome Amanda and Karlyanna from the DrupalCon team.

DrupalCon is probably the biggest open-source event that happens in North America every year. And for about the last 10 years, it's been pretty much the same event with pretty much about the same number of attendees.

It's been about 3,000 people every year, moving around to different cities. This time, the DrupalCon team are taking a different approach. It's in Seattle in April, but they're changing up the format adding all sorts of new twists and interesting changes to it. So I sat down with the team to talk about what's new with DrupalCon this year. (Spoiler alert: one addition this year will be puppies and bunnies)

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github pagesAll developers know Github as service that enables code sharing and also helps you improve your code by using version control.

However, did you know that Github also offers Github Pages, a completely free hosting service?

In this tutorial, I'll show you how to host a simple HTML website for free using Github.

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"Local Web Development With DDEV Explained" shows you how to do local development in a way that matches modern development workflows.

When the book launched, it originally focused on Drupal 8. Today, with version 2.0, of the book, we've updated the book and included two new chapters on working with WordPress.

In this book, Mike Anello recommends replacing WAMP, MAMP and similar tools with DDev-Local, a Docker-based system.

DDEV-Local is an open-source local development environment for PHP-based projects. It provides a robust and flexible setup for platforms such as Drupal, WordPress, and TYPO3.

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Do you need to build a WordPress site? 

If you do, we have the book you need. "WordPress Explained" is one of the best-selling WordPress books, and it's now 100% up-to-date for Gutenberg and WordPress 5.0.

This book teaches you everything you need to know to make a block-based WordPress site. And, it does it in plain English, with a simple step-by-step approach.

WordPress Explained is available for OSTraining members (PDF, ePUB and MOBI) and also on Amazon (Paperback and Kindle).

WordPress is an amazingly powerful system, but many newcomers can find it overwhelming. We wrote this book to make WordPress as simple and straight-forward as possible. 

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| Podcasts

In this episode, we meet with Randy Fay. He has been a longtime member of the Drupal community. He's written about 1,001 modules and has worked with a whole bunch of leading Drupal companies. After a while, he got burned out from excessive commitment to Drupal. We talk about some of his crazier adventures such as cycling from the northern tip of Canada, all the way down to Argentina over the course of several years.

We talk about his involvement in Drupal, and why he left in the end. Then we get to the meat of the conversation, which is his work now with a project called DDEV-Local. Recently, we released a book at OSTraining called "Local Web Development With DDEV Explained".

DDev-Local can give you a much more modern development environment based on Docker containers. We talk with Randy, who's the lead developer for DDEV, and explain why, if you're using MAMP or WAMP, you should consider using DDev instead, as it will greatly speed up your development and make it much more reliable if you're working on multiple projects.

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| Web Design

At the end of 2018, we published a book about CSS Grid, the layout tool that is revolutionizing the frontend web-design. CSS Grid is entirely native to CSS and allows you to create a grid-based layout system, using columns and rows.

"CSS Grid Explained" immediately became one of our best-selling books. So we're working on a large update and expansion for that book. We're also starting to produce a new book, "Flexbox Explained". Flexbox is closely related to CSS Grid, but there are noticeable differences:

  • Flexbox is a one-dimensional layout model. It can manage either columns or rows.
  • CSS Grid is a two-dimensional layout model. It can manage both columns and rows.

Over the next few weeks, we're going to publish a series of Flexbox tutorials as we write "Flexbox Explained". This first tutorial demonstrates the basic concepts of CSS Flexbox with practical examples.

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| Drupal

The Drupal 8 "Flickr" module allows you to insert Flickr images or photosets (albums) on your site, without the need of keeping the images on your server. This has a couple of advantages (we won’t discuss the disadvantages in this tutorial):

  • Less use of resources on your own server
  • Improvements on the performance of the site
  • You avoid copyright issues in your site, Flickr takes care of that
  • Make use of thousands of Flickr images available under CC License.

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| Drupal

The "Imagepin" module allows you to create pins inside an image and display descriptive text when you hover over those pins.

This is useful because the image will not appear clogged with lots of descriptive text. From the other hand, since users like (unconsciously) this kind of interaction, it will help promote your content and increase the click rate of the “calls to action” of your page.

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| WordPress

Moving your WordPress website over to https has never been more important. If you don't, major search engines will penalize your site with a lower ranking.

In this blog post, you will look at why https is so important and at what you need to do to move your WordPress site to https.

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| Podcasts

In this second episode of 2019, I talk with Robbie McCullough from Beaver Builder.

Robby is from Silicon Valley originally, and with his two co-founders he started the Beaver Builder plugin, which has half a million installs now and is one of the best-loved page builders in WordPress.

Although he's from Silicon Valley, he takes a very irreverent and relaxed approach to building the product. They have a irreverent name, Beaver Builder, with a very cute little mascot. Their whole approach to newsletters and to dealing with their customers is very friendly and warm.

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| WordPress

This week I was upgrading a WordPress site. It had a partial blank page in the admin. It wasn't a full White Screen of Death, but there was clearly a bug that needed fixing.

This tutorial will help you to debug issues like this. I'm going to show you how to use WordPress' debugger to find the cause of this issue.

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