5 Places to Get WordPress Snippets

How can you modify your WordPress website? By adding a theme, plugins or modifying WordPress yourself. When you develop your own WordPress websites, you may want to add code instead of relying on a plugin. Adding a code snippet to your theme or a custom plugin can be a better solution than searching for a plugin that does what you want. Where do you find these code snippets, what do you do if it breaks your site and how to do manage them?

5 Places to Get WordPress Snippets

Where do you find code snippets?

WPSNIPP

WPSNIPP – WordPress Snippets has a collection of about 666 snippets. You should be able to find a snippet that works for your next project.

wpsnipp

 

Digging Into WordPress

Digging Into WordPress has tips, tricks and snippets for modifying and making your WordPress site even better. You can use their tips and tutorials to replace plugins that could do the same thing.

Digging Into WordPress

 

WP-Mix

WP-Mix is a mix of code snippets and tutorials. You will find WordPress, PHP, jQuery, HTML, CSS and more.

WP-Mix

 

CSS-Tricks

CSS-Tricks has a collection of WordPress snippets. You can add these snippets to your theme or a site-specific plugin.

CSS-Tricks WordPress Snippets

The Web

You can search the web for a code snippet. Many WordPress or developer blogs will have code snippets that you can use.

What happens when you find one and it breaks your site?

WP Beginner explains how to paste snippets from the web into WordPress and how to avoid mistakes that could take your site down.

What do you do with your code snippets?

Whether you have written or found a WordPress snippet that you want to share, you need a way to do it. Thoriq Firdaus show you how in How to Manage and Use Snippets in WordPress.

Code snippets can make it easier for you to modify WordPress. You can search and paste snippets into your WordPress site. Where and how you paste these snippets can determine whether or not it will fix your problem or crash your website. As with all code you find, read it to make sure you understand what it does and test it. Do you have a place where you can find WordPress code snippets?

Tools for Building an One Page Website

You need to build an one page website. How do you go about building one? Do you use specific tools? You can chose to build a landing page with a pre-built template that you customize or build your own from scratch. The best way to learn a new set of tools or a framework is to build your own. I choose to build a new website with Bootstrap and LESS.
Tools For Building One Page Website

What type of website?

One page portfolio for a Developer. I sketched out on paper a basic design.
Developer Portfolio Template Sketch

When building a new website, you have to make a lot of design decisions. For this project, I am focusing on choosing colors, fonts and images.

How do you choose the colors?

For inspiration, I looked books that I own. I selected one with a color scheme that I liked. Next, I used a Material Design Generator to create a color palette. For this project, I used coolors.co and selected a color palette similar to the book cover.
Coolors Color Palette

What fonts are you going to use?

You want to pick fonts that work well with your website’s content. You can use these tools to help pick fonts that look good together. fontpair.co or 20 Inspirational Free Resources for Better Typeface Pairing Or if you want to experiment, use fonts.google.com to find a font you like and look at the recommended pairings.

For this project, I decided to use: Julius Sans One and Crimson Text. I found it on https://femmebot.github.io/google-type/.

Where do you get images from?

Do you take your own photos or get them from a stock photography website? Whenever you can, you want to customize your website with your own custom photography. Not all projects give you the time to create your own photos. When you can’t create your own photos, you can use stock photography from different web collections. I like to get stock images from pixabay for my projects. I picked out a hero image and several support images for this project.
Binary Background

What was the result?

It didn’t work out. The color scheme and hero image seemed too busy, red and angry. So, I decide to look for a better hero photo. The one I chose wasn’t working. I tried a couple of different photos. I found one that I liked better, but it didn’t fit the existing color palette. The next step was to change the color scheme slightly. I picked out two colors in the photo that looked good with the other colors in the color palette. I changed the CSS to see how the new colors worked. They looked much better. The newer version of the website works better than the original.
One Page Programmer Final

As web developers, we make decisions that affect the design and functioning of a website. Not all decisions work. Sometimes, you have to make changes that affect the design for the better. You may even have to change your approach in order to make a website or app an reality. Have you ever had to make minor changes that improved your original design?

Notes on Building Accessible Websites

Everyone should be able to go to a website and do what they want with a minimal amount of effort. What makes a website accessible? An accessible website should be perceivable, operable, understandable and robust. A website is perceivable when you provide text for any non-text content like images, videos, podcasts or other sound files and provide alternatives for time-based media. An operable website makes all functionality available via keyboard and provides users enough time. Your website is understandable when you create content that is readable and understandable. It becomes robust when your create it using techniques that maximizes future compatibility.
Notes On Building Accessible Websites

How do you achieve this?

You get started by adding accessibility to your website with HTML, CSS and files names.

  • Add alt tags to images. Not all images need the alt tag. If your image is for decoration only, you can skip the alt tag.
  • Use headings frequently. Headings help break up the text and make it easy to understand. Remember, to use one H1 tag per page
  • Use color contrast. The right color combinations can make text either easy or hard to read. Try Lea Verou’s color contrast tool.
  • Make your file names meaningful. Your camera gives your images names with long sets of letters and numbers. Rename them to describe the image. Meaningful names can help with SEO and finding an image if you need to updated it later.
  • Add a label to every form element.

How do you know how accessible your website is?

You can use the following tools to determine your websites accessibility and take steps to fix issues.

Wave

Wave is an accessibility evaluation tool. It can help you to make your content more accessible. It shows you errors in red, warnings in yellow and accessible content features in green.

Wave On Burlington Footwear

ChromeVox

A screen reader for the Chrome browser. Use ChromeVox to learn how a visually impaired person has to use your website.

Your Keyboard

Use your keyboard to navigate through your website without using your mouse. If you need to use your mouse, then you have some items that need fixing.

Do you use Chrome for Your Development?

Ire Aderinokun, UI Designer and Front End Developer, talks about the Chrome Accessibility tools that she uses to test for accessibility issues.

While you develop your next website, use these tools and tips to ensure that you build a site that is perceivable, operable, understandable and robust. By using a variety of tools, you can help to make the user experience better for all of your users.

Want to learn more about accessibility? The A11Y Project is working to make web accessibility easier for web developers to implement.

Takeaways from Milwaukee Code Camp 2016

What is Milwaukee Code Camp? A one day conference with a wide variety of presentations and talks on coding, technology and more. I attended the sessions on Design Patterns, Firebase, HoloLens and Building a Chat Bot. Here are my notes:

Takeaways Milwaukee Code Camp 2016

Design Patterns

David showed us how to make your code adaptable, separate concerns and apply an interface and different design patterns. He started with code that was written without the benefit of an interface. David showed why this design wasn’t as adaptable to changes as it needed to be. You couldn’t add a new back-end provider without rewriting the code.

David showed us four Design Patterns. They are:

  • Bridge Pattern: use an interface to separate dependency from code
  • Decorator Pattern: wrap one object inside of another
  • Chain of Responsibility: passes through a series of handler until it can process your request
  • Template Pattern: it handles repeated code (an algorithm)

David explained that you should use patterns when they make sense. Not all situations are appropriate for a design pattern. You can download the code and check out the slides for Design Patterns on github.

Firebase

Firebase is a noSQL database. It is a realtime database which has a cloud-based backend. With Firebase, you can build high-quality apps. It has APIs package into a single SDK for easy use. As a Google product, can use AD Works and Analytics to learn what your users need. It works across multiple platforms from iOS to JavaScript.

You may want to consider Firebase for your app if:

  • You’re building a new app or rebuilding an existing one.
  • Your application requires minimal integration with third party services or legacy systems.
  • You’re creating an app that doesn’t have complex user authentication needs or heavy data processing requirements.

To get started, sign up for a Firebase account. Create a project, then setup authentication because it is in active at first. Then, you can start creating your app. If you want, you can use it with a Facebook app. You can learn more about Firebase from Google.

HoloLens

HoloLens uses both augmented and mixed reality. They defined augmented as supplemental to reality. PokeMon Go is an example of augmented reality. Mixed is where you add objects to reality. Greg Levenhagen talked about how Microsoft is leading the way with augmented reality by providing HoloLens as a tool for creating revolutionary apps and games. We discussed how HoloLens can be used for engineering, training, manufacturing, sales and remote communications. Right now, C# developers can start building apps for HoloLens today.

You Can Build a Bot, too!

A chat bot that is. A chat bot is an app that simulates a human conversation. They can tell you the weather or find an article for you. “Chat bots are becoming the new apps.” Big tech companies like Google, Apple, Facebook and Slack have chat bots. You can order tacos from Taco Bell in Slack using a chat bot.

When you create a chat bot, you want it to have:

  • A simple and uncomplicated user interface.
  • A specific purpose and complete specific tasks.
  • A personality. Is it snarky or formal?
  • A reliable hosting service. You want your bot to be available all day.
  • A “catch all” response when it doesn’t know something. It may refer you to a website or a person who can answer the question.
  • Be well tested. A buggy chat bot will not be used.

Anthony Jesmok, a Full Stack Developer with Misix, explained that you can get started with your own chat bot. There are several bot frameworks to choose from. For his presentation, he used the Microsoft Bot Framework, Microsoft LUIS (a natural language recognition engine) and Node.js. With Microsoft LUIS, you create an app recognizes and handles the situations (functions) that you what the chat bot do. Anthony has made his code and slides available on github.

Summary

As with other conferences, it can be hard to choose between sessions to go to. I have new and interesting technologies and coding techniques to learn more about. Thanks to the sponsors: Skyline Technologies, SafeNet, Concurrency and University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee for making a great conference.

How Do I Manage Multiple WordPress Websites?

When you have a single WordPress website, managing it is easy. You log in update plugins, WordPress or your theme. Once you start making more WordPress websites whether for yourself or clients, you’ll need a more effective way of managing them.

Manage Multiple Sites

With WordPress, you have a number of solutions to choice from that help you manage multiple WordPress websites from one location. No more logging in and out and switching between websites. Here is a quick overview of three of the best WordPress Management solutions.

MainWP

A WordPress Management plugin that allows to manage multiple WordPress sites from one location. You can manage your day to day WordPress tasks from posts to updates. MainWP is a free plugin with many features.

You can:

  • Manage Plugins and Themes
  • Manage Unlimited WordPress sites
  • Manage Users
  • Host on Your Own Server
  • Manage content, upgrades and backups

What do you get with the paid version?

  • Article Uploader
  • Advance Uptime Monitor
  • Bulk Settings Manager

Infinite WP

A self-hosted, multiple WordPress management platform that simplifies your WordPress management tasks. You can backup and update multiple WordPress sites from one location without having to login to each site.

  • Written in PHP; not native to WordPress
  • Free
  • Self-hosted
  • Master Login
  • One Click Update
  • Back Up and Restore
  • Doesn’t matter what server you install it on

What do you get in the paid version?

  • Scheduled Backups
  • Manage Users
  • Publish Posts and Pages
  • Security Plugins like WordFence and iThemes Security
  • WP Maintenance
  • Cloud Backup
  • Staging

CMS Commander

A powerful dashboard that allow you to manage all of your WordPress websites in one solution. CMS Commander also provides tools for bulk posts articles and pages to your blogs simultaneously, create a new WordPress site with all the settings that you need to get started and more.

  • Free to try
  • One Dashboard to Control All WordPress Websites
  • Full Overview of Traffic and Statistics
  • Copy Entire WordPress Sites for a New Project
  • Complete Control to Manage Posts, Comments and Users
  • Easy to Update All WordPress Sites
  • Automatic Backups of All Your Sites

Summary

Managing multiple WordPress websites individually is both time-consuming and unproductive. By using a WordPress management tool, you can be more productive by streamlining your maintenance tasks and save time. Each tool has different features, benefits and pricing. Pick the one that fits your needs.