We survived going back to school! Hooray. And we’re well settled into the new weekly routine of key-stage 2. I, unfortunately, have come down with a nasty cold. So I’m not running at 100% capacity. But it’s been a good week nonetheless.
Projects: what I’ve been up to
I’ve been continuing to work on a charity microsite re-build that I’m doing in WordPress with vanilla JS and CSS, and building more ACF Gutenberg blocks. I’m loving this approach for small projects. It’s got it’s problems, but so has any method/framework. And the simplicity of it is great and, in my opinion, the pros outweigh the cons for small projects like this.
- I did a big chunk of maintenance for a site that I look after for a small charity client.
- Sorted out some Google Tag Manager and analytics event issues for a client, and learned a few things along the way
- Spent an hour or so helping a client fix up some old micro sites that had been broken by a compulsory PHP upgrade that their hosting company made months ago. This was one of those things were not-every-WordPress-person would have had the skills to diagnose and fix it as I was digging around in logs and debugging other people’s stuff. I like to think I added good value here.
- Keith Devon and I worked on editing down our informal “fireside chat” that should become an edition of his EXCELLENT Pricing WordPress podcast this week. Watch that space (not this one).
- Over the weekend, from my bed-of-poorliness, I started upgrading some of my side projects’ Laravel versions. The excellent Laravel Shift service can automate this for you, but my apps are really simple and I wanted to experience the manual approach. A write up will come soon.
Posts: things I made
- Camping thoughts – I wrote some random thoughts on camping holidays I had while we were away over the summer. Featuring unlimited screen time for kids, Big Brother for the outdoors and bringing boiled water to campsites.
- Tech communities are good – Frustrated with some of the negativity that seems prevalent in tech communities, I write this to point out that bad stuff is actually a small percentage of what goes on in tech communities, it’s just that we hear about it more. There’s loads of good stuff going on every day in tech communities. Let’s shout about that some more! (This made it into both the MasterWP and Post Status newsletters! Woop!)
This week I learned
- WordPress is changing how it blocks robots. AND robots/crawlers and robots.txt don’t work how I thought they did.
- About PHP generators: PHP: Generators overview – Manual (via the free Laracasts overview of Laravel 6)
- About the fzf fuzzy-find command line tool (via @tnash)
- About the levenshtein() PHP function that finds words that are almost the same as the word you have, sort of. (I think this was also via the Laracasts overview of Laravel 6)
This is worthy of its own blog post, but I cycle a bit and like to listen to podcasts as I do. A couple of years back I tried some cheap Bluetooth wireless ear buds. They weren’t much good. So I tried a second time paying a bit more and found some I liked.
I stupidly lost these last week and so went looking for some new earbuds and wondered what was new in the last couple of years.
After a bit of help from Twitter (thanks everyone!) I decided to try some cheap-ish “true wireless” headphones. And I’m actually mightily impressed. There are many, many models you can buy for under £50, but someone recommended some MPOW wireless ones, and so I opted to try the MPOW true-wireless ones and…they’re a bit big and stupid-looking, but they stay in my ears (surprisingly!) do the job and for £30 I’m more than happy with them. I’m REALLY impressed with this technology.
I go on about this a lot, but discovering I was a “Highly Sensitive” person was quite a revelation to me and our family. I suspect that many people I know have this character trait too (about 20% of people do!) and understanding it may be helpful. So ages ago I did a write up.
If you ever felt like you experience the world more intensely than others, if you have a high attention to detail and find big events with lots of people tiring, maybe this is you?
Pins: things I read and remembered
Here’s what I bookmarked this week (not much it would seem!)
- Shariff Wrapper – WordPress plugin | WordPress.org – Interesting privacy-aware sharing buttons plugin via @rmccue
- Bottom Navigation Pattern On Mobile Web Pages: A Better Alternative? – I really like the idea of fixed-bottom navigation on websites. This is a good write up on Smashing Magazine
- Regex For Noobs (like me!) – An Illustrated Guide – Janmeppe.com – Fun illustrated guide to regular expressions, via MasterWP newsletter
- timqian/chart.xkcd: xkcd styled chart lib – A coding library to make xkcd-style “hand-drawn”/cartoony charts. ? – via @changelog
- WTF :: WTF – the terminal dashboard – This looks mad. Amazing, but probably not for me. A personal information dashboard for your terminal. via @changelog
- Composing better emails – This is a super post of email tips. Coding-specific, but principles apply generally. via @changelog
- Preventing your site from being indexed, the right way • Yoast – Blocking websites from indexing, differences between being listed and indexed, with relevant robots.txt and meta tags
Have a great week!