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A Few Steps Back

I have been doing some non-design-related work recently and have not been saturated with anything even computer-related for the past several weeks. Mostly I have been just enjoying life, but also drawing quite a bit and going around taking photos of old, decrepit homesteads and factories. Needless to say, it’s been a much-needed respite from the usual crunch and grind. Taking a few steps back like this from the Web — even for such a short period of time — is remarkably refreshing, and has given me time to contemplate all this web-stuff that keeps us all so busy. When […] Read more »

Should We Support Old Versions of Good Browsers?

I mean, basically anything except for Internet Explorer, which is a debate in and of itself. Here I’m referring to old versions of good browsers, like Firefox 2, Safari 2, Opera 8, and so on. It seems that older versions of these browsers are not as common as older versions of IE, so should we bother supporting them when designing our websites? Most agree that we shouldn’t support old versions of crappy browsers like IE, but what about older versions of good browsers like Firefox, Opera, and Safari? Backwards Compatibility One of the cool things about adhering to Web Standards […] Read more »

3 Ways to Track Web Pages with Google Analytics

Many bloggers, designers, and developers take advantage of Google’s free Analytics service to track and monitor their site’s statistics. Along with a Google account, all that’s needed to use Google Analytics is the addition of a small slice of JavaScript into your web pages. For a long time, there was only one way of doing this, and then in 2007 Google improved their GATC code and established a new way for including it in your web pages. Many people switched over to the newer optimized method, but may not realize that there are now three different ways to track your […] Read more »

New Year Reminder

Just a reminder to stay focused on what you are doing as the New Year unfolds. The world has been overflowing with opportunity and creativity like never before. But most of it is profit-driven regurgitation and mass-marketing of empty hype and latest trends. Stay away from the garbage and keep your mind focused on your goals. Distractions may snag your attention for a moment, but you’ve got to catch yourself as soon as possible and realize that you’re wasting valuable time unless you’re doing what you truly want to be doing. Read more »

CSS3 + Progressive Enhancement = Smart Design

Progressive enhancement is a good thing, and CSS3 is even better. Combined, they enable designers to create lighter, cleaner websites faster and easier than ever before.. CSS3 can do some pretty amazing stuff: text shadows, rgba transparency, multiple background images, embedded fonts, and tons more. It’s awesome, but not all browsers are up to snuff. As designers, it’s up to us to decide which browsers to support for our projects. While everyone has their own particular strategy, there seem to be three general approaches: Support all browsers with perfect fidelity – not realistic for most budgets, requires many elaborate workarounds, […] Read more »

Book Giveaway Winner!

Congrats to Oliver Edwards for winning the randomly selected book giveaway! Oliver Edwards will receive a complimentary printed edition of Digging into WordPress along with the digital PDF version. Thank you to random.org for the true random number generator. Read more »

Book Giveaway: Print Version of Digging into WordPress

I have a free print version of Digging into WordPress to give away to one lucky winner. To qualify for the giveaway, simply leave a comment on this post stating your absolute favorite thing about WordPress. The winner will receive a free printed copy of DiW shipped to their door, plus a lifetime subscription to the PDF version of the book. I will announce the randomly chosen winner next week. – Good luck! :) Read more »

Better Image Preloading with CSS3

I recently added to my growing library of image-preloading methods with a few new-&-improved techniques. After posting that recent preloading article, an even better way of preloading images using pure CSS3 hit me: .preload-images { background: url(image-01.png) no-repeat -9999px -9999px; background: url(image-01.png) no-repeat -9999px -9999px, url(image-02.png) no-repeat -9999px -9999px, url(image-03.png) no-repeat -9999px -9999px, url(image-04.png) no-repeat -9999px -9999px, url(image-05.png) no-repeat -9999px -9999px; } Using CSS3’s new support for multiple background images, we can use a single, existing element to preload all of the required images. Compare this method with the old way of using CSS to preload images: Read more »

Print Version of Digging into WordPress is Here!

Nearly six weeks after releasing the electronic version of Digging into WordPress, Chris and I are proud to announce that the printed version is now available. Beautiful custom design with full-color printing on every page Beautiful custom design.. Make no mistake, this is a beautiful, custom-designed book that makes it fun and easy to soak in the wisdom and advance your WordPress skills. Every detail has been carefully crafted — from the landscape page-orientation and color-coded chapters to the lay-flat spiral binding and large, easy-to-read text — this book is truly a pleasure to experience. Read more »

3 Ways to Preload Images with CSS, JavaScript, or Ajax

Preloading images is a great way to improve the user experience. When images are preloaded in the browser, the visitor can surf around your site and enjoy extremely faster loading times. This is especially beneficial for photo galleries and other image-heavy sites where you want to deliver the goods as quickly and seamlessly as possible. Preloading images definitely helps users without broadband enjoy a better experience when viewing your content. In this article, we’ll explore three different preloading techniques to enhance the performance and usability of your site. Method 1: Preloading with CSS and JavaScript There are many ways to […] Read more »

Really Simple Browser Detection with jQuery

For my Serious redesign, I push the envelope in terms of CSS’ advanced selector functionality. Stuff like: p:first-child p:first-child:first-letter p:first-child:after p:first-child:first-line Plus lots of other stylistic tricks that require CSS3 support in order to display as intended. Fortunately, most of the browsers to which I am catering with this new design have no problems with most of the advanced stuff. Of course, Internet Explorer chokes on just about everything, but fortunately IE’s proprietary conditional comments make it easy to fix things up with some “special” styles: Read more »

The New Clearfix Method

Say goodbye to the age-old clearfix hack and hello to the new and improved clearfix method.. The clearfix hack, or “easy-clearing” hack, is a useful method of clearing floats. I have written about the original method and even suggested a few improvements. The original clearfix hack works great, but the browsers that it targets are either obsolete or well on their way. Specifically, Internet Explorer 5 for Mac is now history, so there is no reason to bother with it when using the clearfix method of clearing floats. Read more »

Stupid WordPress Tricks

One of the most popular articles here at Perishable Press is my January 2005 post, Stupid htaccess Tricks. In that article, I bring together an extensive collection of awesome copy-&-paste HTAccess code snippets. Four years later, people continue to tell me how much they enjoy and use the content as a bookmarked reference for many of their HTAccess needs. The article was even published in a book on Joomla! Security. This is very inspiring to me, so I have decided to create a similar post for all of the useful WordPress code snippets, tips and tricks that I have collected […] Read more »

Getting Serious with a New Design

New design in effect at Perishable Press. It’s sort of a hybrid between some of the things I like about the Quintessential theme and some of the best parts of the subsequent Requiem theme. So this new theme is named Serious because it represents a renewed commitment to design, blogging, and everything I love about working on the Web. While I have everything fresh in my mind, here are some of the highlights of the latest incarnation of Perishable Press.. Read more »

It’s Here: Digging into WordPress!

After nearly a year of production, Chris Coyier and I are stoked to announce our new book: Digging into WordPress! It’s nine jam-packed chapters (400 pages!) stuffed with everything you need to take your WordPress skills to the next level and really get the most out of WordPress. We take you through everything — from setting up for success and creating the perfect theme to optimizing performance and tightening security, Digging into WordPress delivers the goods. You’ll learn how to harness the full potential of WordPress with all of the tips, tricks, and code you need to make it happen. Read more »

Perfect Pre Tags

If you operate a website that features lots of code examples, you know how important it is to spend some quality time styling the <pre></pre> element. When left unstyled, wild <pre></pre> tags will mangle your preformatted content and destroy your site’s layout. Different browsers treat the <pre></pre> tag quite differently, varying greatly in their default handling of font-sizing, scrollbar-rendering, and word-wrapping. Indeed, getting your preformatted code to look consistent, usable, and stylish across browsers is no easy task, but it certainly can be done. In this article, I’ll show you everything you need to create perfect <pre></pre> tags. First thangs […] Read more »

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