WPyogi is now part of wpbeginner

I set up wpyogi.com years ago after setting up a WordPress course.It took me so long to prepare that material, that I decided to put it up online for students to use on their own and for teachers to use in their class room. I no longer teach and as a result the material now needs updating. A few weeks ago I reached on on twitter to see if anyone would be willing to take over the domain and Syed at WPbeginner kindly agreed. Not only did he take the domain name, but also took the content with the aim of updating it soon.

I look forward to seeing how the content evolves.

See you at WordCamp Vancouver 2014

WordCamp Vancouver is just around the corner and if you do any kind of development work with WordPress, you should join us. This year’s WordCamp is the developer edition and the schedule has something for everyone. WordCamp is held on July 26 at the BCIT campus downtown Vancouver. Tickets are on sale and going fast, so make sure you grab yours soon.

I’ll be doing a lightning talk on handling multiple screens and responsive design using CSS and mobble. If you’ve never used the plugin you should come by and ask your questions. If you have any right now, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll do my best to answer you right away or I’ll chat to you at the conference. See you there.

Introducing Water Lily

Water lily is my latest theme released on the WordPress repo. I had initially chosen lotus, but that theme name was already taken and since all names must be unique, I had to content myself with water lily. This process did teach me the difference between water lilies and lotuses though. Seems like many make that same mistake.
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Giving back by providing support

One of the ways to learn more about your craft is to help others. For this reason, I’ve been teaching WordPress theming for a number of years and I’ve contributed on the WordPress support forums a bit. Everyone involved on the WordPress.org support forums is a volunteer and although I haven’t asked all of them why they do it, I’m guessing the reason they do it is like mine, I love it.

cyberchimpsI got addicted to the forums 6 years ago and I’ve contributed in spurts. Some weeks are super active, while other weeks simply leave me no time. Some of you may have noticed that, as of late, I’ve been absent from the forums. The reason for that, is that I was recruited to work on the Cyberchimps forums. I’ve been working with the other “chimps” for a few weeks now and even got my first pay check. I felt a wee bit guilty when the money landed in my Paypal account. Here I was getting paid for doing something I used to do for free!

The purpose of helping on forums is to help others, but also you learn a great deal from troubleshooting. With the wage that I got from Cyberchimps, I thought how I could help even more? I always find looking through the loan requests on Kiva humbling. It’s amazing how such small amounts (for me) can change lives. Last month I lent money to Nalini, allowing her to buy a sewing machine. It’s a small gesture, but if I can provide some CSS guidance to someone on one side of the globe and help someone financially on the other, I feel better about our future.

I plan on continuing this process every month and look forward to seeing who else I get to help out.

WordCamp Vancouver: Put some shine in your back-end

Coming up with titles for WordCamp talks is always tricky. I’m not proud of this latest one, but it did garnered a few fans and thus was stuck with it.

My WordCamp Vancouver talk this year is about looking at ways pages can be designed slightly differently. During the presentation we’ll be looking at using shortcodes, widgets, include pages, looping through pages and advanced custom fields.

Here is the link to my slides: http://bluelimemedia.com/wp/wcyvr-2013/

Happy Summer

raised eyebrowWith the arrival of the sun in Vancouver, and another speaking engagement under my belt, it’s time to for a quick update on what’s happening at Bluelime Media.

My big news is that I have taken a three month full-time contract at Raised Eyebrow Web Studio. They are a great bunch of people and I look forward to learning a lot from them. What this means, of course, is that I’ll have less time available for maintenance of existing sites and for new clients. If there is work needing done, I’ll be able to help but my response times will be slower than you might be used to.

This will be an excellent new challenge for me and help to hone my WordPress skills while adding additional depth in Drupal. If you have any questions or if I can suggest another developer to help you out, feel free to drop me a line. You may also want to bookmark the list of developers I currently recommend.

Become a Better Developer by Contributing to WordPress

I owe much of my career to WordPress and it’s use of use. However, none of it would have been possible without the community. Contributing to WordPress is a great way to become better with WordPress as a developer, designer, teacher, writer… there are contributing opportunities for everyone.

During my talk at WordCamp Ottawa I’ll be sharing info on how you can get started.

In the meantime, here are my slides for the presentation:

WordPress hacking, botnets and brute-force attacks

malwareThese past few days has seen some alarming news about CMS sites being attacked by botnets. Targeting WordPress and Joomla, these bots are simply trying to access your backend with different combinations of usernames and passwords. Various articles have been written about this and below is a roundup of what can be done to keep your WordPress site safe.

Do not use “admin” as your username: Matt points out that since WordPress 3.0 allows you to pick a custom username on installation, to replace the default “admin”. Hackers and bots will attack your site using admin as the username, so if you are using this, please change it right away.
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Come and join me at WordCamp Ottawa

WordCamp Ottawa 2013The first ever WordCamp Ottawa is happening in a few weeks on April 27. It will be held at the University in the MonPetit Hall. I graduated from University in 1991 and haven’t been back since. I’m a little apprehensive about going back, but excited as well.

I’ll give a talk in the developer track and discuss ways to become a better developer by contributing to WordPress and joining the community.

The title of my talk might be a bit misleading though. I probably shouldn’t have said developer.

Designers, teachers, writers and organizers are also needed and welcomed in the WordPress community. I hope that all types of WordPress enthusiasts will join me and get to know the many ways in which one can participate.

See you there.

Responsive starter theme now with genericons

genriconsIf you’ve visited the Bluelime Media website lately, you’ll have noticed that it’s undergone yet another design change. This latest design is simpler, I removed a lot of content but more interestingly, I substituted the social media icons with genericons. Genericons are vector icons embedded in a webfont designed to be clean and simple keeping with a generic aesthetic. Brought to you by Automattic, they are indeed a pleasure to work with.

With more and more folks migrating to new Macs with retina display, I thought it would be a good idea to get in the habit of using vector icons.

In addition to the Bluelime site, I’ve also built a few responsive sites lately and my starter theme has proven very handy. However, I did find myself changing the same things over and over again. So earlier today, I made the following changes to the BLM responsive starter theme.

  • The social media icons have been eliminated and replaced with genericons. I also had to replace delicious with tumblr. Delicious is no longer as popular as it once was.
  • I’ve updated both desktop and mobile navigation. The small menu now display the menu title and upon click opens up the navigation.
  • I’ve simplified the CSS and removed the gradients from the navigation.
  • The header image, if used, now links to the home page.
  • I’ve also updated silly errors here and there that Robert must have missed.
    ( ahem.. yeah, it must be his fault. I wouldn’t have done that.)

If you’ve used the BLM responsive starter theme, I would love to hear your thoughts. If you think it could be improved, enhanced or modified in any way, please let me know. For those interested in seeing the code changes, have a look through the commits.