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Archive for January, 2010

Faster Page Generation in WordPress

In the modern age of the web, speed is key. Gone are the days when you opened a web page, and went outside for twenty minutes before coming back to find that the web page is almost finished loading. Even if there are still people on dial-up connections, the modern world demands speed.


In the past, one of the best ways to improve speed was to reduce the size and amount of the components of the webpage. More specifics of this are outlined in an older LC article about decreasing page load time.

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Intelligent Caching of the CSS Minifier

A few months back, I presented a stunningly simple CSS minifier that enables you to pack your CSS while still maintaining format and readability. Soon after that, I presented a system called Lateral Cache that you could use to store the minified CSS and deliver it quickly.


Although the Lateral Cache system works well and is great for general purposes, the CSS minifier can be aided by a more intelligent caching system. Well, what do I mean by that? That’s what you are going to find out.

View a Demo Download the Files

Please note that the demo link above directs you to Lateral Code’s own CSS file, where intelligent caching is used.

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The Power of Options: Simple, yet Effective

Options are extremely powerful when it comes to building a website. They provide strong flexibility and facilitate many changes. Furthermore, they are largely present in many CMS systems and blogging platforms, such as WordPress.


WordPress Options

For those of you who aren’t familiar with WordPress’ options system, it acts in a simple way:

// an option is stored with the specified $name and $value
add_option( $name, $value );

// an option is retrieved using the $name
get_option( $name );

// updates an option with $name, or creates a new one if it doesn't exist
// this is generally used more than add_option due to its flexibility
update_option( $name, $value );

The ability of these functions stems from their storage of data. Even through multiple requests, the data that is passed as options will stay in-tact. This is because options are stored in a database.

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Removing .svn Directories With PHP

A few days ago, Lateral Code decided to switch over to using SVN (Subversion) for WordPress. This not only is an easy way to install WordPress for new users, but it also makes it a breeze to update your version.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Subversion, it’s a version control system. You can read more about it here.


The Invasion of .svn

Upon reinstalling WordPress with a few simple SVN commands, we noticed many .svn directories. These were located in every single section of our site’s files. Not only that, but we had also read about the dangers of keeping .svn directories in our file system earlier through Smashing Magazine.

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