I recently added a security certificate to the Webdancers site, which put me on a bit of a crusade to help make more sites ‘secure by default’. I attended an excellent presentation last year at WordCamp Sacramento by internet security expert Zack Tollman, of Wired, Inc., on the benefits of converting websites to use SSL/TLS* encryption (watch the video and you can see the back of my head). This is the technology that displays the familiar little padlock icon in the browser (or URL bar), … [Read more...] about ‘Secure by default’ builds customer trust
Back in August, I wrote about Choosing a Home In the Cloud, which described my attempt to become less dependent on Microsoft Windows. Since that time, I've moved more of my applications and data into the cloud, including: Moving my business accounting from Quickbooks to Xero.com. Using CodeAnywhere.com, an online Integrated Development Environment (IDE) to write and publish code for almost all of my website work. Using a hosted version of the Gimp image editor, accessed through a web … [Read more...] about Moving From Windows To the Raspberry Pi
I recently exchanged some tweets with someone who was trying to update her organization's web site but didn't have sufficient access to do so. She had a pretty good grasp of what she needed to accomplish but was being blocked at every turn. It made me think that, while modern site building tools have brought online publishing to the masses, there are still many management functions that require an understanding of how web sites and, indeed, the Internet as a whole, works. I thought this … [Read more...] about What’s In a (Domain) Name?
If you follow me on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn), you’ll have noticed a few links to articles about ad blockers. These rather remarkable programs don’t just hide ads on the web pages that you visit, they prevent them from loading altogether. And when the ads don’t load, nether do the tracking cookies and beacons used by ad servers to track your activities around the web. The result is a faster and much more pleasant online experience. There’s a downside though and it … [Read more...] about Does Blocking Ads Make You a Bad Person?
Update 9/15/15: Chrome version 45.0.2454.93 m has fixed this bug. If you had previously applied the workaround, go back and reverse the instructions below. Chome version 45 introduced a bug that causes the WordPress dashboard menu to go all wonky. Fortunately, there's an easy workaround. Open Chrome and paste this into the address bar: chrome://flags/#disable-slimming-paint Click the "Disable" link in the "Disable slimming paint" option. Ensure that the "Enable slimming paint" option … [Read more...] about Chrome Rendering Bug Affects WordPress Dashboard
I have now installed Windows 10 on two computers: an older laptop and my primary desktop. One of the first things I noticed was the many points at which this new operating system connects to Microsoft’s cloud ecosystem. They encourage you to sign in to your computer using a PIN that’s associated with your online account. And if you want to make use of Cortana, the slick new search assistant, you must be signed in for that as well. You get 15GB of OneDrive cloud storage space for free and that … [Read more...] about Choosing a Home in the Cloud
WordPress and its parent company Automattic are celebrating their 10th anniversary. They find themselves at the top of the heap when it comes to shear numbers of websites using the WordPress platform, powering over 23% of all websites. Beyond that, they are innovators in creating a globally distributed workforce and a profitable open source software business model. This is why WordPress is the platform used by Webdancers to build websites for almost all of our clients. From its roots as a … [Read more...] about Celebrating 10 Years of WordPress
Nothing interrupts the flow of work like a misbehaving keyboard. When pressing a key doesn't result in a character appearing on the screen, it puts a serious dent in one's typing accuracy. So when my Microsoft wireless keyboard started acting up and replacing the batteries didn't help, I started looking at alternatives to the $30-$80 cheap plastic keyboard. I quickly stumbled into the world of mechanical keyboards, where there was lots of talk of linear switches, tactile switches, actuation … [Read more...] about An Update to the Mechanical Keyboard
We spend a lot of effort online trying to get our message out; publishing newsletters, posting on Facebook and Twitter and generally trying to get other people's attention. However, the Internet is just as valuable for the information you can take in. The trouble is that it can be like drinking from the proverbial fire hose. How can you find high quality information about subjects that matter to you, that doesn't waste what little time you have available? I have always enjoyed finding and … [Read more...] about Automate Your Reading Tools