WordPress as a tool against censorship

RePress is a plugin that converts your WordPress into a Web Proxy allowing private browsing where it does not allow you, a great way to avoid censorship in countries where navigation is blocked by certain websites offering a site created with WordPress, or a complete network, from "white" IPs, to skip the censorship .

This plugin developed by the web hosting company GreenHost, has created it for The Pirate Bay the P2P file sharing site, and for Wikileaks a well-known site for divulging official secrets … not so secret.

RePress uses phpproxyimproved an open source software that allows to turn your site into a Web Proxy . All you have to do is put a URL, which will be used when navigating from the proxy to the blocked / censored site.

On the page of RePress settings you have to give it a "permalink" "Unique, which will be used to launch the proxy, in addition to a list of unlocked sites or unlock, nothing more.

The only security advice is to leave your account, if you are registered , in the WordPress that serves as a proxy, to avoid XSS attacks ("cross site scripting"), but the plugin itself warns you about it. After this, it will direct you to the site through the created proxy. By the way, the plugin also deletes all cookies from the WordPress domain used as a proxy, so any configuration associated with cookies will be erased as well.

NOTICE : this publication is from two years ago or more. If it's a code or a plugin it might not work in the latest versions of WordPress, and if it's a news story it might be obsolete. Then do not say we have not warned you.

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ICE, collaborative edition in WordPress

The prestigious newspaper The New York Times together with Automattic, have created a plugin aimed at collaborative editing in WordPress, which is essential for an online newspaper, so that it adapts as much as possible to the ways of working in a newsroom. This development has been called ICE ( I ntegrated C ontent E editor).

That I could find is not yet available in the official repository of WordPress plugins but it is available for download, because it is free and open code, on github in addition to the latest version of WordPress and the editor TinyMCE, as the perfect pack for the online editor.

With ICE, the changes made by the different users are shown in strikethrough or marked with color. Any user can press a button to accept or reject a particular change or all of them. It is a more sophisticated system than the "follow-up" of WordPress, which shows the previous version of a story but does not highlight the specific changes. And while WordPress shows the revisions on another screen, with ICE the changes are displayed in the same text editing window.

For the Times, ICE means that journalists will no longer have to choose between writing to the CCI, the CMS of the printed newspaper, and Scoop, your Web CMS. Regardless of whether you are writing a blog or an article, now they will use the same text editor.

One more bet to make WordPress the CMS par excellence, this time with the New York Times.

Add pagination to the entries

When I explained how to improve the bouce rate in WordPress I left a list of 10 methods to do it, but I kept one more mode, quite simple all said in passing, to do it.

I'm referring to cutting long entries into several pages adding paging to our more extensive publications. In this way we increase the permanence in the site and bounce of visits between internal links, which will improve our SEO .

Also, doing it is very simple, although not obvious because we do not have an icon in the editor to cut entries in several pages, at least by default but it is easy, and a lot.

To do this you just have to add the following code in the specific place where you want to "cut" your entry, and you can do it as many times as you want:

When you publish, and if your subject supports it (almost everyone does) your entry will be cut in the chosen place, offering access to the following pages through numbered links, as many as pages (cuts) have your entrance.

And what do I do if you fear me do not do the "cuts" ?. There are few but there are. Some topics do not include the necessary code to cut the entries in several pages. If so, you just have to add the following code to the ' loop ' of the file single.php of your active topic:

You save the changes and the page will be displayed.

WordPress download statistics by version • WordPress Help

If you are curious, and you want to know which version of WordPress is the most popular, there is a page specialized in WordPress.org that shows you in a graphic which of the versions of WordPress to date is the most popular.

Of course, even with the growing popularity of WordPress, right now the most popular branch, with over 51% of the global downloads is the 3.x version. Did you doubt?

As a curiosity (or not), we are also offered graphics of the most popular PHP and MySQL installed versions, in which they gain 5.2 PHP and 5.1 MySQL.

Admin bar, only for admin • WordPress Help

The new WordPress admin bar is displayed by default for all registered users but if you want to be displayed only by the administrators of your WordPress you just have to add a small code.

open the file functions.php of your active theme, or modify your function plugin and add the following piece of code:

You save the changes and you already have it.

Input thumbnails in the feed (plugin) • WordPress Help

Our friends from Mecus have published in the official repository a plugin, Post thumbnails in feed which allows to display the image thumbnails (featured images) in the RSS of a WordPress .

The configuration is simple, you just have to choose the size to show thumbnail (or less), as we did with the code how to put images highlighted in the feed .

Now you can do it by hand or with plugin.

How to try themes and plugins without breaking anything

If you are one of those who always walk experimenting with changes in aspect (themes) and improvement or incorporation of functionalities (plugins) ) in your WordPress, you must know that you can do experiments without breaking anything you just have to follow some simple instructions so that you neither load the web nor surprise your visitors with strange situations.

Of course, before trying plugins there are some steps that you can perform for choose the perfect plugin but if you want to do tests anyway …

Test subjects without your readers noticing

Surely you like to change the subject from time to time but, if you do not have a testing environment, you can test how your site will be with the new design before you get scared.

Install and activate the plugin Theme test drive which adds a to a new configuration page where you can define which theme you are going to test, which only the administrators of the site will see.

Once active you can check if the widgets adapt to the new design and , above all, if there are customizations in the old design that you will have to incorporate into the new one, this is something that almost always escapes in this type of changes.

The plugin is quite veteran so it is very tested. It's not perfect, because widgets will make you weird things at times, but for generic tests you'll have plenty to spare. Now, my recommendation is that you use a test environment, on your own server, for example in a subfolder of your current domain.

Test plugins without your readers noticing

Both to try new features, as if you are a developer and you want to experiment, you can try plugins, and how they will affect your site, without your visitors having to suffer the consequences of unwanted changes, which sometimes happens.

For this you can use Plugin Test Drive that, as with the previous plugin, allows you to test without your visitors noticing. To do this, all you have to do, after installing and activating it, is to try plugins.

You can do it from 3 different screens:

  • The plugin test drive settings screen where, in addition to specifying who will see the effects of the plugins in test (that you can define by user role or even by IP). In addition to this first setting you can choose between the existing plugins and put them to the test
  • When installing a new plugin, it adds a link to test it ("Test plugin"), in addition to the usual "Activate plugin" and "Voler" to the plugins screen "
  • On the plugins screen, where you will see a new link to test the plugin and, if there is already one in the tests, it will show you a message reminding you

NOTICE : this publication is from two years ago or more. If it's a code or a plugin it might not work in the latest versions of WordPress, and if it's a news story it might be obsolete. Then do not say we have not warned you.

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Forum and WordPress Forums

I'm sure you've noticed, since I migrated to Gigas a few days ago, weird things happened with the WordPress Forums . It was not because of the new hosting, but because of my stubbornness, pure and hard.

And it's been a while since I wanted to migrate the old bbPress forums to bbPress plugin because in WordPress, as in any software, the old versions stop having support and updates, but I was held back by the youth of the plugin and, above all, the migration of the independent forum system to the plugin.

And, taking advantage of the migration, I got down to work. Result? …

  • The old forums are still active, but they have access problems, something has happened with the database in the migration, and that is that bbPress is already somewhat old-fashioned in its independent version
  • The new forums work perfectly, with all the threads, forums and messages perfectly migrated, but it lacks functionalities (still) of the old forums as navigation resources for the last messages and things like that
  • All the users have been migrated from the old forums to the new ones, apparently without problems except for a user who has warned me and I have solved it
  • The WordPress Help search now includes results both from the blog and the new forums (thanks to Luis for notifying me)

If you are interested, the migration process was as follows:

  1. Initial deactivation of old forums, to lose nothing in migration
  2. Migration of independent bbPress to bbPress plugin using bbConverter . It took many hours, since we had to migrate 28 forums, with almost 9,000 users, which contained more than 12,000 threads with more than 35,000 messages, there is nothing
  3. Personalization of the profiles of migrated users, already within WordPress, with the help from Members … and many clicks from me
  4. Integration of blog search engine and forums using Search bbPress
  5. Reactivation of old forums so that the content will be back available even if only in query mode
  6. Change the links of the old forums to the new forum

Of course, I still have many things to refine and add, and that is that forums systems are the most complicated thing always migrate. But if you think the process of migration of a bbPress is complicated, you have not faced updates to Invision Power Board or other systems, which always give war. In this migration, which was radical when going from an independent system to an integrated plugin, the process has been even better and easier than expected by far.

Things I do not like about bbPress plugin?

  • When you insert a link in an entry, you will also find internal links to threads in the forums, which makes it more complicated to find related entries. Things of the total integration
  • The translations do not integrate well and there is no location for the adapted topic
  • If you do the manual integration of subject you have to modify it practically line by line
  • You have to modify the subject a lot so that fits the thing well to each theme

Things I like about bbPress plugin?

  • Now updates will be sewing and singing
  • Automatic integration with the current theme works quite well if you do not ask for frills
  • ] Integration of users with total WordPress
  • How well now works the control of spam

Now, while I finish solving the small problems that I mentioned before, you can visit the new WordPress forums , as always.

NOTICE : this publication is from two years ago or more. If it's a code or a plugin it might not work in the latest versions of WordPress, and if it's a news story it might be obsolete. Then do not say we have not warned you.

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Load images only when scrolling to speed WordPress

Surely more than once it happens to you, that you access a blog that uses many images like this usually, and the loading of the page is slow .

This is because the page tries to load all the available images, and this means that, even if you are not going to see them – scrolling – you can not visualize the first publication well until they are all loaded.

You may have seen that sites like Google Images use a script that works to avoid just that . What that script does is go loading the images as you scroll so you can see the first images and just load the others if you really want to see them . ] Well, the people of Automattic, Techcrunch and Jake Goldman got down to work and, as a result of their work we have the plugin Lazy Load that achieves just that, that the images are loaded to as the visitor scrolls loading only the necessary ones that you see in your browser and, consequently, improving the browsing experience on your website, by loading speed, by simple efficient management of resources.

, that you do not have to configure anything, install it, activate it and start working, using jQuery.sonar to display images as they are in the user's browser display focus . The rest of the content, however, is loaded in full, in case you had the doubt.

What are the advantages? All of them, especially in blogs with a lot of images, because improves page load times and that Google may thank you, and what is certain is that your visitors will thank you.

If you want to see the effect you can check it in my personal blog .

NOTICE : This publication is from two years ago or more. If it's a code or a plugin it might not work in the latest versions of WordPress, and if it's a news story it might be obsolete. Then do not say we have not warned you.

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More format icons to the WordPress visual editor • WordPress Help

By default, WordPress displays a row of icons to format your texts in the visual input editor. And I guess you already know that by clicking on the last icon, that of the colored squares, a second row appears in which you also have the following icons:

Well, what you may not know is that there is a third row of icons that you can make visible …

To see it you just have to add this code to your file functions.php or almost better to your Feature Plugin ]:

This new row will be seen even if you have not displayed the first one, it will always be visible.

Do you want even more? because you can install the plugin TinyMCE Advanced that adds those icons and many more (at will and customizable), replacing the standard WordPress editor with a more "full" version.