May
27
2013

WordPress is 10 years old

10 years ago today, the first release of WordPress became available. It all started as a fork of the platform b2/Cafelog. WordPress has grown to be the largest Content Management System in the world, powering over 18% of all websites on the Internet.

Nearly 70 million websites run WordPress and it’s hard to understate the impact that the software has had on the world of digital publishing. Hundreds of high-profile websites, including blogs from CNN, The New York Times and Reuters, all use WordPress.

WordPress was started by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little and the open-source software has grown to include thousands of contributors. For Matt Mullenweg, hitting the decade mark was a bit startling for him. In a blog post, he wrote about the great platform he helped create:

Has it really been 10 years? It seems just yesterday we were playing around on my blog, and the blogs of a few high school friends. Two of those friends are married, one isn’t anymore, two are still figuring things out, and one has passed away.

You were cute before you became beautiful. Wearing black and white, afraid of color, trying to be so unassuming. I know you got jealous when I wore those Blogger t-shirts. They were the cool kids at SxSW and I thought maybe you could grow up to be like them.

You wouldn’t have shirts of your own for a few more years. We didn’t know what we were doing when we made them and the logo printed ginormous. People called them the Superman shirt and made fun of them. But, oh, that logo — the curves fit you so well.

You showed the world you were growing up, and how much you cared about design and typography and other platonic ideals. You knew that open source didn’t have to be homely. I stretched myself too thin trying to get you there, and I did a stupid thing to pay for it. I hurt you, but instead of casting me away you held me closer, supported me, gave me another chance. I will never forget that. Akismet made me feel less guilty. I wouldn’t change anything, because the mistake made me understand how important it is to fly straight and take your time.

You’re so beautiful… I’m continually amazed and delighted by how you’ve grown. Your awkward years are behind you. Best of all, through it all, you’ve stuck with the principles that got you started in the first place. You’re always changing but that never changes. You’re unafraid to try new things that may seem wacky or unpopular at first.

I see you all over the world now, glowing from screens, bringing people together at meetups and WordCamps — you’re at your best when you do that. You’re my muse; you inspire me, and I’ve seen you inspire others. You become a part of their life and they become a part of yours. I hope we grow old together.

Cheers to ten years, and here’s to a hundred more.

Love,
Matt

Happy 10th Birthday, Dear WordPress! :)

May
8
2013

3 SEO Mistakes that Bloggers Should Avoid

Every blogger knows the importance of search engine optimization. Without proper SEO, getting organic traffic from major search engines like Google can get difficult. And since search engine traffic is free and highly targeted, no blogger should miss out on it. However, if you look around you will find that there are many bloggers that tend to make SEO mistakes that cost them in the long run. In the following article we look into a few common mistakes that you should avoid as a blogger if you’re looking out to get ranked high on the search engine result pages….

#1: Purchasing Links

When you buy links, you take a risk that can cause damage to your relationship with Google and other search engines. While it may give you a temporary boost, it will definitely prove to be harmful as time goes by.

There are many times when paid links are flagged by Google and this can affect your rankings. For example, if you purchase a few hundred links to have them pointed to your own website, all on the same day, you may have some of these links flagged not only for irregular link activity but also for other reasons if the links are not relevant.

#2: Duplicate Content

Google wants your blog to bring value to the table. If you’re going to create duplicate content on your blog with only little variation just for the purpose of populating your site then it’s not a good practice. For instance, ‘understanding section 529 college savings plans’ and ‘knowing section 529 college savings plans’ are pretty similar topics – so even if you create a totally different page or post for both these keywords, it will still put you at risk of getting a search engine penalty. The Big G has an advanced algorithm that can easily catch you playing with topics/keywords that are identical.

So what’s the solution? Taking our above 529 plans example, what you can do is penetrate this topic and go into the details in order to find subtopics that you can work with. The deeper you go, the better it is. This will help you in strengthening each of your blog post and also give you the needed edge over the competition.

#3: Writing Little Content

Gone are the days when you could write a 300-400 word blog post and have it ranked in Google. Today, things are different after the infamous Google Panda and Penguin updates. You have to work on your content and create something that’s worth it  - or else it simply doesn’t make it to the front page.

The reason why Google made this update is because there were many junk websites or blogs with little content were ranking high due to factors such as a high number of incoming links. But now your blog has to have in-depth content that is not only written well but is also organized well. 

So what does this mean to you? Let’s say you run an education blog and you’re writing about the cost of living that a student would incur when moving to a new city. Don’t just write a few paragraphs about it. Go in-depth in explaining the why and the how. Use facts, figures and link to other education sites/blogs that discuss the cost of living factor. This will only add more depth to your content, but will also make it more valuable helping attract more quality incoming links.

Conclusion

The above SEO mistakes that we discussed are pretty common amongst bloggers, but they’re also big. So if you are making these mistakes then it’s about time you fix them to rank better in the search engines.

Feb
26
2013

5 New and Nice WordPress Themes

Infosource: Clean and crisp with the option to display links to your profiles on all the popular social networks, the Infosource Theme is just that… all the essentials for a professional blog. Of course it supports custom menus, widgets and has a full width template so it is pretty versatile and could be used for any number of applications.

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Download Here


Chunk: A straightforward theme with bold typography designed by Tran N. Featuring multiple post formats, custom background, custom menu, and custom header. Also comes with an optional footer widget area.

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Download Here


Photologger: Photologger is a minimalist theme that is ideal for photo blogs, magazines & portfolios. Custom Background, Custom Header, Twitter, Facebook and Youtube links, Spacious, customiseable, clean, and very fast to load.

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Download Here


Annotum Sans: A child theme of Annotum, an open-source, open-process, open-access scholarly authoring and publishing platform based on WordPress, with a modern, sans-serif style. Annotum provides a complete, open-access scholarly journal production system including peer-review, workflow, and advanced editing and formatting features such as structured figures, equations, PubMed and CrossRef reference import, and structured XML input and output compatible with the National Library of Medicine’s Journal Article DTD.

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Download Here


Spine: Theme based on Hybrid Core and Zurb Foundation front end framework.

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Download Here


Dec
11
2012

WordPress 3.5 “Elvin” Released

A new WordPress release is available and chock-full of goodies to delight bloggers and developers alike. We’re calling this one “Elvin” in honor of drummer Elvin Jones, who played with John Coltrane in addition to many others.

If you’ve been around WordPress a while, the most dramatic new change you’ll notice is a completely re-imagined flow for uploading photos and creating galleries. Media has long been a friction point and we’ve listened hard and given a lot of thought into crafting this new system. 3.5 includes a new default theme, Twenty Twelve, which has a very clean mobile-first responsive design and works fantastic as a base for a CMS site. Finally we’ve spent a lot of time refreshing the styles of the dashboard, updating everything to be Retina-ready with beautiful high resolution graphics, a new color picker, and streamlining a couple of fewer-used sections of the admin.

New Media Manager

about-media

Introducing Twenty Twelve

The newest default theme for WordPress is simple, flexible, and elegant.

What makes it really shine are the design details, like the gorgeous Open Sans typeface and a fully responsive design that looks great on any device.

Naturally, Twenty Twelve supports all the theme features you’ve come to know and love, but it is also designed to be as great for a website as it is for a blog.

 about-twenty-twelve

So Sharp You Can’t See the Pixels

The WordPress dashboard now looks beautiful on high-resolution screens like those found on the iPad, Kindle Fire HD, Nexus 10, and MacBook Pro with Retina Display. Icons and other visual elements are crystal clear and full of detail.

about-retina

You can Update directly from Dashboard -> Updates.

Enjoy!

Oct
29
2012

Should You Hire a Graphic Designer?

One of the most important things a small business generally focuses upon is keeping unnecessary costs down. After all, if you can get by without buying that coffee machine or by getting your office chair at a thrift shop, then what’s the point of spending more? Yet sometimes this impulse to shave costs can lead to worse overall results.

Perhaps the clearest example of this is when it comes to the decision of whether to hire a graphic designer. Many small businesses figure that the logo they’ve come up with is good enough, and don’t bother with anything fancy when creating advertisements or designing letterhead. However, this misunderstanding of the importance of design can easily result in lost sales for your company over the long term.

Having proper signage that fits with your logo, advertisements, and website is extremely important for your brand. In the long term, brand awareness can be the deciding factor in a majority of those potential consumers who were on the fence about using your service. This is why hiring a graphic designer is often a more important decision than ensuring you get the very best credit card for small business. Not hiring a designer can result in far less sales, but the second best credit card will likely perform nearly as well in terms of the overall success of your business.

Graphic designers understand why logos in this day and age need to have scalable designs. The logo as it is seen on your outdoor signage will be slightly different from the one you use in print ads, which in turn will be different from the header of your website, which itself will be further different from your website favicon. To the untrained eye, all of these will look similar, but each has different needs based on the medium that only a graphic designer can accommodate. Overhead signs must take perspective into account; print ads must include high dpi to ensure the resolution looks good; websites need a forward-facing design; and favicons need familiarity without high resolution.

For people not well-versed in graphic design, the best way to explain why designers are necessary is to use an analogy. For most consumers in the United States, credit is a way of life. People buy everything on credit, which makes the average household credit card debt rise over time. Yet those savvy enough to consult a financial planner will know better than the average household and will thereby avoid the pitfall of accruing too much debt. It’s the same with graphic designers. Even if you’re tight on cash, contact your local liberal arts college and get the graphic design teacher to recommend a student to you. You’ll be glad you did.

Sep
7
2012

WordPress 3.4.2: Maintenance & Security

WordPress 3.4.2 has just been released and is now available for download. This update is a maintenance and security release for all previous versions.

After nearly 15 million downloads since 3.4 was released not three months ago, we’ve identified and fixed a number of nagging bugs, including:

■Fix some issues with older browsers in the administration area.
■Fix an issue where a theme may not preview correctly, or its screenshot may not be displayed.
■Address pagination problems with some category permalink structures.
■Improve plugin compatibility with the visual editor.
■Prevent improperly sized header images from being uploaded.
■Avoid errors with both oEmbed providers and trackbacks.

This version also fixes a few security issues and contains some security hardening. The vulnerabilities included potential privilege escalation and a bug that affects multisite installs with untrusted users. These issues were discovered and fixed by the WordPress security team.

Download 3.4.2 now or visit your Dashboard → Updates in your site admin to update now.

Jul
25
2012

Best Web Hosting Vs WordPress Hosting

Web hosting service varied on the basis of website type and one need to be careful in terms of web hosting selection because the performance of website mainly relies on the stability of hosting service. With the increasing trend of website development number of web hosting companies is increased as well but one need to pick out the most suited one in the context of website needs. For instance if you have professional website you need to have highly stable and well configured hosting server that’s why sensible webmasters opt for best web hosting services. As compare to that if you are planning to set up blog website based on wordpress than you need to choose a reliable wordpress hosting.

A reliable web host offer numerous type of hosting plans to manage varied type of websites, they offer shared server hosting for small websites, VPS and dedicated hosting for professional websites and wordpress hosting for wordpress based websites. You must be thinking why you need wordpress hosting? Well wordpress is a complete content management system and it’s extremely popular among bloggers as it offer ease in content management and offer countless FREE wordpress themes as well, also its an Open Source Content Management System (CMS) which means developers can easily customize it, so it need proper configuration on hosting server in order to have complete functionality of applications and themes that’s why reputed web hosting companies offer wordpress web hosting plan.

A well establish hosting company provide steady hosting server and configure it smartly on hosting server so that one can easily integrate his blog. The major reason to have wordpress based hosting server is that all the applications and plug-ins offered by wordpress need proper integration on hosting server if your server is not fully configured then you might have to experience several compatibility issues while installing plug-ins or themes.

So if you are planning to set up blog on the basis of wordpress, always opt for reliable wordpress hosting.