Experimenting with Memcached and Batcache

batmobile

WordPress is often accused of being slow, and you can definitely get it to grind to a halt if you try. But in true WordPress fashion, it also comes with interesting building blocks that helps speed it up to all the way to ludicrous speed. WordPress is like Lego, and I’ve been playing with a couple of interesting new bricks that promise to seriously improve performance.
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Taming wp_list_pages

Ever since pages got added to WordPress in version 1.5, wp_list_pages has been the way to get a list of pages. In the pre-widgets era, it used to be coded into pretty much every theme’s sidebar or header to generate the site’s menu.

Nowadays wp_list_pages is at the heart of the Pages widget, and it’s perfect for blog-type sites with a modest number of pages. But if you’re using WordPress as a CMS, and most of your content is written as pages, using wp_list_pages can cause serious performance issues.
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Snapatar now uses oAuth (phew!)

As some of you may know, Twitter is fading out support for “basic authentication”. This basically means that app developers (like myself) can’t just send a user’s login information to Twitter’s server when we want to send a tweet or change a setting. Instead the application needs to be “authorized” by the user using a process called oAuth.

For Snapatar, this meant I needed to make a lot of changes. OAuth is far from trivial to implement, and I was lucky to find a library that handles most of the complicated stuff. With it, I was able to get oAuth working on snapatar.com, and beat the August 16 deadline. More Snapatar now uses oAuth (phew!)

Roy | August 18, 2010 | English,Programming | Comments Off
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The top 5 WP-Cumulus hacks

Every once in a while a user asks me how to change something in WP-Cumulus that fits his or her specific needs. If enough people ask for the same thing (*), it’ll probably be in the next release, but sometimes the modification is so specific to a certain website or project that it makes sense to simply hack it in. Here are the five most common of those, in no particular order.
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Obfuscate email addresses using PHP

If you want to include an email link in a WordPress template, or any other web page for that matter, its advisable to ‘obfuscate’ the address. Unfortunately, spammers scour the web to harvest email addresses, so if you simply place your address online, you’re very likely to get a some extra unwanted email. That’s where obfuscation comes in.
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Nabaztag flash movie source files

A few days ago I got a comment asking me whether I would release the source files for my Nabaztag Flash movie I created when I first got my wifi bunny. I couldn’t think of a single reason not to, so here they are…
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Roy | August 25, 2008 | English,Flash,Gadgets | Comments (6)
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No WordPress on Hosting Zoom?

Imagine renting a big-ass car, with pretty much unlimited mileage. But when you get in the engine turns out to be too weak to actually move you forward. That’s how this feels. This site too has been hosted with Hosting Zoom for a while now, as are some of my other sites. Recently however, I’ve been getting 500 errors (internal server error). So was a friend of mine, and she eventually got HZ’s support department to fess up. WP is exceeding their memory limit for PHP scripts.
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