Big Data companies are abusing the trust of their users/customers. Is GDPR enough to reign in these bad actors?
“I’m sorry, so sorry.” In the 1960s, it was a hit song by the 15-year old American singer Brenda Lee, crooning about unrequited love. In the 21st century, “sorry, so sorry” has become the tragic modus operandi for banks, businesses and social media behemoths. Time and time again, mega companies exploit customer data for nefarious reasons, walk away with a slap on the wrist — and occasionally a hefty fine or two — and spit out a “we’ll do better” PR campaign. “Today, we’re renewing our commitment to you — and working to earn back your trust,” Wells Fargo wrote in an ad caption after being busted for opening millions of customer bank accounts without permission.
“From now on, [we’ll] do more to keep you safe and protect your privacy,” Facebook declared after a spree of bad press, tanking stocks, and public backlash over its handling of fake news and selling user information.
The reasons companies lie are obvious. The first is financial pressure: Stock prices and investors don’t always respond well to transparency. Second, ego. With no incentive to admit errors, businesses are sticking
Sharing a few lessons learned in nearly 10yrs of Managed WordPress. TL;DR; Longevity = Mastery
12 years ago, my talented wife and I had an idea for something known today as “Managed WordPress Hosting.” Yes, I’m half of the inventor of managed WordPress hosting, which is now a multi-billion dollar hosting channel, and you’ve likely never heard of me.
That’s because Pagely, the managed WordPress company I co-founded isn’t venture funded, and it’s not on Fortune’s list of billion-dollar unicorns. We were then, and still are very much today - Indie Hackers.
While the lack of fame and community back-pats can get under my skin, it has far from deterred me, because Pagely is very much an anomaly, in the sense that the business employs dozens of highly skilled and engaged employees and spins off ample cash -- from real paying customers.
My wife and I own 85% of the company and the other 15% is optioned to our employees. We’re also debt free, and we’re proud to say revenue has grown year-over-year (YoY) since launch.
So if you’re looking for a post about growth hacking your way to TechCrunch (closest we ever got to TC was a 1 sentence mention in a competitor’s featured PR gush piece) or securing millions in outside
In this episode Carrie talks about: - How being yourself and embracing who you are is the way to provide a great experience for clients. - Working in a cube farm and feeling the soul sucking drain from days spent working in an environment that wasn’t challenging her. - Building something for one audience and having another one show up. - Writing an opinionated book that shows the real world of freelancing.
Today’s guest is Carrie Dils. Carrie is a freelancer, podcaster, writer, educator, and web developer. She runs a very popular blog where she shares her experiences as a business owner and teaches others how to build their own freelance businesses. Carrie didn’t start out as a developer. She came to it from a far more traditional business – a local coffee shop.
When Carrie left the corporate world early in her career, she visited a coffee shop that she fell in love with, and decided to recreate the experience in her home town.
After almost a decade working at Starbucks trying to build experience, she realized she wanted nothing to do with owning a coffee shop. Still, she was able to glean a lot of the details of running a business from the experience.
She first realized she was in love with freelancing when a radio station paid her $20/hr to make banner ads. She could work when she wanted, from wherever she wanted, and that was enough to get her hooked.
Despite the loving the freelance life, Carrie often found herself in situations where her clients wanted to hire her. However, it was through taking some of these opportunities that she realized just how much it meant
OptinMonster now offers a free plan. Capture up to 100 leads/mo., 5,000 pageviews per month. Downside is it just comes with very basic features & targeting.
Part of a developer's job often involves integrating 3rd party services. But now it looks as though some of those providers are changing the game on us.
For years, web designers have relied on free tools from the likes of Google, Facebook and other large companies to enhance the things we build. We have happily used these offerings to analyze site statistics, serve up fonts and integrate social media. Just about any type of high-end functionality these companies have to offer has been readily available to us – usually without any upfront monetary cost. But things are changing. Google, for one, is now requiring us to add billing information to our accounts if we want to continue to use their Maps API. And the recent revelations of the whole Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal have shaken the very foundation of trust when it comes to securing user data.
Of course, those aren’t the only examples of the changing landscape that one can find. But they do represent a sort of bait-and-switch of the ideals that these companies like to preach. And it leaves a sour taste in the mouth of those of us who have helped to spread this technology in our web projects.
There Was Always a Catch
Whether or not we realized it at the time, many of these “free” services we have added to websites had a cost attached to them. The companies
Jason shares a few good reasons NOT to include a sidebar next to your blogs. I'm curious if anyone else has tested this and is willing to share some conversion metrics.
Sidebars can have their purposes, but in most cases there is probably a better way to give your users the same functionality and create better conversions. The post + sidebar layout is fairly common across WordPress themes. With widgetized areas allowing site owners the ability to add all kinds of functionality, ads, Twitter feeds, and more along the side of their site.
Often times at the expense of pulling the users attention away from the content they landed on the site to view in the first place.
Typically sidebars are used to drive users to additional content or serve up ads, if that’s your revenue stream. But you also want users to view your content. Not bounce off to a third-party advertiser, right?
Sidebars distract users from your content
Most sidebars are going to be laid out at the top of your page alongside the beginning of your content. Best case scenario: Someone reads your entire article and scrolls back up to view your sidebar.
Just kidding. That doesn’t happen.
So rather than showing your user related posts in a sidebar before they’ve even read the current post, you can add them after your post when a user is ready to move on. Or you can include a link
Interesting comparison of how other CMSs implement content blocks. With Gutenberg on its way, I found this very interesting.
Imagine a very simple blog. Blog posts are just a title and a paragraph or three. In that case, having a CMS where you enter the title and those paragraphs and hit publish is perfect. Perhaps some metadata like the date and author come along for the ride. I'm gonna stick my neck out here and say that title-and-content fields only is a CMS anti-pattern. It's powerful in its flexibility but causes long-term pain in lack of control through abstraction. Let's not have a conversation about CMS's as a whole though, let's scope this down to just that content area issue.
Now imagine we have a site with a bit more variety. We're trying to use our CMS to build all sorts of pages. Perhaps some of it is bloggish. Some of it more like landing pages. These pages are constructed from chunks of text but also different components. Maps! Sliders! Advertising! Pull quotes!
Here are four different examples, so you can see exactly what I mean:
I bet that kind of thing looks familiar.
You can absolutely pull this off by putting all those blocks into a single content field. Hey, it's just HTML! Put the HTML you need for all these blocks right into that content field and it'll do what you want.
There's a couple
Brian Krogsgard is announcing CommerceNotebook, which will follow a similar-ish model of PostStatus.
Commerce Notebook is a new site aimed to inform, educate, and provide resources for eCommerce professionals, store owners, and enthusiasts. Welcome to Commerce Notebook!
The goal for this project is to cater to people that know and love eCommerce, so they can do what they do better and more informed.
Who’s behind Commerce Notebook?
Commerce Notebook is brought to you by the same team that’s behind Post Status — a preeminent website geared specifically for WordPress professionals.
My name is Brian Krogsgard (here’s my personal website and Twitter, where I share most stuff). I’m a writer, developer, eCommerce store owner, and entrepreneur. With this site, I’ll share the stories of others in the trenches of eCommerce, as well as my own journeys.
Prior to running my own content-centric business, I was a developer and web consultant. My first eCommerce website build was in 2011. I have worked on — in some capacity or another — a few dozen eCommerce stores since.
Post Status launched on January 21st, 2013 — four years to the day prior to Commerce Notebook. I cover eCommerce within the WordPress landscape on Post Status, and will continue
An interview with Aaron Campbell, head of the WordPress Security Team, on his recent WordCamp Lancaster talk.
Our brains are capable of some amazing feats. Yet, they work in different ways that can reflect in our personality. For instance, some of us gain contentment from putting ourselves out there in the crowd, while others prefer a quite room all to themselves. We’re a species of extroverts and introverts. One is not better than the other – just different. However, when running a design business, you might think that being an extrovert is preferable. If you’re predisposed to going out and making new connections, that would seem to be an advantage over those who aren’t as keen on networking. But that’s not necessarily the case.
Consider that some of the world’s most successful people are introverts. We’re talking about the likes of Albert Einstein, Bill Gates and JK Rowling – to name just a few. They’re proof that you don’t have to be extroverted in order to find success.
Recently, I attended a talk at WordCamp Lancaster (US) that really shed some light on the subject. Aaron Campbell gave a fascinating presentation on succeeding as an introvert. Campbell, who leads the WordPress Core Security Team, spoke from the heart – having
A sister project to VersionPress is coming in July. It is a fully hosted platform with great staging, speed and developer UX.
I’m happy to announce that VersionPress is getting a sister project: VersionPress.com. It is a hosted WordPress platform (a managed WordPress host if you will) that takes the best ideas from VersionPress and packages them in an easy to use interface and adds things like backups, security and world-class infrastructure. It has full compatibility with WordPress plugins and doesn’t require Git so it’s a perfect place to host almost any WordPress site. The platform will fully launch in July 2017 with pre-orders available today. Go check it out at https://preview.versionpress.com/.
We started working on VersionPress in 2014 to bring full version-control to WordPress. The benefits if this is achieved are immense: undo button for everything, the possibility to merge databases between environments (staging <-> live, developers between themselves, etc.), keeping track of who did what and many others. It feels almost magical.
We also learned that there will be two major challenges:
WordPress plugins. They can do almost anything to the database and boy they do. Even those well-written must be explicitly supported and while we’re building an infrastructure
I know many developers who still hate GoDaddy, but one of the complaints has been a lack of PHP 7 support. They just added it for cPanel hosting plans. Does that mean we'll see it soon for Managed WordPress hosting?
Looking for a way to speed up your website? Here at GoDaddy we are always looking for ways to improve our customer’s experience. For our web hosting customers on cPanel Shared or Business Hosting we just made available the ability to upgrade to PHP 7. Let me explain the what, why and how. What is PHP 7?
PHP is a server-side scripting language designed primarily for web development. Popular website apps that use PHP are WordPress, Drupal and Joomla. PHP 7 is the latest version of PHP.
Why should I upgrade?
Are you looking to improve your site speed? Look no further than PHP 7! Benchmarks for PHP 7 consistently show speeds twice as fast as PHP 5.6.
How do I upgrade?
Currently, PHP 7 is available for cPanel customers on either Shared or Business Hosting. We made the upgrade to PHP 7 very easy; however before upgrading, I recommend that you check compatibility on your site to ensure that your website and plug-ins will run as you expect.
Things to Check for Popular Apps
WordPress – PHP Compatibility Checker (Link)
Drupal – Drupal 7 and above is PHP 7 compatible
Joomla – Joomla 3.5 and above is PHP 7 compatible
So, once you checked your compatibility and have decided
James Laws, founder of Ninja Forms, shares data on the impact auto-renewals have had on his business. Even after only two weeks he sees an obvious spike and improvement. Valuable data for any plugin shop or business owner.
140 characters isn’t enough to reply to the inquiries about the impact of automatic renewals on our business. Because of this I thought I would write-up a quick post with the backstory, how we’ve implemented automatic renewals, and perhaps some closing thoughts. Let me be clear. Automatic renewals are not some sort of new business technique that I’m sharing with you. I’m not under some sort of delusion that I am revealing some little known revenue boosting secret. The fact of the matter is that WordPress businesses, like my own, have been behind the curve in a lot of commonly held practices. This is just one of many.
How it all began
A little over three years ago I was at Pressnomics 2 with my business partner. It was our first ever business conference and we went to it with absolutely no agenda. When we got there we heard about all the people who were trying to make deals and partnerships and felt like we were really unprepared for such conversations. That was all during the first day, but by evening we had regrouped and started thinking a little more strategically. The pursuit of the big thing was in full swing and I can honestly tell you that there are relationships
Ready made templates to use with your client. Remember, your time should be worth much more than a cup of coffee.
If you’ve been in the design business for a while, you’ve likely heard this from potential clients before, “you’re too expensive!” or something to that effect, anyhow. So what do you do?
You’ve got a few options! Here are some handy-dandy email scripts I’ve created that you can copy+paste, and tweak to send to those potential clients!
Note: These scripts are not intended to be used verbatim, but to be edited to fit your own situation and level of professionalism. Use these scripts as a starting point, but tweak them to work for you!
Option One – Educate Her on Why You’re Awesome
I realize that this is a large investment, but I can assure you that I am delivering top-notch service that you won’t receive with a low-cost alternative. My clients have seen results such as ____ and ____ because I work with you to really make sure that you’re receiving a design that works for you and your brand. I’m not just creating a _____, I’m helping you achieve your goals.
If you don’t have the funds available at this time, I understand. Please keep me in mind for the future. If you are able and willing to invest
I am currently building SaaS product for WP with JS and this article represents 99% of my feelings while choosing a framework — the one which will be there once the project is complete.
Hey, I got this new web project, but to be honest I haven’t coded much web in a few years and I’ve heard the landscape changed a bit. You are the most up-to date web dev around here right?
-The actual term is Front End engineer, but yeah, I’m the right guy. I do web in 2016. Visualisations, music players, flying drones that play football, you name it. I just came back from JsConf and ReactConf, so I know the latest technologies to create web apps.
Cool. I need to create a page that displays the latest activity from the users, so I just need to get the data from the REST endpoint and display it in some sort of filterable table, and update it if anything changes in the server. I was thinking maybe using jQuery to fetch and display the data?
Insightful post by Kenny Lange with many great points. "Teach people how to treat you like a partner in their business by becoming a consultant for your clients"
The problem is you can quickly find yourself pigeon-holed as “” who updates the client’s site. This means that client’s see you as nothing more than someone who knows how to do tasks they either don’t know how to do or don’t have the time to do themselves.
With left-pad removed from NPM, applications and widely used bits of open-source infrastructure were unable to obtain the dependency, and thus fell over. Thousands, worldwide. Left-pad was fetched 2,486,696 downloads in just the last month, according to NPM. It was that popular. To 'fix the Internet', Laurie Voss, CTO and cofounder of NPM, took the unprecedented step of restoring the unpublished left-pad 0.0.3 that apps required.
And so the internet broke.
People confirmed their biases:
And people got angry:
Everyone involved here has my sympathy. The situation sucks for everyone, not least Azer (who owes none of you ingrates a damn thing!). But reading the GitHub thread should leave you thoroughly exasperated, because this problem is very easily solved.
Bundle your code, even if it’s not for the browser
Just to recap:
left-pad was unpublished
Babel uses fixed versions of its dependencies, one of which (transitively) was left-pad
When you install Babel, you also install all its dependencies (and their dependencies)
Therefore all old versions of Babel were hosed (until left-pad was un-unpublished)
People blame Azer
The key item here is number 3. Suppose that instead of listing all those dependencies in package.json,
18th March marks 4th birthday of weDevs. To celebrate this they are running their biggest ever sales discount, and giveaway. Any user could select what product they want to get in the giveaway for free. Check their diverse range of product.
It has been 4 years since we launched as a company and we are humbled to see where weDevs has come. On 18th March 2017, we are celebrating our anniversary with a bigger plan to give back as a display of respect for our well wishers. We have designed a giveaway for our clients and a discount for anyone who wants to get any solution from us. But on that soon, I am getting a little emotional here and so I will talk shortly about the journey.
How we came to be
At the very very beginning, in 2008, before we even became a company, we only were a blogging site. We developed small themes, plugins and covered reviews, tutorials. Which is why we still blog very passionately on tech. It is during this time where we picked up our love for WordPress and Open Source development from the community. After some experience and learning, we started as a startup company in 2012 and offered premium plugins. Our company took off like a rocket!
We never thought we could come all this way. Now, after 4 years, we have become one of the biggest WordPress companies of the region holding a 30+ member and several departments with 4 major plugins. We have launched WP ERP, the first ever complete and free ERP system
A funny take on all the pitfalls of client communication, wrapped up in a pirate infographic. What's not to like? :)
You can’t blame your clients for not knowing that negative space is supposed to be empty, or that comic sans is an abomination. But you can't forgive them for assuming that your time is free. Here is our rundown of the worst offenders:
How do you protect yourself against these fiendish customers? Because your time is your most precious resource, you need to track every minute to see where it's going.
Toggl was actually built for doing just that - just follow this link to sign up and give it a try. You'll like it (and your accountant will too).
Once you've got an idea of where your time is really going, you'll be in a much better position to deal with clients who try to steal it.
Below, we've picked out some common client problems agencies run into, and a few solutions we’ve learned along the way.
So who's giving you trouble?
My client won’t stop calling/emailing/talking to me
My client thinks everything is urgent
My client is asking for impossible things
1. My client is really good at haggling!
Every argument they make seems like it's coming from a Harvard economist (and probably is), while your arguments come off as “I like money”.
The reason why people
Interesting article on the slow adoption rate of PHP 7 by web hosts, and some of the reasons why most WordPress sites are still running on PHP 5.x.
TAGS: PHP5, Programming, Webhosting, Wordpress You may be thinking: "Wait, don't you mean what happened to PHP6?"
But no, I am actually referring to PHP7, This may seem quite strange since PHP6 was the version that was skipped, not PHP7.
A QUICK SUMMARY FOR THOSE THAT DO NOT KNOW
PHP6 was proposed sometime back in 2010, but was eventually suspended and never reached production phase. This was mostly due to the core features of PHP6 being deemed too technically difficult to implement; this in combination with multiple other reasons meant the development unfortunately reached a standstill.
Many of the features included in PHP6 were instead back-ported into the PHP5.x branch; explaining why we saw so many new features added with the release of PHP5.3.
The version name PHP6 was omitted by the php.net developers due to the fact that it was a very well established and documented project. There are still vast amounts of information available on the web regarding the PHP6 project; and many conferences were held by the php.net developers in the community regarding the project.
It made very little sense to reuse PHP6 as the name for the next PHP version seeing as the next version was
A great article indeed. Makes a lot of sense for communities like ours.
I’m going to ask you two questions. Pause for a minute and think deeply about your answers before reading further:
What are the best software companies in the world?
Who are the best software engineers in the world?
Did you come up with a list of names? If so, how many names are on that list? Three? Five? Maybe ten, at most? There are thousands of software companies and software engineers doing incredible things, but when I ask you for the best, I bet only a select few names pop into your head. Why these names and not others?
It’s because these companies and developers not only do great work, but also spend time telling you that they do great work. I’d bet that for every company and programmer on your list, you’ve read their writing (e.g., blogs, papers, books), seen their presentations (e.g., talks, conferences, meetups), and/or used their code (e.g., open source).
For example, if your list of programmers included Linus Torvalds, it’s probably because you’re familiar with Linux or Git, both of which he developed as free, open source projects. If you had Dennis Ritchie on your list, it’s probably because he was one of the people responsible
We did the test on 3 popular websites and saw how a huge TTFB reduction had no SEO impact.
Staying current with some SEO vs. WordPress site speed concerns can be a burden. After all, keeping on top of the various moving parts of a successful site is tricky enough, without worrying about which one of over 200 ranking signals is currently making a difference in the SERPs. One SEO signal that’s gotten a lot of attention over the last few years is site speed. We all know we should be making our sites faster, but how much difference does it really make in terms of SEO?
In this piece, we’ll round up a number of external studies and look at our own suite of sites to get to the bottom of how much WordPress site speed really moves the needle out in the wild. By the time we’re done, you’ll have a much clearer idea of how much of your efforts you should be devoting to it.
Bonus info: Just wanted to let you know that we have a whole crash course on speeding up your WordPress site. With some simple fixes, you can reduce your loading time by even 50-80%. It’s free, check it out by clicking here.
Let’s kick things off with a quick look at the official line on the subject:
The official line on site speed and SEO
Google’s 2010 announcement of site speed as a ranking factor put it on site
"I swear every other website I visit uses React, for the stupidest stuff". A funny and interesting read.
Random thoughts on web development Going to shit
2015 is when web development went to shit. Web development used to be nice. You could fire up a text editor and start creating JS and CSS files. You can absolutely still do this. That has not changed. So yes, everything I’m about to say can be invalidated by saying that.
At times, I think where web development is at this point is some cruel joke played on us by Ryan Dahl. You see, to get into why web development is so terrible, you have to start at Node.
By definition I was a magpie developer, so undoubtedly I used Node, just as everyone should. At universities they should make every developer write an app with Node.js, deploy it to production, then try to update the dependencies 3 months later. The only downside is we would have zero new developers coming out of computer science programs.
You see the Node.js philosophy is to take the worst fucking language ever designed and put it on the server. Combine that with all the magpies that were using Ruby at the time, and you have the
Sharing this not because Ghost is WordPress competitor but because more and more companies based around remote work are probably facing this same challenge.
In the next couple of months we’ll be reincorporating the Ghost Foundation in Singapore and closing down all operations in the UK. This is easily the biggest business change we've made to Ghost since it started, and will hopefully give us a much easier time trading internationally! This was a huge decision which represents the conclusion of a full year of research, planning and hard work. So, we wanted to take a moment to share exactly how and why we’re doing it.
Let’s start with a simple question: Where should any business legally incorporate?
For a regular business, the answer is typically synonymous with the location of the business’ premises, staff, customers or investors. In most cases, they’re actually all in the same place.
But, of course, Ghost has never been a regular business.
We’re a distributed company: we have no business premises, and our staff are all over the world
We’re an online company: thanks to the power of the internet, our customers are all over the world
We’re a non-profit organisation: we have no investors, and don’t need to optimise for their legal needs
So: Where should Ghost be incorporated?
We don’t really know.
In the early days, we just went with what
Content and links. Comes as no surprise really :) Also shows that best SEO is organic SEO.
When Google originally announced RankBrain, they confirmed that it was now the third most important ranking signal. And while many speculated about what the top two ranking signals were, Google wouldn’t explicitly confirm what those two most important ranking factors were… until now. During yesterday’s WebPromo.Expert Google Q&A, Andrey Lipattsev, Search Quality Senior Strategist at Google, confirmed those two ranking signals, and they are content and links.
“I can tell you what they are. It is content. And it’s links pointing to your site,” Lipattsev said.
He was then asked which order those two ranking factors were in. “There is no order,” he replied.
While this matches what about 99% of webmasters felt were the top two ranking factors, with these being the obvious two choices (and leading to some people pondering if it could be something else as the top two), it definitely raises the question about why Google did not confirm these two ranking factors in the first place. It could have been so the focus of the story at the time was RankBrain, rather than throwing two other ranking signals into the mix. This does make sense in some ways, since RankBrain is a pretty complicated factor