Please. Jump off the abbreviation bandwagon.

Have you ever had to read code with variables like this? int acBalInSav = 1.21 If you have, and were NOT like “Dude, shit man. WTF does that mean?!”, then you’re probably the one who wrote it! Stop abbreviating variable names in your code. I’m not talking about so-to-speak “generally accepted” abbreviations, such as using i in your […]

Rails-like Console for PHP

If you’ve ever used Ruby on Rails, you know it has an amazing console that allows you to execute code within a fully bootstrapped application environment. With the rails console command, you can gain access to your database and models in a command-line interface read-eval-print loop (REPL) for your application. This is made possible by interactive Ruby, […]

Logitech t650 Wireless Touchpad (on Ubuntu)

I recently added a Logitech T650 Wireless Touchpad to my home office setup in an effort to match the Apple Magic Trackpad that I use at work. My command center at Global Thinking consists of a 27″ iMac surrounded by dual monitors (one in the upright position, dedicated to tail-ing the logs!), an Apple Wireless […]

Magento Under-the-Hood: Events and Observers

The Magento observer pattern is an ideal form of extending your store’s functionality. Since it is part of Magento’s architecture, you can inject your own routines into the e-commerce process.

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Blog Re-Design

On my way to the Magento Imagine conference in fabulous Las Vegas, I decided what more to do while I am on an airplane than to finish re-designing my personal website. Mind you, Southwest airlines wireless isn’t the fastest, so wrapping up the latest theme tweaks wasn’t easy. Nonetheless, I was able to finish styling […]

Presentation: Deploying Websites with Rake

I just gave this presentation up at RIT this past week. Hopefully, it will inspire any web developers out there to look into using deployment frameworks (if you don’t already).

Review: Google Nexus 7

I recently got my hands on a Google Nexus 7 tablet, and I must say I am in love. I’ve previously owned three Android phones (Motorola Devour, Droid 1 and Droid 2 Global) and an Archos 101 tablet, but the Nexus 7 takes the cake.

Magento Under-the-Hood: Advanced Layout Techniques

Magento’s XML layout engine is really unique because it allows you to override the presentation elements of an eCommerce site in a variety of ways. At the simplest level, an XML layout file determines which blocks are rendered on the page. A block is a PHP object that encapsulates a portion of the page’s HTML output. In this article, I am going to cover the use of <action /> tags in XML layout files.

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Remote MySQL Administration for 1and1

If you use 1and1.com for web hosting, then you are familiar with how much of a pain their MySQL management can be. In order to access your databases on 1and1, you must first login through the 1and1 customer portal, then navigate to the MySQL databases section, find the database you want to work with, and click on the PHPMyAdmin link. It’s only a few steps, but between pages loads and a slow internet connection this can take up to a few minutes, and even then PHPMyAdmin can be clunky especially if you are used to using a desktop MySQL management tool such as MySQL Workbench or Sequel Pro (Mac). Although some hosting providers allow you to connect to your MySQL instances remotely, 1and1 does not support this (at least not by default).

What I am going to show you in this article is how to proxy a connection to your MySQL instance on 1and1′s servers so that you can manage your databases using a full-featured application like MySQL Workbench or Sequel Pro.

Problems with Magento Admin 404 Pages

Lately, I have been having a problem with Magento (version 1.5.0.1) and how it is handling 404 errors in the admin. Basically, any time I go to a non-existent admin URL, I am getting redirected to the frontend 404 page. What should actually be happening is that I am redirected to an admin 404 page. As it […]

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An Introduction to Magento E-Commerce

Since I have been working with the Magento E-Commerce software as of late, I will be publishing a series of blog posts to share what I have been learning with everyone.  For those of you who don’t know, Magento is a popular PHP/MySQL e-commerce platform that is super-powerful and infinitely customizable.

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Installing MeeGo on an EeePC 900

I have heard about MeeGo before, but haven’t looked into the project much until now. As it turns out, MeeGo is a linux-based distribution which is aimed at handhelds, connected TVs, in-vehicle infotainment systems, and netbooks/tablets. It was only announced by Nokia and Intel in 2010 in an effort to merge the Maemo and Moblin […]

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Magento Module-Manager Bash Completion

The following bash_completion script will enable your Linux shell to auto-complete Magento modman commands. Make sure you have modman in your $PATH, then simply copy the file to /etc/bash_completion.d/modman or append to ~/.bash_completion.

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Town Hall with WordPress Founder Matt Mullenweg

I just got in from the most recent WordPressDC meetup, where the founder of WordPress and Automattic, Matt Mullenweg, entertained us with a nice QA presentation.  The event was held at Fathom Creative in D.C. near 14th and Rhode Island, with about 100 people in attendance (plus another 50 or so via Livestream).

Editing the Top Panel in Ubuntu 10.04 Netbook Edition

After upgrading my eee PC netbook to Ubuntu Netbook Remix 10.04 I found to my dismay that the top gnome-panel is completely locked-down. Unable to find a work-around through gconf-editor or any other easily accessible means, I decided to try my hand at manually editing the gconf configuration files. The following is a tuturial explaining how to remove the Window Picker Applet and add the DockBar and NameBar applets in its place.

Open External Links in a New Window using JQuery

Looking for a quick and dirty way to open all external links in a new window?  The below snippet of code will make all links to external websites open in a new window: $(“a[href*='http://']“).attr(‘target’,'_blank’); Using the ‘*=’ selector on the href attribute, you can match any link containing http:// and set the target attribute to […]

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Latest Domain Purchase: strubeonrails.com

Recently I have been hooked on the GoDaddy app for my new Android phone. It makes it incredibly simple to register domain names on the go. Just a few minutes ago I purchased strubeonrails.com (pronounced stroo-bee-on-rails). I think it is a catchy name, and hope to start posting some useful Ruby programming tips there shortly. […]

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Installing Subversion on BlueHost

This was a rather challenging task that I recently took on in order to setup code versioning for some WordPress Themes and plugins that I have been working on. There were plenty of articles explaining how to compile a Subversion to the $HOME directory on a BlueHost account, but due to a recent OpenSSH update […]

Dual-Booting Ubuntu Netbook Remix and Android-x86 on an Asus Eee PC

After finally purchasing a netbook (Asus Eee PC 900) and finding the Windows OS that it came with to be riddled with viruses, I decided to install Android and Ubuntu Netbook Remix. This article diagrams that process, and how I setup my bootloader to dual-boot both operating systems.

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Using QR Codes to Store Nutritional Information

I recently signed up for an online website that tracks your daily calorie intake.  The particular service that I signed up for (there are a lot of them out there) is FatSecret.  It has a rather substantial database of nutritional information for a lot of foods, ranging from raw produce to food that you would […]

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