January, 2007 Results

Introducing Dan Schulz

Wednesday, January 31st, 2007

Search-This welcomes Dan Schulz to the team!

Dan is another SitePoint catch and a good one. He draws from a wide area of web expertize, but his passions run deep for CSS, XHTML, usability and standards compliant code.

One thing is for sure, with the Search-This team we have assembled, you won’t find any crappy code here.

Enjoy Dan’s bio below:

User Name: Dan Schulz

  • childhood ambition: to get out of the house
  • fondest memory: meeting my best friend 🙂
  • favorite music: whatever sounds good. Usually classical, rock, alternative-rock. I don’t listen to rap. Record company executives took the “C” off of a certain word to make it marketable.
  • retreat: nature
  • proudest moment: two of them, getting out on my own, and becoming self-employed
  • biggest challenge: staying self-employed
  • alarm clock: I have a biological clock (and a 27-hour sleep schedule)
  • perfect day: every day I wake up
  • first job: bagger at the local Jewel-Osco
  • indulgence: sports, reading, table-top warfare gaming, computer games, being with friends
  • favorite movie: no favorite movie – there’s too many I like
  • inspiration: too many to list here

WordPress 2.1 – post_type = “page”

Monday, January 29th, 2007

I haven’t upgraded any of my blogs to WordPress 2.1 yet as I don’t feel like fixing anything that might break when I do. Pure laziness I know. Last week though, a friend asked me for some help on a site he was developing for a client. He was using WordPress as a CMS for the entire site rather than just the blog. He created a new template for the home page and in the sidebar he wanted to show the snippets of the most recent posts. There are plugins for this but he wanted to avoid using them. I knew there was a function that would show a snippet of the post with a “Read More” link called the_excerpt. This function only works within the_loop which wouldn’t work in this case. So, I needed to actually write some code *gasp* and the query I used was:

$news=$wpdb->get_results("SELECT ID,post_title, SUBSTR(post_content, 1, 30) as post_content FROM wp_posts
WHERE post_status= 'publish' ORDER BY ID DESC LIMIT ".$how_many);

This didn’t work though. It got not only the posts but also the pages. I didn’t have access to his site directly so I tested this on my version of WordPress 2.0x. It worked fine. This is when I asked him what version he was using and he said 2.1. Which of course made sense because it was a new site, might as well use the latest and greatest, right?

So I tried to find out why it wasn’t working and what the changes were in 2.1 that affected pages but apparently my google search terms sucked and neither of us could find it. So I told him to open up his db and tell me what it said in the post_status column in the wp_posts table. See, in previous versions of WordPress, in order to differentiate between a post and a page, it was dependent on the post_status column. For a published post, the column had a value of “publish” and for a page it had the value “static” in the column. All of his posts and pages both had values of “publish”. So this was obviously where the problem was. But now we needed to find out where exactly an entry was defined as a post or a page. Ultimately, we got it narrowed down to the post_type column. Previously, this column wasn’t used at all, at least from what I could see. So now, in order to differentiate between a post and a page, a post gets the value post_type=”post” and a page gets post_type=”page”. Makes you wonder why it didn’t do this in the first place!

I’m sure this affects a lot of plugins; I know it affects my Ask Me plugin!

Links for the Weekend, 1-27-2007

Saturday, January 27th, 2007

Help – Google Can’t Index Outside of wp-content directory?

Friday, January 26th, 2007

Hello Search-This readers, I got a question for ya. I don’t know if you’ll know the answer, but I don’t know what’s up either…

I have 3 directories outside of my wp-content directory and it appears that Google can’t index them?


Relatives – Who needs them?

Thursday, January 25th, 2007

Relatives – Who needs them?

Often times while helping people with their CSS layouts I see a misuse of position:relative – where the author hasn’t quite understood what relative positioning is all about. The result is that the page becomes overly complex and every element needs to be adjusted to cater for the perceived movement of the relatively placed element. In the end the layout becomes unmanageable and unworkable.

In this article we will look at what CSS relative position is, what it isn’t and how to correctly implement it.


OOP in PHP from a .NET OOP Perspective: The Error Class

Wednesday, January 24th, 2007

For those just joining, it is suggested that you begin with OOP in PHP from a .NET OOP Perspective as this is Part 2 of a series.

With that said, I am going to outline the base classes that I referred to in the first article. To start out I will talk about the Error class, as if you do not have a good error handling setup, your application is doomed from the beginning.


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Wednesday, January 24th, 2007

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