Although the last week’s news cycle has been dominated by the Apple event and their gadget announcements, there has been quite a bit of news since our last roundup. WordPress 4.0, named in honor of musician Benny Goodman, was released, iCloud ran into some security issues, and Google announced that HTTPS is now a ranking factor. And that’s just to start. So without further ado, here are the most interesting and engaging web design/development, CMS, and security articles from August and September to read at your convenience. Enjoy and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google + for the same great content the rest of the year.
Web Design and Development
In theory, passwords are a reasonably good idea. A sufficiently long and complex password, hashed and stored in a secure database is an effective method of verifying identity. There’s a single point of failure in the system; the password may become known to a third party, in which case nothing lies between them and bogus authentication, but otherwise, passwords have the potential to do a decent job.
With a long and complex password — a password with enough entropy — there’s no way a hacker could brute force it in anything like a practical timeframe. Continue reading
When WordPress hits a new major release number, history has taught us to expect something special. That trend has been broken with WordPress 4.0, which offers more of a polish than glut of new features. As a writer, that’s alright with me, because the features that have been added, minor though they may appear, will make working in WordPress quite a bit more pleasant. Continue reading
I’ve visited a number of websites recently where my first reaction has been to hit the back button. It had nothing to do with the quality of the content, which may have been excellent. I didn’t stick around long enough to find out because the presentation was so off-putting.
It appeared to me that the designers and owners of these sites were actively hostile to their users, or at least that they weren’t thoughtful enough about the user experience and conversion rate optimization to create a site that is pleasant to use. Continue reading
There are some things no one likes to do. They’re tedious and produce no immediate benefit. Updating a content management system like WordPress falls into this category. It seems as if WordPress needs an update every couple of days and eventually users stop paying attention.
WordPress and other CMS users start with the best of intentions, but after a while, clicking the update button to bring the core CMS and its plugins up to the most recent version is deferred in favor of doing something more productive. The number on the admin panel update menu ticks its way upwards until you stop noticing it. Continue reading
Of all the attacks that plague site owners, the brute force attack is the most conceptually simple, unsophisticated, and easy to combat. Yet, every year, thousands of webmasters lose control of their sites to malicious third parties because of brute force attacks. Most of those incidents could have been avoided if webmasters and users understood how brute force attacks are carried out and how to mitigate them. Continue reading
Bad web hosting companies want you to keep paying even though they aren’t providing you with the level of service you deserve. They get away with it because people think that moving to a new host is either impossible, too much work, or bad for SEO. In fact, moving to a new host is entirely possible, quite easy, and migrating to a hosting platform that offers better performance and provides a better experience for users will improve your SEO.
A few years ago I started my first blog. I didn’t write much at the time; it was an experiment and a place to document my thoughts. It doesn’t exist any more, but in its brief life it helped me learn an important lesson about web hosting. Continue reading
If you’ve spent much time dealing with web hosting, you’ll probably have a good grasp of how the addresses you type into a browser’s address bar get you to the sites you want. But, for someone new to the web hosting world, it’s not all that intuitive. Many of the people I talk to don’t have the first idea how DNS works, even on the most basic level.
Trying to create a site without understanding DNS can lead to considerable frustration, so in this article I’d like to offer a brief nutshell view of what a brand new web hosting client needs to know about domain names and DNS. Continue reading
Last month, we took a look at WordPress and MODX, comparing and contrasting the features of each with an eye to determining their suitability for specific users and projects. Both are powerful content management systems, but they’re very different. In a comment on that article, Dan Walker asked why we’d chosen to compare WordPress to MODX, rather than to Joomla! I chose MODX specifically because of its differences to WordPress — it makes for a nice contrast, but Joomla! is well worth an article of its own. Continue reading
The United States celebrated its 228th birthday in July, and while you were out firing up the grill and enjoying the fireworks, we were looking for the best content from the last month. Here are the most interesting and engaging web design/development, CMS, and security articles from July to read at your convenience. Enjoy and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google + for the same great content the rest of the year.
Web Design and Development
A Roadmap To Becoming An A/B Testing Expert – A/B testing, also known as split testing, is the method of pitting two versions of a landing page against each other in a battle of conversion. You test to see which version does a better job of leading visitors to one of your goals, like signing up or subscribing to a newsletter.