Author Archives: Stephen Cronin

About Stephen Cronin

Stephen Cronin has worked in the software industry in Australia, UK and USA for 13 years. He has held senior positions including General Manager, Business Manager, International Product Manager and has also worked as web developer, project manager, trainer and support technician.

Blogger ccTLD Redirects Break Adsense URL Channels

| Created: February 3rd, 2012
Make Money Online 1 Comment

Google Blogger recently started redirecting visitors to the ccTLD version of Blogger appropriate for the reader’s location. Unfortunately, this has broken URL Channels in Google Adsense.
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WordPress Optimization Myth: Saving Database Calls

WordPress Development 6 Comments

Tonight I read an article on WPTuts+ titled 10 Quick Tips: Optimizing & Speeding Up Your WordPress Site. For the most part it’s a good article with lots of great tips, but there is one tip which is just plain incorrect:

Using a constant instead of get_option('home'); saves a database call.
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Fetch_feed Not Working With URLs Containing & Symbol

| Created: November 30th, 2011
WordPress Development 5 Comments

I recently came across a strange problem with the fetch_feed function in WordPress not working with URLs containing the & symbol. The URL was being passed to fetch_feed via a shortcode parameter, but fetch_feed couldn’t find the feed.
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Clearing The Cache When A Widget Is Saved

| Created: November 30th, 2011
WordPress Development 6 Comments

WP Super Cache has a setting which allows the cache to be cleared when a post is saved. I needed to clear the cache when a widget is saved. It turned out to be surprisingly easy.
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wordpress.tv Download Link Script

Scripts No Comments

I’ve been watching a lot of videos from WordPress TV lately. There is some absolutely cracking content on there! However, I really wanted to be able to download videos. There wasn’t a download link, so I wrote this Greasemonkey script to add one.

Download

This script can be downloaded from Userscripts.org

Why Download Vidoes From WordPress.tv?

I mostly consume WordPress.tv content from my Android phone.

I don’t want to watch it over my 3G connection. These videos are often 400MB! It seems there’s a lower bandwidth version when you visit on a mobile device, but it’s still around 80MB in the one I did test. That’s still going to chew through my data plan far too quickly.

Sure, I could watch when connected via WiFi, but these videos are long enough that I may want to stop halfway through and pick it up later (when I may be on my 3G connection). If I leave the page open, then the video should play without needing to download anything later – but that’s a big if. Having the raw mp4 file on my SD card gives me more flexibility.

Also, although there are some basic controls built into the player (pause, move around the timeline), it doesn’t compare with the native player on my phone. It can even be viewed in full screen, but it’s fiddly to activate that control.

So all in all, it’s more convenient to be able to download the video file and have it on my device, rather than watch it through the website.

The Code

As with most of my Greasemonkey Scripts, I’ve embedded jQuery in it. This makes it so much quicker to write. It ends up being only a few lines:

$(document).ready(function($){
        // add contents of noscript into the HTML so we can access it via the DOM, hide it, then extract the URL and add Download link
        $('noscript').before('<div style="display:none" id="wp-tv-download">'+$('noscript').eq(0).text()+'</div>');
        var url = $('div#wp-tv-download a').attr('href');
        $('div#wpl-likebox').after('<div style="text-align:left !important" class="sd-block"><h3 class="sd-title">Download:</h3><div class="sd-content"><a href="'+url+'">'+url+'</a></div></div>');
});

Line 3: We grab the contents of the noscript element, which includes the download link, and add it in a hidden div before the noscript element. We have to do this so we can manipulate the content of the noscript element, as we can’t access it via the DOM.

Line 4: We then extract the URL from the hidden div we created (which is now in the DOM) and store it in a variable.

Line 5: We then add the download link after the #wpl-likebox div. Note that we use the wordpress.tv classes, such as sd-block, sd-title and sd-content, which makes the result look like the rest of the site.

License

This script is dual licensed under the MIT and GPL licenses.

How To Get The Domain From A URL Using JavaScript

| Created: August 29th, 2011
JavaScript Development 10 Comments

I’m sure this is a common problem: getting the domain or host name from a URL using JavaScript. There are certainly many solutions to this problem out there. However, the solutions I found weren’t robust enough for my needs, so I ended up writing my own.
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How To Change The WordPress Post Template Via URL Parameter

| Created: July 27th, 2011
WordPress Development 25 Comments

Have you ever wanted to be able to serve up an alternative version of your posts, perhaps tweaking the layout or even the content of the posts? Not all the time, just in certain circumstances?

I’ve had two cases recently where I’ve needed to do this. My solution: to change the post template when a certain URL parameter is added to the URL. Continue reading

How To Add Site Speed For Google Analytics In WordPress

| Created: May 5th, 2011
WordPress Hacks 11 Comments

Yesterday, Google announced the addition of Site Speed to Google Analytics, which adds a page load time dimension across a range of reports. Great! Lets get it working with our WordPress sites.
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Thoughts On The New WordPress Podcast – daWPshow

| Created: February 9th, 2011
WordPress Opinion 2 Comments

In case you missed it, there’s a new WordPress podcast in town: daWPshow. Fantastic! I think it’s great that people are willing to put their time into creating content about WordPress! Now, with that out of the way, I’m going to lay down some tough love for the show.

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The John O’Nolan Twitter Redesign Script

| Created: October 7th, 2010
Scripts No Comments

A week or so ago, John O’Nolan tweeted a link to a Photoshop redesign of Twitter, making it look less cluttered. Like a bit of a nerd, I turned it into a Greasemonkey script.

Really it was just a bit of fun. Once I start thinking about how to do something, I may as well just go and do it. So it was just a once off – I won’t be updating the script in future, etc.

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