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.

Bye Bye DoFollow (The NoFollow Saga)

| Created: May 25th, 2009
General 93 Comments

I implemented a DoFollow plugin back in August 2007 and it served me well for a couple of years, leading to an increase in traffic. However, in May 2009, the level of comment spam on this blog led to me disabling it. This is a consolidation of four posts covering that span.

Continue reading

Custom Page Templates – Calling An External CSS File

| Created: March 30th, 2009
WordPress Development 37 Comments

Note: Not long after writing this post, I discovered that the best way to load external CSS files is by using the wp_enqueue_style function. Similarly, the best way to load JavaScript files is by using the wp_enqueue_script function. The method outlined below is not necessary – although it may still be useful for other things to be added to the head section.

Custom page templates are a powerful feature of WordPress that can be used to make pages (not posts) do something different from normal. You can make them do pretty much anything. Obviously, this can greatly increase the flexibility of your site.

Amongst other things, I’ve used custom page templates to create a basic photo wall and a dynamic listing of jobs in China.

However, because of the way most WordPress themes are created, calling an external CSS file from a custom page template is not straightforward. Here, I explain the problem, look at the options and explain how to use ‘plugin functionality’ to overcome the problem.

Continue reading

How To Prevent Smart Pricing – Great Solution

| Created: March 11th, 2009
Adsense Smart Pricing 65 Comments

Some of my most popular posts are those in my make money online series that discuss how to avoid Adsense smart pricing by displaying Adsense only to search engine visitors. Now I’ve found the most complete solution to the problem of smart pricing, over on the Blog associated with RT’s backlinks service Continue reading

Poll – Which WordPress Theme Framework To Use?

| Created: February 27th, 2009
WordPress Development 69 Comments

So far, my WordPress development work has consisted of writing WordPress plugins and occasionally hacking themes. I’ve always said that I wanted to write a WordPress theme from scratch, but never had time to do so. One of my sites is going to need a redesign shortly, so here’s my big opportunity.

However, with the rise of the WordPress theme framework and the limited time available to me, I’ve started thinking that the sensible thing to do is use a theme framework. But which one?

Continue reading

XAMMPLite Virtual Directory And WordPress Permalinks

| Created: February 22nd, 2009
WordPress Development 16 Comments

When I’m working on WordPress related development (ie themes and plugins), I like to run WordPress locally. This is great for trying things out before it goes live and also lets me squeeze in some development time in on the train!

My web server package of choice is XAMMP Lite, the Apache distribution that contains PHP and MySQL. Works great in general, but I had some problems with WordPress permalinks and XAMMP Lite. Here’s the solution.

Continue reading

Show Adsense To Search Visitors Only – On Blogger

| Created: January 31st, 2009
Adsense Smart Pricing 59 Comments

Want to make money online with Google Adsense? If so, you better make sure you don’t get smart priced! One of my most successful posts covers how to avoid smart pricing by only serving Adsense to search engine visitors. That post was written for the WordPress platform. In this post, I outline how to do the same on Blogger blogs (although there are severe limitations). Continue reading

Blogger – How To Add Adsense Inside Single Posts Only

| Created: January 16th, 2009
Make Money Online 108 Comments

I was recently optimizing Adsense on one of my Blogger sites and decided I wanted to place Adsense inside the posts – but only on single posts, not on the home page or in the archives. Here’s how.

Continue reading

WordPress 2.7 And My WordPress Plugins

| Created: January 14th, 2009
WordPress Plugin News 24 Comments

I’ve been using WordPress 2.7 for a while now and have comprehensively tested my WordPress plugins on it. In this post, I release the results of my testing: Four plugins work fine (albeit with a non version specific bug found in one of them). One plugin seems to have problems with WordPress 2.7.

Continue reading

2008 On More Than Scratch The Surface

About 20 Comments

Happy New Year to all! A new year, a new start, but before I start churning out new posts, I want to have a quick look at 2008 on More Than Scratch The Surface. I’m not normally given to writing review posts, but I was looking at my Google Analytics stats for 2008 and felt moved to write a review of 2008.

Continue reading

Christmas Update – Greasemonkey, WordPress 2.7, Plugins And More!

| Created: December 23rd, 2008
General 29 Comments

First let me wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! I hope you all accept my best wishes, even if you don’t celebrate Christmas.

December has been a very busy month for me and I haven’t had much time for posting. I may not get another post out this year, so I thought I’d take the opportunity to update you on some of the projects I’m working on.

Continue reading