Guides


This section covers all the possible guides and tutorials found on the web and/or written by me


50+ best practices to optimize PHP code performance

Posted by on Mar 1, 2012 in Guides | 3 comments

50+ best practices to optimize PHP code performance

Like any scripting language, PHP can be used in a variety of applications. The down-side for most programmers is that when they learn how to write PHP, they do not always learn how to write PHP with speed and optimization in mind. This article addresses most common ways you can improve your code with minor changes that will yield large gains as well as teach you how to become a better PHP developer.

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Why HTML5 is the future of the web and what features come with it

Posted by on Jan 23, 2012 in Guides, Reviews | 8 comments

 

What is HTML5?

We’re sure by now you’ve heard the term “HTML5″ thrown around by the likes of Apple and Google. This is the next evolution of HTML, or Hyper Text Markup Language, which forms the backbone of almost every site on the Internet. HTML4, the last major iteration of the language, debuted in 1997 and has been subsequently poked and prodded so that it can handle the demands of the modern Web.

HTML4 has been tweaked, stretched and augmented beyond its initial scope to bring high levels of interactivity and multimedia to Web sites. Plugins like Flash, Silverlight and Java have added media integration to the Web, but not without some cost. In search of a “better user experience” and battery life, Apple has simply dropped support for some of these plugins entirely on mobile devices, leaving much of the media-heavy Internet inaccessible on iPads and iPhones. HTML5 adds many new features, and streamlines functionality in order to render these processor-intensive add-ons unnecessary for many common functions.

Assuming content providers sign on (and many are), this means you won’t have to worry about installing yet another plugin just to listen to a song embedded in a blog or watch a video on YouTube. Similarly, this is a big deal for platforms that either don’t support Flash (e.g., iPhone and iPad), or have well documented problems with it (e.g., Linux). It will be a particular boon to those smartphones for which supporting Flash has proven problematic.

Rough Timeline of Web Technologies

1991 HTML
1994 HTML2
1996 CSS1 + JavaScript
1997 HTML4
1998 CSS2
2000 XHTML1
2002 Tableless Web Design
2005 AJAX
2009 HTML5

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Webservicing Elgg: building a custom REST/RPC API

Posted by on Jun 25, 2011 in Guides | 2 comments

Webservicing Elgg: building a custom REST/RPC API

Some people may find Elgg manual on building your custom API to be inconcise, vague and perhaps even uneasy to follow. This tutorial will show you how to implement Web Services using several custom methods and ready-to-use examples. This guide will walk you through step-by-step on how to create a custom API plugin and implement the insert functionality. We will use REST/RPC hybrid as this is the Elgg’s protocol of choice; and also because it is much easier to integrate with other social networks like Flickr, Facebook and Twitter.

The required knowledge for this article is advanced, proceed only if you know what you’re after.

 

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Power surge burned your HDD PCB? Here’s how to recover.

Posted by on May 7, 2011 in Guides | 20 comments

Power surge burned your HDD PCB? Here’s how to recover.

Found yourself in a situation where after a power surge (or wrong power cable connection) you started smelling something burning? Aside from other hardware parts that could be burned, the most critical one is the Hard Drive (HDD) as it stores our invaluable information. In reality, the drive itself does not burn, but what is affected is the PCB (Printed Circuit Board).

This short guide will help you recover your data after such a catastrophic misfortune.

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Obtaining and installing SSL certificate

Posted by on Jan 29, 2011 in Guides | 0 comments

If you found yourself in a situation where you have to make certain or all parts of your website secure, you will need to enable HTTPS and encrypt the traffic between your webserver and a client’s browser with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL). SSL is thought of as a secure link, or channel that ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral. SSL is an industry standard and is used by millions of websites in the protection of their online transactions with their customers.

To be able to create an SSL connection a web server requires an SSL Certificate. When you choose to activate SSL on your web server you will be prompted to complete a number of questions about the identity of your website and your company. Your web server then creates two cryptographic keys – a Private Key and a Public Key. The Public Key does not need to be secret and is placed into a Certificate Signing Request (CSR) – a data file also containing your details. You should then submit the CSR. During the SSL Certificate application process, the Certification Authority will validate your details and issue an SSL Certificate containing your details and allowing you to use SSL. Your web server will match your issued SSL Certificate to your Private Key. Your web server will then be able to establish an encrypted link between the website and your customer’s web browser.

Whether you’re running an e-commerce site, dealing with payments or simply have confidential data, SSL will provide a peace of mind for your customers/visitors. It will make your site stand out among others as people are more susceptible to giving their private information to a protected and secure organization rather than to a shady site that could even be perceived as scam.

 

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LAMP: Building from Scratch

Posted by on Jan 19, 2011 in Guides | 0 comments

The purpose of this guide is to present the LAMP concept, its basics, the history of each component as well as best practices used in the industry today. This guide will help a reader to get a hands-on experience installing and configuring each element of the LAMP stack. A brief history of each component will be provided, followed by easy-to-follow step by step instructions (with screenshots and external links) on how to install it, configure and optimize for best performance. Also some tips are provided on how to enhance security.
This tutorial is intended to serve as a knowledge base for IT professionals, seeking to expand their expertise and submerge into the world of Open Source products, such as Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP.

General understanding of (web) servers, databases and programming languages is recommended.

 

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A tableless CSS image gallery with support for ALL browsers, even IE6

Posted by on Jan 18, 2011 in Guides | 0 comments

How to make a tableless CSS image galleryYears since CSS enabled us to retire the humble HTML table and write properly semantic code, it is still common to hear hissing and whining from old school coders who are reluctant to update their skills and learn to code by contemporary standards.

When you look for help with tableless CSS on Stack Overflow and other amateur coding forums, you can expect to be trolled by some pimply face kid, “dude, what are you doing… don’t be so puritanical” and, “that’s not possible in CSS, just use tables” and other ill informed ideas that assume tables should still be used for structural code elements.

Regardless the CSS haters it is not 1998 anymore and the use of tables for non-tabular data should have been abandoned with the introduction of ie6 nearly a decade ago. But for now let’s hold to the topic of this article and go into the reasons why tables are a bad idea in another post.

Read the full guide at Web Design Front
More on CSS “Tableless” tables: chrismaxwell.com

 

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