Category Archives: Blog

DreamPress Review: Is This Premium WordPress Hosting Worth It?

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Since 2002 I have been working full time as web designer and developer, with expert knowledge of HTML/HTML5, PHP, CSS, ADOBE, etc. Within the past 10 years I have also been a dedicated and loyal user of WordPress for a all of my blog design projects. So after hundreds of WordPress blog design projects I am confident in my ability to to evaluate the ins and outs of this particular CMS platform. Read More

I Design Blogs Update

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I apologize for not updating my blog, I know it sets an unpleasant tone to see content that isn’t updated frequently. Due to the massive amount of design requests I have received in the past year it has become difficult to update my own site since I am giving all my attention to my clients who I am very grateful for. I work alone and I stay very busy, so it tends to get overwhelming. I am still available for web site and blog design projects and look forward to welcoming new clients. I simply just don’t have the time to work on my own page. Please feel free to call me at 917-243-3454 , 7 days a week between 10 am – 10 pm (I work from home) if you want to hire me or get a quote. I will do everything in my power to update my own site in the near future. Thanks!

Jen, Web Developer

Fix for orange overlay ad in youtube and right-click copy “more” pop up .

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I noticed a few days that an annoying orange overlay ad was suddenly appearing before every single youtube video I watched. It was ugly and cheap looking. It did not bear any resemblance to the slick , built in “skip this ad” interface we are all used to seeing before some monetized youtube videos.

To begin with, the ad begins to play the moment the page loads. Once you click on the orange “skip ad” button, the youtube video does not auto-start like it’s supposed to, it just sits there and forces you to press play.

I don’t like the idea of some slimy ad program attaching itself to my computer and the forcing me to watch videos the way it wants me to.

I also noticed that on certain sites, when I tried to right click and copy certain selections of text and or code, this annoying black pop up button with yellow font with the word”more” would  pop up over the selection, making it impossible for me to grab what I needed.

This obviously meant war, and after trying everything my 10 years of web development experience has taught me with no results, and 3 different scans looking for a kind of malicious activity, I crawled over to the google forums and noticed there were already freaked out web designers and web surfers already asking the same question I was. “Where did this come from?”.

I didn’t download anything knew or did anything radically different within the past month to my computer, so how did this happen? After 24 hours of submitting my question, someone in the forum found a quick and simple fix that once I saw it made me slap my head. The fix is the one thing I should have done first but of course never thought of.

FIX FOR ORANGE OVERLAY AD IN YOUTUBE.

It’s and add-on silly!

Problem solved:
In Internet Explorer  click on Tools – manage add-ons – Toolbars and Extensions – and disable SimplyGen -Complitly
In Chrome. Click on the wrench icon – Click on History- click on extensions- and disable Complitly plugin for chrome 1.1
No more orange skipad!!!

If your using Firefox like I was, just go under your orange firefox tab menu, click on the blue “add-ons” tab and then disable the Complitly add-on. Viola! problem solved! Make sure you restart your broswer once you disable the add-on.

I honestly don’t know how this got there, and deep down inside I don’t want to know, all I know is that it’s a goner and I couldn’t be happier. I hope this helps save you hours of frustration. Feel free to comment!

The top 10 things to consider when you create a new Wordpess blog.

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[dropcap]A[/dropcap] re you ready to start an online business? Maybe you just want to run a blog for your own personal interest and passions.

For whatever reason you desire if you decided to use WordPress (self hosted)  then your already headed in the right direction. WordPress is a CMS ( Content Management System ) that allows you tremendous control and flexibility over your web site.

Obviously I am a blog designer and it’s natural for me to suggest to you that it would be in your best interest to hire a blog designer like myself to do all the heavy lifting for you. Of course, your most likely reading this because your ready to find out more about WordPress and you want  the inside track to how to make the most of your new blog site.

After 10 years of professional web development experience , with the last 7 years specializing in WordPress , I feel highly qualified to give you the most important things to look out for when you take the leap to WordPress.
Here is my top ten list of things you should know before creating a new WordPress self-hosted blog:

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    • [dropcap]#1[/dropcap] WordPress Compatible Hosting: I know a thing or two about hosting after creating hundreds of websites. With WordPress, it’s simple and cheap if you know what to look for.  The most important question to ask your hosting provider is “Do you have hosting for WordPress blogs?” . If the answer is yes, then your all set. Make sure that you understand the difference between WordPress.org (which is what I am referring to in this post) and WordPress.com (which is for beginners who are casual about their blog). Read this article from WordPress.com for more information .You must understand that although most major hosting providers offer hosting for WordPress blogs and other 3rd party software, not all do and if they don’t offer it, or they are not sure then look elsewhere. I personally use Dreamhost and Bluehost. I am also a paid affiliate for both hosting companies. I practice what I preach and can vouch for Bluehost as being the best hosting provider for WordPress hosting.Ask your hosting provider is they have some kind of “1 click installation” option for WordPress installation.  Both Dreamhost, and Bluehost have this feature and plenty of other hosting companies also.This is going to save you alot of headaches if you dare try to install it manually. So make sure your host comes with that option.One more tiny suggestion I have for choosing a host for your WordPress blog is to get your hosting on a Linux server vs a Windows server. Linux servers are cheaper than Windows servers and alot less complicated to deal with. Trust me on this!
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    • [dropcap]#2[/dropcap] Make sure you have a solid site title and description for your site settings. Your site title and description can be found easily under the “Settings>>>>General ” option in your WordPress dashboard. Whenever I set up a new site for a client I make that a priority before I even begin to configure any designs and style to the blog. These two segments of text are important because they are among the first things that the search engine crawlers read when they crawl your site.In my opinion, this is the most important text you can place on your site for seo and placement. Make sure the title is strong, clear, and keyword centric without being spammy . I tend to keep the title short but detailed, the description can be a little longer, maybe a sentence or two. Just make sure you fill these slots in with words and detail that you would want to be found with by users. Here is an example of a quality site title and description for a beauty salon in New Jersey.

      Example site title:   Hair Mania, Central New Jersey’s top rated hair and beauty salon
      Example site description: Hair Mania offers a wide selection  of hair and beauty services that include Hair Treatments, Bridal Up-Dos, Manicure, Pedicure, Facials, Makeovers, and hair extensions.

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    • [dropcap]#3[/dropcap] Where To Find Images For Your Blog:  Unless your looking to possibly get sued, I highly recommend you DO NOT steal images from other people’s site. If you must have an image that you see on someone else’s site and your feeling brave, you may consider contacting that person and asking if you could use the image. If you explain your purpose and give a credit link back to the author’s site, you may get lucky.Otherwise you have other legal options, like content sites. If your looking for content you can always go to sites like istock.com or fotolia.com to access to tons of content. They have photos, illustrations, videos, in every size and style you can image. The images are cheap and there are millions to choose from.You can also shoot your own content.

      You would be amazed what you can do with a digital camera and some good light. Many of my clients shoot their content for their blogs with camera phones. It all depends on what your topic of interest is. Google values anything that is original over duplicated mass used content, so don’t be afraid to do it yourself. If you need a picture of a bowl of lemons, then go get a bowl, fill it with lemons and shoot! I would then watermark that image with my site logo or url and upload to my post. You will feel great knowing that all your content is yours, and if anyone tries to steal it , let them because your  images are watermarked and everyone who sees it will know where it came from.

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    • [dropcap]#4[/dropcap] Original Content Is What Google likes best: Google is the only search engine that matters nowadays. It’s hard to believe that even though yahoo has been around much longer, they literally do not matter when it comes to search engine visibility . Grabbing stories from other sites, even if you linkback to the original source doesn’t hold much water with Google ever since Panda came on the scene, and many business have found out the hard way that they cannot go that route anymore.Don’t be afraid to write your own content.

      If your writing skills are weak, just ask a friend or family member to look over your post before you publish and give any logical input that can help you improve your post. Make sure that the information your discussing is useful and explained clearly. In general a post or page with 500 words is enough to be considered useful by Google’s new standards.[clear]

    • [dropcap]#5[/dropcap] Consider Carefully What Plugins You Install: People tend to go nuts with plugins. I understand the temptation. Plugins make life so much easier and allows you to take your blog to a much more interactive level. If you install too many plugins at once, it may cause considerable conflicts with the WordPress theme your using.I recommend a maximum of 7 plugins per blog. You should always make sure that your plugin is compatible with your version of WordPress. Using outdated plugins with newer versions of WordPress can cause the dreaded broken blog look or even render an error page once it’s installed.[clear]
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    • [dropcap]#6[/dropcap] Install Google Analytics: I love this free tool and it can literally be a guide to understanding your site statistics and how your site views find you. The new updated interface gives you unlimited ways to analyze important information you should know about your audience and traffic flow. I could not live with out this tool. If you do not pay attention to this valuable free information about your site then you are missing out and could do more damage than good. You must know whats going on with your site and how people find you or else you can never improve your rankings.
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    • [dropcap]#7[/dropcap] Keep your posts fresh:  This means that you should post to your blog as often as possible. I can’t tell you how many people go through all the trouble of getting hosting, paying a web designer to design their blog, doing all the leg work to get started and then when everything is done, they neglect their blog and only post content once or twice a month.

      Unless you have a product or knowledge that is so in-demand that people will flock to your blog no matter what you do, the lack of activity will tank your blogs page rank.It’s true that WordPress is great for SEO, but it’s not just something that happens because it’s WordPress. The benefits from using WordPress for SEO comes from how you use WordPress as opposed to WordPress just doing it because it can. I recommend at least 4 posts a week for the very least. Anything less than that and your not going to see much results. Whenever you write a post, submit it immediately to social media. It works like a charm.

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    • [dropcap]#8[/dropcap] Social Media Is Crucial: If your dreading getting a Facebook or Twitter account for your blog, then get over it. Even if you don’t have a lot of friends on Facebook or Twitter and your afraid that no one will notice you then your wrong. This goes back to the quality of your content.The one thing about the Internet that is always going to be true, is that there is always someone interested in something. When you submit your posts to your social media pages your now telling the world, “I have something to say, now pass it around”. People from everywhere will like your page or re-tweet your tweets. Once you track your site statistics in Google Analytics and start seeing how much traffic your getting from these social media sites you will start to understand how important they are.
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    • [dropcap]#9[/dropcap] Get Familiar With WordPress.org: This site is the ultimate resource for everything that is WordPress (self hosted) related. The best part is that it is official and is incredible for answwering any questions about WordPress you may have.
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  • [dropcap]#10[/dropcap] Consider Your Audience:  Everything you do from your site design to the content you write and upload should be catered to the demographic your site was created for. Don’t overload your site with ads that can cause the page load to slow down. Make sure your content isn’t offensive or off subject. Encourage your readers to comment and share your posts on their social media pages and blogs. Get social and make the most of your site.
[/custom_list] If your in need of hiring a professional to install and design your next WordPress blog, contact me for more information.

Fix for twitter widgets tweets that go blank on website.

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The other day I was contacted by a client who mentioned to me that all of the tweets that is  usually displayed on the twitter widget embedded on her site were simply gone and not updating. I assumed that maybe she somehow set her tweets to private and maybe that was the reason her tweets were no longer showing, but when I logged into her account I saw that all of he settings were perfect. Through much trial and error, my client mentioned that maybe it’s because she re-tweeted some tweets from earlier this week, and maybe that was why it wasn’t showing. I personally thought it was unlikely but since nothing else seemed to make sense as to why the widget from the twitter site directly was not working, we figured it would be best to give it a try..of course that was EXACTLY what is was. One she undid her re-tweets her tweets began to show up again on her web site widget.

I find it fascinating that twitter would not have this mentioned anywhere on their site, It would have saved my 30 minutes of my life if I would have been able to know this just by reading the help section. If you ever run into a problem with your tweets not displaying properly on your  web site’s twitter widget, first make sure you did not select to make your tweets private, and second if you have recently re-tweeted any tweets, undo them , log out of twitter and refresh the page on your site and see if your tweets are back.

How to define a site in Dreamweaver *video*

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This is an awesome video tutorial from PixelForLife on how to define a site in Dreamweaver..

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This is one of the most important steps when you decide to use Dreamweaver. This should be done before you even create a new page, but if you have already created one, it’s not too late to define your website.

Why (self hosted) WordPress is better than Blogger

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This is an article from Mr. Gobala Krishnan about why he feels WordPress is superior to Blogger. I think this is a great piece of info for those interested in chosing a blogging platform.- Jen

 

There’s a war going on in the blogosphere, and it has nothing to do with bloggers dissing each other on their respective websites. The war is about control of the blogosphere by several great, many good, and tons of terrible blogging platforms. The average newbie now has “too many” options to choose from, and the battle for blogging supremacy is hotter than ever.

At my website and blogs, I’m always asked the question “Is WordPress better than Blogger?”. The answer, of course, is “Yes”. But to really understand why, it’s important to look at both blogging platforms side-by-side and see which one you really need.

You also need to understand that there are different versions of WordPress, the earliest now termed as “WordPress” at http://www.wordpress.org, and the hosted version similar to Blogger now termed “WordPress.com” which is of course available at WordPress.com

For Part 1 of this article, we look only at the self-hosted version of WordPress. Here’s the comparison scale:

1) Ease of Set-up And Use

Yes, it’s much easier to set-up a blog with Blogspot.com and get your own Bloggger account. You can be done in 10 minutes flat. Once you’re set-up you can start posting immediately. If you want to add a designer’s touch to your blog, there are also tons of blogger templates available for free.

Installing WordPress however can be a major headache if you don’t know what you’re doing. Since you’re going to host it on your own account, you’ll need to download the installation files, upload them to your server, set-up a database, and run the configuration script.

However, if you know which hosting account to get, you can choose one with Cpanel included. With Cpanel, you can do a one-click installation, upgrade and removal of your WordPress platform. There are tons of different hosting plans to choose from, so get one that fits your needs.

2) Customization & Advanced Use

Blogger doesn’t allow categories. You can’t sort your articles into different focuses, unless you know how to hack the platform. With WordPress, not only can you add categories, you can also display each category differently on your main page. In fact with the correct plugins you can even turn your WordPress into a magazine-like portal.

Publishing with Blogger can be a pain in the ass. It can take forever to post articles, especially if you’re making changes to the entire website. With WordPress, publishing is much faster, although if you load your system with all kinds of bells and whistles it can be just as frustrating.

With a Blogger account, you can get additional features like “Shout Boxes” that improve interaction on your site. You can also get pretty themes and nifty little tools that you can add to the core template files. However, that’s as far as you can go with Blogger.

With WordPress however, the sky is the limit. As cliche as that may sound, not only can you get themes, additional “plugins” and advanced tools, you can also extend WordPress to far beyond just a blogging platform.

The talk today is about using WordPress as a complete, user-friendly Content Management System or CMS. Unlike complicated predecessors like PHPPostNuke, B2, Mambo or even Joomla, WordPress is user friendly. Plus, the availability of source codes in this open-source system coupled with a strong community makes it possible to use WordPress as an article management system, classifieds system, direct-selling site and even a paid membership site.

4) Copyrights and Ownership of Content

I started with Blogger and I won’t say that it’s bad. But after a while I started to get frustrated with Blogger, and here’s why: Google Owns Your Content

Google has the authority to shut down your account without warning if they don’t like what you’re blogging about. You don’t have absolute control over your own blog. With WordPress, you own the domain name and the blog is hosted on your own account. You have full control over your content.

With the self-hosted version of WordPress (not WordPress.com), you’re free to write about anything you want, and use the software in any way you want. Yes, Blogger allows you to publish to your own domain, but they still own the database that holds your content! Don’t forget that!

5) Search Engine Optimization and Traffic

There’s this propaganda that since Google owns Blogger, they tend to favor Blogger accounts. I won’t say that this is illogical, but from my experience, there’s no such favoritism.

I’ve heard as many stories of getting indexed fast and ranking high in search engines from both WordPress and Blogger users. As long as the content is good, the spiders will come.

When you post in Blogger, you can only “ping” a limited amount of sites, whereas with WordPress on your own domain you can ping as many blog directories as you want, and start getting more traffic.

As a conclusion, I would say that WordPress is only slightly ahead in terms of optimization for search engines, and building large amounts of traffic.

6) Money-Making Potential

There’s no doubt that it’s easier to get started with Google Adsense if you have a Blogger account. In fact you can now apply for Adsense from within a Blogger account. Not entirely surprising considering the fact that both are owned by the same company.

With WordPress, it can get tricky. The default installation is not enough. You’ll need a couple of plugins and even a better theme to really maximize the Adsense potential. However, this seems to be getting easier and there’s even “Adsense revenue sharing” plugins around that allow you to share ad revenue with other contributors and writers for your blog.

When you start using WordPress to build your Adsense websites, you’ll soon discover what I mean. It’s something you need to experience for yourself. I can tell you one thing though – when you go WordPress, you don’t go back.

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I agree with just about everything Mr. Gobala Krishnan stated. From my personal experience after working with so many WordPress blogs over the years, there is no comparison whatsoever between a free Blogger account, and a WordPress.org self hosted blog. Please do not confuse WordPress.com and WordPress.org as the same thing. Sure it’s the same business, and most of the admin panel in wordpress.com looks exactly like WordPress.org, but one comes with huge amount of features that give you so much more control over your blog. I don’t even bother offering Blogger customizations anymore because everyone is fleeing from Blogger to WordPress at record speed. -Jen

Make wrinkles disapear

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When it comes to photo retouch no can make you look better than me! I offer various choices of blemish removal blemish removal, that means stretch marks, acne, birthmarks, tattoos, scars anything and everything. With some photos depending on the quality and position I can even make you appear thinner where you need it most, Yes, I’m talking about weight reduction!. I can knock off 10 years within minutes and give your face a fresh glamours appearance. Eye color enhancement , skin smoothing, and several other photo enhancement options are available.

Photo Enhancements aren’t just for those looking to erase blemishes on the body and face. If you have any photo that needs objects removed, logos blurred on shirts , enhance the color of a phtos, repair red eye, or background color changes just shoot me an email and I will see what I can do.

Prices for retouching starts off at $7 per photo and can go as high as $40 per photo. I offer discounts to customers who submit 10 photos or more.  In general people pay $7-$10 per photo. I don’t give exact pricing for most of my services because every job is unique and I charge according to how much time I assume it will take once I view the content.

Warning! I do not remove watermarks or security logos as a service so please do NOT  ask. I wouldn’t be saying this if others haven’t tried. Unless (with proof) they are your own photos of YOU that you need altered such as cropping or background removal for a cut-out, I will not manipulate watermarks for any other reason.

Here are some examples  below of cosmetic photo retouch, to visit my adult photo retouch page click here

Click to enlarge (these are examples not actual customers)


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