Change Log

I wanted one semi-public place where I could keep an annotated log of changes to this Blog.  I didn’t think it would be of all that much interest to my readers, so I’m not publishing it as a post (or series of posts).

Right now, I’m planning to slot the updates in at the end of the page, rather than in reverse (blogging) order, but that may change over time.

Updates

18 Aug. 09

Applied the following updates:

WordPress 2.8.4 (Security Release)

WordPress Blog WordPress 2.8.4: Security Release

Subscription Options, Version: 0.4.2

The Subscription Options Plugin

20 Aug. 09

Just added the Zemanta WordPress Plugin to Maskil

WordPress Zemanta WordPress Plugins

I’ve also downloaded and installed the Zemanta LiveWriter Plugin, as I mainly use the awesome WLW for editing my posts. (I do the initial composing in Word 2003 and I prefer to have a clean page without distractions when doing the initial heavy lifting.)

Zemanta LiveWriter Plugin Zemanta Ltd.

02 Sep. 09

Deactivated the SEO Slugs plugin.  See my SEO page for the reasons why.

Deactivated IntenseDebate and replaced it with JS-Kit Echo

Installed the Dagon Design Sitemap Generator WordPress Plugin.

03 Sep. 09

RSS Footer

Implemented RSS Footer.  See my SEO page for background.

RSS Footer – Yoast – Tweaking Websites

Missed Schedule Future Posts

I’ve always preferred to schedule my posts so I’m posting consistently on the same days of the week and times.  Suddenly, in the last week or two, my scheduled posts haven’t been published.  Instead, they sit there was a status of “Missed Schedule”.  (BTW, that must be the all-time stupidest piece of coding logic ever.  Surely if you missed the schedule you should retry again in 10 minutes?)

I saw a couple of solutions that didn’t really please me, so I went with 5ubliminal’s Scheduled M.I.A.s WordPress Plugin.  I hope I’ll be able to remove the plugin, if/when the WordPress guys fix this bug.  (It’s been around since WP 2.7, when they messed up the cron functionality, so I’m not holding my breath.  I actually can’t believe that they’ve allowed this core functionality to remain broken from version 2.7 through 2.8.4).  See below for the WP bug report, the link to the PHP code and some useful notes regarding installation.

It’s implemented, but not yet tested.  That will have to wait for my next scheduled post.

AddToAny

Uninstalled AddThis and installed AddToAny for my bookmarking, sharing and social networking gadget on each post/page.  Please see the SEO page for the background.

AddToAny – Share / Bookmark Button, Email Button, Subscribe Button Widgets

08 Sep. 09

Scheduled M.I.A.s

Sad to say, the Scheduled MIA’s plugin simply didn’t work.  Not MIA, but DOA!  I waited for almost 2 hours after the scheduled time, but my latest post still had the Missed Schedule status.  Deactivated for deletion.  I’ll have to look at the option of back revving the cron files, as suggested by another  user.

A hearty welcome to the following plugins:

SEO Title Tag

In preparation for an exercise to go back and enter Title Tags for all my legacy Blogger posts.

SEO Title Tag: A WordPress Plugin for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Simple Trackback Validation Plugin

Coming from a Blogger background, the idea of trackback spam was an eye-opener for me!  I think I’ve been caught out a couple of times, so this should hopefully prevent further occurrences.

Simple Trackback Validation Plugin Software Guide

Wibiya

My request to join the Beta was accepted and I’ve installed the Wibiya Wibar.  All part of my ongoing efforts to make my site stickier, by trying to build some sort of community around Maskil.

Wibiya – My Dashboard

16 Sep. 09

Upgraded to the latest version of the Zemanta plugin, version 0.6.2.  No real indication as to what the changes are.

Deleted the SEO Title Tag directory/folder from the server (deactivated the plugin some days back).  Now, how to get rid of the related tables, i.e.:

# wp_seo_title_tag_category
# wp_seo_title_tag_tag
# wp_seo_title_tag_url

05 Oct. 09

Sitemap

Included the human-readable Sitemap page (Plugin by dagondesign.com) in the top-level Navigation Menu. I just wish Thesis would have separate menus for Pages and Categories, though, or at least show them on 2 separate rows, like Carrington!

I notice that, even although Allow Comments is unchecked for the Sitemap page, Echo (JS-Kit) still displays a comment box. I’ll have to investigate whether that can be disabled. (There is a Thesis option to “Disable comments on all pages”.)

Add Noindex to Archive Pages

Under “Add Noindex to Archive Pages”, I’ve now also checked “Add noindex to monthly archives”. This was originally unchecked, based on the advice in an unnamed Thesis/SEO blog post. I noticed that it was generating exceptions on Google Webmaster Tools.

WordPress Plugins

A general note regarding plugins. I’ve been installing each plugin in its own folder within the plugins folder, just because it makes things easier to manage (especially when you need to delete all the files for deactivated plugins you want to uninstall). I read today that this is now a best practice, and that you’re likely to encounter problems by dumping all plugins into a common folder.

Installed the following WP plugins, after first doing some basic testing on http://test.maskil.info/ (I’ve finally started getting into that routine). Just a pity I’m not allowed to use Thesis on a Test as well as the Live blog.

Broken Link Checker

A plugin for WordPress that will check your posts (and pages), looking for broken links, and let you know if any are found.

Broken links are apparently not just irritating for humans, but also for search engine crawlers. You will lose points if Google keeps bumping up against broken links.

Broken Link Checker for WordPress – W-Shadow.com

No Self Pings

Prevents WP from pinging your own posts when you cross-link posts. Apparently there’s an SEO penalty for this behaviour!

Blogwaffe – WordPress plugin: No Self Pings

Update Notifier

Update Notifier is a WordPress plugin that sends daily email notifications to the admin if there is a new version of WordPress available for download. Notifications about updates for plugins and themes can also be sent.

Not the only plugin of this nature, but this one adds value by notifying for plugin and theme upgrades as well. How cool is that?

Lions Go Roar – Update Notifier

08 Oct. 09

A few – mostly cosmetic – changes on Maskil today.

FeedSmith

Based on this thread in the DIYthemes Forums, I’m now relying on the FeedBurner FeedSmith plugin rather than the setting in Thesis Options.

Install feedburner – DIYthemes Forums

Checked to ensure that the FeedBurner FeedSmith plugin has been activated and appears to be functioning.

Under Thesis Options, Syndication/Feed, Set your feed URL, I’ve removed the FeedBurner details, i.e. http://feeds.feedburner.com/Maskil/Blog

I’ve also changed the RSS Feed URL in the Subscription Options widget to point to the default WP feed, i.e. http://maskil.info/feed/.

Widgets

Cosmetic changes to the following sidebar widgets:

Testing

Played around with a lot of stuff today, including:

  • Gigya Socialize Plugin.  Looks good, but I’ll have to collect all the API keys, etc myself.  May or may not be worth the effort.
  • Gigya Toolbar.  Doesn’t work or look as good as the Wibiya wibar, so I think I’ll stick with Wibiya.
  • Successfully installed the DISQUS comment system on Maskil Test.  A much better look and feel than the other big players (Intense Debate and JS-Kit), so I’ll probably go with it on Maskil.
  • Installed a Facebook Fan Box on Maskil, but it probably doesn’t add value with having the Fan Page and FB Community on Wibiya.  Maybe just a Page Badge instead?
  • Played around with TwitterRemote (from TwitterCounter), but I’m in two minds as to whether it adds value.

Change Log for Maskil.Info 12 Oct. 09

Add to Any: Share/Bookmark/Email Button

Upgraded to Version .9.9.4 of Add to Any

Update Notifier Version 1.2 did its job by sending me e-mail notifications of the plugin upgrade being available.

DISQUS Comment System

This counts as a major change, although the transition was very smooth.

Installed Version 2.12.7121 of the DISQUS Comment System, replacing the JS-Kit Comment System.  I wasn’t too unhappy with JS-Kit, but didn’t think it added that much value to justify the cost, especially with DISQUS being free.  In addition, DISQUS now includes the same type of “reaction from the Web” functionality as Echo.

By all accounts DISQUS is the “least bad” of the comment systems, so I’m hoping this will be my last change in that regard.  I’ve now tried ‘em all!

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  • Is it your journal?

  • I use this blog to test upgrades, widgets, add-ons, etc., before applying them to my Live blog, blog.maskil.info. I also use it as a “change log” to keep a record of these changes.