Simple Twitter Feed has seen far more downloads and use that I ever imagined. I thought I’d be the only one using it, and in my wildest dreams a couple of other people. Since I posted it on WordPress.org 4 days ago I’ve seen over 850 downloads. I know other Twitter plugins have far more, and that’s not what this is about. I’m just happy to see people using something I built.
While the code was fairly trivial to write, I did learn a few things about WordPress along the way. I’ve always used WordPress, and even done a few custom things with it. But writing this plugin has taught me a few things about the API that I wouldn’t have known otherwise. Things like using Transients for caching, and the make_clickable() function to make URLs into links in a string.
With all that said though, I’m happy to announce the release of version 0.5 of Simple Twitter Feed. In this version I’ve added an option to the widget that allows you to specify how many tweets you want to display. Since the initial release this is the first feature that I’ve added. The rest of the updates have been to the code, and was mostly designed to make caching more reliable.
From here on out, I’ll be releasing bug fixes and patches. However, the pace of development will slow as I go back to focusing on other projects. I have a couple features that I’d like to add, but it won’t be for a few weeks.
If you do find a bug, post either in the support forum on WordPress.org, or contact me via this blog. You can do that by posting in the comments here, or by using the form that you can find on the Contact Me page.
Thank you for your ongoing support! Keep checking back to this blog for updates not only on Simple Twitter Feed, but on other plugins that I will be releasing soon!
Simple Twitter Feed is a super simple WordPress plugin that gives you a widget of your latest tweets. It does all the heavy lifting for you, while getting out of your way when it comes to styling. It needs nothing but your twitter username to work.
Twitter plugins exist. They usually have more features. I didn’t need any of that though. I just wanted to give a widget my username and have it just work. Since I couldn’t find one that simple I decided to just roll my own, like any good developer would.
It took me only a few minutes to find the documentation (and example) of a widget plugin on WordPress.org. From there I did some quick googling and decided I would pull the tweets from twitters RSS api. I would only need to provide a users twitter handle and I would get an RSS feed of that users public timeline.
I used some built-in WordPress functions to get the RSS feed and then I parsed it, looped over it, got the latest tweets, and boom! I was done. Check it out and let me know what you think in the comments!
About the plugin
- WordPress 3.01 or later
- cURL should be installed on your server
- A Twitter account
- Install and activate the plugin via the WordPress dashboard OR
- Download from this page
- Unzip and copy files to /wp-content/plugins/Simple-Twitter-Feed
- Go to your WordPress dashboard and activate the plugin
- Add the widget to one of your widget areas
- Enter a title and your Twitter handle (username) and save
- You’re done!
- Q: What if I don’t have cURL installed on my server (or don’t know if I do)?
- A: You should ask your system administrator, they are your friend!
Today I had cause to write a simple Alphanumeric string generator. I thought I’d share it with y’all.
It’s really just a couple of functions. One takes a length parameter, the other returns a random character. The first function called the other until it’s built a random string of characters that is the length of the parameter you passed. Here’s the link to generate a random 16 character string:
If you’d like to download this script (it’s in PHP) you can grab it here. It’s pretty well commented and should be self-explanatory. Do with it what you want!
Today I was working on copying data from one database to another. I needed to copy just the text from one field, and leave out any HTML. I found the easiest way to see what was text and what was HTML was to decode it. That’s why I wrote this little tool to help me do the job faster.
Check it out!
I’ve update Project Board with all the things I initially wanted to put in, including:
- Color Coded Projects
- Due Dates
- Drill Down / Editing capabilities
I’ve still got a few more things that I’d like to add in the future, like a project URL, formatting descriptions using MarkDown, comments / notes, etc. However, I’m happy with Project Board right now, and don’t have lots of time to update it, so it probably won’t see tons of updates right away. They will come slowly though!
Go ahead and check it out, play with it, and use it. I’m also always happy to have contributors, so feel free to go and fork it on GitHub.
I’ve been working on this pretty cool project lately and I figured I’d share it with y’all.
Project Board was born out of my constantly trying to keep in focus what I was working on, and what stage it was in. I had seen some poster / white boards before that had area’s for stuff you’re actively working on, stuff that’s pending, new stuff, etc. (I later found out that these are called Kanban Boards) With Project Board I’m working on creating a web based version of that.
Right now it’s very simple, but there will be some pretty cool additions in the next couple of weeks. Your data is persisted using HTML5′s localStorage() feature. It will store the data in your browser between sessions, but not between computers or other browsers. This is a slight limitation, but down the road I hope to overcome that.
You can go play with it, test it, and use it to your hearts content! Here are some things to look forward to:
- Color coding of projects
- Ability to add/edit start and due dates to a project
- Ability to add/edit a longer description for a project
- Drill into a project to see deeper details by clicking
- Ability to change headers of boxes to make them more personal to you.
Those are all things that I want, and that I’ve talked to a couple other people about, what what are your thoughts? What are you looking for in a simple task / project management tool?