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What we talk about when we talk about preventing hacks

February 18, 2015

Lately, I’ve been seeing and helping a lot of customers who have had their website hacked. These include, but are not limited to, WordPress sites. Once the initial panic has subsided, oftentimes customers’ first question is “how do I prevent this in the future?”

Of course, no networked computer is completely immune to attack, and there is no guarantee that an attack of this nature will never happen again. That said, there are steps that you can take to reduce the likelihood of attacks of any kind. Read More …

Setting up your first online store with Shopify

February 6, 2014

To start, a lot of the decisions you’ll have to make about setting up your first ecommerce site have to do with the economics of what you’re planning to sell — how much volume, how many SKUs, and shipping logistics. For example, if you’re only selling a dozen units of one SKU per month, that’s a lot less to worry about than selling thousands of units each of dozens of SKUs, shipped in a refrigerated truck.

If you’ve never run an ecommerce site before, I usually recommend starting with Shopify. Shopify is a hosted solution that helps you manage your inventory, and handles the payment end of things. All you need is a payment gateway (like Paypal, or preferably Stripe) that connects Shopify to your bank account. The upshot is that you don’t have to assume the risk (and cost) of securely doing the credit card processing yourself.

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Hosting, Media Temple, and what to do next

October 21, 2013

You may have recently heard that GoDaddy purchased Media Temple, our host, but Media Temple will “continue operating as an independent and autonomous company.” Such acquisitions are typical in the tech world, but this one hit home: I’ve been a Media Temple customer for about five years, and I deeply distrust GoDaddy — not only are GoDaddy’s services inferior and frustrating, their company has a slimy reputation that’s hard to ignore. Read More …

Testing, 1-2-3

July 17, 2013

It’s easy to say that I test everything before it leaves the shop. I’m the programmer, after all. But with complex platforms like WordPress, where drop-in components, widgets, and themes may all come from different vendors, it’s easy to lose track of who’s responsible for testing what. Read More …

I would do anything, but I won’t do that

June 25, 2013

After 15 years of developing websites for scores of clients, I’ve learned a little bit about a lot of things. Perhaps more importantly, I’ve learned a lot about what I don’t do — either because it’s outside my experience, too shady, or just not something that interests me. Read More …

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