I have been using the Genesis Framework for sometime now on this site and just about every other site that I manage, but I decided that we needed a break from one another… at least for just a little bit. In keeping up with WordPress and its development I figured I would give the new Twenty Fifteen theme a test run and see what it had to offer. So far I am digging the minimalism of it, as well as the default features that are included. The inclusion of Social links is really nice an allowed me to remove another plugin that was used previously to achieve the same function.
If you are feeling adventurous you can grab it from the nightly build, or directly via Git or SVN.
Also with this change I decided to finally do away with site comments, which is something I have been thinking about doing for sometime. Removing comments also allowed me to remove yet another plugin, that being Disqus. I may end up enabling comments on specific posts from time to time depending on the content, but overall I think they are gone for good at this point.
With my contact tweaking and screwing with Fauxzen I decided to enable Swiftype. It just went active on the site today and so far it has been flawless and the indexing from the blog to their site was fast and flawless. Don’t get me wrong the standard built in WordPress search seems to work great on a daily basis, but Swiftype offers some really cool features that just aren’t there or well in actuality probably needed for a normal users WordPress install. They outline some key features on their site like Drag and Drop ranking for one. The Drag and Drop ranking this will let you order the way search results are found. This could be really handy if you have paid posts/ads on your site and you want to channel traffic to post X instead of Y when people are searching for W. They also offer realtime analytics of searches, this again can really help you tune your site to provide more relevant information, as well as helping you see what kind of things interest your site visitors when they come to your site. The one that really sold me which while simple and not all that amazing was the auto-complete feature, the little bit of eye candy is really nice and may help people find other entries that the normal search might not have yielded. Installing Swiftype was a walk in the park, they provide a nice WordPress plugin that you install and plug in your API key that you get from your account on their site. Once you have done that there is a simple button to click to have their crawler index all the pages on your site. Thats it, no extensive configurations that end up taking the better part of the day to setup. Overall it has been less than a day so far using Swiftype but I think I might keep it around for a while. I am very interested to see how much their pricing ends up being once out of public beta as that will more than likely be the determining factor for me if I end up keeping it installed or now. So go ahead and go give it a try.
Well looking back I have been pretty bad about posting, always stating I will be posting on a regular basis…. never seems to happen. Anyways its a new year and I am going to try to make the same promise again. I have been wanting to post on a more frequent basis these days, but for some reason I never find the time to actually site and do so. I mildly blame Reddit and Imgur for this as they seem to occupy more and more of my free time. Continue reading “Happy Late New Year!”