How to enable instant search in WordPress

Searching for things on WordPress doesn't have to be a long, slow process with multiple page reloads. Thank God. Instant Search & Suggest is a plugin that speeds up the search process by calling up information from posts, pages, taxonomies, and custom post types on the fly. They show up as drop-down suggestions under the search box, of course, but the content area can also be repopulated on the fly. And it can work with just about any theme. In fact, the plugin's author makes the bold claim that it should...
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40+ tools for writing better PHP

PHP is a server-side scripting language designed for web development, but also used as a general-purpose programming language. With over 240 million indexed domains using PHP, including major websites like Facebook, Digg and WordPress, there are good reasons why many web developers prefer it to other server-side scripting languages, such as Python and Ruby. There are scads of PHP tools available over the internet for php developers, but finding an appropriate PHP tool is quite an arduous task...
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Introducing Page Parts for WordPress

How do I add extra content to a page, from the admin screen, but outside of the main content block? That’s a question you’ll eventually run into with many different CMSs. And it can be a pain. While sometimes, you’ll be able to use a CMS that takes complex page layouts into account (such as Perch, Concrete5, ImpressPages, and the like), it’s not always an option. A massive percentage of the Internet is built on WordPress for a reason after all. I’ve looked for different options over the years,...
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The best free WordPress plugins, March 2015

Hey WordPress lovers. Every month dozens of incredible free WordPress plugins are released by the community, and we’re here to bring them to you. This seems to be a month of small but useful utilities that only do one or two things, with a few exceptions. So go on. March on down to the list, and get to it! (I'm only a little bit ashamed of that pun.) WP NoteUp ... Notes! Alongside your posts and pages! Use them to remind yourself, or other authors, about things you'd put in a note. That's really all there is to...
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Introducing Frontend Debugger for WordPress

You’ve been writing HTML/CSS, and a little bit of JS for an hour now. This next template for your WordPress theme is almost complete. With an unconscious sigh of relief, you refresh the page, and there it is! It’s done. You deserve a break. And then you see it. Something is positioned wrong, or missing. Something’s out of order. Something’s wrong. Awww, hell. Why now? Why me? Why do bad things happen to good... ok, decent people? It’s a bug. It hurts to look at. So, incidentally, does your code....
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Why developers should embrace progressive enhancement

Mobile devices are growing in usage worldwide. People are buying more smartphones — and tablets — each and every year. Moreover, people are using their mobile devices more and more to access the web. It’s important to take the web experience on a mobile device into account. It’s important today and it will be even more important tomorrow as the number of users is constantly increasing. Progressive enhancement is a philosophy that makes sure that people have an easy access to your information,...
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How to chart your hours with APIs, JavaScript, and SVG

I log every minute I spend at a computer. Ever since I became a full-time freelancer, I’ve been tracking my time, assigning each moment of my day to a project and a sub-task. It all started from a desire to make the best possible return on my time. As a freelancer who charged hourly, each and every minute had a monetary value. I’ve since relaxed my approach, but some positive aspects of time-watching have stuck with me. The over-used Drucker quote goes something like “What’s measured improves”,...
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40 tools for writing better CSS

We all know CSS is great. It makes our sites look good, can be used to add animation, and keeps the presentation separate from the content. It can be hard, though, to know everything there is to know about CSS. It only gets harder as we try to make our code cross-browser compatible. This is where third-party tools come in. From simplifying our workflows, to generating actual CSS, these tools give us the code we need, faster, even as we learn to write it ourselves. Pure ... Pure is not quite a framework. Rather,...
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