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Archive for the ‘Tools’ Category

Coding websites is a long tedious process and there’s always more to learn. Why not make the job a little easier by writing code with an Integrated Development Environment? These programs(IDE for short) have syntax highlighting and many other features which expedite the coding process. This post features 11 web development programs which span the gamut of Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems.

Visual Studio Express

visual studio express software webdev

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Although somewhat of an offbeat concept, storing your documents in WordPress can provide a number of benefits. PDFs and other types of documents(Word, Excel, PowerPoint) can be quickly shared with others who need access to certain information. Google Drive provides a cloud-based approach but it’s not a completely private solution.

There aren’t too many plugins available with this direct functionality. However the plugins which are out there have some of the best interfaces imaginable. Take a look over this collection and see if you can find any valuable resources to handle online document storage in WordPress.

BSK PDF Manager

bsk pdf manager plugin open source

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Between smartphones and tablets there are so many new apps being released every month. If you manage a website then you probably know these apps can be helpful with content, marketing, and checking traffic stats.

But there are even applications to help manage your website if it’s based on a certain Content Management System. This gallery includes a number of apps you can download and incorporate into your schedule when out and about. If you’re using any mainstream CMS engine you might be surprised at what’s available!

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Being productive is always a challenge. All of us have too many things to do, emails to reply, news to read, meetings to attend, stuff to organize, social media to update and so on. The problem is that staying on top of all that while doing our work and taking care of our sanity may be a real challenge. This is why we are so thankful to productivity tools and services. Read the rest of this entry »

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  • While developers may love diving under the hood, those are usually marketing people who end up using content management systems and paying money for web design agencies. And so great content management systems must be built with the actual content managers in mind first. One of such systems is ImpressPages.

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    On every website, there are 3rd party scripts that track us (for serving ads, generating stats, displaying content, etc.).

    Ghostery is a free browser extension that informs us about these scripts on every page.

    And, besides informing, it allows us to block them too and this can be made categorically or item-by-item.

    Ghostery

    As a web user, such a plugin is so nice. And, as a web developer, it is great as we can instantly see which website uses which scripts or enable/disable them to see how sites behave for debugging purposes.

    Ghostery is available for all major browsers and even for mobile.

    It is important to have a comfortable development environment to code better and faster.

    And, there are numerous IDEs for that purpose, mostly paid and few free ones.

    CodeLobster PHP Edition is a free IDE that has all the features we can expect. It is pretty powerful.

    When starting, we can choose one of the many code-higlighting themes for the application (there are options which mimic the popular IDEs).

    CodeLobster

    As the name states, it is suitable for PHP (or client-side) developers. A built-in debugger exists and a source-comment filter simplifies locating the right lines of any file so easily.

    The UI has support for multiple tabs, code is highlighted successfully even if multiple languages are used on the same file and there is autocompletion for HTML, PHP, CSS and Javascript, including HTML5 and CSS3.

    CodeLobster has FTP integration and uploading files to any remote address is simple.

    The application has some handy and hidden features like “pressing F1 on any function or element gets you to a related documentation page about it” or “an index can help you locate them quickly”.

    CodeLbster WordPress Plugin

    Besides the free edition, there are 2 more versions: Lite and Pro where

    • Lite version:
      • is integrated to all the popular version control systems (Git, SVN, Mercurial, TortoiseSVN)
      • has an SQL manager that can produce all necessary actions on a database
      • supports LESS and SASS
      • has code validator, formatter and snippets
    • Pro version:
      • has all the features of Lite
      • has plugins for WordPress, Joomla, Drupal
      • has plugins for CakePHP, CodeIgniter, Symfony, Yii and Smarty
      • has plugin for jQuery
    Coding with these plugins is very fast and easy as they have auto-complete and you don’t need to go back-and-forth to make sure you are using the right syntax.

    The giveaway

    CodeLobster is giving away 3 Pro licenses to WRD readers. You can join it by simply commenting to this post and winners will be selected randomly with the query below 1 week later (12 Nov 2013):

    SELECT * FROM wp_comments WHERE comment_post_id=4771 AND comment_approved=1 AND comment_type='' GROUP BY comment_author_email ORDER BY RAND() LIMIT 3

    Good luck to all.

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  • Google has released a new tool, named Google Web Designer, for creating interactive HTML5 sites and ads.

    It is a modern WYSIWYG where you don’t need to dive into the code but use the features to get the output and the tools are mostly design-oriented.

    However, the code generated is always there and it can be edited or tweaked and the result is displayed automatically.

    Google Web Designer

    The tool comes with ready-to-use settings for designing Google-powered ads (DocubleClick, AdMob) that will work on any device.

    There are built-in components like 360 or carousel galleries, YouTube video embedding and more.

    A timeline exists for animations and anything can be drawn with a pen tool (not limited to shapes).

    Google Web Designer is currently in beta status and it is available for both Windows + Mac.

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  • Web designers/developers who write client-side code with a language that needs to be compiled, usually lose some time going back and forth with their editors and the compiling interface (usually command line).

    If you don’t already have a setup for auto-compiling, Koala might be what you need.

    It is a desktop application that works on Windows, Mac + Linux and can compile Less, Sass, Compass + CoffeeScript.

    Koala Compiler

    Koala can compile the files manually or automatically once they are changed and compresses them.

    Also, it is possible to set different options for each file to be compiled.

    Lately, a post at WRD had introduced Hack St. which was a handy web app for debugging HTTP requests.

    Postman is a similar tool with more features and comes as a free Chrome extension.

    It allows sending any type of HTTP requests (GET, HEAD, POST, PUT..) with any number of parameters + headers.

    Postman Chrome Extension

    There is support for different authentication mechanisms (basic, digest, OAuth) and the response received is syntax highlighted (HTML, JSON or XML).

    Postman keeps a history of requests so that we can easily re-send them later and has a “collections” feature for storing all requests to the same API/domain.

    The extension even has some more features to simplify testing and debugging of HTTP requests. A must-have for every web developer.

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