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Create your Own Short URLs

Short URL services have become a critical part of sharing links around the web. These services take a long URL like http://markhodder.com/2011/02/create-your-own-short-urls/ and convert it to a smaller URL like http://mah.lt/s/6

Both links point to the same source, one just has fewer characters (17 vs 53)

These shorter links save precious space, which is critical when it comes to sharing them on Twitter. More then just making a link shorter, these services can also collect additional data, every time the link is clicked.

Information like how many people clicked the link, the countries they visited from and the source where the link was clicked. They even make it easy to update a link after it’s been shared. This allows you to point to a new source if the content has moved.

Why not use an Existing Service?

There are plenty of companies out there offering this service for free, or for a small fee so why take the time to create your own URL shortner?

The most obvious reason is that you are at the mercy of the companies you create your links with, if they are down so are your links. Even worse, if the company closes down your links could be gone forever.

Another great reason to create your own service is that you can create a more personal link. Instead of promoting a 3rd party company every time you share a link, you can be promoting your own brand.

Finally with some free tools, it’s relatively easy to get setup and creating your own URLs in no time!

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Previous / Next & Back / Next Links

Interesting post on how using these words is bad UI design to represent older and newer content. Instead replace Previous, Next / Back etc. with “Older” or “Newer” links.

A commenter also states that it’s not only the words used but that they are consistent throughout the site as well – simple but often missed concept.

Read the full article

WordPress Expand Text

This WordPress plugin allows you to create sections of text in your post or page which expand/collapse when clicked on. You simply wrap the special tags around your text, and set the ‘expand link’ (the link visitors click on to show the text). If your visitors do not have javascript enabled, the ‘expand link’ is not shown, and the text is displayed normally.

Get it, click here

Demo:


Here is your text! Expanded and in a nice blue box, the box can be customized through CSS.

New WordPress 2.5 Out!

WordPress 2.5 has been released and it’s a big one – so what’s new you ask? Well grab a cup a coffee and pull up a chair, this is going to take a while.

  • Redesigned admin interface
  • New dashboard with a quick view on all the important goings on
  • Multifile uploading with progress bars
  • One-click upgrading of plugins
  • Built in photo gallery
  • Media Library
  • Better WYSIWYG Post and Page editor
  • Search posts and page built in
  • Tag editor
  • EXIF Extraction
  • Concurrent editing protection
  • Password strength meter
  • and a lot lot more…

There have also been many improvements under the hood such as database optimization, secure cookies, salted passwords and inline documentation among others.

This is one of the biggest upgrades I have seen to WordPress in recent memory and I highly recommend checking it out.

Screen shots

Dashboard 2.5

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