Blog Archives

  1. <tutorial>HTML</tutorial>

    HTML From Scratch

    I am often asked where to find quality tutorials on beginning learning HTML and all that jazz, so I thought I'd make a video! This is the first in a series I call "From Scratch" that aims to teach total newbies how to make web-pages, I hope the video explains it all well enough and you get something from it. As always comment below if you need any help. You...

  2. Sweet, sweet AJAX goodness!

    WordPress: Load more posts on page scroll

    Note: This article has been marked for a quality review and will soon be updated. Although I don't visit archive pages very often, when I do I like it when I don't have to trawl through pages and pages of 10 posts using tiny navigation buttons at the bottom of the page. A great way to prevent this annoyance for your users is to use AJAX to dynamically append posts...

  3. I ♥ htaccess

    Elegant URL Rewriting

    To me .htaccess files are black magic - one letter wrong and you get internal server errors bouncing around everywhere, so when it came to URL re-writing (more specifically removal of file extensions) I was a little tired of getting "Error 500" messages. But I finally managed to manipulate the dark magic that lyes deep within the realms of the kingdom of .htaccess file, and created a system whereby I...

  4. No not the rainforest

    Build an uploader for S3

    S3 is Amazon's "Simple Storage Service" for hosting content on the web. It allows developers to offload static content to their powerful content delivery network at low cost, to improve site performance. I've used S3 on a number of projects to host content, but one thing that only recently cropped up wad the notion of allowing users to upload their own content to the service from within any given site....

  5. The classic beach-ball

    Adding subtle user feedback

    We all hate waiting for websites to load right? It's annoying to watch images download and wait for Twitter streams to render isn't it? Well it's a fact that 99% of websites have this issue - that is, that load time is about 1 or 2 seconds. Now for companies like Google it isn't an issue, they have enough money to ensure they have sites that load instantly; but for...

  6. This has nothing to do with cheese

    Adding Vignettes to Images with CSS

    Vignettes are something we've been able to add to images in Photoshop for many years - it describes the technique of reducing clarity towards the edges of images by reducing things like saturation and brightness, and can often give an image a different quality. It was for that reason that I decided I wanted to use them in my designs, but I certainly didn't want to use images that were...

  7. Focus on the content

    Trimming the Fat

    In light of the recent redesign of Tom's Big Box I thought I write a post about some of the design choices I made with regard to 'trimming the fat'. I want to look at the attitudes towards certain aspects of websites, and more specifically blogs. In re-designing the site I was constantly asking myself "is this element entirely necessary". Tom's Big Box isn't about showing off my skills as...

  8. The all-new look

    Site Redesign 2011

    Well I finally got around to it! For months I've been procrastinating and finding other thing to do, but today I am proud to announce that I have successfully redesigned the blog and built a new theme. What you see before you is the result of many hours working on design and coding (as most websites are), during the process which spanned several months, I had about 4 different designs...

  9. Tom is busy working...

    Updates are coming!

    I've not blogged in months, I know, I'm lazy. But things are going to change. I am in the process of redesigning the site and have a number of articles that I'm working on, so this is just a post to check in and let you know I'm not gone and am going to return to blogging in the near future. So where have I been? Well I've been busy...

  10. Cookies!

    Use PayPal for pay-per-post on WordPress.

    Note: This article has been marked for a quality review and will soon be updated. As you may know I like WordPress - it's a great platform for building websites on. As you may not know is, I like PayPal - it's an easy to way to safely make quick payments online. Now you may be asking what the hell I'm on about, have I been paid by WP and...

  11. Who won?!

    Poster Giveaway – The Winner

    The other week I posted a competition to win a fantastic prize from Digital Room, to be more specific, a chance to use (for free) their online poster maker to create 1 18x24 Poster Print, Semi Gloss / High Gloss poster. Now, luckily for those who entered TBB isn't the world's most popular blog (yet 🙂 ), and so there wasn't too much competition. So who won? Well thanks to...

  12. Poster Goodness

    Poster Giveaway

    It's that time again people - when the kind folks of this world decide to use me to give things away to you guys! This time I'm happy to announce that it is a poster giveaway! So what's the deal? Well the guys over at Digital Room have provided free access to their fantastic online poster maker service. Digital Room offers some fantastic services (in this case, their great online...

  13. iPad Apps

    My Favourite iPad apps so far

    So I've had the iPad for some time now, and I've decided to make a review of a number of the apps. Now you might be asking yourself why I'm doing this, and the reason for this, is because I want people who are thinking of buying the apps, to have a more rounded view of them, instead of having some trendy bearded man telling them it's the best thing...

  14. Straight up stuff

    QuickTip: Create a dotted/dashed line in Photoshop

    More and more often nowadays I am finding the need to create dotted or dashed lines in my Photoshop mockups, but what is a ten second job in CSS, could turn out to be a ten minute job in Photoshop if you don't know how to do so easily. Before I came across the trick I'm going to show you today I would do one of two things. Either just...

  15. Finishing up

    Screencast #4 – Creating a WordPress Theme – Part 2

    In part two of this tutorial I show you how to finish off creating a basic WordPress theme, demonstrating the creation of a single post page as well as looking at how the commenting system works. Also in the video is how to create custom page templates and then apply them to different pages, as well as using theme options to enhance the user experience; and of course "widgetizing" the...

  16. Get going

    Screencast #3 – Creating a WordPress Theme – Part 1

    In part one of this tutorial I show you how to get started creating a WordPress theme, explaining all about the core files and how WordPress works. I'll show you how to install WordPress and how to convert existing markup into a theme. In the tutorial I develop a theme named "Curiosity" - the markup for which can be found below the video. Part 2 is coming soon so stay...

  17. Up a little, now down.

    Using absolute and relative positioning

    Now to many people this might be a really simple concept, that is the concept of using absolute and relative positioning; but I remember when I started web design I wasn't really sure what either meant. So this article is aimed at explaining why you might want to use the two properties in conjunction with one another, to have more control over how your site looks. So we'll start with...

  18. outsidePosts

    Publishing to WordPress from outside the admin panel

    Note: This article has been marked for a quality review and will soon be updated. I recently finished up a theme for which I had to allow users to post to WordPress from outside the admin panel. Now at first you may wonder why anyone would want to do such a thing, but let me tell you of my scenario. Basically I was creating a job board whereby users could...

  19. fbdagger

    Why Facebook is potentially fatal

    So that's a rather brash title isn't it? Well I feel that a subject like this needs to be met with outright forwardness and it is for this reason that I am writing this article. Now this isn't an article bashing Facebook or it's recently changed privacy settings, its about the people that use it. I'll start with a case in point. A friend of mine posted a status update...

  20. uprintingWinner

    500 Free Business Cards Winner

    So that's it! The competition, which started only last week, is over and luckily for those who entered, there wasn't too much opposition! So the winner of this fantastic prize, who wins a fantastic 500 free business cards from UPrinting with free shipping in the US is... Spencer Hogg   Well done to him, and thank you to all of you who entered! But don't worry if you didn't win,...

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