Three Signs it’s time to quit your job

LinkedIn seems to only be about management strategy and recruitment, but it does mean that sometimes you see posts like this one that I saw recently entitled “Nine Signs It’s Time To Quit Your Job”. It made me wonder what other signs there were that maybe it was time to move on. So here are three of my own:

  1. You accidentally left your axe embedded in the desk of your least favourite colleague.
  2. You forgot to take your bosses’ shoes out of the microwave.
  3. No matter how hard you try you can’t get rid of the permanent marker from the photocopier glass.

I am sure there are more. What do you reckon?


Shout out today to the very remarkable Heather Burns and all those involved in WordPress 4.9.6 which landed today. It’s the one with the privacy stuff…

If you run WordPress you should be notified of the available update any time now.

Things to jump out straight away – the ease at which a Privacy Policy can be added. I know, it doesn’t sound like much, adding pages is a fundamental of WordPress really but the fact you can instruct WP to create a new page and that adds in the headings and starter content for you to consider is excellent.

The data export and data erase tools come in to play too, which is nice. Oh, and WP have added some PHP polyfills to core.

All in all – a very handy update.

Unlikely things to say

I recently had the pleasure of setting up a WordPress install for a client who already had GoDaddy hosting.

I won’t say this too loud or often, and hopefully no one will read this anyway, but I was pleasantly surprised by the GoDaddy WordPress hosting that he had – it included SSH access, default plugins that seemed to be useful rather than hinder, and most impressive was the inclusion of a full staging area, with quick and simple deployment options.

A staging area is, in my experience, missed off the list of things to use by so many, it was good to see this done on what has to be said is a very low budget hosting solution.

Gutenberg Color Pallette

I know that the rather lovely Gutenberg isn’t supposed to be used on production sites yet but I figure this blog doesn’t really count so I’m using this as my playground. I am also very aware that Gutenberg has split opinion in the WordPress community and there are a lot of issues to work through but, as I mentioned very briefly before, I am enjoying Gutenberg and like the direction it is taking WordPress as a content editor.

There will be a lot of head scratching and working out to be done to make sure sites I’ve made work with it, and to work out how Gutenberg sits alongside all the WordPress site builders that I’ve inherited over the last few years, but I’ve added it in to my work flow for site development now, taking me away from encouraging people to use something such as Divi or similar. They are great, but, when simplicity is desired, Gutenberg works for me.


Anyway – enough of that – the above code snippet is one of my new favourite things. It is, I think, pretty obvious what it does – as the code suggests it edits the colour palette options that are available in the Gutenberg editor (for those of you who don’t know Gutenberg – see the image, it’s a handy little Background / Text Colour editor). Drop the snippet in to your theme’s functions file and you’re away.

Simply put, this snippet lets you, the designer / developer behind the website, encourage the content creator for the site to use specific colours within their content. Very handy! The colour picker remains in place so people can go off-piste if they are that way inclined although even that functionality can be removed with the addition of add_theme_support('disable-custom-colors') if you need such restrictions.


NB Thanks to for the colour scheme in this example.


$ftp_conn = ftp_connect($host) or die("Could not connect to server");
$login = ftp_login ($ftp_conn, $user, $password);

I am pretty sure that ftp_connect isn’t recommended from a security point of view, and probably hasn’t been for a couple of hundred years.

Having said that, it turns out that when a third party says ‘to hell with the security concerns’, and only gives you access to FTP for an order process it’s pretty straight forward to connect with the PHP I’m putting together.


The importance of alignment…

We took the kids to The National Emergency Services Museum earlier this week. It was fabulous, and the entry was one of those annual ticket things, so more visits will be had during the next twelve months I am sure. The kids learnt a lot that day, one unintended lesson was how important it is to consider alignment when creating a word search!

Streaming like a pro?

Last week I had the pleasure of live streaming an event from Holyrood, Edinburgh.

Highlights included the 10k run round Arthur’s Seat (no, not up) in the morning, having a plastic tub security cleared by security people with guns, forgetting to put my belt back on after security clearance, and getting to play with fun kit for a few hours.

Lowlight (but fun really) was having our setup time cut from a comfortable 2 hours, to a rather tight 40 minutes.

I’d like to make the output more professional (especially from a post production editing point of view) but I do feel I’m getting the hang of live streaming. At the moment the kit is a bit of ‘what can we throw at it’ and included:

2 x Canon XA10 cameras on tripods
1 x rather large Mac (it’s all we had!)
1 x Allen&Heath Zed10 USB mixer (taking a feed from the front of house mix, plus adding in a second mic for our stream ‘reporter’)
1 x OBS Studio which I really like…
1 x rather reliable 4G modem / router
Lots x gaffer tape

It’s a lot of fun. I’ll post some more as I’m hoping to be able to do more of this in the coming year…