I use many of these plugins on a daily basis and would recommend them to any web developer.
Firebug allows you to inspect elements on a web page and see the associated attributes. You can edit in real time allowing you to quickly make changes to an elements colour, position, border or behavior.
Firebug has a number of extensions that will be covered later on in this article.
Clicking display alt tags under the images menu is a quick way to see if you have missed any. The resize menu lets you test your site in different resolutions.
Extended statusbar is useful to way to see how large a page is to download and how long it takes to load. I often use this to help monitor slow loading pages.
Colorzila allows you to mouse over elements on the screen to see the colour. Its very useful if you need to match a colour or check a colour is correct.
(Note US spelling 'color').
MeasureIT simply allows you to measure elements on a screen and gives you the measurement in pixels. Very useful for checking the height of objects, text spacing and the overall width of the page.
An easy way to take screen shots of a page. Especially useful if the page includes scroll bars as it saves you copying and pasting multiple screen shots together.
YSlow shows you various options on how to speed up your website. Clearly not all are suitable/cost effective for a website such as ImAFish however many are very relevant. Each item is given a rating from A to F and a full explanation on how to implement. YSlow is developed by Yahoo.
8. Page Speed
Linkification is a simply little plugin that converts any URL on the screen into a clickable link. Quite useful for those times someone has forgotten to turn a URL into a link.
10. IE Tab
IE Tab is a nice plugin to test your page in Internet Explorer without actually having to open the Browser. It's also useful if you want a fresh session for a website without having to open another browser.
After Apple recently announced a delay to OS X 10.5 Leopard I had to delay my iMac upgrade until the Autumn. This led me to thinking about how to speed up Tiger to get the most out of my ageing G5. This is what I came up with:
1. Repair Disk Permissions Navigate to Applications > Utilities > Disk Utility. Select your Macintosh HD and select Verify Disk Permissions. If needed you can then Repair Disk Permissions.
2. Clear out login items Its good to check that unwanted programs are not starting up when you login to your Mac. This can be done from System Preferences > Accounts > Login Items.
3. Clear out unwanted applications Go through your applications folder and see if you can save yourself some disk space by removing any applications you no longer use.
4. Clear out unused system preferences Check in your system preferences if there are any unused system preferences tabs that can be removed. If you do find something you don't use you can either disable it within its menu or remove it from '~/Library/PreferencePanes'. You may have to reboot or do a force empty trash (see #38).
5. Clear Desktop Its been reported numerous times that having a clear desktop can increase the speed of your Mac. So either put your junk in folders or delete it!
6. Empty Trash (if it wont empty see #38) I'm always amazed when I'm looking on someone's Mac and they haven't ever emptied the trash! Check what's in there then save yourself some space and empty it.
7. Turn off Universal Access (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Universal Access and turn off anything you're not using.
8. Turn off Bluetooth (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Bluetooth.
9. Turn off speech recognition (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Speech Recognition.
10. Turn off internet sharing (if not used) Navigate to System Preferences > Sharing > Internet
11. Check there is plenty of disk space on the boot drive. Your Mac uses some of your hard drive space as virtual memory when there is not enough actual memory available. Its good to always keep 10% of your hard drive free for such activity.
12. Remove Unwanted Language Packs OS X contains hundreds of languages that you most likely wont use. Monolingual is a free program that can root out these languages and remove them saving you some extra disk space.
*Edit: Warning people have experienced problems with Monolingual so becareful what you remove. Only a reinstall will put the languages back so decide weather you really need the extra space by removing them.
13. Remove any desktop changing programs Until recently I had a nice program that would put a different babe on my desktop each month. It looked great but once I started looking in activity monitor it was taking up lots of memory and processor time.
14. Check dock for unwanted apps. Your dock should only contain your most used applications so take a look through to see if there is anything you can remove or uninstall.
15. Choose suitable applications for files Be sensible when choosing what applications open by default - think do you really need Photoshop to open just to view an image when preview will work fine? Right click on a file then select Get Info.
16. Check Software Build If you have an Intel Mac then check the build of the software is universal - it might be that the application is still running through Rosetta and that a universal update is available.
17. Remove dock animation Navigate to System Preferences > Dock then un-tick Animate Opening Applications.
18. Avoid animated desktops Navigate to System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver then un-tick Change picture.
19. Remove unused widgets. Each widget takes some memory and processor power even when you're not using the dashboard so only enable the ones you use. Alternatively you can disable the dashboard - see #23.
20. Check to see how much processing power and memory each widget uses. Some widgets are more intensive than others, if there is one that is particularly demanding see if there is one with similar functionality on the Apple website. To do this run Activity Monitor - Applications > Utilities > Activity Monitor.
As you can see the widgets I have running are all using an acceptable amount of Real Memory.
Tinkertool Tinkertool is a utility that gives you access to additional settings within OS X.
21. Remove animation effects. The animation effects are the eye candy that make OS X look nice but they are not really needed, you can turn them off from the Finder pane within Tinkertool.
22. Disable Dock shadow. From the Dock pane un-tick Enable Dock shadow.
23. Disable Dashboard. If you don't use the Dashboard you can deactivate it from the General pane.
24. Skip checksum verifications when opening DMG files. This will speed up the loading of disk images when opening. This can be found in the Applications pane.
25. Remove or deactivate unwanted login items from the Login Items pane. You might already have done this in #2.
26. Reduce delay time for display of loading pages in Safari. This should speed up your web browsing experience, found within the Safari Pane.
OnyX OynX is similar to Tinkertool however has many more options and preferences.You may have already done some of these in previous tips. Parameters
27. Un-tick Graphic Effects (Finder tab). You may already have done this with Tinkertool #21.
28. Un-tick Animate 'Opening applications' and 'When alert in background' (Dock tab).
29. Disable Dashboard (Dashboard and Expose tab). You may already have done this with Tinkertool #23.
30. Set Safari speed of web page display to fast (Safari Tab). You may already have done this in #26. Maintenance
31. Repair Disk Permissions. You may already have done this in #1.
32. Run Maintenance Scripts.
33. Reset Spotlight Index (it may take over a day to rebuild the index afterwards).
34. Run complete system optimization. Cleaning
35. Clear Internet Settings.
36. Clear User and Font Caches.
37. Clear unused logs.
38. Force Empty Trash Automation
39. Check settings - The default settings should be fine here. Click Execute.
You can do some of the following by resetting Safari - click Safari > Reset Safari. *Edit: Resetting Safari does not clear Favicons.
40. Clear Cache. To speed up page loading Safari saves a copy of every page in its cache however if the cache gets too large it can actually slow down page loading so its best to empty it occasionally. To do so click Safari > Empty Cache.
41. Clear History. Safari can remember every single site you have visited which can have a negative effect on its performance. You can empty it be selecting History > Clear History.
42. Clear AutoFill. AutoFill is the data is saved in forms such as your username and password on websites. As with the cache and history the AutoFill can mount up over time. To empty select Safari > Preferences then select the AutoFill tab. From here you can go through the three AutoFill sections and clear out data that you no longer want stored.
43. Clear Favicons. Favicons are the little icons you see to the left of the URL in the address bar. These can be cleared by emptying user folder/Library/Safari/Icons.
44. If you use Firefox then you can get specially optimized versions of the browser based on your processor architecture - either G4, G5 or intel.
45. Extensions Firefox has some great extensions but they can slow down the browser so take a serious look to see weather you really need that extra toolbar!
46. Smart Playlists These can slow down the operation of iTunes as they reload the contents of the list every time the program loads. If you have a a smart play list that does not change very often then you can either deactivate live updating (by clicking file > edit smart play list) or copy of the contents of the smart play list in to a regular play list.
47. HP Printer drivers can often cause problems and use a lot of processor power so check in the activity monitor for HP Communicator, if it seems to be constantly running at 80% - 100% then try uninstalling it. I had problems on my Mac Mini for my HP PSC 1110 all in one with the HP software on OS X 10.3 maxing out the CPU after printing. I had to remove the software and just use the basic drivers rather than the full suite.
48. Check Classic is not running if not being used. Classic can be disabled from within System Preference.
49. Run Software Update. The latest updates sometimes provide speed increases as well as fix bugs and vulnerabilities.
51. Add More RAM. There is only so much you can do with software, the cheapest way to give you're Mac a speed boost is to upgrade the memory.
52. Reboot your Mac. After doing all this optimization it might be an idea to reboot your Mac. If your like me and use sleep mode for the majority of the time then a reboot once in a while often helps too!
Update: Interested in seeing how many hits this article has got and how to do it for your blog then read here?
Google Pack is a collection of free software packaged together with one simple installer distributed by Google. The pack includes a mixture of software including some of Googles own products such as Picasa and Google Desktop, and other programs such as Adobe reader and Norton Antivirus 2005 SE. The pack revolves around the updater that acts a package manager for downloading programs and updates.
A full list of the programs available: Google Earth Google Desktop Picasa Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer Google Pack Screensaver Mozilla Firefox with Google Toolbad Ad-Ware SE Personal Norton Antivirus 2005 Special Edition Adobe Reader 7 Google Talk Google Video Player RealPlayer GalleryPlayer HD Images When first launching Google Pack it will start downloading and installing software, you can however choose which programs you want. For instance I cancelled Google Desktop as it’s a bit intrusive on my desktop and start bar.
The Google website makes it easy to install programs as they are added to the pack.
Within the installed programs list it is easy to remove programs you don’t need.
Google Pack is a good collection of free software, it does a nice job of keeping them up to date and can integrate with your Google account. I found it especially useful when first installing a new PC as the software included with the pack is often what I find myself installing anyway.
The pack has plenty of room to expand in the future and I would like to see an audio manager, video player and maybe even an office suite such as Open Office. Currently Google Pack is Windows XP only.
Building a solid link profile is a very important part of SEO. However, not all links are created equal. If you are looking to build a solid link profile here are 3 ways you can do just that.
Focus On High Quality Links
The quality of links in your profile matter. If you have thousands of poor quality links pointing to your website Google and other search engines will see that as a problem.
If there are any toxic links pointing to your website, disavow them as soon as possible. Doing so will ensure they don't pass on any bad link juice to your website.
Get Links From Sites In Your Niche
If you are a personal trainer in Los Angeles, you want to make sure your site has links coming from sites in the health and fitness space.
If you have a ton of links coming from a real estate agents site Google will view that as irrelevant and your rankings will take a hit.
Diversify Your Links
Instead of focusing on getting all of your links from one or two niche sites, try getting a range of links from several trustworthy sites.
When a trustworthy site is linking back to you the search engines see that as a good thing and will send you more traffic as a result.
A solid link profile is the key to getting quality organic traffic to your website. It doesn't matter how well you have optimized your website, if your link profile isn't strong your traffic and conversions will suffer.
To get the best results you have to put yourself in the place of your ideal customers. What are they searching for when they go to Google? Knowing this information will give you an advantage over the competition.
Need Help With Your Link Profile?
If you have no idea where to start when it comes to building a solid link profile, 445 Media can help. They are experts in both on and off page SEO and can help you build a link profile that drives hundreds of targeted visitors to your site every single month.
Do you have a job that keeps you tied to your desk throughout the day? It can be difficult to stay in shape in an office environment, but there are things you can do to try and maintain a healthy lifestyle. Read on for our top five work fitness tips to help you avoid piling on the pounds.
Adjust your posture
Many people fall into the trap of slouching at their desk. Sitting up straight is a calorie-burner as it contributes to toning your physique. Your back and core muscles tighten up when you sit up straight, helping to tone them as well. Having correct posture can prevent backaches and neck pain, allowing you to continue exercising away from work without injuries or injuring yourself further.
Don't skip lunch or 'down time'
Do you usually grab your lunch without taking a break from your work? This usually results in us rushing something unhealthy down and increases the chances of putting on weight. Choosing healthy options such as fruits, vegetables and fat free yogurts away from your desk can help you stay fit. Take time away from the daily grind and utilise your lunch hour to do something enjoyable such as trying out casumo free spins or reading a good book can also help our wellbeing.
Keep yourself mobile
Standing up and going for a short walk can help you stay in shape as this will increase your activity levels during the day. If you need to speak with a colleague, pop along to their office rather than phoning or sending an email. At lunchtime try and get outside for some fresh air – even a brisk 15 minute walk can make a difference to your fitness levels.
Don't overdo tea or coffee
It can be notoriously difficult to try to control your intake of tea and coffee at work. This can be made worse if you take your drinks with sugar. Drink plenty of water throughout the day so that you remain hydrated and alert. Water can trick your body into feeling full, significantly diminishing your hunger and cravings.
Don't skip your gym session
You can soon get out of the habit of visiting the gym if you have an office job, but keeping a workout in your daily routine will undoubtedly help you to stay in shape. Most gyms offer early morning sessions, so why not get up an hour earlier and start the day on a treadmill or exercise bike? A quick shower afterwards will leave you refreshed and ready to tackle your office duties.