12 Essential Plugins for WordPress Developers

Posted by Harshad

12 Essential Plugins for WordPress Developers

12 Essential Plugins for WordPress Developers

Posted: 06 Mar 2014 07:01 AM PST

As the current most-used CMS, WordPress has numerous plugins that enhances its capabilities. To name a few, there is a very popular plugin called WooCommerce that turns WordPress into a full-fledged e-commerce platform, and bbPress that allows one to run a forum on the site.

Apart from the plugins for general users, WordPress has quite a number that are aimed at developers too. If you are a developer looking to develop either a plugin or theme for WordPress, we have put together some essential and handy plugins that will help make the job much easier.

1. Debug Bar

Debug Bar adds a new menu called Debug at the admin bar. Click on the menu, and it will neatly display information like cache, total queries, total queried time, and memory usage that will be very useful in the debugging process. In addition, you may also see some PHP Warnings and Notices that occur when you enable WP_DEBUG.

2. Log Deprecated Notices

Some functions in WordPress have been deprecated, meaning they are no longer recommended for usage. Log Deprecated Notices is a plugin that will list all these functions as they are found in the plugin or theme and even show us alternatives.

3. Monster Widget

Monster Widget is designed for WordPress theme developers. It contains all the 13 WordPress Core widgets – such as Text Widget, Category Widget, and Tag Cloud – in a single widget. It’s convenient, saves a lot of time and ensures that they are presented nicely in the theme.

4. Regenerate Thumbnails

If you often set a new size of image thumbnails, whether in your theme or plugin, you may find Regenerate Thumbnails useful. It allows you to regenerate all the thumbnail images in the library in the new size you want, with a single click. The process, however, may take a while depending on the amount of images – especially when you run it in a live site.


5. RTL Tester

Since there are many WordPress users out there who read and write from right-to-left (RTL), you might need to test your theme or plugin in RTL mode as well. Install RTL Tester, and a new button is added to the admin bar that enables you to switch between the right and left text direction.

6. Simply Show IDs

This plugin adds a new column at the right side of the WordPress table that displays entry IDs. This way you can easily grab the ID for each entry including Posts, Pages, Categories, Media, Links, and Tags.

7. Theme Check

Theme Check is a must-install plugin for every WordPress theme developer. It measures the WordPress theme against the current WordPress coding standards and best practices. It also checks for required elements that need to be present in the theme such as the theme screenshot, licenses, and author information.

8. User Switching

With User Switching, you can switch between registered users without having to repeatedly enter usernames and passwords. Once activated, you will see a new menu called Switch off in the admin bar, as you can see from the following screenshot. If you need a plugin that creates a new role with a set of new capabilities, this plugin will certainly come in handy.

9. WordPress Reset

This plugin allows you to reset WordPress to its initial state. It will remove the previous contents, additions, and customizations from the database. However, it does not remove the files that have been uploaded previously.

10. Beta Tester

Beta Tester lets you update to WordPress Beta, Release Candidate (RC), or Nightly version easily, which is useful to test the compatibility of your theme or plugin with the upcoming version.

11. Query Monitor

Query Monitor adds a new toolbar at the WordPress admin bar and shows query data along with a bunch of other features that have not yet been seen in other debugging plugins, and would be very helpful in the process. These include showing HTTP Requests, Transients, Redirects, Ajax Call, Hooks, and PHP Errors.

12. WordPress Style Guide

This plugin provides references for developing WordPress Admin UI. It includes references for jQuery UI Components, Forms, Helper Classes, and Dashicons, which is the new icon set used in MP6.


10 Exchanges To Buy And Sell Bitcoins

Posted: 06 Mar 2014 05:01 AM PST

While Mt. Gox imploded recently, losing 750,000 Bitcoins and filing for bankruptcy, the Bitcoin ecosystem seems to have weathered the storm quite well. The price of Bitcoins recovered in the wake of the Mt. Gox fiasco, hitting a high of $701.32 per coin. It seems that reports of Bitcoin’s death have been greatly exaggerated after all. Mt. Gox may have been the largest Bitcoin exchange right before it went under, but that doesn’t mean that it was the only game in town.


The nature of the Bitcoin marketplace means that there are a lot of other exchanges out there where you can trade Bitcoins with national currencies as well as other cryptocurrencies. Some of these exchanges claim to do things differently from first-generation services such as Mt. Gox, and some, like Coinbase, have even received funding from venture capitalists. There’s no guarantee that there won’t be a repat of Mt. Gox, so tread wisely, but if you want to start buying and selling Bitcoins, here’s 10 exchanges you should take a look at.

1. Kraken

Kraken is a feature-rich cryptocurrency trading platform. It combines Forex trading and Bitcoin exchanges into one comprehensive service. Kraken has advanced order forms such as Stop-Loss, Trailing Stop and Take Profit, meaning that you can trade exactly how you want. To match these trading features, Kraken has big-picture security, including full reserves, extensive legal council and strong relationships with banks.


Kraken supports USD and EUR. However, trading with national currencies requires level 2 verification. There are four tiers of verification on Kraken. The amount Kraken charges for deposits and withdrawals depends on the currency. Transaction times also differ. Full lists are available in the FAQ. Kraken also supports Litecoin, Namecoin and Ripple.

2. Bitstamp

Bitstamp is a Slovenian-based Bitcoin exchange, previously the second-largest exchange behind Mt. Gox. It doesn’t offer a lot of advanced buying or selling order forms. Bitstamp has an instant buy/sell order that buys and sells your coins at the lowest and highest offered price respectively, as well as a limit order that limits maximum purchase and minimum selling prices.


Bitstamp only supports USD. The site charges a nominal fee per transaction, with the size of the fee changing based on a 30 day trading history. Withdrawals are also charged a fee, ranging from 0.90 Euro if you’re part of the Single Euro Payment Area (SEPA) to a $15.00 minimum fee for those outside of the SEPA.

3. Bitfinex

Bitfinex is second only to Bitstamp in terms of transaction volume, and is definitely one of the most advanced Bitcoin exchanges currently operating. You can go short or long, exchange and even trade Bitcoins with leverage, if you so desire. All Bitcoins are stored in a cold wallet and the database is backed up once a day. In addition, Bitfinex works with security company Arcui to detect and prevent intrusions.


Bitfinex only supports USD. It has a relatively complex fee structure, with different fees based on the amount of Bitcoin you’ve traded over a 30-day period. These fees start at 0.15% and can go as low as 0.1%. Withdrawals in Bitcoin and Litecoin are both free, with a $10 fee charged for international wire withdrawals.

4. BTC-e

BTC-e is one of the larger Bitcoin exchanges on the Internet, behind only Bitstamp and Bitfinex. BTC-e is shrouded in anonymity, with no clues regarding the identities of the individuals behind it and where the exchange is truly based. BTC-e is built on the MetaTrader 4 platform and intends to start publishing audited financial statements in the near future.


BTC-e supports USD, EUR and Russian Rubles. BTC-e charges a 0.2% fee for every transaction conducted on the site, although the site does mention that this fee may be different for each individual account. Aside from Bitcoin, BTC-e also trades in Litecoin, Namecoin, Peercoin and Primecoin.

5. Justcoin

Justcoin is a Bitcoin exchange from Norway. It positions itself as an easy-to-use exchange, and so doesn’t have any advanced trading or exchange features. Security-wise, Justcoin stores its bitcoins in encrypted offline wallets, which are then stored in secure bank vaults. Justcoin also provides two-factor authentication.


Justcoin supports USD, EUR and Norwegian Kroner, and charges a 0.5% trading fee for all transactions. It also supports Litecoin and Ripple, although you can’t buy these currencies directly. Instead, you’ll have to buy Bitcoins first and then exchange for either of the two currencies.

6. Coinbase

Coinbase is more than just a Bitcoin exchange; it’s a comprehensive digital wallet that can be used to store, spend, buy and accept Bitcoins. In a sense, Coinbase is trying to be the PayPal of Bitcoin, letting merchants accept Bitcoin as well as helping users buy, use and store the currency. It claims to offer bank level security and the payment industry best practices, including two-factor authentication.


Coinbase only supports USD and is only for users in the United States. It charges a flat 1% fee on all transfers to and from USD, but doesn’t charge for Bitcoin to Bitcoin transactions. Coinbase also has a mobile wallet app for Android as well as an SMS-based mobile wallet.

7. BTCChina

BTCChina is China’s leading Bitcoin exchange, both in terms of trading volumes and the amount of liquidity. BTCChina has a number of notable security features going for it, including its new Picasso service, which offers offline storage of Bitcoins. Since BTCChina focuses on a specific country, it also provides SMS verification for added security.


BTCChina only supports Chinese Yuan. The exchange charges a 0.1% trading commission fee. However, limit orders not executed immediately get a 0.1% rebate upon completion. In addition, "market-makers" that add to market liquidity are exempted from trading commission and get a 0.1% market-maker rebate.

8. CampBX

CampBX is a United States-based Bitcoin exchange with a number of advanced trading features. Some of these features include Spend-X trades, short selling and margin trading, although the latter two are not yet active. CampBX promises 99.99% uptime and is audited daily by security auditor McAfee. CampBX also has Google TOTP two-factor authentication.


CampBX only accepts USD at the moment, but they are working on accepting EUR. Fees for both quick and advanced orders are 0.55%, with bulk discounts available. CampBX also has its own Testnet version, which lets users practice trading with easily-obtained coins akin to play money.

9. Cryptsy

Cryptsy is the exchange to go to for trading between different cryptocurrencies. Cryptsy lets you trade over 60 different types of cryptocurrencies, from the more popular cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Litecoin to less-popular cryptocurrencies such as QuarkCoin, ZetaCoin and, yes, Dogecoin. As of now, Cryptsy focuses on coin-to-coin trading, but it intends to allow users to trade in USD soon.


Cryptsy also plans to expand its service offerings and establish escrow services, further establishing itself as a service for merchants looking to start accepting cryptocurrencies. Cryptsy charges a 0.2% fee on purchases and a 0.3% fee on sales.

10. Bter

Bter is a lot like Cryptsy in that it’s more of a large altcoin exchange rather than a place to buy and sell Bitcoins. Bter was one of the first altcoin exchanges to support Primecoin. Unlike Cryptsy, Bter also enables you to buy and sell coins using Chinese Yuan. Bter includes security provisions such as manual withdrawal confirmation and Google TOTP two-factor authentication.


Bter only supports Chinese Yuan. It also developed its own desktop cryptocurrency trading software, BterTrader. The software lets you track trading values, Moving Average indicators and market depth, all from your desktop. Bter charges a 0.2% fee for both sales and purchases.


10 Android Notification Features You Can Fiddle With

Posted: 06 Mar 2014 02:01 AM PST

We have previously covered some of the cool aspects of owning an Android device, for instance, apps you can use for easier app-switching, cool Android homescreens you can DIY, apps you can use to connect to a computer, Xposed modules you can use to bypass flashing, and how to block ads in apps and browsers running on Android.

Today’s topic: notification features on Android, more precisely, what you can play around with on the notification bar or Quick Settings Panel.

Android Notification Bar

From managing your notifications in bulk, putting your profile picture to display on the notification bar to interacting with your apps straight from the bar, here are 10 features you can run on your Android notification bar. Think we missed anything? Let us know in the comments.

1. Display 24-Hour Clock In Notification Bar

Some people might be interested in changing their default time format into a 24-hour format rather than sticking to the 12-hour format. If you love shouting out 1700 hours instead of 5 pm, then you might like to know how to switch your clock to display in the 24-hour format.

  1. Head to Settings > Date & time.
  2. Then tick on Use 24-Hour format.

Display 24 Hour Clock In Notification Bar

2. How To Put Up profile Picture In Notification Bar

Did you know that you can put your profile picture in the quick settings panel? It is the same picture from your Google+ page so you will need to add your Google+ account to your Android.

  1. Head to Settings > + Add Account.
  2. Choose Google.
  3. Choose Existing or New.

Make sure your Google account is the one you used for your Google+ page and you already have a display picture uploaded there.

How to put up profile picture in Notification bar

3. Hide WiFi Notifications

When your Wi-Fi is on, but no Wi-Fi networks are available, you will keep receiving notiications on available networks. To remove this:

  1. Head to Settings > WiFi.
  2. Press your device menu button or look for the options menu (…) then tap on it.
  3. Tap on Advanced.
  4. Untick Network Notification.

Note: If your Android device does not display such option, you can try this other method (which requires rooted access).

Hide WiFi Notifications

4. Manage Quick Settings Panel

From Jelly Bean you will notice that there are two types of Android notification bar, one with your usual notifications and the other with a settings shortcut also known as the Quick Settings Panel. To manage your Quick Settings Panel:

  1. Head to Settings > Toolbars.
  2. Tap on Quick Settings Panels > Tiles and Layout.
  3. Tap on Add to add more tiles or hold down the current tiles and drag it to the add button to remove it.

Manage Quick Settings Panels

5. Change Default Notification Sound

If the default notification sound is not to your liking, you can easily change it in the settings app. Follow the steps below to change default notification sounds.

  1. Head to Settings > Sound.
  2. Tap on Default notification sound.
  3. Choose your preferred default notification sound.

Change Default Notification Sound

6. Expand And Contract Notification

In Jelly Bean 4.1.2 onwards you can expand and contract (select) app notifications. This way you can see more information regarding the notifications, or you may interact with the notification without having to open the app first.

To expand the notification all you need is just to swipe downwards to expand it and swipe upwards to contract that notification.

Expand And Contract Notification

7. Dismiss All Notifications

Android notification can be cleared easily via this button (see image) available at the top right side of your Android notification bar. Simply tap on the dimiss all notification button to clear all of your notifications immediately. (Do note that notifications that require you to open them such as email, hangouts, whatsapp, etc will re-appear after a while even after dismissal).

Dismiss All Notifications

8. How To Look For Dismissed Notifications

If you have Android Kit Kat and you accidentally dismissed notifications, you can look for your dismissed notifications via these steps.

  1. Long press home screen and select Widgets.
  2. Choose Shortcuts > Notifications.

How to look for dismissed notifications

9. Interact From Within Notifications

If you have Android Jelly Bean 4.1.2, you can interact immediately with your apps from the notification bar. For example, if you’re using Gmail, the moment you receive an email in your notification bar, you will be able to expand it, tap on the reply button, or choose to archive that email. Note that this is limited to only a few apps.

Interact From Within Notifications - gmail, missed call, SMS, screenshot

10. Disable Notifications About Updates

Hate receiving notifications about updates? You can ask the app to not send you one. To disable notifications about updates to apps or games follow these steps.

  1. Go to Settings > Play Store.
  2. Head to Play Store settings by tapping on the navicon.
  3. Untick Notifications.

Do take note that this does not disable automatic updates of apps. For instructions on that, check out this post on Android tips and tricks instead.

Disable Notifications about updates to apps or games


9 Tips For Internet Privacy [Infographic]

Posted: 05 Mar 2014 11:01 PM PST

You probably can’t live without your smartphone, or to a lesser degree, your smartphone has to be within reach at all times, but did you know that the apps and services you run on your phone track your behavior in order to give you "better search results"? If you value the privacy of your search queries, your content preferences, and pretty much what you do on your smartphone, you need to take a look at this infographic by whoishostingthis.com.

Want to know how to search smarter, without your search queries being tracked by any third party? Do you know which browsers respect your privacy more than the mainstream choices? And do you also know that there are plenty of better and safer alternatives for just about any online activity you carry out: video, chat, file storage, even social networking?

Find the answers to all these questions and tell us what you think about the current state of Internet privacy.

Credit: Megan Barnes



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