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Topics - Torben

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Traffic / Automated content writing
« on: May 15, 2019, 05:50:32 PM »
Stumbled over this:

I haven't tried it but it looks cool sites with lots of product data.

Water Cooler / Is Tesla being overrun by its competitors?
« on: January 12, 2018, 09:14:18 AM »
GM is planning to put autonomous steering wheel-free cars on the road in 2019:
We all know that autonomous steering wheel-free cars is the future, but 2019? Wow!

It seems to me that Tesla is turning in to a spearhead tech company, which is showing the way for the rest of the industry but fail to keep up when the technology becomes mainstream.

Tesla is still the leader in electric cars but that too is changing. All major carmakers have plans for electric cars within the next five years. If the industry manages to lower the production cost gab between an electric car and a regular car the competition will be completely reset and Tesla will experience a Nokia/Iphone moment.

We have a lot of Teslaís in Denmark and Norway has the highest Tesla market penetration in the world. In both countries Tesla owners are complaining about many weeks of waiting time on service and repairs because Tesla has supply chain and service issues. The simply donít have the muscle and experience that the traditional carmakers have.

So now they are planning to make a fancy semi-truck and they have already sold 1000. Congratulations. I still donít see Tesla as anything but a spearhead tech company.

Water Cooler / Amazon Drone Towers
« on: July 07, 2017, 12:07:52 PM »
Amazon has applied to patent a drone tower:

Is there any talk about drone traffic congestion in the US?

I'm easily impressed by new tech and I'll be in line to try drone delivery if it ever comes to Denmark. But when you need drone towers to service the drones there is bound to be a lot of drone traffic in the area and I was just wondering if that issue has been raised in the US media?

Traffic / Mobile-first Indexing
« on: February 24, 2017, 10:50:21 AM »
Is Mobile-first Indexing in effect yet? I haven't noticed any official announcements but I'm seeing interesting SERP changes for one of my sites.

I have a responsive site that hides a lot of content on mobile devices. After showing that content on mobile many pages have jumped 2-3 positions in the SERP. It's always difficult to rule out other factors but this smells like Mobile-first.

Hardware & Technology / I have embraced the gayness of the Mac!
« on: January 24, 2017, 09:26:22 AM »
Iím coming out!

A month ago I got the new Macbook and I love it. Maxed out specs except disk size and 5K ď27 screen.

It was time for a new computer and for some time I have been considering Mac. We have 4 Iphones, 4 Ipads and Apple TV in the house, so Iím not a stranger to the Apple world.

My biggest reservation with Mac has always been that my favourite programs didnít come in Mac versions. That has changed in the recent years and only a few of the programs I use only run on Windows. Although sometimes you will only get 99% of the functionality you are used to from the Windows version, but I can live with that. 

Of course, die hard Mac fans will point out Mac alternatives, but they live in an imaginary world and I donít think they have ever been in real life work situations.

Thatís why I havenít turned may back on Windows completely Ė I do have a business to run. Iím using VMware Fusion to run a virtual windows machine on my Mac and the co-exist in harmony with shared folders. That also allows me to have run a Linux server for development with the exact same configuration as my production server.

MacOS is packed with small details that sums up to make a big difference, which the Redmond team could learn a lot from. However, when it comes to Finder, which is the Mac file explorer, team Cupertino needs to put down their cafť latte and spend a month in Redmond.

Dell has been an excellent work companion, but Iím never going back.

Traffic / Matt Cutts is now a spammer
« on: March 29, 2015, 12:14:34 PM »

Water Cooler / Meanwhile in Scandinavia..
« on: January 10, 2014, 10:27:51 AM »

Water Cooler / Friday fun: Tank Paintball
« on: June 28, 2013, 11:22:05 AM »
I've tried paintball and it was good fun.

This beats any friday after work activity:

Web Development / The legacy of Internet Explorer
« on: August 24, 2012, 08:00:21 AM »
Remember Netscape or how about Mosaic?

Internet Explorer is loosing market share but was once the source of most web innovations:

I have just finished developing a traditional corporate website based on WordPress for a client who is fanatic about security, stability and up-time. If you are done laughing I will tell you how we made a rock solid fast website.

Why WordPress? I still havenít found anything better. Drupal is too complex and all Java based CMS suck.

The website is a traditional corporate website, so comments and other fancy social interaction is not possible. They just donít have the resources to communicate with their users in this way. This means that we can tighten security in a way that would break the functionality on a normal WP installation.

The site only uses these best-of-breed plugins, so it is light and fast:
Gravity Forms
WordPress SEO
W3 Total Cache

The site runs on a dedicated virtual server, which opens a nice bag of tricks. First of all a normal user has no need to access a .php file directly because all request are routed to the index.php file. For commenting, login, xmlrpc etc users will need direct access to certain .php files but this is not the case on this site.

I have accomplished this with the following directives in the httpd.conf file

<Directory "/var/www/html">
  AllowOverride All
  Order allow,deny
  Allow from all

  <Files *.php>
    Order deny,allow
    Deny from all
    Allow from
  <Files "index.php">
    Order Allow,Deny
    Allow from all


So access to .php files is only allowed from which is an internal VPN IP but you could of course set public WAN IP. In setup you donít have direct access unless you are on a secure VPN connection.

Furthermore we have removed all WP version info in the HTML. However some plugins like WordPress SEO will give away version info but info is placed in HTML comments, which are removed by the minify function in W3 Total Cache.

You can always find the WP version in the readme.html and in case we forget to delete that file after an upgrade we have restricted access with to location directive

<Location ~ "/(wp-admin|license\.html|license\.txt|readme\.html)">
  Order Deny,Allow
  Deny from all
  Allow from

The site is pretty fast as it is but to speed up things even more they will put a F5 load balancer in front of the server. This is not for load balancing but simply for caching. The content on the site is pretty static so there is a long time to live on the cache and in cache the server is down the load balancer will keep the cache.

So there you have it. A WordPress website can be a good match for those who are fanatic about security, stability and up-time.

Web Development / Can you fake the PHP version in phpinfo() ?
« on: June 07, 2012, 11:06:04 AM »
I'm fighting a first level supporter about php version on a shared host. He says the server is running php 5.3. However, phpinfo says 5.2.17 and a small piece of 5.3 code fails so I'm pretty sure that they are not running 5.3.

So now the supporter says that the server is running php 5.3 even though phpinfo() says 5.2.17. Is it even possible to override the php version shown in phpinfo ?

Web Development / WordPress security tip
« on: April 26, 2012, 09:56:08 AM »
Quick security tip for WordPress

add a .htaccess file the uploads folder (/wp-content/uploads) with the following content:

<Files *.php>
deny from all

This will prevent hackers from executing uploaded php files.

Web Development / XSS exploit in WooThemes
« on: April 16, 2012, 02:25:19 PM »
Yesterday I discovered a XSS exploit in WooThemes. I notified WooThemes and they have fixed it and released a new version of their framework. So if you are using WooThemes I strongly suggest that hit the update button.

Consider yourself warned.

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