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Over a series of 8 videos, watch and learn as Ryan builds an entire ExpressionEngine website from beginning to end. Get started now.

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Vector Media Group Acquires CartThrob

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It was soft announced a couple days ago in the ExpressionEngine Slack account (and on Twitter) but it’s now official: CartThrob is saved.

From the blog post from Vector:

We’ve got some exciting news: Vector is now the proud owner of the #1 ExpressionEngine eCommerce add-on, CartThrob!

For years, CartThrob has been our choice for implementing eCommerce on ExpressionEngine sites we’ve built for clients. We’re fans of its flexibility, data model, usage of native EE concepts like channel fields, and extensibility. We loved that no matter what a client needed, CartThrob could do it — including custom (and complex!) tax and shipping rules. We’ve also used CartThrob’s amazing API to integrate with every acronym you can imagine: CRMs, ERPs, DAMs, PIMs, and fulfillment vendors like warehouses and logistics providers.

Among the acquisition package is CT Admin and a handful of other add-ons.

Vector is a great company and employs a former developer of CartThrob and other add-ons. I’m sure this will be a good future for the e-commerce add-on.

Posted on Jul 24, 2015 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: EE Add-ons

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Intermediate Twig: Logic, Macros & More

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Knowing what your CMS is capable of is essential for not only choosing the right CMS for your projects, but building the right solutions within that CMS. For the latest CTRL+CLICK CAST, we take a deeper look at Twig, the templating language for Craft CMS with special guest Andrew Welch. We discuss some of the features that developers should consider for faster, more efficient development … namely filters and macros. Andrew shares real-world cases for using both, including localization and logic for complex looping. And while Craft/Twig is the focus, we also talk about best practices for any developer: working through a solution in advance of building it, documentation (then more documentation), and taking time to practice. Tune in now!

Thanks to Visual Chefs for sponsoring this episode!

Posted on Jul 16, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Content-First Design with Steph Hay

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As web developers, we often love to dive straight into planning and implementing the structure of a website. But all of that is meaningless without the right content to bolster user experience and further business goals.

In this week’s episode, content strategist and expert Steph Hay drives home the importance of content-first design. She gives real-world examples of questions and conversations that have you understand the client or customer’s language better, and how content-first design ultimately makes us get our work done ​faster​, while simultaneously communicating more effectively.

Tune in now! Thanks to Craft for sponsoring!

Posted on Jul 02, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Diagnosing Performance using New Relic with Anna Brown

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Performance and site speed is important for many client sites, especially as they grow, but knowing where to begin optimizing can be a bit of a mystery. In this week’s episode, ExpressionEngine vet Anna Brown stops by the show to explain her experience diagnosing EE site issues using the New Relic service. Anna explains how New Relic’s graphs and transaction data can reveal exact site and database issues in order for you to tweak site performance for a faster site. We also talk about client budgets, practicalities when doing performance diagnostics, and even front-end considerations when optimizing an site.

Tune in now! Thanks to EllisLab for sponsoring!

Posted on Jun 18, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Teaching UX Design with Leslie Jensen-Inman

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The state of web education dictates the state of our industry, in terms of developing and finding talent. Does our current education system prepare students for the realities of working in the web industry and being good professionals and employees?

In this week’s episode, UX expert and Center Centre co-founder Dr. Leslie Jensen-Inman talks about the state of UX web education (past and present), and share resources to help you on your user experience journey — both as a teacher and as a student. We discuss details on what the real-world industry needs in terms of talent and what Center Centre is trying to do to fill that need, as well as ideas on what makes a good teacher and student. Also, she urges our peers to help others know more about the path to a UX career.

Tune in now! Thanks to Visual Chefs for sponsoring!

Posted on Jun 04, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Web Components with John Rogerson

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From DRY techniques to the new hotness, atomic design, there’s no question that web development is becoming increasingly modular. And web components are part of that evolution towards modularity, but many devs remain uncertain about why, when and how to use them.

ExpressionEngine veteran and front-end expert John Rogerson returns to the show to help de-mystify web components. We get into basic definitions and use cases, and John offers great analogies to web dev approaches we are all already familiar with. We discuss the pros of web components (modularity, extensibility) and the cons (new spec, undefined standards, accessibility). And John shares his favorite resources for understanding and getting started with web components. Tune in now!

Thanks to EllisLab for sponsoring this episode!

Posted on May 21, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: When is Wordpress the Right Fit? with Angie Herrera

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In this week’s episode, long-time EE community member Angie Herrera stops by the show to discuss—gasp!— WordPress! She discusses why her firm, Block 81, has decided to add it ​back​ into their arsenal, while comparing it to the other CMSs in their toolkit. We chat about the best scenarios WordPress is suited for, as well as the times it’s the wrong fit and when it’s time to look at solutions beyond WP like EE, Craft and Statamic.

Tune in now! Thanks to Visual Chefs for sponsoring!

Posted on May 07, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Improving Diversity in Tech

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No matter who you are or whether you realize it, diversity (or lack of) affects you. Just look at the news from Silicon Valley any day of the week, and it is clear our web/tech industry struggles with diversity. Which is why we need to talk about it.

For the latest CTRL+CLICK CAST, diversity advocates Ashe Dryden and Faruk Ateş join the show to offer their perspectives on ways to improve diversity in tech. We discuss the difference between diversity and inclusion, why both remain a challenge for tech companies and the tech community, and things we can each do to affect change for the better. Ashe offers suggestions for companies and the community as a whole to become more empathetic and aware. Faruk talks about ways to make tech events and conferences more diverse, from an organizer, speaker and attendee perspective. And our entire conversation draws parallels with the challenges of embracing accessibility in design and development.

Tune in now! Thanks to EllisLab for sponsoring this episode!

Posted on Apr 23, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Design Deliverables for Today’s Web with Samantha Warren

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Style Tiles, Element Collages, comps, wireframes — this is just a sample of a few design deliverables that we can create for clients. What else? Samantha Warren, creator of Style Tiles, joins us in this week’s show to discuss how she communicates design direction to clients and internal teams as efficiently and thoroughly as possible. We talk about the challenge of communicating design ideas, static vs. dynamic deliverables, as well as the tools in our arsenal (now and in the future) that help us design for today’s responsive web!

Tune in now! Thanks to Visual Chefs for sponsoring!

Posted on Apr 09, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Fighting CMS Spam with Greg Aker

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Spam. Whether it is in your comments, your forums or even your member profiles, it is, at best, annoying. At worst, spam is dangerous for your site and even your server. For the latest CTRL+CLICK CAST, Greg Aker shares his experiences fighting the spam scourge in a CMS environment.

​Greg explains how content management system can introduce more challenges to the fight and offers recommendations for dealing with those, including proper configuration, keeping the system up-to-date and carefully choosing add-ons. Greg also shares prevention solutions, including services like Akismet and custom-built approaches. Plus: the add-ons we use in ExpressionEngine and other EE-specific tools. Tune in now!

​Thanks to EllisLab for sponsoring this episode!

Posted on Mar 26, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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Solspace Facebook Connect Add-on Critical Update

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If you are a customer of Solspace’s Facebook Connect add-on then you probably already received an email about this. They released a critical update that allows the add-on to work with upcoming changes to the Facebook Graph API.

From their blog post:

Today we released Facebook Connect 3.0, which is a free, critical update for all customers using this add-on. The 1.x version of the Facebook API has been deprecated and will stop working after April 30, 2015. The latest version of Facebook Connect now uses the latest version of the Facebook Graph API (v2.2) and Javascript SDK. You need to act quickly and update to this version of Facebook Connect before April 30, 2015.

There are some important changes you should read about before updating.

Posted on Mar 24, 2015 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: EE Add-ons

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ExpressionEngine 2.9.3 Released

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The latest release of ExpressionEngine features a lot of bug fixes (always a good thing), a few snacks for everyone, and a few treats for developers.

Before you update, you should read the changelog so you know what’s different (and if it impacts your installation; it shouldn’t). The highlights blog post from EllisLab is also good.

One new snacks for everyone:

Added allow_pending_login config override to allow the Pending member group to log in.

With EE 2.9.3, the Pending member group (that comes with EE) is now allowed to log in. You have to enable this as a config override.

$config['allow_pending_login'] = 'y';

This is a small but nice feature, especially if you’re doing heavy member sites that have different states of access.

For developers, there’s now an easier way to get access to the password reset routine:

Added hooks for additional processing after a user resets their password. member_process_reset_password for front end, and cp_member_reset_password for the control panel.

For developers, these handy password reset extensions are great if you are creating SSO solutions.

There you go, EE 2.9.3. We’re only seven point releases away from EE 3, right?

Posted on Mar 24, 2015 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: EllisLab, ExpressionEngine 2

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What They’re Saying About EE

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Right from the horse’s mouth, you could say:

Keep CSRF enabled!

Posted on Mar 13, 2015 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: What They're Saying About EE

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Responsive Typography with Clarissa Peterson

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Responsive design isn’t just the layout: how about the typography? In this week’s episode, guest Clarissa Peterson stops by to chat front-end development for mobile devices and typographic considerations. We talk about ideal and realistic situations regarding multiple devices and testing, plus Emily and Lea discuss web font services, good typography rules, and the mindset challenges with responsive design.

Tune in now! Thanks to our sponsor Visual Chefs!

Posted on Mar 12, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Podcasting 101

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Are you a podcaster or interested in podcasting? Then learn from our lessons at CTRL+CLICK CAST! For our latest episode, we give you a peek behind the scenes and reveal all. From our equipment to our production, we detail the hardware, software and services we rely on (and why). We also talk about how we decide topics, schedule guests and find sponsors, along with the lessons we’ve learned and the adjustments we’ve made. And we share our story: how we started podcasting five years ago and why we keep doing it. Tune in now!

Thanks to EllisLab for sponsoring this episode!

Posted on Feb 26, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Pricing for Profit with Marcus Neto

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In this week’s podcast, former EllisLab Director of Enterprise, Marcus Neto, stops by the show to talk about pricing for profit. He gives us a historical and current perspective of his agency, Blue Fish Design Studio, and shares how he’s evolved his ideas on profit margins, pricing models and industry expectations. He talks about the minimum price his shop works with, his thought process on sales and the resources—conferences, books, and professionals—that help his business thrive! Tune in now!

Thanks to Visual Chefs for sponsoring!

Posted on Feb 12, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CTRL+CLICK CAST: Pursuing Your Passion Practically with Beth Dean

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“Follow your passion.” Great advice, but not always practical. Especially when you have responsibilities like family to support and bills to pay. For the first episode of 2015, special guest Beth Dean joins CTRL+CLICK to share her experiences following her passion as an illustrator, while still paying the bills as a product designer for Facebook.

We talk about passion in what you do for a living vs. passions that don’t pay the bills, as well as the importance of self-reflection in not only finding your passion but sustaining it. Beth also explains how critical time management is to ensure balance between passion and practical responsibilities. And she’s our guinea pig, answering a brand new set of rapidfire questions. Tune in now!

Thanks to Visual Chefs for sponsoring this episode!

Posted on Jan 15, 2015 by CTRL+CLICK CAST

Filed Under: CTRL+CLICK CAST

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CLI Tool to Sync Remote Database to Local

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remotee-sync is a Node package that install a command line tool that makes it easy to import remote EE databases into your local development environment.

Install it with:

npm install -g remotee-sync

Instead of passing settings and credentials via the command line, you can use a config file to set your environments, databases, and more.

Posted on Jan 12, 2015 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: Development Tools

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Anecka: Get Help With Abandoned Add-ons

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In what looks to be a useful service offering (and a clever differentiation strategy), Columbus, Ohio-based Anecka is offering a flat price to upgrade an abandoned add-on that you rely on.

There are a lot of add-ons we all rely on and sometimes (okay, far too often) they are stuck in the past. They’re not updated and no longer work well (or at all) with newer version of ExpressionEngine. This is especially true after ExpressionEngine 2.8, which made add-on breaking changes.

This puts ExpressionEngine developers/designers who want to upgrade to the latest version of ExpressionEngine in a tough spot as replacing these add-ons can be an expensive and time-consuming process.

Anecka wants to help you update those old, abandoned add-ons so you can keep moving forward with your project.

(The broader lesson here is: choose your add-ons wisely.)

Posted on Jan 05, 2015 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: Community, Development Tools, ExpressionEngine 2

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nginx Configuration for ExpressionEngine

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Vector Media Group recently open sourced their nginx configuration for ExpressionEngine.

At Vector Media Group we’re big fans of nginx. It’s often a much faster and more stable alternative to Apache – especially on projects getting heavy concurrent traffic. We use it on as many ExpressionEngine (and other CMS) sites as possible, so have created a template to use as a starting point on our projects.

The Github repository README has full instructions for installing and using nginx, including support for SSL, CE Cache, and more.

Posted on Dec 18, 2014 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: Development Tools