The construction of a webshop in a modern web programming language

July 23rd, 2008

A webshop is an online store where visitors to a page can add products to a cart from a virtual shop and then order them.

A modern webshop is built on two parts, a database like MySQL containing data about the products offered on the shop and a webshop built with a web scripting language for example PHP or ASP.

Let’s begin with the database. In this simple example we only have a couple of tables.

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How to do web design with tables

July 23rd, 2008

Normally most articles on the net are about making sites in CSS without tables. But in this tutorial I am going to show you how to make a site with tables. Most web-gurus insist on making a site in validated CSS, but I think it can be valuable to know how sites where used to make back when CSS was only used to style text.

In the early days of the web there where no easy way of controlling the layout of a page because there where no way of doing that. You could have text on a page, have line breaks and some images but that was it. Sometimes those early pages can be simple and very relaxing to view since most web sites of today are so dramatically different than those simpler pages.

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How to convert a site from ASP to PHP

July 23rd, 2008

ASP is a popular server script language made by Microsoft. PHP is another server script language which is made popular by being free, open and running on many different operating systems such as Linux.

Sometimes you need to convert a site from ASP to PHP. This is a quick way of accomplishing that task that I have used a lot in the past.

1. Get a good text editor

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The file structure of a website

July 23rd, 2008

When we began coding our own websites back in the 90′ies we did not have any guide that thought us some of the simpler things involved when making websites, for example: how to set up the file structure of the website we were making.

There were many guides going through the various steps and techniques on how to edit images for the web and different obscure HTML-tags never used in real life. But these guides did never teach us anything on how to structure a professional site.

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SEO: Become a search engine optimization expert in 5 minutes

July 23rd, 2008

Lately I have seen a lot of commercial e-books promising readers ways to create a “laser targeted” stream of traffic to a site.

I think it is silly to sell this information because SEO is not difficult at all. SEO (stands for Search Engine Optimization) and is very useful to know about. To take this extreme course you will need basic HTML knowledge.

If you do not have 5 minutes to spare then take the 5 second course at the bottom of the page.

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Drupal: Custom profile field search page

July 23rd, 2008

Last week I got a request to build a search page where a paying member of a site could search profile fields of other registered members. The community is built on Drupal 5.0 and I thought it would be a relatively easy task of integrating a finished module enabling search on profile fields. The customer wanted the search result to be presented by one row with three columns each holding a thumbnail image of the member who matched the search criteria.

I was slightly wrong because I could not find a good module to download from www.drupal.org. So I decided to analyze the database to see how the data was structured and to see if it was possible to create a custom PHP snippet that would provide a visitor a page where he makes a detailed search of members of a site.

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PHP: Automatic file renamer script

July 23rd, 2008

I have been working on a personal non commercial PHP based programming project in the evenings the last couple of days.

I download quite a lot of files through P2P networks and unpacking archives and renaming files takes a lot of time out of my free time in the evenings/weekends.

So what if you could automate the process of unpacking downloaded archives, renaming files, moving files, putting files in ready to burn folders with the maximum size of 4.5 GB and creating the file list automatically. Sounds like a dream?

Not at all, its reality (almost).

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A very basic web shop tutorial

July 23rd, 2008

Earlier this year I got a request for making a website with an integrated web shop. The customer had already brought in a designer and my part was to make the proposed design actually work in reality, in other words -to code the site in PHP.

My initial thought was to combine OSCommerce, an open source web shop written in PHP/MySQL, with the rest of the site. OSCommerce is well known and well documented and is relatively easy to modify if you know your way around PHP code and SQL tables.

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Create a Sony PSP web site in 5 easy steps

July 23rd, 2008

Sony’s PlayStation Portable is a competent portable console with many functions. Not only can you play advanced games with it, you can also play music, watch movies and surf the web with its own web browser. The PSP have built in wireless network connectivity so it is possible to browse the web wherever there is a hotspot.

The browser for the PSP is very capable, a surprising amount of websites work very good with the PSP browser and browsing forums and normal day to day sites generally works good. Many sites with heavy data will show an error on the PSP since memory is limited and the PSP can not swap out to the memory stick. Also in today’s world dominated by Internet Explorer, some sites will render wrong in the PSP browser. But that is to be expected since Internet Explorer is the defacto browser of today.

A tedious task with the PSP is to type in web addresses because letters have to be typed in with the keypad on a virtual keyboard. The solution to this problem is to make a startup page which contains all your favorite links in order to reduce the amount of links to be typed in.

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Drupal versus your own CMS

July 23rd, 2008

As of now this site is currently based on the free content management system called Drupal. The CMS is highly advanced and has a lot of support from bedroom/professional coders so if there is one obscure plug-in offering a specific set of functionality for your site you can be pretty sure you will find one already made for Drupal.

With that said when you try to please everyone things can become quite large and complex which anyone will notice who begins to customize Drupal beyond adding modules.

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