WordPress Subversion Checkout

I finally converted several of my blogs to use the WordPress Subversion Checkout. This means any future upgrades are directly taken from the WordPress Repository using the Subversion checkout command. Future upgrades are going to be fast, easy and convenient. No more downloading and FTPing of files. It takes just a simple command to upgrade WordPress to the latest version. I’m upgrading to WordPress version 2.3.1 here as an example.

cd blog
svn sw http://svn.automattic.com/wordpress/tags/2.3.1

I can also upgrade to the latest “bleeding edge” development version by getting the source directly from the trunk, but I’m not that adventurous. I rather run a stable version from a standard WordPress release.

Installing a new WordPress blog using Subversion:

mkdir blog
cd blog
svn co http://svn.automattic.com/wordpress/tags/2.3.1 .

Don’t forget the dot in the end. You don’t want a folder named ‘tags/2.3.1’ installed on your blog directory.

Updating the blog from the repository:

$ cd blog
$ svn up

Compiz Fusion Keyboard Shortcuts

For Linux users who are fortunate enough to be playing with the Desktop Effects on their favorite Linux distribution – mine is Ubuntu, here’s a list of keyboard shortcuts for the Compiz Fusion Desktop Effects that you may have been looking for. I have put together a list mainly because I’ve had a hard time finding a comprehensive list from a single location. I may have missed something, so please let me know. One more thing, the Super key is the Windows key in case you are wondering. Here are the shortcuts.

Desktop Effects1 Keyboard Shortcuts
Rotate Cube Mousewheel on Desktop
Switcher2 Alt + Tab
Shift Switcher3 Super + Tab (2 modes: flip and cover)
Ring Switcher Super + Tab – overrides Shift Switcher
Expo Super + E (toggle)
Film Effect Ctrl + Alt + Down Arrow4
Rotate Cube Manually Ctrl + Alt + Left Mouse Button
Scale Windows Alt + Shift + Up Arrow
Show/Clear Desktop Ctrl + Alt + D (toggle)
Snapping Windows Move a window across workspaces5
Screenshot Super + Left Mouse Button
Zoom In/Out Super + Mousewheel
Transparent Window Alt + Mousewheel
Resize Window Alt + F8
Move Window Alt + F7
Add Helper Super + P
Widget Layer F9 (toggle)
Water Effects Shift + F9 (toggle)
Fire Effects: On Super + Shift + Left Mouse Button
Fire Effects: Clear Super + Shift + C
Annotate: Draw Super + Left Mouse Button
Annotate: Start Super + 1
Annotate: End Super + 3
Group: Select Window(s) Super + S
Group: Group Windows Super + T
Group: Ungroup Windows Super + U
Group: Flip Windows Super + Right or Left Arrow

1 Effects have to be enabled to see results.
2 To see the full effect, have multiple windows or programs open.
3 To configure: Go to Advanced Desktop Effects Settings.
4 Use left and right arrow thereafter to move to workspaces.
5 Disables Wobbly Windows.

Make sure the effects are enabled to see results. You can do so by going to System – Preferences – Advanced Desktop Effects Settings. Some effects will disable others. For example, the Desktop Wall will disable the Desktop Cube, Snapping Windows will disable Wobbly Windows and many more. Please let me know if I missed something, so I can add more effects to the list.

Ubuntu 7.10

I recently upgraded my Linux desktop to Ubuntu 7.10. The upgrade process took a little over an hour considering the number of packages that were being downloaded and installed. Moving from Ubuntu 7.04 Fiesty Fawn to 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon as they are known to the Ubuntu community, is an extremely easy process. All it takes is a handful of clicks. I suggest that you go for a coffee break while the system is downloading. The download can last up to an hour and that is with a fast internet connection.

Ubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon’s features include: the latest Gnome 2.20, a “fast user switching” utility allowing easy switching of users between sessions, a “NTFS writing” capability allowing Ubuntu users to write to a Windows NTFS file system – a first in Ubuntu, a “desktop search” utility and the “fully automatic printer configuration” just to name a few.

The inclusion of the Compiz Desktop Effects in my opinion is the biggest draw to Ubuntu 7.10. It’s the eye candy. Unfortunately, the Desktop Effects didn’t work for me from the outset. It was somehow disabled due to my restricted ATI graphic drivers which were not included on Ubuntu’s whitelist. There is no cause for concern. After scouring the forums, I installed the xserver-xgl, compiz and the compiz settings manager to make Desktop Effects work again. Here’s the command if you are interested.

#sudo apt-get install xserver-xgl compiz compizconfig-settings-manager

I’m quite impressed with the Compiz Desktop Effects although the documentation is very skimpy. I had to scour the internet to find some keyboards shortcuts that I badly needed. I hope Ubuntu fixes the issues with the ATI drivers because leaving the Desktop Effects uninstalled is not what I expected with Ubuntu 7.10.

CSS Class vs ID

When I first learned CSS, the biggest challenge for me was learning the difference between “ID” and “CLASS” selectors. I struggled with the concept until I learned that “ID” selectors are unique and can only be used once in a page layout. On the other hand, “CLASS” selectors can occur multiple times in a single page layout. A good example of using the “CLASS” selector is using it for posts or articles which can occur many times in a single page. See some examples below.

ID Selectors

ID selectors are unique. They occur only once in a page layout. A good use for an ID selector are headers, footers, menus, sidebars, etc. Remember, it’s must be unique and can NOT be repeated in a page.

<div id="header">
header info here
</div>

Apply CSS to ID selectors by using the # pound sign. I associate “ID” selectors to an ID Card or a Drivers License which contains a unique number. Therefore IDs have unique numbers and uses the # pound sign.

#header {
padding: 10px;
margin: 2px;
}
#footer {
color: #555;
font-size: 12px;
}

CLASS selectors

CLASS selectors on the other hand, occur multiple times in a page such as divs for posts, articles, etc.

<div class="content">
content here....
</div>
<div class="content">
content here....
</div>

Apply CSS to CLASS selectors by using the . period sign. I associate CLASS selectors to a “class period” like in a school enviroment — a class period. The CSS code under .post in this case will apply to every instance of the CLASS selector.

.post {
padding: 10px;
margin: 2px;
}

I hope this short article clears up some of the confusion between ID and CLASSES for first time CSS coders. I hope it gives you a much clearer picture as to which selectors to use when designing your next page layout.