Lessons from Carpentry in Web Development

I come from a family of builders. My father’s father was a master carpenter. And though my father was a business man by career, he was an excellent carpenter by trade. My grandfather built a dresser for my father that I still use today. I have boxes that my father built, a pump organ that he restored, as well as desks and benches. My mother has a hutch that her grandfather build and my father restored. We have furniture, and the tools used to build it, that go back five generations.

Unfortunately, my grandfather died before I was born, and my father died when I was twelve. I missed out on the chance to acquire much of the wisdom that’s accumulated over the years. Now, as a man in my 30’s, I’m learning how to build things with trial and a lot more error than I’d like. And I’ve learned a lot of lessons in carpentry that have parallels in web development. Read More

Copy and Paste Components Across Publications in Tridion

So, there’s a thing in Tridion that you can’t do: Copy and Paste components across publications.

And it’s kind of annoying. Especially if, say, you accidentally created 50 components in the wrong publication. Now what do you do?

Well, what I do is come up with a bookmarklet, to make it like it never happened. I also definitely don’t log the incident on my timesheet.

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Some Guiding Principles For Front-End Development

I’ve recently had a bout of philosophy that I can’t quite shake. I like philosophy a lot, and I think we’re all philosophers. I think I picked up that idea in my Ayn Rand phase, where she said,

As a human being, you have no choice about the fact that you need a philosophy. Your only choice is whether you define a philosophy by a subconsious… thought

What I’ve realized is that I have had some subconscious thoughts about Front-end Development. And once I really bring them to the foreground, I realize that there are some core principles that guide why I do what I do, and how I choose to do it. So, I’d like to share some of my philosophies of front-end development. Read More

Front-end Best Practices for Tridion’s Experience Manager

Tridion’s Experience Manager (XPM) has been a hot topic at Tahzoo recently. Piti Itharat, Shawn Webber, and I have all been talking about some of the “gotchas” we’ve experienced in the front-end of XPM implementations. Especially after a few front-end folks started asking for tips on how to be XPM-minded when writing HTML and CSS, the three of us put together a short list of best-practices and pitfalls for doing the front-end in XPM.

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Creating a CSS or JS Razor Component Template for multimedia components in Tridion

Today was a rough day. I’ve got a new Tridion implementation that I’m working with, and I was feeling a little defeated by DD4T. It’s no beef on the framework, it’s just a lot to wrap my head around. So I decided to do something that I thought should be an easy win: Create a component template for the CSS and JavaScript.

Then I realized that the last time I wrote a Razor CT for this, the CSS and JavaScript were managed as code components, not multimedia components. So… crud. How do I do this?
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A Neat Tridion Trick With the Pub Up Bookmarklet

Just a short while ago, I announced a tiny lil’ Tridion bookmarklet called Pub Up!™. It was a very simple bookmarklet that left you in your current location in your folders, and just took you one publication higher. Well, when I announced this to the SDL Tridion MVP chat room, Nuno (AKA The King of Tridion), had a simple reply,

oh shiny
what about taking you to the owner publication?
select an item, get the item’s owning pub, go there

It’s been a while, so my memory is fuzzy on exactly how I responded, but it was something to the effect of, “programming is hard”.

With that, Nuno shared a neat trick. And, well, it sure is neat. Let’s discuss. Read More