Full stack web developer, interested in all the things, but especially the web, code, design, Linux, OS X, PHP, WordPress, JavaScript & robots.

MenuMeters for OS X El Capitan 10.11 image/svg+xml

So, there I was, sat on the couch and merrily tapping away on my MacBook Pro. I was working in Atom, coding on a little project, whilst also taking a mild interest in The Great British Bake Off, which was playing on my desktop. It was only when the GBBO finished that I noticed the audible racket coming from my MacBook. It sounded like it was about to take off!

After a little bit of investigating, it turns out there was a runaway service (Atom related) consuming the CPU, which in turn, was causing the fans to spin at warp factor 9!

Worryingly, because of the ambient noise (and my crappy hearing), I was blissfully unaware of the problem. Not good. So, to help reduce the likelihood of this scenario happening again, I Googled for “OS X CPU monitor menubar” and found MenuMeters.

Problem solved. MenuMeters is a nifty little preference pane that allows for showing a number of live stats (CPU, memory, disk, and network monitoring etc) within the OS X menubar. So, all I need to do now is glance at it from time-to-time, and if I see the little CPU percentage bar turn red, I’ll know there’s a problem.

Oh, and MenuMeters is released under the GNU General Public License (GPL). Winning!

Use Cases for Fixed Backgrounds in CSS image/svg+xml

The background-attachment property has never seemed all that useful to me. I have always looked at it as some sort of old school design trick from the GeoCities days to get a repeating background to stay in place during scroll. Turns out a background with a fixed position can be much more useful than that.

Some nifty examples of the background-attachment CSS property. I really like how you can use this to achieve a fairly dramatic effect with relatively little effort.

Google will punish sites that use annoying pop-up ads image/svg+xml

Google is about to deal a small blow to some of the most annoying ads on mobile: pop-ups and interstitials. It’s not a stretch to argue that readers don’t like these ads. So Google is making a call that websites that use pop-ups and interstitials are worse search results and may rank them lower because of it.

In general, I’m not a fan of letting Google dictate how developers/designers should create their web pages, but in this case, I’m all for it.

Google announcement here.

If You Don’t Know what WP Release Day is, You’re Already Doomed image/svg+xml

Yesterday was WP Release Day. If you manage WordPress websites and have no idea what I’m referring to, you’re already doomed.

I spent Release Day updating and testing development servers, before updating and testing production servers, so I’m definitely not doomed. Phew.

If you are responsible for managing websites, either prepare for Release Days, or stop managing websites.

I hate to be so blunt, but it’s really the bottom line. Managing a website means exactly that: Manage it! If you aren’t prepared, then you can only blame yourself.

Sometimes it’s good to be blunt.

A Response To PHP – The Wrong Way image/svg+xml

For anyone who isn’t aware, there is a site call, which is a summary of good (dare I say, best?) practices for writing PHP in 2016.

In addition, there now exists, whose aim is to provide a kind of counterbalance to and what is presently mainstream PHP culture. This article is a rebuttal to the arguments found in

Some people have way too much time on their hands. That said, I did enjoy reading — I’m definitely more aligned with “the wrong way” of thinking about these things.