DiggingIntoWordPress

by Chris Coyier & Jeff Starr

Category: PHP

Custom Query Shortcode: Run a Loop inside Any Post/Page

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I had the occasion yesterday to have a page with a section on it where it would output a very specific set of other pages, which would need to change dynamically. What I could have done is built a special page template for this page, and inside that template run a query_posts() to get these posts. But I wanted this page to remain editable from the admin. Besides, creating a special page template every time you need to do something like this is too cumbersome. WordPress is extensible enough to do better.

Hence, the Custom Query Shortcode!

Google Maps Shortcode

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David Hollander of SparkWeb Interactive sent us in a little code clip for inserting Google Maps into Posts/Pages by the use of shortcodes. Google actually has copy-and-pastable iframe code already in Google Maps that is really easy to snag, but David was having problems with the Visual text editor screwing up the code when saving the Post. With a short code, no problem.

Two Ways to Limit the Number of Posts without a Plugin

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Let’s say your blog is set to display ten posts per page, as specified via the WordPress Admin under Settings > Reading. Once set, ten posts will appear on your home page, archive pages, search results, and so on. In other words, if it isn’t a single-view page or an actual “page” page, you’re gonna get ten posts per page. It’s a global setting.

Remove Title from Blogroll

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Typically when you use one of WordPress functions to output a list of “stuff” from WordPress, you can pass a parameter to eliminate the “title” that WordPress likes to put in there by default. For example, with wp_list_categories you pass along “title_li=” with nothing after the equals sign to remove the title that normally accompanies the output. With the function to output links (e.g. blogroll), you use the function wp_list_bookmarks, but unfortunately using that same parameter the same way is ineffective at removing the title.

Create a Custom Database Error Page in WordPress

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As a dynamic blogging system, WordPress consists of PHP files (the WP core) that interact with a MySQL database to generate the web pages for your website. When everything is working properly, this dynamic interaction keeps WordPress humming along like a champ, but when your database crashes, WordPress can’t operate and will deliver the following message to your visitors:

Precision Targeting with Custom Action Hooks

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WordPress’ powerful action-hook system makes it possible to insert functionality at any point in your theme. Most WordPress themes include some of the built-in WordPress hooks by default. For example, most of us are aware of the two most common WordPress hooks: wp_head() and wp_footer(), which generally appear in the theme’s header and footer sections. These two hooks provide WordPress a location at which to execute various scripts and functions. For example, the wp_head() hook is where WordPress generates a variety of <link /> and <script></script> elements, among other things.

Global Custom Fields

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UPDATE: Make sure to take out “Take Two” on this concept, with a cleaner method for doing this.

Custom fields allow us to attach data to Posts or Pages that we can yank out and use at will in our templates. They are awesomely flexible and single-handedly allow WordPress to be used for about any CMS need. The fact that they can only be used on single Posts can be limiting in some circumstances. Sometimes you wish you could grab a custom value that you can control and is consistent globally, regardless of the current post. In this post we’ll look at a technique to do so.

Code is poetry