Make the new Twitter profiles more readable

Twitter is currently rolling out it’s redesigned profile pages, mainly to make Twitter more appealing for new users who may already be used to other social networks (read: Facebook).

That’s all well and good, but what about us, more seasoned users? Tough. Instead of a nice compact stream of information, we’re stuck with masses of whitespace and wildly varying font sizes. At times, this results in seeing as few as 4 tweets at a time, even on a 1080p desktop display.

Screenshot showing only 4 tweets visible on the new twitter profiles

If you’re using a modern browser (and you really should be), this won’t be a problem for long. If you don’t already have it, install the Stylish add-on [ Firefox | Chrome ] and our Twitter Profile Compactor user style.

This little chunk of CSS removes the excess whitespace and ensures the font sizes of tweets are all uniform. That’s a bit better!

Screenshot of a new twitter profile with Twitter Profile Compactor enabled.

If you get stuck at any point, give us a shout on Twitter and if you have any ideas for making this work better with the new Twitter profiles, the code is up on GitHub.

A Whistle Stop Tour of Git

git logo
Having just spent the afternoon showing Karin from Scream Blue Murder how to use git, I figured this would be a useful reference. It’s super quick because there is little to no explanation here, just the raw commands. It’s up to you to do a bit more research to understand what’s going on! Saying that, there should be enough here to get you working with git, even if you don’t grasp it all – just dive right in and play around.

Continue reading “A Whistle Stop Tour of Git”

Backup folders outside your sync app using symlinks

I say “sync app” as this process works on Copy, Dropbox and the like, in just the same way.

The idea is to make it appear to your sync app that a folder is inside it’s watched folder, when it is in fact somewhere else entirely.

Use either the JUNCTION utility from Sysinternals, or the MKLINK command built in to Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Server 2008, for example:
junction "C:\Documents and Settings\User\My Documents\My Dropbox\DesiredFolder" "C:\Path\To\DesiredFolder"

mklink /D "C:\Users\Steve\Documents\Dropbox\DesiredFolder" "C:\Path\To\DesiredFolder"

Or, if you prefer a GUI, install Link Shell Extension.

OS X or Linux:
Use the ln command, for example:
ln -s /path/to/desired-folder ~/Dropbox/desired-folder

This works with files too:
ln -s /path/to/desired-file ~/Dropbox/desired-file

Another easy way to do this with Terminal is type the ln -s part, then from Finder drag the folder/file that you want into the Terminal window then drag the Dropbox folder and hit return.

Reduce the number of malicious URL requests that hit your website

If your site runs on Apache and you’re familiar with .htaccess, the 5G Blacklist is an effective way to secure your site against malicious HTTP activity.

[Update: The 6G Blacklist is now available.]

The 5G Blacklist is a simple, flexible blacklist that checks all URI requests against a series of carefully constructed HTAccess directives. This happens quietly behind the scenes at the server level, saving resources for stuff like PHP and MySQL for all blocked requests.

Simply add the following code to your site’s .htaccess file. Make sure you make a copy of your existing file before making any changes.