A year older… and a lot wiser…

Paperpunch

It’s my birthday today! With that, I edge just one year away from three-tenths of a century.

And, as a gift to met, I’ve spent a good portion of the night working on a new theme for this blog, one which was long pending.

After a lot of searching I came across Paperpunch Theme by The Theme Foundry which I fell in love with almost instantly.

Paperpunch

Paperpunch is a clean and easy to use theme, yet comes packed with some decent free features. You can upgrade to the Pro version which makes life a lot easier!

My plugin Add to Footer definitely made life a bit easier, since I didn’t need to add in a lot of code for my analytics.
However, the theme required a good amount of modification to capture my header and sidebar, pages, comments and other features that I have maintained across themes across several years. Not to forget the ads that help sustain this blog.

Lastly, SexyBookmarks WordPress Plugin does deserve a major mention for it is extremely feature rich and with minimal interference allows you to share content of this blog with your friends through the most popular social networking sites. You are recommending these posts, aren’t you?

I’ve also included a neat little array of buttons at the top of each post, you can quickly share our posts on Facebook and Google Plus.

Until next time… do keep reading and do comment below and tell me if you like this new theme. If not, what can I do to improve it?

And, have you hit the like button at the bottom of this post to add Ajay – On the Road called Life to your Facebook favourites?

Happy New Year 2010 & 2009 in Review

Wishing all my dedicated readers a Very Very Happy and Prosperous New Year 2010! How did you bring in the new year? I spent it quietly at home.

Looking back at 2009, I must say that it has been a rather successful year for me on all fronts. While I may not have achieved most of the goals I set for Techtites, it was definitely a lot better than 2008.

I have refrained from setting any goals for this blog, primarily because it serves as a personal blog.

At this time of the year, I normally make a very detailed post about my activities during the year. This year, I’ll refrain from a very detailed post and just make a short and sweet summary.

I began the year knowing that I had a good job in hand. I spent the first three months of the year completing my MBA. I joined the bank in early April and have slogged patiently and diligently over the last nine successful months.

I have also ensured that I continued making regular posts both at this blog and at Techtites during this duration. It’s a hobby that I have ensured that I have not given up, despite the long work hours.

On the coding front, I took over the development of Ajax Edit Comments in March from Ronald. Honestly, I didn’t make much progress on that front and a few months later, Ronald returned to continue the development of the best comment editing plugin for WordPress!

In December, Ajax Edit Comments became a premium plugin available to all users on a paid subscription basis. And, for a limited period you can get the basic subscription for only $10/year.

The downloads of my other plugins have also increased over the last year. I have released several updates to my plugins and my theme. I also plan on quite a few updates on both these fronts. I have had a few themes that I hoped to develop just lying around, so am hoping to finalise and release some of these.

Looking forward, I hope and pray that 2010 turns out to be an even more successful year than 2009!

Connections Reloaded v3.1 – Now supports WordPress 2.9

While Connections Reloaded 3.0.2 perfectly supports WordPress 2.9, the new version of WordPress introduced the feature of Posts Thumbnails.

For some strange reason, your theme needs to have the necessary code to “enable” this feature.

So, I decided to put together a version of Connections Reloaded that adds supports for the new post thumbnail features of WordPress.

If you’re using this theme, you’ll notice a new section in your New Post screen that allows you to designate an image as a post thumbnail.

By default, the posts do not display the post thumbnails, since each display requires two database queries. You can turn this on by visiting the Connections Reloaded settings page.

If you are running this theme on your blog, do consider a donation.

Read more and download Connections Reloaded

Connections Reloaded v3

Header Options

If you’re following me on twitter, I recently tweeted that I was working on an updated version of Connections Reloaded. After a few revisions to fulfill all the requirements of the repository, I give you the new and improved Connections Reloaded v3.

The biggest feature addition to this version of the theme is the inbuilt options page that allows for easy customisation from within WP-Admin itself.

Header Options Content and Footer options

The screenshots above give you an idea of what options are available. I plan on adding more options. Comment and let me know what you would like to control from the options page.

Besides this, I’ve also worked on increasing the security of the theme. If you notice an vulnerability, please bring it to my notice before making it public.

There has been slight cleaning up of the code and I’ve also added the .sticky class to the stylesheet for sticky posts. While the theme always supported this, it wasn’t obvious.

So, go ahead give the theme a try. Current users, remember to upgrade. And, if you’re using the theme, do consider a donation.

ajaydsouza.com has a new look. Still need your suggestions

If you’re reading this in your feed reader, then hit this link now.

I mentioned earlier that I moved this blog to Media Temple yesterday. However, on monitoring the same, I have realized that I am still not at optimum levels. I’m not really sure what the reason for the super high resource usage is, but it is usually the themes and the plugins. So, as a test, I have decided to change the theme in an attempt to find a really light one.

One of my most read blogs is Weblog Tools Collection, and in a recent post, I stumbled upon Swift. This is a three column theme from Sadish. Sadish has known to churn out really good themes and I decided to use Swift.

As you can see, it still needs a crazy amount of work. For starters, the header needs to be fixed, as does the footer. I still need to replicate some of my old menu system. However, most of all I’m going to monitor the load on the server to see if switching the theme actually helped!

As usual, I’m throwing open this post to suggestions from you. I’m looking to improve this theme. What would you like to see?