Timesaving PhpStorm Keyboard Shortcuts to Increase Productivity

Some developers will pass over PhpStorm (or other JetBrains products) because it doesn’t embody the same look and feel of a typical Mac application. And that’s unfortunate, because PhpStorm is a powerhouse packed with productivity boosting features, that once you use them, you will never be able to use a standard text editor again.

In my continued effort to keep proving to my friend, Tom McFarlin, that PhpStorm is worth switching to, I thought I’d share some of the timesaving keyboard shortcuts that I use every day to help boost my productivity as a developer.

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How To Setup and Configure PhpStorm, Xdebug, and MAMP for Debugging

I must have read 8 – 10 articles scattered about the internet when I first got PhpStorm setup to do debugging with Xdebug and MAMP. Each article seems to be missing one key piece of the puzzle. After a few days mucking with everything, I was able to get the stars to align. And it’s one of those things that, once you get it working, it just works and you don’t have to bother with it again.

However, that initial setup can be very frustrating. And since my good friend, Tom McFarlin, decided to give PhpStorm another serious look, I thought I’d document how I was able to get things setup and hopefully save him and you some time.

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Pagely Review: Fine-Tuned Managed WordPress Hosting

Apparently I am becoming somewhat of a managed WordPress host reviewer.

Pagely - The Most Scalable WordPress Hosting Platform In The World, Powered by the Amazon cloud.

I have previous written a WP Engine review on my own blog, and today, Envato published an article I wrote for their Code tutorials, reviewing Pagely as managed WordPress host.

Both are excellent hosts worthy of  your consideration.

So check out both of the articles and let me know if you have any questions!

WP Engine: Is Managed WordPress Hosting Worth The Premium Price?

I guess you could call me a bit promiscuous when it comes to hosting providers.

As I’ve already said, I’ve personally been though seven hosts and I have probably worked my way through just as many with clients. And let’s just be honest… A vast majority of hosts will meet the demands for many of our sites, especially when you’re just getting started.

But over time, things can get…complicated.

Your site starts to gain some traction, which is awesome, but it can come with a laundry list of side effects.

  • Server resources like database, storage, bandwidth, etc. start to explode.
  • Pages load starts to crawl.
  • Lovely white pages of death like “internal server error” or “error establishing a database connection”.
  • Start spending late nights parsing log files to track down memory, performance, or caching issues with magical combinations of server operating system, PHP, MySQL, WordPress, plugin, and theme configurations and versions.


I don’t know about you, but as much as I really want to dig in and do and know it all, it’s simply not possible. There just isn’t enough time and I know I cannot be an expert at all those things. I just want as much time to work on the things I am great at and leave the rest alone.

Is there any hope? Can managed hosting focused strictly on WordPress really be the answer?

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Introducing WP Test: The Best Tests For WordPress

Accounting for all the variables is one of the most challenging aspects of developing for WordPress.

There are so many scenarios to account for, such as WordPress versions, plugin versions, plugin conflicts, host server configurations, browsers, and the endless ways you can customize WordPress through post formats, custom post types, theme options, theme templates, etc.

In this vast sea of variety is both the pleasure and the pain in developing WordPress themes and plugins for mass distribution.

Today I would like to begin to put an end to one of those variables. I would like to introduce the release of WP Test, the best tests for WordPress.

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How To Test And Troubleshoot WordPress Plugins And Themes

I had the incredible honor and privilege to speek at WordCamp Atlanta last week.

I gave a presentation on Testing & Troubleshooting WordPress Plugins & Themes, which is the culmination of all that I have learned from leading quality at 8BIT for the past three years.

I am posting my enture presentation along with bullet point cliff notes and resource links for each slide.

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How To Fix WordPress Admin Styles Not Loading

This is one of those articles you tuck away in Evernote or your favorite “read it later” app because it will most likely not mean anything to you right this moment, but when it does happen, you will be glad you saved this.

When I got my new computer, I took the opportunity to clean up my local development environment. That meant a fresh installation of MAMP Pro and some new databases.

I got everything setup and I was settling in for a good, long second shift when I saw this in my WordPress admin.

WordPress Admin Styles Missing
WordPress admin CSS styles missing.

All the WordPress admin styles were not loading.

This was not what I had planned for my evening… *sigh*

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13″ MacBook Air vs. 13″ Retina MacBook Pro…Fight!

MacBook Air vs. Retina

I have to admit, I have been pretty spoiled when it comes to computers over the past several years. I have not bought a computer for myself since 2007. I have been incredibly fortunate to have employers give me top-of-the-line hardware for both company and personal use.

My new job is decidedly more corporate, which means it came time for me to once again separate work and personal computer use.

Now, which computer to get?

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Breaking Up With Flash

My relationship with Adobe Flash started in 2006. I owe a lot to Flash. It has shaped my professional development career for the past six years and paid for our wedding, our house, two cars, and two kids. I have immense gratitude and respect for the platform.

But things change, especially in technology.

Today is bittersweet. Today I am officially breaking up with Flash…for good.

It’s not you, Flash. It’s me. It is time to see other platforms.

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