Change in support strategy

Due to the very high desire for support, and the expectation that it should be both free, instant & personal, from the users of the free plugin Share and Follow. I have been forced to make some changes.

  1. Personal support is only available for those that pay for it.  The payment is by purchasing the CDN subscription at a base rate of 9.99euros.  Not much if you consider you might need many hours of support. All support for CDN customers will be done over email and possibly skype chat.
  2. Those that do not want to pay for support will have the option to use the wordpress community forum, where they can receive support from other users of the plugin.

I will periodically check the wordpress forum, I expect monthly, but will not be offering personal support, but generic support.  That means that I will point you in the right  direction, but won’t detail to the nth degree the solution.

i.e.

Generic support example:   “you will need to use CSS to add a larger margin or padding to heading item”.

Personal support example: “After reviewing your site, the solution is to add the following code into the ‘add your own css’ section on the CSS Style and Configuration page.

.shareinpost h3 {margin-top:3px}

Notice that I will look at your exact site and give you specific code to make it work on your theme.   Personal service.  Is that worth 9,99 to you?

please note that support questions placed as comments on this website will be removed.  Those that mail me with questions who do not have the CDN subscription will be ignored (as will spammers!).

I trust that you understand that my time is valuable and I have already given a large amount of it to you already in the form of the share and follow plugin.

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Version 1.60.1 released after a long break in development

After a very long break in development (I was helping a family member through illness), I have finally made a new release of share and follow. Here is a list of the things that have changed.

* google plus interactive icons added
* changed share shortcode to allow for ID and title naming
* added caching
* improved communications for CDN clients to allow for 3 different methods (socks, file_get_contents and curl)
* removed about 120K of un-needed code by writing a better class
* changed who the functions work by placing the functions inside the class and the calls outside.
* fixed any class scope issues
* PHP5 compatible only
* changed all sections to have their own menu, thus stopping problems with servers with small $_POST buffers
* reduced the database calls significantly
* change standard twitter share method
* added ability to echo or return all functions
* changed system to only be compatible with version 2.9 and above with PHP5 installed, thus same as requirements of 3.2
* improved error messages for CSS file when it cannot be written
* No php warnings of any kind when in debug mode.

so all in all very much worth downloading.

 

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release 1.53.3 – niggle fix and clean up of ampersands

Had a couple of niggles to resolve as well as some ampersands that were in the URLS for CDN users. Here’s what has changed

  • fixed & in CDN urls
  • fixed & in URL of stumble uppon interactive button
  • converted blank.png into blank.gif which is also smaller and offers some IE6 support (not total)
  • reduced size of follow words
  • changed file functions.php to be saf-functions.php as it was causing problems on a few servers with dodgy PHP installs
  • changed stats.js to not load anymore
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release 1.53, added friendfeed to the plugin and now 26 icons sets on the CDN

Just released version 1.53 with friendfeed, soon  to come Behance, Panoramio and Gmail among others.

Also added more icons sets to the CDN to bring it up to 26 sets to choose from.  Not bad for 9,99euro for most people, especially as it makes your site much faster.

do let me know if you have any problems.
regards

andy

Posted in CDN, release | 45 Comments

release 1.52.5 now out. improved CSS caching and validation

Just released version 1.52.5 which had a few bug fixes in it and some improvements.

Bug fixes

  • Tag sharing now does not put up a strange unwanted heading on the share widget
  • Changed share widget to grab the correct email body text
  • changed email share button to have %20 for spaces, and &body= in urlencoded format
  • added alt=”follow word” to the follow word image tag

Improvements

  • better CSS caching (faster)
  • reduced amount of CSS code
  • automatically changed & in headings into ‘and’ so that twitter shares don’t look so strange if they include a &.  i.e. Share & Follow becomes Share and Follow
  • Now validates 100%
  • Reduced the share widget code

So mainly this was bug fixing with a few improvements

As ever do let me know if you have any problems.

regards
Andy

Posted in release | 18 Comments

December plans for Share and Follow – our roadmap

I am very hopeful I can clear the decks of all other work to focus on Share and Follow for a month. I’ve got so many plans for things I need to add or change in the plugin that I really need that time.

So here is a short list of the things I want to do during that time.

  • Auto publishing to at least Facebook and Twitter, want to do Hyves, vkontakte and Orkut
  • Bit.ly pro domains work correctly, and also ?p=123 works as well to keep branding in twitter
  • Combined stats counter for twitter, where it gets bit.ly, t.co, site.com/seo-url and site.com/?p=123 all to combine in one twitter button
  • complete re-make of the like, retweet and other interactive buttons to all become the same size and shape
  • resolve titles like “share & follow” properly for twitter sharing so that it does not make it a GET variable
  • Author listings widget, and author details at the bottom of posts, including Vcard, Email, Twitter, Facebook or other social networks
  • Complete re-make of the back end admin pages to be more of a wizard with easier options for more people to use it without being bamboozled by options, very much a more graphic approach with advanced options available when wanted to techie geeks like me.
  • Increase the number of interactive buttons to include new items
  • Advert widget for CDN customers
  • Mobile and Touch device options to allow turning off of things or lowest KB delivery of share buttons
  • page/post exclusion with a tick box in the Edit Post/Edit Page admin screens

There are quite a few things here, but they all need to be done to make sure that Share and Follow stays #1 most popular Social Networking Plugin for WordPress.

Oh and it looks like very soon I will be branching out into Drupal & Joomla! as well as other CMS’s…. time to go global.

Of course you can help in this situation by either Donating or getting the CDN, thus meaning that myself and Neville the icon master do not need to get other work in for Christmas presents for our families.

All the best
Andy

Posted in roadmap | 2 Comments

Some direct mail requests not replied to, mail system corruption

Sadly I’ve had a mail corruption with Thunderbird this week. It has effected a bunch of mails (approx 50) before I was able to spot it and fix it. Very simple fix was just to compact the inbox and other folders.

Anyhow, this has meant that I have not been able to respond to a few emails that have been sent to me via the contact form, as I have no idea who to reply.

Question 1.
Why does the HTML Validator Service fail on the email link?
It fails because there are spaces in the Body= field on email link. It usually says “Here is a link to a site I really like” as you can see there are many spaces in that sentence. If those spaces are replaced with %20 which is the standard what to encode URL’s, it will then put the following message into the email body “Here%20is%20a%20link%20to%20a%20site%20I%20really%20like”, thus making it look ugly to the users of your site. Thus it is staying as “Here is a link to a site I really like” and will continue to fail

Question 2
When using SEO Ultimate and not putting in a specific description, SEO ultimate shows the description of “Share this on Facebook Digg This Tweet this….” all of the text from the share links in the post.
This is because SEO Ultimate is hooking in to the_content() to auto-generate the description and is including the Share Links as they also hook into the_content(). The best way to deal with this is to actually write your own description, which should be done anyway for google and SEO. Auto-generated descriptions are *never* as good as writing your own. If you are feeling intrepid and a bit of a php coder and don’t want to write your own descriptions, you could changed the priority on the SEO Ultimate hook to be a lower number than 10, i.e. 1 and then it will have made it’s description before the share links are added. This again is not so good as you will need to manage this every time you upgrade.

I do not expect the maker of SEO Ultimate is interested in changing the way their plugin functions to help people who want to be lazy when writing a self made description is far superior to any kind of generated description. They no doubt will say the same thing “write your own description”.

Kind regards
Andy

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Release 1.52.4 – you can choose your RSS feeds and also turn off print CSS support.

Release 1.52.4 is all about RSS and Printing. There are two main changes in the latest version….

1) added the ability to choose not to have PRINT CSS, be that external or inline styles.
See the menu item “Do you want to load a print CSS file?” and set it to NO if you do not want the print CSS to load.

2) the user can now select which RSS feed they wish to show on the follow tab, rss, rss2 or atom. This is done with a radio button so you can easily select what you want.

Also addressed was the not working correctly RSS comments on posts, they were coming back the same page and not the RSS feed for comments for the post.

As ever please do let me know if you have issues.
regards
andy

Posted in release | 1 Comment

Release 1.52.2 interactive links shortcode added

We’ve just added a new shortcode to the plugin that can be accessed by using the following shortcode

interactive_links    (with square brackets around it [])
example:

this is the default.  the default options are

interactive_links tweet = ‘yes’ like=’yes’ stumble=’no’ style=’button_count’

example:

With the counter of the share on the right

interactive_links style=’side_count’

example:

So now it’s even easier to show stuff in your blog the way you want.

All the best
andy

Posted in release | 12 Comments

Release 1.52.1 new icon sets in CDN, Blogger Support, improved interactive button support.

Blogger is here! finally we have added blogger for sharing and following. Get it while it’s hot

We’ve added 4 extra icon sets to the CDN in time with this release of the CDN. Most of them seasonal with Christmas Puddings, Baubles from the Christmas Tree and Christmas Puddings, oh and a Autumn Leaves set as well for this time of year in the northern hemisphere.

Also we had out first donation set where Dutch company Inveztors came to us for a set of icons for their site made in the style that they wanted, using their corporate colours in icons only. We’ve come to a deal where they are donating their icon set to the users of the CDN to use. Luck you CDN subscribers.  This might start a trend where you can completely brand you site with the button style of your choosing.  We’ve just managed to streamline and adapt our Icon Set Creation and have found we can produce icon sets in a much faster time, making it possible for us to make icon sets in hours not weeks. Thank god for Adobe Fireworks for its SVG and Batch Processing capabilities.

Prices for such services to follow once we’ve worked it all out.

Also if you want to be helpful, please let me know what other purchasing option than Pay Pal you would like so that I can understand whats best out there.

All the best
andy

Posted in blogger, CDN, release | 5 Comments