Changing to an SSD server – does it make a difference? An anecdote

I had been looking to change web hosts for a while, and thought I’d try out one of the hosts that was offering an SSD option.

I’ve also been learning a lot lately about performance, and how that is measured. This was a perfect opportunity to test the effect of an SSD server. Since I was moving my site, and changing nothing else about it, this seemed like a good comparison.

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Two level breadcrumbs with CSS :only-child

There was a situation where we had some breadcrumbs being produced by a CMS. The problem was that the breadcrumb appeared on the top-level page as well as it’s children pages. On the top level page it came across very redundant, and this single level breadcrumb would appear right above the page title. However, we wanted the breadcrumb trail to still appear on the second level pages.

Ideally, this kind of situation would be dealt with at the template level, and the markup would simply be absent. In this case, we couldn’t change the template, we could only change the CSS.

The solution was the CSS :only-child pseudo selector.

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Simplicity comes with experience

Being able to confidently offer simple solutions that solve a problem is a hallmark of experience. Before even committing your fingers to a keyboard, experience will (hopefully) allow you to:

  • Question requirements. Is something truly necessary?
  • Get to the root business goal. People don’t just blindly ask for stuff without a reason – but getting to that real reason can take some digging.
  • Redefine success. Get others to see that simplicity and reliability trumps whiz-bang.

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