Toronto Web Design and Development | Shift8 Web

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11/22/2023

How to rewrite URLs generated by WordPress AJAX POST Requests

In the realm of WordPress development, AJAX is a pivotal technology for creating dynamic and interactive web experiences. AJAX empowers websites to fetch and display content seamlessly without requiring a full page refresh. However, in certain scenarios, the URLs generated within these AJAX-fetched contents might necessitate modification for a variety of reasons, such as enhancing […]

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09/03/2023

Starting Web Design and Development Projects through Toronto’s Inflationary Landscape

In the dynamic economic landscape of Toronto, where businesses must contend with various economic climates, embarking on a web design or development project takes on heightened importance. The intersection of economic dynamics with the digital realm underscores the necessity of a strategic approach that caters to businesses’ unique needs across varying economic conditions. Enter Shift8, […]

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08/23/2023

How to recover a hacked WordPress website

Well it happened to you. You receive an email from a customer, or perhaps your web host : Your WordPress site is displaying an “unsafe website” browser error. Or maybe it is now showing some gambling advertisements. It clearly has been compromised. What do you do now? Based on over 14 years experience hosting, managing […]

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12/12/2022

How to increase revenue of your Toronto based e-commerce business

Increasing the revenue of an existing e-commerce business in Toronto can be a challenging task, as it involves competing with other businesses and attracting and retaining customers. However, there are several strategies that can help an e-commerce business in Toronto increase its revenue. Below are some steps to follow to increase the revenue of an […]

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12/10/2022

Why good web design is important for your business

Web design is an important aspect of a business’s online presence, as it can have a significant impact on the success of the business. Good web design involves a combination of factors, including a user-friendly interface, visually appealing graphics and layout, and easy navigation. It is also important for the website to be mobile-friendly and […]

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09/14/2022

How to develop your own WordPress CRON job properly and ensure it actually runs

Hello! In this post we will be walking through how to interact with the WordPress Cron system. We will delve into how to establish your scheduled jobs properly using the built-in WordPress cron system, with no other external interactions such as the OS cronjob system. This will be useful for WordPress plugin developers as in […]

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03/16/2022

How to make Woocommerce more enterprise friendly

Hello! After Working with WordPress and Woocommerce for a while, watching it grow and evolve over time, there are some constraints that we have been encountered over the years in particular with larger enterprise projects. WordPress appeals to a massive audience (43% market share to be exact). In this massive appeal, the WordPress development community […]

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02/08/2022

How to push your single post or page content with this new WordPress plugin

Hello! There is quite a bit of documentation with how to scale your WordPress site for enterprise. Additionally there are quite a few enterprise WordPress hosting solutions that allow you to “stage” your content on staging sites with automated methods to push or clone the staging site (once an internal approved process gives the thumbs […]

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12/04/2020

How to import your Zoom Webinars into WordPress as custom content

Hello! Now, more than ever, companies businesses and individuals are leveraging web based collaborative tools like Zoom. Whether it be for company meetings, training sessions or sales seminars, the idea is to use video conferencing technology to replace in-person interactions. Zoom has emerged as a leading player, being positioned favourably at the right point in […]

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09/28/2020

How to scale your WordPress site for enterprise level redundancy

Hello! It often becomes a requirement for certain levels of clients to ensure service level agreements for uptime and redundancy are kept. What does this mean? Well we want to ensure that a particular site can withstand a single point of failure, which usually means we would need to expand the services across multiple endpoints. […]

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09/09/2020

How to bulk update all WordPress pages or posts

Hello! Sometimes its necessary to perform mass or automated actions against your WordPress content. Reasons for this can vary, but in our scenario there was a bug in a plugin relating to translated content via WPML where afte a fix / plugin update was applied, resolving the content errors was as simple as re-saving an […]

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05/08/2020

How to optimize and speed up your WordPress site

Hello! What a topic : how speed up your WordPress site. There are so many elements and factors that contribute to site speed, it is my intention to cover each area that contributes or affects overall site speed, specifically with a WordPress site. Being the most popular CMS in the world means that all sorts […]

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04/07/2020

How to transition your Toronto business online

Hello! Without a doubt, the covid-19 pandemic has caused a massive disruption to the global economy including a fundamental shift to how small, medium and large enterprise businesses can conduct their day-to-day operations. The impact of social distancing and other quarantine strategies as dictated by the various health regulatory bodies have had a staggering impact […]

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03/10/2020

How to sanitize and reset all WordPress user accounts with linux shell scripting and wp-cli

Hello! There are several key best practices insofar as how to deal with security intrusions, including but not limited to restoring from backups on a clean server. In this article, I will be going over how to create an automated shell script that completes the following actions across multiple WordPress sites on your linux server […]

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11/21/2019

What is good web design?

Hello! Trends in web design have come and gone over the years, however there have been some recurring indicators that have manifested as good web design in different iterations as styles change, web development technologies change and the internet changes. CSS, HTML and Javascript frameworks have all come a long way in terms of front […]

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11/12/2019

How to Start an E-commerce Site in Toronto

One of the biggest roadblocks to starting a new business in Toronto is the upfront costs involved with opening a store or even securing office space. With today’s online economy, though, those expenses can be eliminated by opening an E-Commerce Site. These online sites provide you with a great virtual storefront that doesn’t come with […]

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11/05/2019

How to Start a Business in Toronto

Are you thinking about starting your own business in Toronto? There are a number of benefits to owning your own small business. You’re the boss, for one, and you get to make all of the decisions about the company, its products/services, and its direction. While starting a new business in Toronto isn’t difficult, you do […]

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10/30/2019

Web Design for Toronto Businesses

Hello! If you are operating a local business in Toronto, one of the most important things you need to do is maintain a web presence. Whether your business is a startup, business services or restaurant : your web presence is key to the fundamental survival and operation of your business. What does it mean to […]

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09/25/2019

How to create self-populating “smart” forms in Drupal 8 with Form API

Hello! Many years ago (2015 to be exact), we published an article on how to create self-populating dropdown forms using the Drupal 7 Webform API. Now that the year is 2019 and Drupal 8 has been “Released” for quite some time now, with 8.7.1 as of May 2019, we thought it might be a good […]

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06/10/2019

Free CDN for your WordPress site

  Install our Free WordPress CDN plugin by Register on our CDN dashboard and then install our wordpress pluginHello! Site speed has, for quite a while now, been a significant factor towards expectation of user experience as well as for things like organic Google ranking. When a website is slow to load, the end user […]

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05/23/2019

How we created our own free content delivery network for WordPress users

Try out our Free CDN service by installing the Shift8 CDN WordPress pluginHello! We thought it would be an interesting challenge both from a DevOPS perspective as well as a web development and integration perspective to create our own fully managed content delivery network. Utilization of the network is geared specifically for WordPress users. The […]

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05/23/2019

Employment Opportunity : Full Stack Developer

Hello! We are looking for a Full Stack PHP Developer to work on multiple projects for our clients. We are a digital agency located in Toronto Canada and work with small and large enterprise organizations across many sectors. We are looking for inspired and experienced people to help complement an existing technical team to contribute […]

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03/26/2019

How to build a port scanner with Javascript using React Native

Hello! Why bother writing a port scanner in Javascript you might ask? Well javascript is many things, however the majority of its use is based on its original design to be synchronously executed in-browser using a single thread. Because of this, it becomes a challenge to write code outside of this original use case, though […]

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01/18/2019

How to block your WordPress site from being scanned by WPScan with Nginx

Hello! First and foremost, why would you want to block WPScan from probing your site? Well we all know that security through obscurity is a bad practice. That said the risks of malicious activity on your site is undoubtedly heightened through many points of information disclosure that is freely available to parse and organize to […]

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01/11/2019

How to inject advanced custom fields into your WPBakery post grid

Hello! Yes of course WPBakery / Visual Composer is bloated. Absolutely correct its more ideal to simply create your own page template with a custom WordPress query and design your own post grid from scratch. For smaller budget WordPress projects where time is money, it is sometimes ideal to go the post grid route. Why […]

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11/02/2018

How to cache queries to admin-ajax.php in WordPress to improve performance

Hello! Working with wordpress for a while now, we noticed that many actions, whether administrative in nature or building a WordPress query on the front end, are dependent on the built-in admin-ajax.php or WordPress AJAX API. Since many 3rd party plugins depend on this Ajax API to dynamically push and pull data, it is unfortunately […]

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09/13/2018

How to protect WordPress media files and only allow the users who uploaded them to view

Hello! In the past we have written about how to protect your WordPress media files. In the past exercises we utilized a strategy to set a session cookie with encrypted details that can be read and validated at the http service (i.e. nginx) as well as application (php/wordpress) level. Since then we have refined this […]

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06/27/2018

How to implement a government ID verification system with Woocommerce and WordPress

  Need this implemented on your site? Click here and fill out our quote form!   Hello! There are many reasons why your Woocommerce store may need a system to accommodate verifying the identity of your customers. Depending on what your selling and the local or federal laws that are in place, having the identity […]

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05/08/2018

How to make bulk changes to WordPress Woocommerce product attributes with PHP

Hello! Sometimes its necessary to make site-wide changes to WordPress posts in order to save time and programmatically propagate changes without having to edit each post one at a time. For bulk manipulation of WordPress data, it is sometimes effective to write a command line PHP script to hook into your WordPress environment and execute […]

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03/28/2018

#DeleteFacebook : How to poison, obfuscate and purge your facebook data before deleting your account

* Update : Thank you Vice for writing an article about my script! Unfortunately it seems as though facebook is actually blocking the ability for anyone to share the article. I wonder why? * Update 2 : Facebook is now allowing the Vice article to be shared, only after about 24 hours of blocking the […]

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02/23/2018

WordPress plugin to remotely manage and automate multiple WordPress sites

Hello! Being a Toronto based web design and development agency means that we interact with a significant number of WordPress sites. This tends to happen when a project starts (obviously), but often continues after a site is launched. This is something that we offer along the lines of “post launch maintenance”. By no means once […]

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02/20/2018

Steps to take when designing a logo for a client: From research to presentation.

The method of designing a logo and formulating or refreshing a brand is a practice that I have become much more comfortable with over the years. The identity of a business and how that business is characterized by the world is, at first glance defined by their logo. I’ve put down our experiences collaborating with […]

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02/07/2018

How to use Jenkins and Git to automate code pushes for your Laravel project

Hello! Recently we published guides how to push WordPress sites with Jenkins or how to push WordPress sites with a simple shell script. We thought it might be useful to give an overview of how to streamline your code integration process with Jenkins , GitHub and Bash shell scripting. The script I will outline below […]

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01/31/2018

How to craft an XSS payload to create an admin user in WordPress

Hello! XSS (or cross site scripting) attacks are a common method to maliciously execute actions against a website installation. In particular this type of attack vector is useful when dealing with a CMS like WordPress where you have administrative user accounts to target. This means that if you are able to craft an XSS payload […]

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01/29/2018

WordPress plugin to get geolocation coordinates from a visitors IP address

Hello! We recently had a requirement from a client to generate content on a page specifically based on the geolocation coordinates of the visitor’s IP address. Now this sort of mechanism isn’t totally new, however we decided to develop a WordPress plugin called Shift8 GeoIP that would obtain this information and set it into an […]

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01/15/2018

WordPress Woocommerce plugin to disable payment methods based on zip or postal codes

Hello! Woocommerce is a great easy-to-implement and versatile e-commerce platform. With the robust development community, expanding the core functionality can be relatively straight forward with the availability of a wide assortment of 3rd party plugins for Woocommerce. One of the things that we felt was missing, but a simple requirement, was the ability to manipulate […]

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12/21/2017

How to push your WordPress site with a simple bash shell script and integrate it with Jenkins

Hello! Previously we gave an overview of our new WordPress plugin to integrate your Jenkins build process within the WordPress administration area. The previous post gave an overview of how to set up Jenkins as well as how to set up the WordPress plugin. Where we stopped short is actually integrating the build script within […]

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12/19/2017

WordPress plugin to integrate Jenkins to streamline your build process

Hello! We love integrating Jenkins into development workflow. Typically Jenkins would be used for custom development projects to streamline the development “push” process in order to seamlessly integrate code changes from a testing / staging environment over to the live environment. For frameworks like Laravel or Django, this works very nicely. Until recently, we haven’t […]

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08/31/2017

IP Address Reputation and intelligence plugin for WordPress

Hello! With WordPress security, there are many methods for hardening and tightening controls, methods for preventing common attack vectors including best practices from a development, systems administration and even 3rd party plugin perspective. Since the rising popularity of “IP Reputation Intelligence” with Corporate networks and streaming services like Netflix, I thought it would be a […]

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07/12/2017

How to integrate Chart.js into WordPress Woocommerce to show charts and graphs of your products

Hello! One of the nice things about Woocommerce is that it is very easily customized. Actions can be removed and re-added in order to adjust the default behavior. Additionally you can override many of the default templates that come with Woocommerce and its many extensions to fine tune and adjust the way you want your […]

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05/10/2017

Read and auto populate fields in WordPress Gravity forms with jQuery

Hello! When designing and implementing Gravity forms there may be occasions where you would want to auto populate multiple fields based on a preceding field selection. This was the case in our scenario where we wanted to populate the selection of a drop-down box based on a Google Map location field within Gravity Forms on […]

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04/13/2017

How to encrypt and execute your PHP code with MCRYPT or OPENSSL

Hello! While the scenario may not necessarily be common in which you would want to encrypt your PHP code and execute it, it is something that I would consider an interesting discussion nonetheless. I fully support free and open source software, however if you are developing an application that manages or monitors systems or services […]

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03/14/2017

How to use PHP as a web service to backup MySQL over HTTPS to a remote destination

Hello! Following with the theme of our last post, we thought it might be useful to demonstrate how to create a pure PHP based web service to backup your MySQL database to a remote destination (also with PHP) over a secure HTTPS connection. High level, all we will be doing is iterating over all the […]

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03/03/2017

How to use PHP to recursively transfer files in parallel over HTTP

Hello! There may be some scenarios where you might want to clone your site or push files to a remote location completely and 100% using PHP as a web service, without touching the command line. There are many console or command line utilities to help complete this type of job such as rsync, scp, ncftp, […]

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01/30/2017

How to use jQuery to sort and reorganize your content

Hello! Recently we were tasked with finding ways to re-organize search results on a Drupal page in such a way that we could prioritize, group and sort the results in a coherent way. The simplest way to look at organizing in general, especially content that is dynamically generated, is to either adjust the query that […]

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12/19/2016

How to create a custom gallery meta field for posts in WordPress

Hello! If you read our last post on us releasing a new WordPress Plugin for Portfolio Galleries, you would have seen us touch a bit on creating custom fields / meta boxes for your post type. One of the bigger challenges when creating the Portfolio Grid plugin was implementing the administrative jQuery to manipulate the […]

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12/13/2016

WordPress plugin to display your portfolio in a full width grid

Hello! We just released a WordPress plugin, Shift8 Portfolio, to organize your portfolio in a grid using bootstrap scaffolding! This is a very straightforward plugin that we decided to write for our own portfolio page. After using it ourselves it was decided that we needed to share it with the world 🙂 There are many […]

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11/18/2016

How to create asynchronous non-blocking queued jobs in WordPress

Hello! One of the projects that we are currently working on is a WordPress plugin that integrates with the Toronto Real Estate Board to pull new listings from their systems and import them into WordPress as posts. The mechanics required to connect to TREB are very basic. One might call TREB’s systems out of date. […]

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11/11/2016

New Company Site Launch for Shift8 Web

Hello! We are excited to announce that we have created a brand new website for ourselves! Sometimes its difficult to focus on ourselves when we are so often focused on our clients. With new and exciting projects on the horizon, we thought we would take the opportunity to chip away and eventually launch a new […]

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09/12/2016

WordPress plugin for a mobile friendly sticky navigation menu

Hello! Creating a unique, original and flexible navigation menu in WordPress can be challenging. There are many commercial and free plugins out there to establish navigation systems, however many of the commercial options seem to be “overkill” providing many bloated options with embedded CSS that can be difficult to adjust by a novice user. What […]

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07/25/2016

How to speed up drupal : Clean up base64 encoded images

Hello! Recently we experienced a severe slowdown bottleneck with a Drupal site. After some debugging we decided to turn on mysql slow query logging. After watching the logs we noticed that while the content page was loading in Drupal’s administration back-end there was extremely long scrolling of encoded binary data : INSERT INTO cache_form (cid, […]

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07/05/2016

How to create a web interface to modify your AWS Security Group

Hello! On top of developing and designing websites for clients in and around Toronto, we also do managed and dedicated web hosting. This includes managing AWS Cloud infrastructure for our clients. When implementing infrastructure in general terms, it is generally accepted to take the approach to lock down as much as possible with respect to […]

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06/22/2016

WordPress plugin to integrate your Facebook page feed

Hello! We have created yet another WordPress plugin! We are highly motivated to roll out any and all WordPress custom development as a neatly packaged plugin for the general public to use. We have many more ideas and many more plugins in the works. Check out the plugin hereThis latest plugin, recently approved by the […]

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06/17/2016

WordPress plugin to create animated full screen modal flyouts

Hello! We have recently created & submitted our first official WordPress plugin : Shift8 Modal. This is a relatively straightforward plugin that integrates the animatedModal jQuery library into WordPress as an easy-to-use shortcode. Submitting our plugin to the WordPress plugin directyl took roughly 7 days to complete. WordPress has pretty straightforward (though sometimes changing) development […]

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05/30/2016

How to export and import field collection data in Drupal

Hello! There are many great tools out there that make importing and exporting content into Drupal nodes very easy. We deal with custom Drupal content often and have extensively used many of the (amazing) tools available, such as node export, views data export and feed import , specifically with the field collection feeds addon. With […]

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05/13/2016

Protect and lock down your WordPress media files

Hello! Occasionally it was necessary for us to lock down some or all of the WordPress media library from public viewing, indexing. The reasons why this would be necessary can vary from sensitive information leakage to private user information protection (i.e. custom user media files uploaded on a per user account basis). Either way, there […]

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04/26/2016

How to create a heatmap layer on Google Maps using JQuery and PHP

Hello! There was a scenario not too long ago where we were required to create a heatmap layer on top of a Google map to plot latitude/longitude coordinates. I thought I’d share the process through which we pull the coordinate data from a MySQL database and plot it into the google map as a heatmap […]

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03/10/2016

How to customize WordPress search results page

Hello! When designing websites, especially websites that have an active blog, it is often necessary to style, customize and design the WordPress search results page. When styling the search results, we typically like to modify the way the results are presented as well as append a few custom CSS container classes in order to ensure […]

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01/11/2016

Create a custom mobile and tablet friendly dropdown menu in WordPress

Hello! In our many instances where we are developing, designing and deploying a WordPress site for a client, it is a constant necessity to implement a mobile / tablet friendly dropdown menu. Because this happens often, we have developed a “starter” mobile menu for our WordPress implementations. We prefer to create a CSS based responsive […]

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12/14/2015

Create self-populating ajax drop-down forms in Drupal with the Form API

Hello! At risk of making the title of this post a mouth full, I thought I’d share some of our experience with interacting with Drupal’s Form API (Specficially Drupal 7.x). There is a lot of documentation on different ways you can interact with the Form API to accomplish a wide range of tasks from collecting […]

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10/21/2015

Create your own WordPress shortcode that pulls posts from facebook page

Hello there! In the same vein as our previous post that shows how you could create your own shortcode to pull tweets from a user, we’ve decided to make a similar post that shows how you could pull content from a facebook page and integrate it into your WordPress site. Sometimes it makes more sense […]

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09/18/2015

Create your own wordpress shortcode to pull tweets from a user

Hello! I’m of the opinion that it is better to code your own functions, shortcode and templates to accomplish even simple things within content management systems, as opposed to downloading a free plugin to accomplish the same task. You might be asking “Why not just download a plugin? Its much easier!”. Well that may be […]

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08/13/2015

Use PHP to send APNS iOS and GCM Android push notifications

Hello! Through our own internal projects it has become a requirement in the past to implement a system that integrates with a mobile application. Specifically we have implemented systems that send out push notifications to iOS and Android based devices. The conditions through which we would be sending the notifications are somewhat irrelevant, though it […]

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06/29/2015

How we created our own typeface

By : Suzanne Today marks a milestone in my journey to create a typeface that I can share with the world and can be my rough around the edges legacy long after I am gone 😉 . Creating your own typeface can be a time consuming but very rewarding experience. I definitely enjoy the process […]

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06/22/2015

Securing your MySQL queries from SQL injection in PHP

Hello! There is many strategies for securing your code against malicious user input. Some frameworks have checks and balances built in. There are simple standard PHP functions that are designed to strip tags and illegal characters from variables like strip_tags and filter_var. Filtering XSS in PHP Those standard functions are good for basic input filtering, […]

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05/14/2015

Use jQuery and CSS to make a sticky navigation menu

Hello! Some may argue that sticky navigation menus (menus that are fixed at the top or bottom of the page as you scroll) are a fashionable web design style. Whether or not its a “fad”, having a navigation bar that is fixed as you scroll throughout the the site is advantageous. This is especially so […]

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05/01/2015

Ajax Long Polling to your RESTful API

Hello! Whether your developing a mobile or web based application, keeping on top of constantly changing data is a challenge on its own. Sometimes its necessary to make repeated calls to your API to pull updates at regular intervals. We wrote a previous blog post describing how to use Ajax to pull JSON data via […]

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04/06/2015

Use PHP to set up a RESTful API with simple authentication

Hello! It is sometimes necessary to bridge different web applications together in order to transmit or receive information and process it. One scenario could be a mobile application that connects to a web service to pull or push data in order to update the app or provide “real time” services with centralized data. One of […]

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03/26/2015

Tips to secure your WordPress site

Security is a huge deal. Sometimes your at the mercy of the open source solution or content management system that you choose. There are occasions that even after ensuring your CMS and the subsidiary plugins are consistently up to date, you still fall mercy to a zero day exploit that circumvents the security of your […]

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03/04/2015

Pull JSON data from your website to your mobile application with Ajax and PHP

Hello! Making mobile applications is much easier than it used to be. As with previous posts, we have been experimenting with Apache Cordova Framework for easily building mobile applications, leveraging web frameworks like AngularJS. Many mobile applications communicate with a centralized “server” or website that retains all the data that may be useful for the […]

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02/23/2015

Create an iphone or android app with geo-location targeting

Hello! Creating mobile applications can be a grueling process. There are many factors that can complicate the process and it is very specialized. One thing we have been looking at recently is utilizing an AngularJS, Node.js based framework to utilize HTML5, javascript and jQuery based technology to implement mobile applications. Specifically the Apache Cordova framework […]

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02/13/2015

Detect facial features in your images and modify them in real time with Jquery, Javascript, CSS and PHP

Hello! A few weeks ago we wrote a post that detailed how you could leverage PHP, Javascript and jQuery to detect facial features in images. In this post we will detail how you can take the detection of facial features and modify the image in real time with CSS and jQuery. You can read the […]

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01/30/2015

Detecting faces in your images with PHP , Javascript and jQuery

Hello! In some scenarios with web application development it may be necessary to be able to detect the facial features of a photo. For example an application that detects how many people are in a picture, or perhaps an app that modifies the faces of the people in a photo. Whether you’re making a mobile […]

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01/15/2015

Creating custom post types and pulling them into a custom page template in WordPress

Hello! Occasionally in WordPress it is necessary to push, what is primarily a blogging content management system, to its limits in order to create a dynamic website. The reason why it may be necessary to create a custom wordpress post type is in just that scenario where you need to create custom and dynamic types […]

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01/08/2015

Happy 2015!

Hello All, Happy 2015! Here’s to an excellent year to all of our friends, family and to all of our clients, from the past present and future! It’s been a very frigid couple of days in Toronto, we have been thinking back the the warmer months. This is especially true when we had an unseasonably […]

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12/15/2014

Load testing your web application

Hello! These days with so many (buzzword) cloud services, the standard vanilla LAMP stack is slowly becoming a thing of the past. Or at least more obfuscated / confusing. Its important when building your web application to consider things like analytics, metrics, reporting, capacity planning and scaling. You need to be able to scale your […]

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12/04/2014

Automatically tweet your Toronto Real Estate (TREB) listings

Hello! A while ago we released a Python based solution to connect to TREB, pull real estate listings and post it to WordPress. We also posted a brief guide on how to use the Python script. With python, we are using the module wordpress_xmlrpc in order to connect to a wordpress sites via the XML […]

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11/27/2014

Detect browser type or device type and assign custom CSS in WordPress

Howdy! With the advent of responsive web design in recent years, developing “mobile only” websites has somewhat become a thing of the past. That is to say we no longer need to maintain a separate version of a website for mobile devices as we once did. All that said, it is sometimes necessary to address […]

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11/24/2014

Some cute flat icons that we made

Hello There! Here is a collection of some of the most popular Social Media platform icons that we created using http://fontawesome.io/ You can download these icons and use them for whatever you please. They are .png files and each icon is 32px. These icons are using the colours from the Shift8 Web brand, but you […]

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11/19/2014

Use Python to connect to a WordPress site

Hello there! We love web development here at Shift8. We also love finding ways to automate and integrate different interfaces together. For example, we have written Python solutions to integrate TREB (Toronto Real Estate Board) listings into a WordPress site. Finding a Python Library to work with WordPress There are many readily available libraries that […]

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11/12/2014

Convert text to an image with Javascript and HTML5

Hello! Working with frameworks like Django and with CMS’ like Drupal and WordPress we come across a wide variety of requirements for manipulating, sanitizing and importing data from all different sources and formats. Recently we had the requirement to take a text field that was defined in a Django model and convert that text string […]

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11/09/2014

Drupal Problem : An AJAX HTTP request terminated abnormally

Hello! Recently we had a tricky problem with Drupal 7 and manipulating content. Our content types and content in general for a particular Drupal site has grown significantly. Ajax queries in Drupal Adding and removing content such as images or gallery items requires an Ajax query that polls the database. These queries, once your database […]

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10/29/2014

Make your own custom WordPress shortcode for pulling category posts

Hello! WordPress is a great entry level CMS that has a vibrant and extensive development community with many free plugins and offerings to help extend your web installation significantly. Once in a while , either with a significant WordPress update or for other reasons, the default plugins wont cut it. Sometimes when you seemingly want […]

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10/21/2014

Varnish, session cookies and WordPress

Hello! Caching is invariably the wave of the future. We have worked with many different caching technologies to leverage a website to be able to handle more traffic as well as offering a low cost vector to scale a website without investing in expensive hardware. We occasionally offer web hosting through our own web hosting […]

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10/09/2014

Drupal Development : Make a page template for dynamic page requests

Hello! Drupal is a fantastic content management system with an even more fantastic development community. Recently through our own Drupal development projects, we came across a scenario that required the processing of dynamic (i.e. “Wildcard”) page requests to the same drupal page template. If I’ve lost you already , don’t worry! All we are trying […]

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08/28/2014

Brand new company site : shift8 + django

Hello! We have recently completely re-vamped our company website : www.shift8web.ca. We have decided to move away from a conventional CMS and towards a web framework called django. Some of the challenges encountered were from a systems administration perspective (nginx + varnish + php-fpm). Other challenges faced were migrating all our content / data into […]

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07/16/2013

TREB IDX WordPress Integration with Python : Integrate WordPress and TREB real estate listings!

TREB WordPress Integration with our open source python solution We know that some of you are definitely looking forward to the release of this integrated system that has been promised quite a while ago. Well the time has come for us to release the open source Python code that seamlessly does the following : Download […]

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05/13/2013

New corporate site redesign!

We are very proud to announce the complete ground-up redesign of our corporate website! We have completely redesigned all elements, layout and style from the ground up. We hope you like the new site (we do!). Its important to restructure and redesign your website regularly. By regularly I mean every few years. It completely depends […]

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01/29/2013

Why using Flash media on your site is bad

Hello! I realize that its 2013 and the flash media debate is pretty much a peripheral debate at this point. Being in the web design industry, it is still a common occurrence to be presented with a job or project that requires migrating a corporate website away from the dependance of static flash media. There’s […]

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01/23/2013

Looking for a way to post Toronto Real Estate listings (TREB IDX) on your site?

Greetings! Are you a real estate agent, or a web designer working to develop a dynamic site that automatically pulls TREB (Toronto Real Estate Board) listings (or TREB IDX) from their database (with their permission of course) and import it dynamically into the site as a regular daily job? We have been working hard to […]

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01/23/2013

Javascript : Inject HTML Into a page without being disruptive

Greetings! Occasionally it comes up in a project, for many different reasons, to utilize javascript or jquery in a user interaction or user interface design scenario. Usually, with javascript, this can be found in the form of an onmouseover() or onmouseclick() query. Sometimes logic has to be maintained where if certain conditions are met such […]

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01/23/2013

Frameworks or Traditional Content Management Systems?

Typically for each client we work with designing a website from the ground up, we find ourselves evaluating one of two options : using a web framework such as DJango or going with a Traditional content management system such as WordPress, Joomla or Drupal. Although the needs and requirements of each client are typically unique, […]

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09/13/2012

Not sure whether now is the right time to start your web design project?

Maybe this will help you make your decision! Custom web design projects can be quite expensive, and we certainly recognize that. This is especially true for small businesses where their design budgets are smaller and more stringent than the bigger companies. Every dollar has to count and your return on your investment in a site […]

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09/03/2012

5 Steps for a web designer to learn PHP

In today’s world it is almost essential, in the web design world, for a designer to wear more hats than just graphic and web design. Many projects are likely to involve some sort of custom web programming in order to meet a clients (ever changing) needs and requirements. Because web design is often considered a […]

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04/19/2012

Shift8 : Toronto Web Design Company Site Redesign!

Hello There! We are very excited about the launch of our newly minted, fresh off the presses, front facing company website! We thought we would post here about it as well to let you all know that the new site has been launched and you should definitely check it out! We are very proud of […]

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04/12/2012

StarDot Hosting

Complete top down Branding and Logo design for our affiliated Web Hosting Company.

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02/02/2012

Working With Toronto Real Estate Agents To Incorporate Toronoto MLS Listings Into Their Websites

We’ve been working with several Toronto Real Estate Agents on their websites to help incorporate a search page for potential buyers. We’ve connected with The Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) using IDX http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Data_Exchange Here’s an example of how we utilized this technology for The Property Team in in Toronto, we worked very close with this […]

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02/02/2012

New Shift8 Toronto Web Design Blog!

Hello there! We at Shift8 Web Design have decided to create a blog! Here you will find new ideas, experiences and everything relating to the Toronto Web Design community.   Stay tuned!

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02/02/2012

What Does Shift*8 Offer?

We know that all great design starts out with a great idea. Like any creative practice. A website, a business card, a newsletter, or any piece of promotional material starts out with great branding. The branding is what will make your company stand out from your competitors. We have a passion for producing the most […]

At Shift8, we cater to all sorts of businesses in and around Toronto from small, medium, large and enterprise projects. We are comfortable adapting to your existing processes and try our best to compliment communication and collaboration to the point where every step of the way is as efficient as possible.

Our projects are typically broken into 5 or 6 key “milestones” which focus heavily on the design collaboration in the early stages. We mock-up any interactive or unique page within your new website so that you get a clear picture of exactly how your design vision will be translated into a functional website.

Using tools like Basecamp and Redpen, we try to make the process simple yet fun and effective. We will revise your vision as many times as necessary until you are 100% happy, before moving to the functional, content integration and development phases of the project.

For the projects that are more development heavy, we make sure a considerable amount of effort is spent in the preliminary stages of project planning. We strongly believe that full transparency with a project development plan ensures that expectations are met on both sides between us and the client. We want to ensure that the project is broken into intelligent phases with accurate budgetary and timeline breakdowns.

Approved design mock-ups get translated into a browse-ready project site where we revise again and again until you are satisfied. Client satisfaction is our lifeblood and main motivation. We aren’t happy until you are.

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phone: 416-479-0685
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