What Roots should tell you before you use Trellis, Bedrock and Sage

What Roots should tell you before you use Trellis, Bedrock and Sage

Posted on 17th, October 2018 9:17 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis

We have a love-hate relationship with Roots. What we’ve learned in the past 18 months of developing WordPress ecosystems with Trellis, Bedrock and Sage is that Roots claims to be a faster way to develop WordPress websites, but that’s not the whole story.   Our experience has been that lack of clarity on what technology, […]


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A plain text list of all countries in the world and their respective states / provinces / counties

Posted on 28th, July 2018 10:36 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Programming, Tips and Tricks, Website Development

We created a plain text list of all countries in the world and their respective states / provinces / counties. It’s incomplete but that’s the goal. Available on GitHub in raw format.


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What is a wireframe in website development or application development?

Posted on 10th, July 2018 7:27 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Business Development, New Products or Services, Search Engine Optimization, Search Marketing, Website Development, Website Development

In the context of website development or application development a wireframe black and white, deliberately simplified line drawing of the layout of a website or application. This is sometimes mistakenly synonymous with website prototyping.   Example   How are wireframes used? Wireframing is one step in a professional website design process. It’s a time and […]


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In Depth Comparison of WordPress vs Laravel (CMS & eCommerce Included)

Posted on 24th, June 2018 3:55 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Programming, Website Development

We developer custom WordPress Themes from scratch and existing platforms like Roots (Trellis, Bedrock and Sage), as well as custom WordPress Plugins. We’ve done so for almost the entire time we’ve been in business (circa 2005). Over time we’ve gradually discovered the limitations with WordPress but ultimately decided that the alternatives were just that: an […]


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Debunking and Demustifying Bid Adjustments and Max CPC in Google AdWords

Posted on 13th, April 2018 6:00 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: AdWords, Pay Per Click Management, Search Marketing

A client recently asked us this question: “I was looking over our Google AdWords campaign and noticed we are no longer being charged around $X a click but $X more per click. And then on the ad groups some terms are even more per click. Is there a way to bring down the cost per […]


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What should I pay for Google AdWords management?

Posted on 6th, April 2018 6:32 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: AdWords, Pay Per Click Management

If you’re investigating hiring a company to manage your advertising on Google AdWords (and other platforms) then this article was written specifically to help you understand the typical pricing models and the pros and cons. This article specifically talks about Google AdWords, but it really can apply to other platforms like Facebook Advertising, Instagram Advertising, […]


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What is professional logo design?

Posted on 20th, March 2018 2:08 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Digital Design, Digital Marketing, Uncategorized, Website Development

These days, it’s easy to create your own logo or remotely hire individuals for as little as $5. Yet, some agencies still charge hundreds, or thousands of dollars to create them. Why is this? And which one should I choose?   Shorter Answer Regardless of who you hire here’s what you should get: A horizontal […]


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Roots Issue #12: Code, styles, not updating

Posted on 7th, December 2017 5:01 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis, Ubuntu

The Issue Recently, I discovered that when I saved my code it was no longer appearing when I reloaded the website while working locally in development. This occurred along with this error so I thought they were connected.   The Solution It turned out that when you run gulp –production that the Theme begins to look in […]


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Roots Issue #11

Posted on by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Roots, Trellis, Ubuntu

[Browsersync] Couldn’t open browser (if you are using BrowserSync in a headless environment, you might want to set the open option to false) I have built several sites with Roots stack now and suddenly, BrowserSync is no longer working on one of them. However, BrowserySync is working on all the others. So this suggests to […]


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Roots Issue #10

Posted on 17th, November 2017 5:40 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis, Ubuntu

Today I switched from my Mac to my Linux Ubuntu and attempted to continue working on a Roots site. After cloning it down and using vagrant up to start the server and the site. Then I noticed the sites styling was broken. So I looked at the main.css stylesheet and discovered it was not found. So […]


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Roots Issue #7: What to do when your Theme styles on Staging or Production are broken.

Posted on 5th, November 2017 11:21 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock

Disclaimer: First of all, if you don’t realize that there are possibly many causes for this type of issue, you probably need more experience in website development in general. Particularly mastering HTML and CSS.   Today, I deployed a site to Staging. This means that I: Opened Terminal on my Mac / Linux Ubuntu machine. […]


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The First 5 Things You Should Know When Using ‘Screen’

Posted on 15th, October 2017 6:59 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bash / Shell, Programming

What is screen? screen is program that allows you to use multiple windows (virtual VT100 terminals) in Unix. In other words, instead of having a bunch of tabs open in Terminal to do different things at the same time you can run the commands below to show and hide them.   1. How to use […]


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Roots Error #1 – Failed to connect to the host via ssh: Permission denied (publickey).

Posted on 5th, October 2017 6:53 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, Roots, Trellis

Earlier this year we began using Roots’ Trellis, Bedrock and Sage to develop and manage websites. While the system is everything WordPress should be. There are some things it should not be. One of them is temperamental, another is incredibly complicated. Today I’m working on our third project with Roots. But simultaneously with our second and […]


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Roots Error #3 – ERROR! Invalid vars plugin version from /Users/myusers/Sites/mysite.com/trellis/lib/trellis/plugins/vars/version.py

Posted on by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, PHP, Programming, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis

Aaaand we’re back. If you saw or read my previous two articles, those were related to project #2. This article, however, is related to project #3.   The Problem I created the site and successfully worked on it on my Linux Ubuntu machine. I successfully deployed my work from development to staging went to bed. And then […]


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Roots Error #4 – composer create-project roots/sage mysite 8.5.3 zsh: command not found: composer

Posted on by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, Linux, Mac, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis, Ubuntu

This year we began using Roots’ Trellis, Bedrock and Sage to develop and manage websites. So far, I’ve only successfully completed one. But I’m actively working on three others. All riddled with obnoxious problems that seem to appear out of nowhere. Luckily for me, I have four computers. Two Macs, one Windows and one Linux […]


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Roots Error #2 – Mailhog, connection failure

Posted on by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, PHP, Programming, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis

Yet another error while using Roots’ Trellis, Bedrock and Sage during vagrant up on a brand new site, development locally on MacOS Sierra 10.12.6   My experience with Roots is that every time I use it I get a new error. Even if I didn’t change anything.   The Problem Today the error began when I create […]


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Proposed Improvements to the WordPress UI

Posted on 10th, September 2017 5:42 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Programming, WordPress

As of the writing of this article WordPress Plugins are allowed to do a few things that interrupt the WordPress UI. Headers – In the back end, when on any page, especially settings pages of Plugins, the headers are cluttered and inconsistent. Exhibit A, B, C. To improve this we proposes approving the following: Enhanced Permalink […]


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What does a professional proposal, contract or estimate look like?

Posted on 6th, September 2017 1:19 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: AdWords, Analytics, Business Development, Company News, Content Marketing, Pay Per Click Management, Press Releases, Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Search Marketing, Video Production, Website Development, Website Development

This article outlines what both parties involved in a proposal, contract or estimate for internet marketing should expect and work towards during the negotiation process.


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What does a professional website development process look like?

Posted on by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Company News, Press Releases, Website Development

If you’re evaluating website development for your business we’ve written this guide to help you know how to define professional website development. Unfortunately, there are many who claim to offer professional services and very few resources to help you confirm and identify the good from the bad.   1. Receive a Professional Proposal This is, without […]


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Switching from Mac to Ubuntu GNOME 17.04 / 17.10

Posted on 14th, August 2017 8:17 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Linux, Operating Systems, Ubuntu

This article will help you configure Ubuntu GNOME 17.04 / 17.10 to behave equal to or better than your Mac.   Context I’ve been a lifetime Mac user. But I wanted to play some games that aren’t available on the Mac, or no model of Mac laptops had a graphics card capable of running them […]


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Curious about content marketing? Here’s the who, what, where, when, and why.

Posted on 14th, June 2017 5:30 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Content Marketing, Pay Per Click Management, Programming, Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Search Marketing, Video Production, Website Development

What is content marketing? While the phrase “content marketing” is new and trending, the practice is not. Content marketing is the process of using your resources to create and promote original content that is attractive to an audience. Effective content marketing will generate a return on investment directly and / or indirectly. Overall, you can […]


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Should you put pricing on your website?

Posted on 26th, April 2017 12:17 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Business Development

Recently I was overseeing the development of landing pages for our website. The topic of whether or not we should display our pricing came up and I found that that majority of our team agreed that we should not reveal it. I wasn’t particularly surprised because this is a common tactic, but it’s one I […]


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My First Time with Roots’ Trellis + Bedrock + Sage

Posted on 7th, April 2017 7:37 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bash / Shell, Bedrock, PHP, Programming, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis, Website Development

This article was written to document some of the specific challenges I had that other’s using Roots’ Trellis + Bedrock + Sage may experience as well. My hope is that anyone who gets stuck will be able to save themselves the many hours it cost me to track down these solutions and understand precisely why […]


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How to Use Font Awesome with Sage Theme & Bootstrap 4

Posted on 27th, March 2017 7:02 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Bedrock, Roots, Sage Theme, Trellis

I am developing a clients website with Trellis + Bedrock + Sage and Bootstrap 4. Bootstrap 4 no longer includes Font Awesome library by default so I had to learn how to include it in Sage by reading this forum thread on the Roots website.   Short Answer Navigate to your Sage Theme folder from […]


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The Data Visualization Experiment (Try It!)

Posted on 9th, March 2017 7:35 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Pay Per Click Management, Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Search Marketing, Video Production, Website Development

Visually appealing designs are one part of great design. But understanding how to communicate information through visual representation is another influential part. When I’m teaching someone what this really means, I have found this experiment to be effective:   When you’re done reading this sentence, I want you to click this link to a photo of […]


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My Struggles with PHP

Posted on 23rd, January 2017 4:53 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: PHP

I’ve been programming since 2005, and doing PHP since circa 2006, WordPress circe 2010. I never received a formal education in programming so, while I don’t have school debt, I do have substantive gaps in my knowledge. Like a road with pot holes.   Recently, I’ve started a new company, wppluginco.com, and shifted back into […]


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My First Week With Freelancer.com – Major Bugs, No Support!

Posted on 19th, January 2017 10:03 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: PHP

Backstory (if you don’t care, skip ahead) To hire staff, I have historically relied on Craigslist and UpWork.com (Formerly ODesk.com). For myself, as a former freelance developer, I tried to find work on ODesk.com but found that the audience was primarily seeking low-wage workers (as was I when I was an employer) so it proved fruitless […]


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What is Crowd-Sourced Server Administration and Distributed Server Administration

Posted on 1st, January 2017 10:52 AM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: New Products or Services, Trellis, Web Hosting

Historically, website servers were created and managed by one person, or organization and built with third party software – typically open source. This has benefits, but for small businesses especially this greatly limits the purview of security to those select people. Since security is a naturally evolving topic it’s critical that the server itself is […]


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Graphics Issues with the 2014 Razer Blade

Posted on 8th, December 2016 10:04 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: 10, 8.1, Blade, Gaming

If you found this article you’re probably experiencing some form of video card issues with your Razer Blade laptop. I’m sorry. It sucks.   Hopefully you’re not experiencing the issue I am. But if you are, then here is a detailed report of what’s happening, what I’ve done to try and fix it, and what things […]


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Thinking Outside the Box about How to Monetize a Website

Posted on 1st, December 2016 7:05 PM by Spencer Hill

Posted in: Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Website Development

If you’ve spent hours or days researching “How to monetize your website” and you’ve found a lot of the same stuff, this article is probably worth the read because I tried hard to give unorthodox ideas and support them with stats!   I have been designing, coding, marketing or managing those who do these things […]


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Since 2005 we've been offering digital and content marketing strategy and implementation. Including website development, search engine optimization and marketing, search marketing and more.

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