After eight posts, I am ending the plugin killer series. It has been a nice run. Hopefully, I have given you an idea of how easy it is to customize WordPress yourself – without having to resort to third party plugins. Not that there is anything wrong with that. Its just that, its more satisfying when you do it yourself. The advantages and disadvantages of customizing a theme rather than installing a plugin is given in the introduction to the WordPress Plugin Killer Series.
If you are on wordpress, the canonical tag can be integrated into your theme easily. There is a plugin to do the job for you – but you don’t need a plugin to do something as simple as this.
A list of the popular posts of the blog is a standard feature in many blogs. There are quite a few plugins that offer this feature. But it can also be implemented using a simple SQL query that counts the number of comments in a post.
Many blogs have links to add the current post to various social bookmarking site like Digg, Reddit, Delicious, etc. This blog don’t have it – but my LinDesk blog does. This effect is achieved using wordpress plugins. But when you take a look at the code, its just simple HTML.
Related posts is a very popular feature. My default wordpress installation often includes a plugin that has this functionality. There are quite a few plugins that lets you have this feature. This can be implemented by listing other posts with the same category/tags as the current post.
Many blogs highlight the author’s comment in the comments section. You can use plugins to get this effect(For eg., the Highlight Author Comments Plugin) – but you don’t have to. You can get the get the same effect by adding a small bit of CSS code to your theme stylesheet.
TweetThis is a WordPress Plugin that ‘adds a Twitter link to every post and page, so your readers can share your blog entries on their Twitter accounts with ease.’ And in the tradition of my WordPress Plugin Killer Series, this post will show you how to do it without a plugin.
Paypal donate plugins. This is extremely simple to implement – you don’t even have to edit the code to get this done. Just copy/paste the code provided by Paypal.
Recently, one of my friends posted a list of plugins you can use to optimize your 404 page. In case you don’t know what a 404 page, its the page that shows up if the URL requested by the user don’t exist. He listed eight plugins to do this. And since I am working on the Plugin Killer series, it got me thinking – is it possible to do it without using any plugins?
Other People’s Posts
Many other people have written on this topic too. Here is a few posts I could find….
- Add Custom Status or Notes to a Post without a Plugin
- How to Display Any RSS Feed on WordPress Blog
- WordPress Maintenance Mode Without a Plugin
- How to: Show related posts without a plugin
- WordPress: Removing Nofollow Without A Plugin
- WordPress & jQuery Contact Form without a Plugin
If you know of any such articles, post a comment.