Rails: Tips for Speeding up ActiveRecord Queries

Using ActiveRecord is one of the joys of working with Ruby on Rails. It’s short and sweet—turning what would have been a long-winded SQL statement into a short, human-readable line of Ruby. But if you’re not careful, it’s easy...

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Get the Most Out of MailChimp

In my previous article about website trends, I briefly touched upon software as a service (SaaS) and different third-party services that you can utilize on a website. MailChimp is by far one of our favorite tools that we suggest our clients utilize. ...

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3 Tips for Improving Onsite SEO with Google Analytics

This is Part 2 of our ongoing series to help you make the most of your website as your number one online marketing tool. Last month’s Internet Marketing Play introduced us to Google Analytics and the data available through it. If you missed the...

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Building an Accessible Website

At Web Ascender we strive to build websites that everyone can enjoy. I have outlined some of the key components to building a highly accessible website. By following these guidelines even website visitors with disabilities will be able to enjoy you...

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How to Use Pinterest to Generate Leads for Your Business

Getting started with Pinterest for your business Pinterest is a great way to get brand exposure, attract new audiences and create loyalty with consumers. It’s also becoming an engaging tool that can help drive sales for your business. A Pinter...

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5 Critical Reasons You Need a Company Blog

Blogging has gotten a weird rap over the years, and some people still think it’s just for the outspoken folks, techy people or foodies. In reality, it is a critical and undervalued instrument that will help your business become well liked by Go...

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Wordpress Child Themes Explained - Part 2

In Wordpress Child Themes Explained Part 1, I showed you how to set up and apply a child theme within your WordPress site. In Part 2, I'll take it a step further and show you how to modify and customize specific areas on your site without compromisin...

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4 Options for Accepting Online Payments

Accepting payments online through your website or mobile app is becoming more and more common. In fact, customers expect your business to provide an online payment option to purchase your products or services. Additionally, after submitting an onli...

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5 Reasons Why Wireframing is Important in Web Design

You may have heard the term "wireframing" at some point in time when talking to a web company about a new design or redesign, but what is wireframing after all? Wireframing allows you to determine the information hierarchy of your design while making...

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Working with Bits and Bytes in Ruby

For one of our projects at Web Ascender we’ve had the interesting challenge of communicating with low-level hardware from our high-level Ruby on Rails application. The application needed to read binary data from UDP packets, convert the data to Ruby numbers, dates and strings, and then send a response. While one might normally reach for a more low-level language like C or C++ for this, we were pleasantly surprised with the wide array of built-in tools Ruby provides for working with bits and binary data. Here I cover working with different bases, bitwise and shift operators, and packing and unpacking binary data.

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