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New Auto Links plugin (51 posts)

  1. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Hey all,
    I wrote my first plugin, and it's called Auto Links. It is based on Kidder's Link Definer plugin, but has more functionality.

    Auto Links turns keywords in your post for popular websites into links automatically for you. So if you use Yahoo in a post, Auto Links makes a link of it. Unlike the original Link Definer plugin, Auto Links will only do this once for each keyword. It would be over kill to turn every reference to Yahoo in your post into a link.

    Also this plugin lets you put a graphic next to each link. You can use the one that comes with Auto Links or use your own, or turn it off altogether. You can also control which window the
    link will open in, be it the parent window or blank window, or whatever you want.

    You can get it here:
    http://www.forceagainstsomething.com/index.php/auto-links-plugin-for-wordpress/

    It's still in beta, but so far it seems to be working well. I need to make a admin panel for it, I know that. But any other feedback would be great!

  2. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Hey all,
    Well I'm up to version 0.8beta now. There are some big improvments over the last versions. First of all, all options are configured via the admin panel. No more editing the source code to configure Auto Links.

    I also made it much easier to add and remove keywords from your list.

    Any feedback would be great!

    - Sean

  3. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    I'll grab it and give it a shot.... problem is I almost never use "popular websites" in posts....

    Oh, btw, is there a way to add to the words that will be linkified? If not, I hereby request same - because that WOULD make this worth my while....

    [Edit: ah, yup - read the info, stupid. Thanks, I will definitely play with this....]

  4. Dgold
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Hmph. Amazing. I got this Auto Links working, no problem. Easy, and it works so far. I can happily report it works side-by-side with Identify External Links Plugin, except that plugin does not add the icon to Auto Links' links (I let Auto Links add its own icon, they're different but I kinda like that).

    I disabled another plugin, Text Replace. I was afraid they'd conflict, especially if I asked for the same term from both. I have an issue. Neither of these plugins will replace the terms "ONE:" and "TWO:" with bolded ONE: and bolded TWO:. As a workaround I even tried asking Auto Links Plugin to replace ONE with a link to http://www.one.com - and even that wouldn't work. Meanwhile other terms in the same paragraph replace perfectly well.

    Is "ONE" and "TWO" some sacred terminology in WordPress that cannot be expressed in PHP??

  5. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    I'm not sure what that is. I tried both ONE and ONE: and Auto Links linkafied both of them, no problem. Possibly a conflict with another plugin?

    - Sean

  6. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Possible option for future version.

    Would anyone be interested in having Auto Links keep track of which links are being clicked? Then from the Auto Links sub menu it would show you how many times an idividual keyword has been clicked. If enough people are interested in a feature like that, let me know.

    - Sean

  7. Dgold
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Thanks for the test and reply Sean. I will try to eliminate other possible plugin conflicts. Could it be something else though?

    I have the data stored in a giant plain-text document. I have "SET ONE" and "SET TWO" for a full year, in one .txt

    I simply copied and pasted each SET ONE / SET TWO into a WordPress entry.

    And neither program will recognize them consistently (sometimes getting the TWO: but not always, it's weird)... I feel like I've got invisible characters in there or something.

  8. swordfish
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    i suggest to have a mailing list to keep intrested people updated. I dont like to miss the final version!

    I have a little suggestion. How about pulling the favicon.ico and displaying it besides the link?

    Good Luck!

  9. swordfish
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    by the way, yours is one of my coolest plugins.

    Keep up the good work!

  10. swordfish
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    I was wondering what will happen if we actually add a link to that first word which auto links is going to link?

    Lets test it.

  11. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    I'm not real sure what you mean about adding a link to the first word. I ran several test, and AL shouldn't turn linked words into links again.

    A newsletter doesn't seem like a bad idea. I'll try to set something up on my site.

    And I'll look into an option for having it display the favicon.ico. Although that might be difficult since it'll have to be converted to gif or jpeg.

    - Sean

  12. swordfish
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    adding link to the first post means this:
    http://www.gangavalli.com/blog/2005/08/04/my-first-post/
    You can see that there are repetitions of the word 'wordpress' and i have linked the first on to my own blog, then the auto link is linking the second word to the wordpress. will that be ok? just asking!

    And good luck with that favicon.ico thing.
    would like to see it soon.

  13. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Oh, I see. Yeah, AL only makes sure that *it* doesn't make two links out of the same keyword. If you've already made a keyword into a link yourself, AL will just ignore that. I'm not sure if that is desirable or not, or if something should be changed in the plugin. I suppose it should be left the way it is.

    - Sean

  14. Dgold
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Sean, I'm loving the plugin. It's in use on http://dgold.info/radio/

    If I had a request for future upgrades, I would suggest allowing a "tree" of links to the same URL, so that 1 company can have 5 nicknames, and still only the 1st occurance would be linked out of any in that parent-nickname relationship. Example,

    --The Music Never Stopped.net
    --TheMusicNeverStopped.net
    --TMNS
    --TMNS.net

    => www.themusicneverstopped.net/

    Right now I have these nicknames assigned, but if I use all 4 in one article, they all 4 get links and link-arrow, to the same URL.

    Love the plugin though. It doesn't conflict with any of my other plugins or linking habits, including Identify External Links which puts the link-arrow by external links I typed, and not by those from your plugin.

    For the record, I still can't get "SET ONE:" and "SET TWO:" to replace with anything else. A mystery to me.

  15. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Hi Sean -

    Works great! Only a couple little nitpicks: it doesn't validate to XHTML 1.0 Strict (which is what I validate all my stuff to) because you're using "_blank" etc. as a targeting mechanism. Could you give me some idea where to edit the php file to target using onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" which does validate to strict?

    As well, there's apparently no mechanism (as yet) for including alt and title for the links created, which isn't kosher either....

  16. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Was going to edit, but won't let me....

    Nev' mind the first thing, sorted it myself. Instead of '" target="' in the php, use '" onclick ="'. And in the field in the Options page, use window.open(this.href);return false; instead of a deprecated target selector. Works like a charm....

  17. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Some very good points. I've been working pretty hard over the past few days on the plugin, and there are going to be a few more features. I hadn't even considered what Dgold said, but that's a *very* good point. I'll look into that.

    For vkaryl, I'm not a fan of javascript, so I won't use it in the script. However, I will do this. I'll create an option for inserting your own bit's of HTML/Javascript. If there are bits of code you want included in every link, just type it into a text box from the admin screen and it'll get put in. And if you leave the "Target window to open link in:" option blank, the plugin won't add any kind of 'target=' parameter.

    It does include the alt parameter in the image. I don't know about the name parameter. What should the plugin put there? The URL of the link, the keyword?

    I could make another option for specifying 'alt', 'name', and 'class' parameters. You can do something like:

    Enter custom 'name' parameter : [ Visit %KW% now! ]

    And if the keyword being linkified is Yahoo, the value of 'name' would be 'Visit Yahoo now!'.

    I could probably make a few %TAGS% which are replaced with relevant information.

    I'm putting in keyword tracking because I want it for myself. That's been taking up the past could days. Hopefully I'll have the next minor version out before the weekend.

    Thanks for the feedback and keep it coming!

    - Sean

  18. richards1052
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    This plugin sounds interesting. But can someone explain to me in plain English what it does & how it does it? I'd love a plugin that would be able to take a set of words I commonly use which I'd like to turn into links whenever I include them in a post (New York Time, Washington Post, etc.). Is that something like what this does?

    I can't tell you how many times I've read about a plugin that sounded like it might be intriguing but the plugin author never bothered to explain clearly what it did. Certainly, technophiles would know because shorthand & jargon are easily understood by them. But pity us poor layfolk who need some explanation.

  19. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Richard1052,
    That's exactly what it does. If you use the word Yahoo, or Washington Post in an article, that word is automatically turned into a link to their website.

    Of course which words it turns into links is up to you. The plugin maintains a database of keywords and their links. It comes with a default set of keywords and links, but you can add your own, and remove keywords.

    In fact I like the way you put it, that does sound a bit clearer than my explanation.

    - Sean

  20. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    New Feature List: This is for the upcoming release of v0.9beta, which should be out tonight or tomorrow. All of these options are configurable, and can be turned on or off.

    Keyword Logging - View stats about which keywords are being clicked the most, which gives you an idea of what your site visitors interest are.

    Add protocol (i.e. http://) to link - I realized it was a bit presumptuous of the plugin to add http:// to each link. That made it impossible to link to pages that start with https:// or ftp://, and also made it more difficult to link to pages within your own domain.

    Custom HTML/JavaScript to Add to Links - Now you can slip your own bits of code into each link. Gives you the option to put bits of JavaScript and other goodies into the links.

    Link 'ALT', 'NAME', and 'CLASS'. Now you can change or add any of these to your tags.

    And I've still got a few more ideas for the future. Also I'll be putting in Dgolds suggestion about a keyword tree, which allows you to use different keywords for the same company. This is a bit harder to program, so that will come in the next release.

    Thanks for the feedback folks!
    - Sean

  21. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Hi again.... don't know about link "name".... link "title" is what is required to validate. Nice to see updates, and while I understand your unwillingness to use js, that particular "onclick" function allows "linkified" pages to validate to my preferred doctype. I myself wouldn't be wanting anything else in the way of js (other than a couple of external files I load through the header).

    The keyword tree, when complete, will be VERY nice. Dgold, that's a great suggestion!

    Thanks again for this plugin, Sean!

  22. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    vkaryl,
    Your right about the name/title thing. I don't know what I was thinking. :)

    - Sean

  23. vkaryl
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    No problem.... I have mini brain-farts like that all the time! (Of course, I get to claim "blond and senior" as an excuse....)

  24. richards1052
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Great, I'll try it then. My problem is that I don't often link to a static link like yahoo.com (as an example). I usually am linking to various news article within yahoo.com. So I'm not sure whether it will help me for links that are individualized for ea. different article I might be linking to. But I'll check it out to see what it can do.

  25. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    The new version is done, v0.9beta!

    You can download it from the Auto Links page at:
    http://www.forceagainstsomething.com/index.php/auto-links-plugin-for-wordpress/

    *New Features*
    -Keyword tracking.
    -Custom 'alt', 'title', and 'class' attributes.
    -Insert your own JavaScript into the links.
    -And more...

    New users and old should read the installation instructions from the Auto Links page, since the installation has changed a little bit, especially when it comes to setting directory permissions if your going to use keyword tracking.

    I want to remind everyone that this is still beta software, and although I've tested it, it is sure to have some bugs. Adding the new options and keyword tracking has made the software more complex, thus leaving it prone to more bugs.

    As always, feedback is great! If there are any error messages, please try to let me know what they are.

    *ToDo*
    I will have a keyword tree before 1.0. I expect a few more minor versions, like 0.9.1, 0.9.2, etc..

    - Sean

  26. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Ok, I'm releasing v0.9.1 that fixes a couple of bugs that were brought to my attention.

    -Removed 'alt' attribute from tag.
    -Won't linkify keywords that are part of bigger words, i.e. won't linkify 'intel' in 'intelligence'.
    -Links have been tested to be valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional.

    As always, you can get the latest version from:
    http://www.forceagainstsomething.com/index.php/auto-links-plugin-for-wordpress/

    Thanks to everyone that's been leaving feedback on my website. You're the ones making Auto Links a better plugin.

    - Sean

  27. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Here's release version v0.9.2. This was a complete rewrite of the codes 'core', and it should run a great deal faster.

    As always, you can get the latest version from:
    http://www.forceagainstsomething.com/index.php/auto-links-plugin-for-wordpress/

    Keep the feedback coming!

    - Sean

  28. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Ok, minor update that addresses Dgolds request. Now if two or more keywords point to the same address, only the first one will be turned into a link.

    So if you have both Wal-Mart and Walmart, and they both point to http://www.walmart.com, only the first keyword will get turned into a link.

    - Sean

  29. Dgold
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Sean, just noticed your updates posts. I appreciate you taking the time to address my suggestion. I'm going to download the update and install, later tonight.

    --Dgold

  30. forceagainstsomething
    Member
    Posted 9 years ago #

    Dgold,
    Not a problem. It was a good idea. Right now it's not the 'tree' envisioned, since from the admin menu, you'd still have to type in two or more different keywords with the same link address. Hopefully by v1.0 I'll have more of a 'tree' thing going on.

    Some other things I want to add before hitting the big v1.0.

    I've got the keyword tracking logs viewer turned off right now. I'm rebuilding it so that it's more useful with bar graphs and stuff. If you're using v0.9.2 and up, if you have keyword tracking turned on, and you view your logs, the only thing you'll see is the raw logging data.

    I discovered that Auto Links works real well for Amazon associates. I think it's a great plugin to use for that kinda thing, especially with the keyword tracking. The only problem is if you are going to use it for Amazon associate searches, you can't use it for plain ol' keywords (i.e. Google) because of the way you have to change the Image option. I'd like to change it so the plugin can handle both well. There is a quick 'how-to' on my website for setting up Auto Links to work with Amazon.

    The plugin needs a decent way to edit the keywords. This is something that was brought up in a comment on my site, and it's very true. Right now if you want to edit the keyword 'WordPress' to change the URL, you have to delete the keyword and redo it. That's just a hack, and I wanna change that.

    Adding keywords on the fly. Right now you add keywords through the admin panel. But what if, while writing a post, you decide you want a new keyword, something you've just written, to be a keyword. I want to create a tag that you can wrap words in, and when you save/publish the post, Auto Links will see that word and add it to your keywords list for you.

    And there are a number of small little things here and there. If anyone else has any ideas, I'm all for hearing them.

    - Sean

    http://www.forceagainstsomething.com/index.php/auto-links-plugin-for-wordpress/

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