Tag Archives: blogging

As of April, 2011, the home page of ardamis.com has over two million inbound links, with over 2,800,000 total inbound links to all pages on the site.

This is an increase of 1,200,000 inbound links to the home page alone since July, 2010. I calculate that the home page is gained an average of 150,000 inbound links a month during the last eight months. That’s pretty amazing.

April 2011 Inbound Links

But I continue to be disappointed in the Site Performance area of Webmaster Tools. Try as I might, Google still thinks my site is crushingly slow, with average load times of 2.9 seconds, even though my independent tests suggest that the site consistently returns pages in less than two seconds.

April 2011 Site Performance

I’ll keep at it.

In August, 2010, I described a simple method for dramatically reducing the number of spam comments that are submitted to a WordPress blog. The spam comments are rejected before they are checked by Akismet, so they never make it into the database at all.

Now, a few months later, I’m posting a screenshot of the Akismet stats graph from the WordPress dashboard showing the number of spam comments identified by Akismet before and after the system was implemented.

Akismet stats for August - December, 2010

The spike in spam comments detected around November 3rd occurred after an update to WordPress overwrote my altered wp-comments.php file. I replaced the file and the spam dropped back down to single digits per day.

The sitelinks on ardamis.com seem to come and go. I noticed that they were back again a few days ago.

Google sitelinks for "ardamis"

But this time around, a search for “Oliver Baty” also returns sitelinks.

Google sitelinks for "oliver baty"

This is the first time I’ve noticed that a search for other than the domain name has returned sitelinks for ardamis.com, so I figured it was worth recording for posterity.

As of early October, Ardamis.com has its Google sitelinks back. I first noticed them back in July of 2009, when Ardamis had a toolbar PageRank of 6. Changes to Google’s algorithm later cost the site the sitelinks and reduced the PR to 5, which is how the site has appeared for the last year or so. Three months ago, in July of 2010 and one year after the sitelinks appeared, I noticed that all of the pages combined had over one million inbound links.

This is what a Google search for ardamis returns:

Ardamis' Google sitelinks

Ardamis' Google sitelinks

The second result returned, Final Fantasy XIII freezing on Xbox 360, is among my longest posts, has 91 comments, and enjoys some of the best inbound links of any page on the site, including from the forums at Xbox.com, Kotaku and GamesRadar.

The third result is my primary competition for the term ardamis, which briefly held the number one ranking a few months ago. That site has some one-line site links.

The actual mechanics of obtaining sitelinks remains a mystery, but there are plenty of people who are willing to speculate (and a few brave enough to promise they can deliver them for a price).

I’ve been posting more frequently, the site uses the WP-Paginate plugin and according to Google’s Webmaster Tools, the home page alone now has well over one million inbound links, but otherwise it’s been business as usual here.

Ardamis home page one million links

Over one million inbound links to the home page of Ardamis.com

I’m not going to speculate about how to get sitelinks or whether one or more of the changes in the last year was the catalyst, but Google does say to use descriptive and non-repetitive anchor and alt text in a site’s internal links and to keep important pages within a few clicks of the home page. These are very basic, fundamental things that any site should do, but it bears repeating.

I’ve written a number of posts on ways to reduce the number of spam comments a blog receives. In this post, I’ll revisit an old method that has almost completely stopped spam comments at ardamis.com before they get to the database.

My first system for blocking WordPress comment spam was an overly complex combination of JavaScript and a challenge-response to test that the comment was being submitted by a person. The value of the action attribute in the form was not in the HTML when the page was loaded, so the form couldn’t be immediately submitted, then JavaScript was used to write the path to a renamed wp-comments-post.php file only after a certain user action was performed. I was never really satisfied with it. I didn’t like relying on JavaScript, I had doubts that any human being (meaning of any mental or physical capacity, speaking any language, etc.) could correctly answer the question, and I was concerned that any obstacle to submitting a form discourages legitimate commenting.

A few months later, I posted a simpler timestamp method for reducing WordPress comment spam that compares two timestamps and then rejects any form submission that occurrs within 60 seconds of the post page being loaded. The visitor wasn’t bothered by an additional form field solely for anti-spam and there was no JavaScript involved.

Both methods were very effective at blocking spam before it made it to the database. In the five months leading up to the implementation of the first method, Akismet was catching an average of 1418 spam comments per month. In the first five months after these methods were put in place, Akismet was catching only 54 spam comments per month. But I also noticed a reduction in legitimate comments, from an average of 26 per month to 20 per month, which led me to suspect that real visitors attempting to leave comments were being discouraged from doing so.

The timestamp method required changing a core file, which was overwritten each time WordPress was updated. As time went on, I forgot to replace the file after upgrading WordPress, so the protection was lost and I once again had only Akismet blocking spam. A few months later, while doing work on the database in an attempt to speed up WordPress, I happened to check my historical stats and found that Akismet had detected 4,144 comments in July, 2010. Yikes. It was time to revisit these old methods.

At 2:30 AM on August 1, 2010, I again implemented my timestamp method, but this time I also renamed the wp-comments-post.php file that processes the form. I changed my theme’s comments.php file to submit the form to the new page, deleted the wp-comments-post.php file from the server and tested to make sure that comments could still be submitted. And then I waited to see what would happen.

The effect was pretty amazing. The spam had almost completely stopped.

My Akismet stats look like this:

Date Spam
7.30.10 192
7.31.10 196
8.1.10 32
8.2.10 0
8.5.10 4
8.8.10 4
8.10.10 4
8.11.10 4
8.13.10 0
8.14.10 0

(I don’t know why so many dates in August are skipped in the log, but whatever.)

Fast, but only partial protection

The quick and easy way to reduce the number of spam comments that your WordPress blog receives is to merely change the location of the comment form processing script.

  1. Rename wp-comments-post.php to anything else. I like using a string of random hexadecimal characters, like: z1t0zVGuaCZEi.php.
  2. Edit your current theme’s comments.php so that the form is submitted to this new file.
  3. Upload these files to their respective directories, then delete the wp-comments-post.php file from your server.

This method works well to stop spam submitted by bots that assume the comment form processing script used by WordPress is always at the same location. More advanced bots will read the actual location of the file from the action attribute of the form element, but that can be countered by using either the JavaScript or timestamp method.

Access log analysis

To illustrate the effectiveness of the renamed wp-comments-post file + timestamp check, below are some events from my 06 August 2010 access log.

Bot defeated by renamed file alone

Here is a form submission to the non-existent wp-comments-post file that occurs 2 seconds after the post page is requested. - - [06/Aug/2010:23:21:37 -0700] "GET www.ardamis.com/2007/07/12/defeating-contact-form-spam/ HTTP/1.0" 200 32530 "http://www.google.com" "Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; en) Opera 8.50" - - [06/Aug/2010:23:21:39 -0700] "POST www.ardamis.com/wp-comments-post.php HTTP/1.0" 404 15529 "//ardamis.com/2007/07/12/defeating-contact-form-spam/" "Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1; en) Opera 8.50"

The bot is sent a 404 HTTP status code, which is widely understood to mean that the page isn’t there and you can stop asking for it. But that doesn’t stop this bot! Two minutes later, it’s back at another page, trying again. - - [06/Aug/2010:23:23:01 -0700] "GET www.ardamis.com/2007/03/29/xbox-360-gamercard-wordpress-plugin/ HTTP/1.0" 200 101259 "http://www.google.com" "Opera/9.64(Windows NT 5.1; U; en) Presto/2.1.1" - - [06/Aug/2010:23:23:05 -0700] "POST www.ardamis.com/wp-comments-post.php HTTP/1.0" 404 15529 "//ardamis.com/2007/03/29/xbox-360-gamercard-wordpress-plugin/" "Opera/9.64(Windows NT 5.1; U; en) Presto/2.1.1"

Again, it gets a 404 back. Some bots never learn.

Bot defeated by timestamp check

Here is a form submission to the renamed wp-comments-post file that occurs 4 seconds after the post page is requested. - - [06/Aug/2010:23:30:41 -0700] "GET www.ardamis.com/2007/03/29/xbox-360-gamercard-wordpress-plugin/ HTTP/1.1" 200 21787 "-" "Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 7.0; Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/4.0; SLCC2; .NET CLR 2.0.50727; .NET CLR 3.5.30729; .NET CLR 3.0.30729)" - - [06/Aug/2010:23:30:45 -0700] "POST www.ardamis.com/wp-comments-post-timestamp-3.0.1.php HTTP/1.1" 500 1227 "//ardamis.com/2007/03/29/xbox-360-gamercard-wordpress-plugin/" "Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 7.0; Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; Trident/4.0; SLCC2; .NET CLR 2.0.50727; .NET CLR 3.5.30729; .NET CLR 3.0.30729)"

The 500 HTTP header indicates that this submission was denied and the comment never made it to the database. This access log doesn’t indicate which check stopped the POST (eg: the email validation or the timestamp function), but my money is on the timestamp.

Here’s another form submission to the renamed wp-comments-post file that occurs one second after the post page is requested. Speed reader or bot? - - [06/Aug/2010:23:56:54 -0700] "GET www.ardamis.com/2010/02/26/fixing-word-2007-add-in-issues/ HTTP/1.1" 200 23977 "-" "Opera/9.01 (Windows NT 5.0; U; en)" - - [06/Aug/2010:23:56:55 -0700] "POST www.ardamis.com/wp-comments-post-timestamp-3.0.1.php HTTP/1.1" 500 1213 "//ardamis.com/2010/02/26/fixing-word-2007-add-in-issues/" "Opera/9.01 (Windows NT 5.0; U; en)"

The submission is rejected.

Taking the method even further

To take this method even further, one could send a 200 OK header even when the comment is blocked, so the bots never know their mission failed. But this seems unnecessary at this point, as it doesn’t appear that they change their behavior after being sent a 404 error, or that they try again after being sent a 500 error. It also makes it harder to figure out from the access logs which comments were rejected and for what reason.

If you still want to do this, first implement the timestamp method, then make the following modifications.

Sending a 200 header

$comment_timestamp    = trim($_POST['timestamp']);
$submitted_timestamp  = time();

if ( $comment_timestamp == '' ) {
// If the value for $_POST['timestamp'] is an empty string, exit (the form wasn't submitted by the theme's comments.php)
	header('HTTP/1.1 200 OK');
	echo '<p style="text-align:center;">Error: It looks like this form was not submitted by the form at ' . get_option('siteurl') . '.</p>';
if ( $submitted_timestamp - $comment_timestamp < 60 ) {
// If the form was submitted within 60 seconds of page load, exit
	header('HTTP/1.1 200 OK');
	echo '<p style="text-align:center;">Error: The comment was posted too soon after the page was loaded.  Please press the Back button on your browser and try again in a few seconds.</p>'; 
// If the form was submitted more than 10 minutes after page load, die
if ( $submitted_timestamp - $comment_timestamp > 600 ) {
	header('HTTP/1.1 200 OK');
	echo '<p style="text-align:center;">Error: You waited too long before posting a comment.</p>';

One could also write a record to a database each time the old wp-comments-post.php file is requested or any of the timestamp checks block a form submission, and pretty quickly generate a list of IP addresses for a black list. At the same time, one could log which timestamp check caught the spam attempt, which is interesting enough that I’ll probably do it eventually.

I’ve written a few posts on how to speed up web sites by sending the correct headers to leverage browser caching and compressing .php, .css and .js files without mod_gzip or mod_deflate.

The intended audience for this post is developers who have already applied most or all of Google’s Web Performance Best Practices and Yahoo’s Best Practices for Speeding Up Your Web Site and are wondering how to speed up WordPress sites in particular.

I assume you’re familiar with WordPress caching and are already using a caching plugin, such as WP Super Cache, W3 Total Cache or the like.

Reduce HTTP requests

Reducing HTTP requests should be the very first thing step in speeding up any site. If you are using plugins, watch them carefully for inefficiencies like added CSS and JavaScript files. Combine, minify and compress these files. Some plugins allow you to turn off their bundled CSS in the plugin’s settings page. Where possible, copy the plugin’s CSS into the current theme’s style.css and turn off the extra file.

Delete deactivated plugins

Remove any plugins you’re not using. Deactivated plugins can be deleted from the Plugins page.

Speed up the mod_rewrite code

jdMorgan from WebmasterWorld.com has written a replacement for the .htaccess rewrite rule used by WordPress. This will speed up the WordPress mod_rewrite code by a factor of more than two.

This is a total replacement for the code supplied with WP as bounded by the “Begin WP” and “End WP” comments, and fixes several performance-affecting problems. Notably, the unnecessary and potentially-problematic container is completely removed, and code is added and re-structured to both prevent completely-unnecessary file- and directory- exists checks and to reduce the number of necessary -exists checks to one-half the original count (due to the way mod_rewrite behaves recursively in .htaccess context).


The following code is adapted from the original to add png, flv and swf to the list of static file formats:

# BEGIN WordPress
# adapted from http://www.webmasterworld.com/apache/4053973.htm
RewriteEngine on
# Unless you have set a different RewriteBase preceding this point,
# you may delete or comment-out the following RewriteBase directive
# RewriteBase /
# if this request is for "/" or has already been rewritten to WP
RewriteCond $1 ^(index\.php)?$ [OR]
# or if request is for image, css, or js file
RewriteCond $1 \.(gif|jpg|png|ico|css|js|flv|swf)$ [NC,OR]
# or if URL resolves to existing file
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -f [OR]
# or if URL resolves to existing directory
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} -d
# then skip the rewrite to WP
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ - [S=1]
# else rewrite the request to WP
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
# END wordpress 

Only load the comment-reply.js when needed

In the default WordPress template, the comment-reply.js script is included on all single post pages, regardless of whether nested/threaded comments is enabled. A simple tweak changes the theme to only include comment-reply.js on single post pages only when it makes sense to do so: if threaded comments are enabled, commenting on that post is allowed, and a comment already exists.

Remove the following line from your theme’s header.php:

<?php if ( is_singular() ) wp_enqueue_script( 'comment-reply' ); ?>

Add the following lines to your theme’s functions.php.

// Don't add the wp-includes/js/comment-reply.js?ver=20090102 script to single post pages unless threaded comments are enabled
// adapted from http://bigredtin.com/behind-the-websites/including-wordpress-comment-reply-js/
function theme_queue_js(){
  if (!is_admin()){
    if (is_singular() && (get_option('thread_comments') == 1) && comments_open() && have_comments())
add_action('wp_print_scripts', 'theme_queue_js');

Only load the l10n.js when needed

In WordPress 3.1, a l10n.js script is loaded. It is “mostly used for scripts that send over localization data from PHP to the JS side using wp_localize_script().” Whether it’s safe to remove this file seems to be a matter of debate, but should you decide you want to remove it…

Add the following lines to your theme’s functions.php.

// Don't add the wp-includes/js/l10n.js?ver=20101110 script to non-admin pages
// adapted from http://wordpress.stackexchange.com/questions/5451/what-does-l10n-js-do-in-wordpress-3-1-and-how-do-i-remove-it
function remove_l10n_js(){
  if (!is_admin()){
add_action('wp_print_scripts', 'remove_l10n_js');

Replace unecessary code executions and database queries

WordPress saves settings specific to your blog in the database. These settings include what language your blog is written in, whether text is read left-to-right or vice versa, the path to the template directory, etc.

The default WordPress theme contains a number of database queries in order to figure out these things and build the correct page. The default theme needs this flexibility, but your theme does not. Joost de Valk recommends replacing these database queries with static text in your theme files in his post Speed up WordPress, and clean it up too!

An easy way to do this is to browse to your web site and then view the source code. Copy the content that won’t change from page to page and paste it into your theme, overwriting the PHP with the generated HTML.

For example, my theme’s header.php file contains this line:

<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" <?php language_attributes(); ?>>

The source code of the rendered page displays this line:

<html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" dir="ltr" lang="en-US">

On my blog, this HTML output is never going to be anything different, so why make WordPress look these settings up in the database each time a page is loaded? This line is an excellent candidate for replacement. The footer.php file contains a handful more opportunities for replacement, but go through each of your theme’s files and look for references to the template directory and other data that won’t change as long as you’re using the theme. All told, I was able to replace 12 database queries with static HTML.

Joost also recommends checking for unnecessary or slow database queries, and installing a helpful debugging plugin, in his post on Optimizing WordPress database performance.

Clean out your MySQL database

Delete spam comments

From the Dashboard, click Comments, then click on Empty Spam.

Delete post revisions

If you don’t use post revisions, you may want to delete them from the wp_posts table. Back up your database, then run the following SQL query:

DELETE FROM wp_posts WHERE post_type = "revision";

Before: 683 records
After: 165 records

This does not delete the latest draft of unpublished posts. It’s a good idea to optimize the table after deleting the revisions.

You can stop WordPress from saving post revisions by adding the following code to wp-config.php:

define('WP_POST_REVISIONS', false );

Optimize your MySQL database

Optimizing your MyISAM tables is comparable to defragmenting your hard drive. It’s probably been a while since you’ve done that, too.

If you’re using phpMyAdmin, browse to your WordPress database. Under the Structure tab, at the bottom of the list of tables, click on the link “Check all”. In the “With selected” menu, choose “Optimize table”. (I would have recommended just optimizing tables that have overhead, but the wp_posts table can be optimized even when it doesn’t show any overhead.

For MyISAM tables, OPTIMIZE TABLE works as follows:

  • If the table has deleted or split rows, repair the table.
  • If the index pages are not sorted, sort them.
  • If the table’s statistics are not up to date (and the repair could not be accomplished by sorting the index), update them.


Flush the Buffer Early

When users request a page, it can take anywhere from 200 to 500ms for the backend server to stitch together the HTML page. During this time, the browser is idle as it waits for the data to arrive. In PHP you have the function flush(). It allows you to send your partially ready HTML response to the browser so that the browser can start fetching components while your backend is busy with the rest of the HTML page. The benefit is mainly seen on busy backends or light frontends.


Add flush() between the closing tag and the opening tag in header.php.

<?php flush(); // http://developer.yahoo.com/performance/rules.html#flush ?>

OK, so this isn’t technically a WordPress-specific tweak, but it’s a good idea.

It required only a few small changes to move from XHTML 1.0 Strict to HTML5, but as of today, ardamis.com is being served as valid HTML5. For some time, I’ve been waiting for HTML5 to get closer to becoming a W3C recommendation, and for better support from user agents, but I’ve gotten caught up with other improvements to the site and decided to make the transition now.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be updating the HTML to incorporate some of the new tags. I’m pretty excited about replacing divs with new semantic elements like <header>, <article>, and <footer>.

I had noticed mentions of analytic information provided by Compete.com often enough that I was curious about what it could do for me.

Compete already had some information about ardamis.com, but it was stunningly wrong. For example, it was telling me that the phrase “godaddy referral program” was responsible for 20.35% of the total traffic sent to my site by search engines. Until recently, I did have a page that mentioned godaddy referral programs, but according to Google Analytics, it was barely ever visited (7 page views in the last 30 days – it was the 78th most popular page on my site, which does get a few thousand visitors a month). Even more strange, it told me that I was getting traffic for the search phrase “myspace”. I have never written anything about myspace before.

I figured that once I installed their JavaScript tracking code, the analytics information would be much more accurate. So I installed the code, confirmed it appeared at the bottom of the home page, and attempted to verify my site at //ardamis.com/, but was unable to. I had read somewhere that the free account does not support tracking subdomains, and the verification process seemed to get hung up on the use of .htaccess to redirect non-www traffic to www.ardamis.com. I was mystified that Compete apparently could not recognize this was happening via a 301 redirect header and compensate.


It looks like the CompeteXL code has not been correctly placed on the homepage of your site.

This could be because either the code was not copied over correctly, or because it has been placed on the wrong page.

We think your homepage is


I went so far as to email my amazement to their support staff, who promptly and politely wrote me back. (Thumbs up to the guys answering the emails.)

I had made a few other changes to my site at the same time, so I ran a Page Speed check on it. Page Speed told me that I was linking to a resource at trgc.opt.fimserve.com that was throwing a 404 error. I was pretty sure I didn’t intentionally link to anything at that domain, so I Googled it. Surprisingly, there’s not much out there on trgc.opt.fimserve.com other than this and this. As it turns out, fimserve.com is part of something called the FOX Audience Network, and FAN’s parent company is News Corporation, which also owns myspace.com.

Here’s the WHOIS on fimserve.com:

Whois Server: whois.register.com
Referral URL: http://www.register.com
Name Server: NS1.MYSPACE.COM
Name Server: NS2.MYSPACE.COM
Status: clientTransferProhibited
Updated Date: 17-oct-2006
Creation Date: 17-oct-2006
Expiration Date: 17-oct-2011

And here’s the WHOIS on foxaudiencenetwork.com:

Whois Server: whois.markmonitor.com
Referral URL: http://www.markmonitor.com
Name Server: NS1.MYSPACE.COM
Name Server: NS2.MYSPACE.COM
Status: clientDeleteProhibited
Status: clientTransferProhibited
Status: clientUpdateProhibited
Updated Date: 03-may-2010
Creation Date: 03-jun-2008
Expiration Date: 03-jun-2011

I didn’t like the idea that information about my visitors was being shared with anyone but the site I had signed up for, so I started looking through the Compete FAQs and found this:

Currently, the CompeteXL code tracks ONLY self-reported Audience Profile data through a partnership with the FOX Audience Network.

The CompeteXL code DOES NOT track traffic or user engagement metrics, that information continues to be provided through our multi-sourced panel and requires NO addition of code to your site.


What the hell? Why am I installing a tracking code if it’s not used to track traffic?

Oh, and this was a fun discovery, too:

The FOX Audience Network (FAN) is a unit of News Corporation that supports monetization efforts across the company’s online content portfolio, as well as third-party publisher sites.

FAN leverages proprietary advertising technology to create highly-targeted advertising campaigns for a wide range of marketers, while also delivering cutting-edge tools and services to third-party publisher partners. FAN works directly with hundreds of advertisers to develop customized marketing programs that optimize both branded and performance-based strategies.


I use a very popular HOSTS file to block a huge number of servers that are known to host advertisements, tracking scripts (including Google Analytics), parasites, hijackers and unwanted Adware/Spyware programs. The 404 error in Page Speed was caused by the inclusion of trgc.opt.fimserve.com in this custom HOSTS file, which then led me to finding all this out the next day. I’ve removed the tracking code because the information I wanted was on traffic – who’s coming to my site, why, and through what means – and not user demographics.

In May, 2011, the Xbox Forums were redesigned and some, but not all, of the existing content moved to a new subdomain: http://forumsarchive.xbox.com. I’ve updated the post to fix the links so they no longer 404, but the rest of the information is dated and probably inaccurate.

I was having some problems with Final Fantasy XIII freezing on my Xbox 360, so I posted a few times to the Xbox Forums at http://forums.xbox.com/. The posts contained a link to a blog post here on ardamis.com that explained my situation in greater detail. I started to wonder if the forums were searcheable in Google, so I checked and found that for the most part, they weren’t.

The regular forum thread URLs contain a nofollow, noindex robots meta tag and end with ‘ShowPost.aspx’, but if you click on the Print button, you’re taken to a URL that ends with ‘PrintPost.aspx’. These printer-friendly pages have no such tag.

If you Google this – site:forums.xbox.com – you’ll see what I mean. There are currently less than a thousand results in Google.

This post is just to test whether I can get a PrintPost.aspx page indexed in Google by linking to it, and whether I can create an inbound link from forums.xbox.com by linking to the printer-friendly version of a thread that contains a link back to a page on ardamis.com.

The URL to the normal thread: http://forumsarchive.xbox.com/31588531/ShowPost.aspx
The URL to the printer-friendly page: http://forumsarchive.xbox.com/31588531/PrintPost.aspx

The URL to the normal thread: http://forumsarchive.xbox.com/31685953/ShowPost.aspx
The URL to the printer-friendly page: http://forumsarchive.xbox.com/31685953/PrintPost.aspx

To test, as of 03.17.2010…
Your search – site:forums.xbox.com ardamis – did not match any documents.

Update: 03.18.2010

Both PrintPost.aspx pages are now indexed. Google Webmaster Tools still doesn’t know of any inbound links to my Final Fantasy post, although there are probably a handful by now.

Update: 03.19.2010

The PrintPost.aspx pages are now showing up as the first two results in Google for final fantasy xiii xbox freeze. My post is the third result.

Update: 03.31.2010

My post is now the first result for final fantasy xiii xbox freeze. The PrintPost.aspx pages are now showing up as the second and third results.

Update: 06.26.2010

The answer is Yes, it is possible to get inbound links that show up in Google Webmaster Tools from forums.xbox.com.

I’ve been collecting links to good WordPress templates for a long time. Because I’ve been asked a few times recently if I can recommend some templates, I’m putting them together here.

Huge, isolated, animated slideshow

I really like these themes for focusing almost exclusively on one’s portfolio. They feature a massive, animated slideshow that keeps the visitor’s attention on the images. In some cases, a shadow underneath the slideshow, combined with the animation, creates a 3-D effect to put the portfolio right in the visitor’s face.

Confined slideshow

These themes are a bit more modest than the first collection. They still accentuate a portfolio of images, but in a less flashy way. The slideshow exists within a defined banner area, so the look is a little more traditional. These templates would be a better fit for businesses.

Partial-banner image rotation

These themes use only part of the banner to display a rotating group of images, leaving an area for text next to the images. This allows a short message or tagline to get equal placement. These are the most conservative themes.

Creative themes

This last group of themes break with the conventions of the above themes and use full-screen-width or otherwise larger-than-normal images that rotate behind the other elements of the site. Undeniably attention-grabbing, but also slower to load.

Single page

These are single-page web sites. These types of pages are great as business cards or resumes, or as place holders while a larger site is developed.

The rest

I like these, too, but they don’t fit in any of the above categories.