“Can my site load faster?”
Making WordPress websites feel right requires vigilant balance of speed and branding. Our articles and reviews help you achieve site optimization for small mobile device screens. We write about the fastest free themes, the latest plugin tricks for speed, and lightweight branding techniques.
Why we call ourselves PagePipe.
A web page is a document with its own address on the Internet. The pipe is a plumbing analogy for Internet bandwidth. Page data is similar to water flowing through a pipe. The pipe diameter is maximum throughput, information capacity, or digital data rate limit.
As the pipe increases, so does the amount of page data that can flow through in a given amount of time. The fatter the pipe, the more and faster pages can be sent through.
Pages travel through the pipe pretty fast – around two-thirds of the speed of light. A fat pipe means that more page information can travel in parallel. A narrow pipe can handle fewer and smaller amounts of page data, mainly in sequence one after the other, which slows down the transfers.
Using the pipe to its full potential requires page optimization. Optimization is the balancing of page aesthetics and speed. Achieving that balance for small-screen design is our speciality.
Steve Teare launched PagePipe in 2004 to focus on experimental web techniques – in retrospect those ideas seem visionary. Steve’s preoccupation was balancing page speed, color usage, and liquid pages. Responsive design trends didn’t exist yet. Steve took the first steps to becoming a WordPress Speed Coach. WordPress was first released on May 27, 2003. But it was years before Steve saw the potential WordPress could be modified to load as fast as hand-coded pages.
The web design trends of 2004 included:
- Cluttered, high-density layout.
- Restrained, pale color schemes.
- All-Flash sites
- Starburst effects.
- Patterns and textures.
At that time, Steve used a combination of Adobe Flash and HTML Frames to achieve liquid page goals. The large, edge-to-edge images did dynamic resizing inside liquid frames.
Today those low-bandwidth, liquid page tricks are done with lightweight CSS3. He built workaround Framed Hybrid experiments in HTML. His 25k page weights with 500ms load times weren’t needed with high-speed connections. For today’s mobile connections, those are recommended specifications!
Free Case Study – No signup needed.
Color and speed experiment part 1 download >
16p, full-color, printable, 8 x 8 inch, 1.1M PDF
Now, the perceived need has changed with the advent of mobile devices and responsive design. Reports claim mobile devices surpass desktop connections for web access. We don’t care how many people play games on their iPhone from boredom. We’re concerned about small and medium-sized businesses who want to improve profitability. That means selling something.
Fast, responsive, branded websites are emerging today for businesses who depend on web sales.
Free tools have been invented to measure speed problems. The most dramatic and accessible online tool was Yslow offered in 2007 as an extension to Firebug addon for the Firefox browser. With that web tool, PagePipe worked on solving speed and aesthetic balancing before they were mainstream. UX problems that only could be imagined as a future journey. PagePipe had a solution without a problem until 2007. Today, these are big concerns for many website owners and web designers.
Yslow (2007), iPhones (2007), WebPagetest.org (2008), Google Chrome (2008), Android (2010), Responsive design (2011), CSS3 media queries (2012), WordPress milestone 26.5% of websites (2016), 47,573 plugins in free repository (2016), 1,412 responsive, cross-device free themes (2016).
Steve’s most valued strength is creativity.