Little hack to display last Tweets

This morning, I was reading an interesting article about plugins in WordPress, and how to get rid of them (available here, in French… Google Translate is your friend 😉 ).
I wanted to test adding my Tweet feed, not impacting performance (I tested several plugins already, but they decreased performance, as I could measure on GTmetrix).
And this hack works !

Here is what I did:

  1. Add a plugin to allow php code in Text widget
  2. Add code in functions.php file from my template
  3. Add a widget to display result in the sidebar

First I had to install a plugin, because I wanted to use Widgets and this hack needs to add HTML + PHP code to work.
So I installed the plugin PHP Text Widget.

Second, I copied/pasted the following source code (from somix blog) in my theme functions.php page (Menu Appearance -> Editor -> Theme Functions).
I added it at the end.

function twitterstatut() {
    $username = "username"; //You Tweeter account
    $limit = "3";//How many Tweet to display
    $tweetprefix = "<li>"; //Before each tweet
    $tweetsuffix = "</li>"; //After each tweet
  //Fetching the feed
  $feed = "" . $username . "&rpp=" . $limit;
    $ch = curl_init();
      curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_RETURNTRANSFER, 1);
      curl_setopt($ch, CURLOPT_URL, $feed);
      $twitterFeed = curl_exec($ch);
  //Feed cleanup
    $twitterFeed = str_replace("&lt;", "<", $twitterFeed);
    $twitterFeed = str_replace("&gt;", ">", $twitterFeed);
    $twitterFeed = str_replace("&quot;", "\"", $twitterFeed);
    $twitterFeed = str_replace("&amp;apos;", "'", $twitterFeed);
    $twitterFeed = str_replace("&amp;", "&", $twitterFeed);
    $clean = explode("<content type=\"html\">", $twitterFeed);
    $cleandate = explode("<published>", $twitterFeed);
    $amount = count($clean) - 1;
    $amount = count($cleandate) - 1;
  //Feed display
    for ($i = 1; $i <= $amount; $i  ) {
      $cleaner = explode("</content>", $clean[$i]);
      $cleanerbis = explode("</published>", $cleandate[$i]);
      $mydate = strtotime($cleanerbis[0]);
      $time_diff = time() - $mydate;
      if ( $time_diff > 0 )$display = sprintf( __('%s ago'), human_time_diff( $mydate ) );
      $rendu = $tweetprefix.$cleaner[0].'<span class="small"> ['.$display.']</span>'.$tweetsuffix;
      echo $rendu;}
    return ob_get_clean();}
add_option('cachetwittimer',mktime() - 10000,'','yes');

function cachetwit() {
  $time3 = mktime();
  if ( $time3 > get_option('cachetwittimer') + 1800 ) {
    $myvar = twitterstatut();
    update_option('cachetwittimer', mktime());
    if ( $myvar == '') {}
    else {update_option('cachetwithtml', $myvar);}}
echo get_option('cachetwithtml');}

Just need to change:

  • your username (row #4)
  • how many tweets do you want to display (row #5)
  • your CSS style to use (row #32)
  • delay to cache this information (row #40 : 1800s in my case)

This last parameter is interesting, as it highlights the cache mechanism in place. This is probably the reason why I didn’t see any impact on performance once deployed….

Last action: create a Text widget in the sidebar (Menu Appearance -> Widgets), and copy/paste the following code:

<?php if (function_exists('cachetwit')) {cachetwit();}?>

It simply works !

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