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This page exists as a landing page to support the Hiztory WordPress plugin. You may find additional information on our blog by searching the hiztory tag.
The hiztory plugin will render historical births, deaths, events, and aviation history in your WordPress website with shortcode. Although Hiztory was originally built for one of our aviation websites , and despite aviation content being a clear focus moving forward, it hasn’t detracted us form building upon the data and adding multiple other modules that relate to various interest groups or countries. Despite not having released too many of these other components into the wild (just yet), many of them are available from the Hiztory API .
Like any plugin that you’ve ever installed into WordPress, it can be installed in a number of different ways.
The easiest method of installation is via the ‘Install Plugins’ menu on your own WordPress blog via
Add New in the left hand menu. Search for “
hiztory“. Since it’s essentially a misspelled word, we’re the only result with that keyword. Click
Install Now… then
Of course, you could just download the zip file directly and then either upload it via the
Upload option on the ‘Install Plugin’ administration page referenced above, or you could FTP the contents into your
Once you click on
Activate, you’ll see a
Settings menu. Select it. Alternatively, you will now be able to select the
History Shortcode option from your Settings menu.
The Hiztory shortcode generator is a form that’ll construct shortcode based on the (non-default) options your select.
By clicking on
Get Shortcode at this point we’ll just generate default usage by way of nothing other than the
The default output provides us with one historical aviation event. You’ll likely want to change this!
(24-25) German aircraft attack Convoy JW-52 while it is en route the Kola Inlet in the Soviet Union via the Barents Sea but cause no damage. - 24th January 1943
Using the shortcode generator, and as an example, we’ll generate three results that’ll be cached locally for two hours. We’ll also change the formatting of the date so it renders as
Sun 3rd Dec, 1944… and we’ll apply style to the date with html tags.
[hiztory number="3" datetags="em,strong" dateformat="D jS M, Y" cache="7200"]
You should note that the datetags, or the html formatting for the date, doesn’t include the < or > tag; this is automatically applied with the results.
The shortcode will generate the following result:
- The American spacecraft Voyager 2 makes its closest approach to Uranus, passing within 50,600 miles. - Fri 24th Jan, 1986
- Voyager 2, NASA space probe, passes within 81,500 km (50,600 mi) of Uranus. - Fri 24th Jan, 1986
- Air West Flight 612 was a scheduled domestic passenger flight operated by Air West between Khartoum, Sudan and Al-Fashir. With 103 people on board, the flight, operated by a Boeing 737, was hijacked shortly after takeoff by a male individual. The plane landed safely at N’Djamena, Chad, where the hijacker surrendered. - Wed 24th Jan, 2007
Of course, you can choose not to display results in a list (as is the default case). In the next example, we’ll retrieve three historical events and format them in a block of text. By default, we’ll add the <br> tags after each event (you can change this in the option titled ‘
After post HTML‘).
[hiztory number="3" type="events" datetags="strong" returnaslist="0" dateformat="l jS M, Y" cache="7200"]
Result:43th Golden Globes: Whoopi Goldberg, Color Purple win - Friday 24th Jan, 1986
1st reported case of AIDS transmitted by heterosexual oral sex - Tuesday 24th Jan, 1989
61st Australian Womens Tennis: H Mandlikova beat M Navratilova (75 76) - Saturday 24th Jan, 1987
Retrieving Results for Another Date
By default, we’ll select the date associated with your WordPress installation in making our request to the API. At times, however, it might be necessary to render results for another arbitrary date.
By unticking the option that says “Yes, use WordPress blog time of for data requests?”, a date option appears. Keep in mind that this is a static date reference that won’t change over time.
Some other features of the shortcode generation include:
- Events relating to deaths, births, events and aviation.
- Results between 1 and 15.
- Custom separator between the content and date.
- Defined or custom date format (using PHP’s date() function).
Using Shortcode in a Sidebar?
By default, WordPress doesn’t enable the filter that permits you to use shortcode in a sidebar widget. If you plan on using this plugin, a sidebar widget is probably the most appropriate place to display random history. To enable shortcode in widgets, we’ve create a simple form that’ll activate that function globally; it works outside our plugin as well.
If you’re using our custom functions plugin, this filter is enabled by default, so you don’t have to activate it.
There are a number of RSS feeds available that generate random output for each day.
The feeds can be consumed by most blogs and other CMS platforms by way of widgets and other types of integrated functionality. Certainly, in WordPress, there are countless plugins that’ll render feeds in different ways – not to mention shortcode, including our own.
The feeds are based on Australian Eastern Standard Time. If you’re elsewhere in the world, you can access a local feed using the following format:
Format is as follows: http://www.hiztory.org/[month]/[date]/[data-type].rss
We’ll build upon both the API and this plugin based almost exclusively on the feedback we receive. Some of the features that we’ll be including sooner rather than later include the following:
- Ability to render results beyond the 15 limit currently imposed.
- The API will shortly permit multiple events from multiple user defined categories (at the moment we only allow one category per request).
- Geo-specific history queries
- Additional categories (tech, marine, science, space, rail, country specific etc.).
- Keyword filtering.
While the shortcode generator from the
Settings menu will create the appropriate string of shortcode, you may choose to build it manually using the following shortcode attributes.
typerelates to the category of history to be returned. For example,
type="deaths". Various categories will be added to the plugin shortly.
monthis a two-digit representation of the month. Used in company with
date. Only used when requesting history that isn’t for “today”.
dateis a two-digit representation of the date. Used in company with
month. Only used when requesting history that isn’t for “today”.
numberdetermines how many results are returned. At this stage, anything between 1 and 15 is accepted.
useblogdatewill force the request to be made using your WordPress website timezone. Defaults to true so usually shouldn’t be touched.
By default we’ll return the history in a list (it just looks better). To disable this and return it a block of code, use
To return HTML after each history event, use
after=". Replace the
<br>with whatever HTML is required.
datetagsrelates to the HTML wrapped around the returned date. You should note that the datetags, or the html formatting for the date, doesnt include the < or > tag; this is automatically applied with the results.
separatoris the character that seperates the text from the date.
dateformatrelates to how the date is rendered. For a full list of options see the PHP manual . Defaults to ‘jS F Y’.
linkify="0"by default), we’ll attempt to match text in the history to your WordPress website tags. If they match, we’ll link the history text to the appropriate tag link.
By default we’ll cache results locally in your database for an hour (
cache="3600"). To alter the time results are cached use, say,
cache="1800"(30 minutes). Querying the hiztory API too frequently may result in throttling.
The plugin will continue to be developed so ensure you subscribe to our Facebook page to be updated of changes.