Drupal 7 was released with an automatic cron option which is handy for those who do not have shell access or a way to enable a Unix type cron with their web host.
At Classic, we use Jenkins to trigger cron via Drupal's cron URL. Because we have cron scheduled, we have no need for Drupal's built-in automatic cron which defaults to run every 3 hours. Also, we sometimes have to disable the Jenkins cron during deployments to make sure that that cron doesn't execute until all code has been deployed successfully.
I work on a Drupal application which utilizes Drupal taxonomy for grouping products on the front page. A view displays an image for each product grouping, allowing users to click through and view products in the selected category.
Well, you can certainly learn something new about Drupal everyday. I spent a good bit of time trying to figure out why I couldn't perform a simple field value update to a few nodes in an application. So, node_save() was running without error, and nothing I attempted to update in the node object or related fields would save.
When developing Drupal applications on my Mac, I like having access to the same tools I use on servers. This allows me to test for possible conflicts and issues, while evaluating performance impact. I recently decided to look at getting Memcached going on my Mac since we use it on servers at Classic Graphics. Memcached is a memory-based caching system for speeding up web applications by storing chunks of data. Drupal and PHP can leverage Memcached to assist with performance.