WPMU DEV's Blog - Everything WordPress » WordPress News - WPMU.org http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog The WPMU DEV WordPress blog provides tutorials, tips, resources and reviews to help out any WP user Sun, 25 Jan 2015 13:00:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.1 This Week in WordPress: New Travel Scholarship and SEO Sabotage http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-13/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-13/#comments Thu, 22 Jan 2015 12:30:37 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=136544 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

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The WhiP Newsletter #157

Hello dear reader,

Life Changer

The WordPress Foundation has announced a travel scholarship in memory of contributor Kim Parsell. Kim, who died in December, attended WordPress San Francisco for the first time last year thanks to financial assistance from the foundation and told friends it was one of the best experiences of her life. The scholarship will be awarded each year ahead of WCSF’s replacement event to a female contributor who has never attended the event before. Community organizer Jen Mylo says she hopes the scholarship will encourage more woman to get involved with WordPress.

The new European VAT rules are a bit of a headache if you’ve tried to wrap your head around what it all means. Brian Krogsgard at Post Status has put together what is no doubt the most comprehensive guide to WordPress and the new VAT (Value-Added Tax) rules. If you sell products or services to Europeans, you might want to bookmark this post.

This week’s episode of DradCast features Matt Medeiros, the co-founder of Slocum Studio, host of the Matt Report, and creator of Conductor Plugin.

And another podcast, WPWeekly, features three employees from GoDaddy, including Mendel Kurland, the web host’s first WordPress evangelist.

The Papi Project adds a new Page Type API to WordPress. Sarah Gooding at WP Tavern talks to Fredrik Forsmo, a systems developer in Sweden, who developed the project, which offers a less traditional approach to working with fields and page types.

WebDevStudios is giving its Custom Post Type plugin a UI overhaul and is calling for beta testers. The plugin has been around for five years in the WordPress Plugin Repository, but the interface hasn’t changed since WordPress 3.0.

Big Spender

Find the perfect theme for your next project with the Envato Market Blog’s guide to finding the right theme for your next WordPress project. This is more of a beginners guide if you haven’t already spent way too much money on ThemeForest themes in the past.

“What is the shelf life of a WordPress theme? Since WordPress themes provide the design of the site, and since design trends change every few years, is there a correlation to how long a WordPress theme can be sold?” Developer Tom McFarlin ponders the shelf life and feature creep of WordPress themes as his Mayer theme turns one-year-old.

Cute Critters

Chris Lema from Crowd Favorite manages to mix raccoons and plugin support while spruiking Sidekick, a new plugin that lets you create custom tutorials inside the WordPress admin to train people to solve any problems they may be having with your products.

BuddyPress Edit Activity is a new plugin that allows users to edit their activity posts and replied on the front-end, similar to the “Edit Post” feature on Facebook. The plugin is by the folks at BuddyBoss who recently released BuddyPress Global Search.

Freshbooks, TimeTrade and ManageWP feature in Torque’s round-up of freelancer tools designed to help your business run smoothly.

Meanwhile, WP Explorer has also put together a collection of tools for freelancers, complete with plugins (Editorial Calendar, CollabPress) and and websites (Trello, MailChimp).

On the Kinsta blog, Anita Dunai reviews the Project Panorama, a project management plugin for WordPress, and gives it the thumbs up.

Lastly, WP Mayor reviews WP Web Scraper, a free plugin that lets you grab content from any web page or XML or RSS feed and display it on your WordPress site.

Getting Started

Getting Started with WordPress Plugin Development: The Ultimate Guide (WPMU DEV).

The Best WordPress Facebook Widgets (Elegant Themes).

User Field Visibility for Profile Builder (Cozmos Labs).

5 Cool Things Developers Can Do With Reactor (AppPresser).

How To: Allow users to Login to WordPress using Github (WPLift).

How to Add a Notepad to Your WordPress Dashboard (WP Beginner).


What kind of productive person are you? Is it okay to push off deadlines if you’re balancing more work than one person can usually handle? Find out at Fast Company.

While we aren’t yet zipping around on hoverboards, the future is here and it really is incredible. i09 looks at the 15 predictions that have become a reality.

All the best for a productive Friday and relaxing weekend.

The WhiP Newsletter #158

Hello dear reader,


It seems users have a love/hate relationships with the distraction-free writing experience that came with WordPress 4.1. After Community Organizer (and former WordPress UX Lead) Jen Mylo wrote about how she doesn’t like the new feature as much as the old one, Brian Krogsgard from Post Status attempted to implement some of her suggestions, albeit in the browser inspector. WP Tavern’s Jeff Chandler supports Jen and Brian’s suggestions, which include a full-height editor and moving the “Save Draft” and “Preview” buttons.

PHP and JavaScript are among the most popular programming languages used on GitHub, according to research and analysis firm RedMonk. Jeff Chandler says the results show JavaScript is in the middle of a renaissance and backs up the suggestion 90% of WordPress development in the future could be JavaScript based.

And also over at WP Tavern, Jeff Chandler reviews Sidekick, a new service thatallows you to create voice-guided, interactive walkthroughs for any WordPress dashboard.

For the Love of Code

“To truly learn and retain a more advanced development knowledge, you have to yearn to get better. If you don’t want to get better, you will likely never see anything but minor improvement. Your attitude towards learning goes a long way.” Easy Digital Downloads creator Pippin Williamson offers some advice on how to become a better developer.

“If they had a gay Cuban man, a trans man, a dude with Asperger’s, and a light-skinned black man on the speaker list (along with other people), but the audience read all of them as generic white guys, what would that say about the diversity of the speaker roll (knowing that references to the various diverse statuses would appear nowhere in the bios or in the presentations themselves)?” Jen Mylo writes about working a little harder towards truly democratizing publishing.

Rather than blow their profits on, well, stuff, the folks at ManageWP give 10% of their earnings each month to Zivojin Misic, an organization that aims to improve youth education, with a focus on entrepreneurship and IT skills. Nemanja Aleksic writes about having a conscience and giving back to the WordPress community.

The latest episode of Matt Report features Andrew Youderian of the eCommerceFuel podcast.

Easy on the Eye

CodeInWP looks at how and where to outsource WordPress-Related work.

WP Kube lists 35 bbPress forum themes, and many of them are surprisingly eye-catching.

How to create image galleries with the free Photo Gallery plugin at Pagely.

Stories Instead Of Code?

Using a Custom Taxonomy to Add a Location Drop Down (WPMU DEV).

5 Simple Methods for Creating Custom Queries in WordPress (WPMU DEV).

Your Ultimate Guide To Google+ Communities (Elegant Themes).

Write Stories Instead Of Code? Five Steps to Storytelling with Canvas(WooThemes).

How to Add an Expiration Date to Sticky Posts in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Combining Underscores With Bootstrap to Create a Theme Framework: Introduction (WPMU DEV).

More Essential Plugins for WordPress Theme Development (tuts+).

Creating Your WordPress Knowledge Base’s Structure (tuts+).

How To Create WordPress Custom Fields Without Plugins (Hongkiat)

Taxonomy Page Parent Menu Collapsed (Paul Underwood).

Toasters Have USB Ports?!

And for something completely different, here’s a video on how to mod any toaster to control PC games.

All the best for an awesome Monday!

The WhiP Newsletter #159

Hello dear reader,


“They did everything through a third-party, an internet hitman of sorts, to try to cover their tracks…” WP Site Care’s Ryan Sullivan says someone in the WordPress community waged SEO sabotage on his business, almost taking it down.Whodunnit?

Fortunately, not everyone working with WordPress is a douche bag. WP Tavern’s Jeff Chandler looks at acts of kindness in the community.

“Many people in the WordPress community, in particular, work alone at home as freelancers or with distributed companies. Unless the individual is motivated, this work environment can severely limit healthy social interactions.” Sarah Gooding at WP Tavern writes about tackling depression in IT.

On this week’s episode of WPwatercooler, Jason Tucker and guests discuss what to look out for when choosing a business theme.

ManageWP Orion has launched a closed beta signup for its overhauled site management service.


Brian Krogsgard at Post Status previews Pressnomics and what he’s looking forward to at the conference this weekend.

Split screens and grid-based design comes out tops on WebDesignDepot’s list of essential layout trends to look out for this year.

On the WPMU DEV Blog, we review the top 10 most popular responsive themes.

Lastly, Pagely has added to its Pagely Answers series with articles on caching, support, Multisite, WooCommerce, BuddyPress and core updates.

Learn WordPress

Learn everything you need to know about WordPress in a year with Daniel Pataki’s awesome and comprehensive guide at Hongkiat.

Modern is a beautiful new blog and portfolio theme that’s free.

Recover lost sales from your eCommerce store with these abandoned cart plugins.

Archive your site’s content with the Archived Post Status plugin.

And here are some helpful Google Chrome extensions for WordPress.

Make Your Mark

How to Customize Twenty Fifteen to Make it Your Own (WPMU DEV).

How To Use Twitter For Business (Elegant Themes).

Using WP_Query To Search For a Person (WPMU DEV).

Creating Your Own Widgets Using Various WordPress APIs: Introduction(tuts+).

Maintainability of WordPress Theme Customizer Code (Tom McFarlin).

How to Rename Images and Media Files in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Making Inline Media Queries Even Better with Breakpoint Sass(WebDevStudios).

Using a Class Autoloader to Improve WordPress Development (Torque).


The most popular password in 2014 is still 123456. Doh!

Lastly, if you use Slack you know it’s awesome. Still, the messaging app’s founder says he has no f–king idea why it’s exploded.

All the best for a thoughtful and productive Wednesday.

Sorry for the break in The WhiP yesterday. We missed you, if it’s any consolation.

The WhiP Newsletter #160

Hello dear reader,

Code Execution

10up engineer Drew Jaynes will be the project lead for WordPress 4.2. The core team is planning three releases of WordPress this year in April, August and December.

Brian Krogsgard has launched the Post Status Membership Club. For $99 a year you get articles, video, audio, a newsletter, member deals from the site’s corporate partners and access to a LinkedIn-style directory.

Sucuri is warning Pagelines and Platform themes users to update ASAP after discovering two dangerous issues: a Privilege Escalation vulnerability affecting both themes and a Remote Code Execution issue for Platform.

For the To Do List

Torque reminds you to stop and think about who your users are and whether you’re actually solving their problems.

Elegant Themes explores the evolution of UI versus UX in WordPress designand what we can expect to see in the future.

Six Revisions offers its tips on WordPress plugin development (taking advantage of hooks, using WP Cron etc).

Everyone uses Google Analytics, right? Here are five things Google won’t tell you about your analytics and what you can do about it, at WebDesignerDepot.

And over at WebDesignLedger, here are 20 themes for business consultants.

Developer Tom McFarlin has open sourced his Mayer theme, which is now available on GitHub.

The latest version of iThemes Security includes a new time-saving security feature: the ability to easily change WordPress security keys and salts.

Adapting to the Environment

Loading WordPress Posts Dynamically With AJAX (WPMU DEV).

Getting Started With Google Analytics In Your WordPress Site (WP Kube).

How to Bulk Resize Large Images in WordPress (WP Beginner).

How to Set Up a WordPress Development Site with Codio’s Free Cloud-Based IDE (WP Tavern).

Guide: Optimizing Your WordPress Themes for Windows 8.1 and Internet Explorer (WP Lift).

An Introduction to Adaptive Design (tuts+).

Knock Out

The first rule of Code-Fight.Club is… Well, how would you know about it if we didn’t talk about it?

Lastly, here’s a game for the designers: How good are you at kerning? 

All the best for a sublime Thursday.

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This Week in WordPress: Features as Plugins a Mess, and ThemeForest Unrest http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-12/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-12/#comments Thu, 15 Jan 2015 12:30:24 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=136253 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

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The WhiP Newsletter #152

Hello dear reader,


A whole lotta tears have been shed for Kim Parsell this week after news of her death. Tributes have flowed and a memorial website has been created to remember the Docs team member. WebDevStudios designer Suzette Franck, who launched the site yesterday, said she wanted to “pay tribute to an awesome lady.”

On this week’s episode of WPWeekly WP Tavern’s Jeff Chandler shares his memories of Kim Parsell and discusses the outpouring of support from the WordPress community.

Yesterday, we featured the Je Suis Charlie plugin, which allows WordPress users to show their solidarity after the Paris Charlie Hedbo attack. The plugin has now been downloaded more than 1100 times.

WebDevStudios have ushered in the New Year with a new website and a look back at how the web development company has grown.

“It’s been a fun ride and I’m looking forward to the next 100.” The Matt Report’s Matt Medeiros reflects on the growing and competitive WordPress podcasting space in his 100th episode.

Soon we may never have to deal with ugly permalinks ever again. There are plans toautomatically enable pretty permalinks in WordPress 4.2.

Big and Small

All kinds of WordPress initiatives, big and small, are being launched all the time, but not all stick around for the long haul. Jeff Chandler takes a look at some websites, like WPKindness and Netropolitan, that have fizzled out.

Since Google Panda was unleashed on the web, it’s been a scramble to figure out just what the search engine wants. (Just tell us already!). Elegant Themes attempts to read Google’s mind in their latest post about SEO best practices.

And for even more SEO goodness, ProBlogger offers a list of “must-dos,” like keyword research and proactive outreach.


It’s easy to default to searching the WordPress Plugin Repository for free plugins.WP Mayor offers up some alternatives, including a few you may not have come across before.

MailChimp (Mail… kimp?), IFTTT and BuzzSumo are just some of the sites featured in Torque’s collection of 42 blogging tools for, well, bloggers.

Motive is a new theme for creative types by the guys at Themezilla. It comes with eye-catching animation and multiple layouts for your portfolio and blog.

WP Garage reviews blogVault, an online backup service that “actually works.”

WP Explorer looks at how to create stunning, responsive tables in WordPress with the wpDataTables plugin.

And how to set up OptinMonster to encourage visitors to subscribe to your site, over at Webloggerz.


How to Engage Readers with Post Reactions in WordPress (WP Beginner).

How Custom Fields Can Help Make Updating WordPress Easier for Your Clients (Envato Market Blog).

Understanding Bounce Rate (And How to Keep it Down) (WooThemes).

How to Integrate Slack With WordPress (WP Beginner).

Developing Plugins for Your WordPress Theme Framework (tuts+).

Plugin Authors: How to Avoid Download Prompts Associated with Screenshots on the WordPress Plugin Directory (WP Tavern).

Winter is Coming

What would you be prepared to do to get a cheap MacBook Air? These Japanesecamped out overnight outside an Apple store in the snow. And in 17 degree fahrenheit snow.

“The commute to work is dark. The trip home, also dark. It’s freezing, and everyone around you is sneezing and coughing.” While we’re on the subject of snow, if you’re wishing it was spring already, here are are tips at Fast Company on how to stay productive during the winter months.

All the best for a productive Friday and a lovely weekend.

The WhiP Newsletter #153

Hello dear reader,

King Fu Panda

“Many of our affiliates simply lost all of their traffic, so we lost basically all sales generated by them, which is an important source of revenue for new shops.” If Google Panda hit you hard, you’ll relate to developer Dumitru Brinzan who launched AcademiaThemes early last year. Despite a significant loss in traffic and affiliate revenue, Brinzan is still maintaining the site, as WP Tavern explains.

BuddyPress 2.2 Beta 1 is available for testing. Some of the features in this release include member types that allow developers to register different types of users, and post type activities that allow you to connect custom post types to activity stream items.

The latest episode of the Dradcast podcast features John Hawkins, a web developer and WordCamp speaker/organizer from Las Vegas. He co-founded 9seeds, a custom WordPress development company.

ManageWP have rebuilt their management service from the ground up and they’re calling it ManageWP Orion. In the company’s latest post ahead of launch, they explain their development process, and why they didn’t just fix their existing service.

Alter Ego

Should WordPress businesses post revenue figures? Is it an ego-boosting exercise that promotes envy? Or does it simply inspire and show others what’s possible? WP Mayor’s Jean Galea puts the question out there after all the year in review posts that have been posted recently.

Torque looks at the “seven laws of WordPress maintenance” – obvious stuff like backing up your content and securing your site.

If you’ve been too busy working on other peoples’ websites to worry about your own, take out 5 minutes of your day to read iThemes’ post on why you shouldn’t neglect your own website, plus tips on how to make it awesome.

On the WordPress VIP blog, Matt Harvey, Director of Product at USA Today Sports Media Group presents on how USA Today uses APIs and WordPress to display sports data.

Puss in Boots

Over at CodeInWP there is a collection of 10 free Bootstrap-based WordPress themes.

Elegant Theme have put together a list of 40 web design blogs for inspiration.

Duplicate and Merge Posts is a new-ish plugin that lets you clone a live post, edit it, and then merge back the updated copy into the original post.

Organize your post schedule with one of these WordPress plugins for future posts at WP Solver.

Hook, Line and Sinker

Understanding WordPress Hooks: Knowing What to Use Where (WPMU DEV).

How to Create Your Own Workout Diary With WordPress (WPMU DEV).

Add a Dynamic “Back to Top” Button to Your WordPress Site (WPMU DEV).

How To Optimize Your WordPress Site For Local Search (Elegant Themes).

Getting Started With Redux Framework: Introducing It and Integrating It Into Your Theme (tuts+).

Developer Plugin: Essential for WordPress Theme Development (tuts+).

Planning a WordPress Knowledge Base (tuts+).

Using WP_Query and Multiple Meta Keys (Tom McFarlin).

Slowing Down to Go Further

Matt Mullenweg reflects on turning 31… and running a company that raised $160 million last year.

If you’re a Gmail user, have you checked out Gmail Labs? It offers all kinds of cool experimental features. Lifehacker have put together their favorite 10 labs to increase email productivity.

All the best for a grand Monday.

The WhiP Newsletter #154

Hello dear reader,

Give It Away Now

The WordPress.org Theme Repository is getting a long-awaited update. Once complete, the website will match the themes browser in the backend of WordPress.Sarah Gooding previews the new design at WP Tavern.

BuddyBoss has released BuddyPress Global Search, a plugin that adds a unified search bar to WordPress sites, allowing users to search through every BuddyPress component, along with pages, posts, and select custom post types.

Developer Mike Van Winkle says it’s time for WordPress to establish some rules for freemium plugins. Posting in the Advanced WordPress Facebook group, Mike says he’s become “increasingly discouraged by the signal/noise ratio in WordPress related content.” Check out his post to have your say.

WpRecipes has teamed up with ThemeFuse to give away a website package, including a WordPress theme, one year of hosting and a domain.

WP Lift is also running a giveaway, this time with web host KeyCDN. Enter to win one of two tree accounts with 1TB of traffic included.

And to round-out these WordPress deals, WP Engine is offering a 15% New Year discount.


WordPress writer Kevin Muldoon, who runs the Rise internet marking forums, hasmade his predictions for SEO in 2015. Things like UX-focused SEO and more (dreaded) Google algorithm updates.

The folks at Webloggerz take a look at what they say are the 37 most popular WordPress themes ever made. Think you can guess the top three?

Building a portfolio for your business can feel overwhelming – especially if you’re a perfectionist! Here are 50+ great portfolio themes to help you get started on our blog.

Cookie Monster

How to Allow User Log In with Email in WordPress (WP Beginner).

The Benefits of Using the Free Shortcoder Plugin (tuts+).

How to Create a Custom 404 Error Page for WordPress (Torque).

How To Set Cookies in WordPress (Tom McFarlin).

How To Build A Wedding Website With WordPress (Elegant Themes).

Display A Category Checklist In WordPress (Paul Underwood).

How to Customize The Body and Title Font in WordPress Default Themes Without Touching Code (WP Tavern).

Unable to Connect

There have been many articles published in the past about Automattic as a distributed company. Here’s a couple of differing perspectives (both posted on Matt Mullenweg’s blog), one from Steph Yiu about communicating remotely with lots of people and Chris Hardie on distributed versus in-person teams.

Did you know the offline dinosaur is Chrome is also a game? *brain explosion*

All the best for a cool Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #155

Hello dear reader,

Like a Version

“… we feel the idea of providing multiple demos to showcase this flexibility is quite simply good marketing practice. For a multi-purpose theme with configurable options, mocking up different concepts using these available options saves buyers valuable setup time and helps them envision how the theme will fit their individual needs.” Envato have moved to clarify their policies on theme bundles (selling multiple different WordPress themes or demos as one item), niche and multipurpose themes, marketing, and bundling plugins with themes after some unrest in the ThemeForest forums.

Core contributor John Blackbourn has put a call out for feature plugins for WordPress 4.2. A few possible features include Image Flow (for better image uploading, management, and editing, on every device), Shortcake (a shortcode UI), and a new Metadata API for registering contextual custom field data (type of data, label text for forms) along with UI (show custom fields in a post edit screen with their corresponding field type inputs).

VersionPress, a plugin that allows you to prevent change to a site without having to restore a backup, is set for release later this week – but only if you were an early backer. Developers Borek Bernard and Jan Voráček launched a crowdfunding campaign last year asking for $30,000, and while they only reached 50% of their target, they pushed on with development anyway. Find out more at WP Tavern.

The folks at GravityView hired Jonathan Mann, the song a day guy, to create a new video for them and it really is something.

“I’ve taken only what I could handle alone and in time. Now that Justin is in, we will do more,” he said. “In only few days after the initial launch the response and support has been overwhelming. This confirms that our community is in great need of experienced reviewers.” Emil Uzelac, who last week launched the community’s first theme review service, Theme Review, has partnered with fellow WordPress.org theme review team colleague Justin Tadlock.

The third edition of Professional WordPress is set for release on January 15. Check out WebDevStudios’ Q&A with author Brad Williams and win a copy.

Jeff Chandler at WP Taverns says 2015 could be the year of admin themes, but it largely depends on whether the WP API is merged into core. His prediction follows that of Human Made’s Noel Tock, who reckons we’ll see more custom dashboards, front-end editing and internationalization in WordPress this year.

Do You Want to Build a Website?

The first hurdle to growing your business online is building a website. Not only to you have to find a theme, or hire something to tailor one for you, but you need to ensure you have the right tools on the backend. Here are our picks of the must-have plugins you need to get your business website running smoothly.

On the Envato Market blog, designer Jake Rocheleau explores the growing trend of using hero images in web design and sites that use the feature well.

The Better Notifications for WordPress plugin is now out of beta after the original collaborators found a new developer. The plugin allows you to send customizable HTML emails to users based on different actions in WordPress.

WP RSS Aggregator and WP-Drudge are the perfect combo, according to WP Mayor.

If you’re a WooThemes users, have you heard of these eight features?

Pretty Fly (For a Straight-Forward Guide)

How to Customize The Body and Title Font in WordPress Default Themes Without Touching Code (WP Tavern).

How To Add An Author Box to Your WordPress Site (WP Explorer).

How to Change Editor Background Color by Word Count in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Using Namespaces in WordPress Development (Torque).

How to Browse and Restore Individual Files or Folders on Your WordPress Site (with BackUpBuddy (iThemes).

A Straight-Forward Guide To WordPress Slugs (Elegant Themes).


What does 1 million lines of code look like? Have you ever wondered how many lines of code there are in Facebook or even the Large Hadron Collider?

If 2014 was the year of ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ then what is 2015?

All the best for a warm and wonderful Wednesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #156

Hello dear reader,

Hearts a Mess

“The success of MP6 proved that by developing core features as plugins first, they were easier to test, manage, and merge into core at the appropriate time. Since adopting the development process, at least seven features have landed in core. However, as an outsider looking in, the process seems to be falling apart.” Jeff Chandler at WP Tavern says the features at plugins first model is a mess and need to be fixed.

Web host WP Engine has opened sourced its new Mercury Vagrant project, which allows anyone in the WordPress community to run a single Vagrant for developing, debugging, and deploying HHVM-based code. WP Engine Labs has collaborated with the VVV creators at web development agency 10up on the project.

Pressnomics 3, a conference for entrepreneurs who create the products and services that drive the WordPress economy, kicks off on January 22 in Arizona. Thethree-day event will feature 19 speakers from within and around the WordPress community who will share their stories, insights, and lessons learned in business with an audience of over 250.

Envato, the parent company of ThemeForest, has published its 2014 Year in Review. Last September, ThemeForest became one of the top 100 most popular websites in the world according to Alexa, ahead of Netflix.

BuddyPress 2.2 Beta 2 is now ready for testing. New features include member types that allow developers to register different types of users (i.e “teacher” vs. “student”), and post type activities for connecting custom post types to activity stream items.

Eyes Wide Open

“I use Evernote and keep a notebook of “cool products – not yet” that feel like they’re a bit shy of being awesome. But I never know if they’ll get better if I don’t circle back.” Chris Lema from Crowd Favorite advises it’s a good idea to “circle back” and give companies and products a second chance.

Writing at WP Tavern, WPShout’s David Hayes says he loves Composer (a dependency manager for PHP, if you haven’t heard of it) and he loves WordPress, but the “run your whole WordPress site with Composer” solution is only right for developer-intensive use of WordPress.

Smoke and Mirrors

WPLift has rounded up their favorite free WordPress themes released this month.

Two new free themes from Automattic are now available at WordPress.org – Motif (a fork of Okay Themes’ Paradigm theme) and Capoverso (named after an Italian word for the indent in the first line of a paragraph).

Need a caching plugin? WP Mayor takes a quick look at some of the popular caching options available, including W3 Total Cache, WP Super Cache and Hyper Cache.

And how to make your site faster with the free WP Smush.It plugin, over at Pagely.

Easy Way Out

How to Disable Title for Selective Posts in WordPress (WP Beginner).

11 Simple Tips to Boost Your Website’s Security (Torque).

How To Post To Facebook From WordPress (Elegant Themes).

Ever Heard of Must-Use Plugins? (tuts+).

How to Back Up a WordPress Site with CodeGuard (tuts+).

Getting Started with Vagrant & VVV for Local Development (WebDevStudios).

I Feel Better

“So pay us money, provide an address anywhere in the world and we’ll send them so much glitter in an envelope that they’ll be finding that !@#$ everywhere for weeks.” It’s almost worth having enemies just so you can use ShipYourEnemiesGlitter.com

All the best for sweet Thursday.

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This Week in WordPress: Tributes for #wpmom, WP Predictions for 2015 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-11/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-11/#comments Thu, 08 Jan 2015 13:00:08 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=135985 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

Subscribe to The Whip daily for lashings of WordPress goodness.

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The WhiP Newsletter #148 – Monday, January 5

Happy New Year!

New Year, New News

It’s easy to forget how much happened last year in WordPress until you actually sift through the hundreds of articles that were published (and that’s only during the past fortnight!). WP Tavern explores the past 12 months (and almost lists their 2014 archive) in a couple of comprehensive posts (here and here) that look at last year in WordPress news.

Post Status’ Brian Krogsgard has left design and development agency Range to focus on consulting – and re-launching his WordPress news site with a membership model. The site will offer individual and corporate yearly membership and is expected to launch on January 21. For more background, check out Brian’s post from back in September where he talked about the future of Post Status.

New rules around VAT on digital goods kicked in on January 1 in EU countries. The new rules affect all companies (EU and non-EU) that sell to consumers inside the EU. To find out more, check out WooCommerce’s post on their new Taxamo extension.

ManageWP have teased users with a preview of the next version of their WordPress management service, dubbed ManageWP Orion. It promises improved performance, async actions, better usability, a clone wizard, optimized scheduled backups and in-depth client reports.

WordPress tweaking service Elto, formerly known as Tweaky, have suspended their services. According to the company’s blog, the company is working on a new product experience. No date has been publicly set for when the company will re-launch.

Envato have published a list of their top 50 new WordPress themes of 2014, as well as their top 50 new WordPress plugins.

WordPress.com VIP has grown. During the past year, the service has surpassed 28 billion page views, added 350 new sites to the VIP network and hired 13 new staff members.

Lastly, and in case you missed it, WordPress 4.1 was released on December 18. Here’s Post Status’ rundown of the latest version, named “Dinah.”

Looking Forward, Looking Back

Who do you follow in the WordPress community? Torque caused a stir with their round-up of 100 WordPress influencers, most notably leaving out Matt Mullenweg (he only co-created WordPress but, you know, whatevs).

The Envato Market Blog wraps up 2014 with a look at the versions of WordPress released over the past 12 months.

And the folks at Torque look back at their favorite posts of 2014.

Easy Digital Downloads create Pippin Williamson also looks back on 2014 in arevealing post detailing his revenue (EDD reached gross earnings of ~$475,000).

Following on from his 2014 review, Pippin writes about giving up control is important if you want to grow your business, and why he is no longer the sole lead developer for Easy Digital Downloads.

For all the WordPress businesses out there, CodeInWP looks at seven mistakes to avoid when promoting your wares.

Access Granted

Will 2015 be the year more focus is placed on accessibility? In our first post for the year, we take a look at the best themes and plugins for making your site accessible.

If you run a WordPress business and ignore social media you’re missing out on potential customers. The folks at Elegant Themes check out social media trends to look out for in 2015.

Elegant Themes’ Joyce Grace has put together a huge post on typography in web design.

Over at WP Tavern, Sarah Gooding takes a look at the most popular free themes released in 2014.

There were dozens of tutorials published over the Christmas break so instead of listing them all, here are WP Beginner’s favorites of 2014.

And here’s an overview of what the folks at tuts+ have been up to over the past 12 months.

New Year, New You

A new year usually means new resolutions (that you’ll probably forget by February). Here are 14 tips to help you make this year your most productive yet.

All the best for a fantastic year ahead.

P.S. This is our first edition of The WhiP for 2015. Thanks for sticking around. We’re keen to get your feedback on what you think of our little newsletter so we’ll be sending out a survey this week. Stay tuned.

The WhiP Newsletter #149 – Tuesday, January 6

Hello dear reader,


In sad news, WordPress contributor Kim Parsell has died. Kim was affectionately known to many as #wpmom. Over the past few years she worked on improving documentation in WordPress as a member of the Documentation team. Tributes have begun to flow from fellow Docs team members (Siobhan McKeown and Drew Jaynes), at WP Tavern, and this beautiful post by developer Carrie Dils.

Long-time WordPress Theme Review Team member Emil Uzelac has launched the community’s first theme review service, Theme Review. The aptly titled service aims to help themers produce a better quality themes for client work, commercial and free themes. The service will cover things like efficiency, performance, sanity, and the overall code quality.

In a departure from its usual beginner tutorials, WP Beginner has questioned whether Jetpack is misleading users to promote WordPress.com on Facebook.

CodeInWP have compiled a mammoth list of their top 101 WordPress blogs along with their most popular and engaging posts. A great read if you like to keep on top of WordPress news and resources.

iThemes is celebrating its seventh birthday this month with a 35% off everything sale.

On the latest episode of WP Watercooler, host Jason Tuckers and guests discuss why and how you should optimize your WordPress sites.


Don’t run the risk of losing all your hard work. Check out our list of top premium and freemium backup plugins.

ManageWP offers a peak at the design decisions behind Orion, the next version of its product.

Landing pages have become a staple amongst marketers and product developers who create everything from eBooks to mobile apps. The Envato Market Blog takes a look at WordPress landing page theme design trends.

Speaking of trends, here are 14 web designs trends to look out for in 2015 at Torque.

A collection of WordPress tools and resources (plugins, themes, places to find help, managed hosting, books etc) over at BeginWP).

WP Mayor reviews CSS Hero, a plugin that allows you to easily make themes customizations.

If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to get fit, check out WP Lift’s collection of free weight loss and fitness plugins.

What the Heck

What the Heck Are WordPress Frameworks? (WP Kube).

Control the Visibility of WordPress Widgets Based on Time and Date (WP Tavern).

Creative Ways To Drive More Traffic To Your Website (Elegant Themes).

How To Sell Online When You Don’t Have A Product (WooThemes).

Teeny Tiny

Using The TinyMCE Editor In WordPress [Guide] (Hongkiat).

Using Google Two-Factor Authentication With WordPress (tuts+).

Add Discussion Forums To Your WordPress Website With bbPress (Pagely).

Lock, Stock, and Barrel

“…Facebook’s core business of selling ads into the News Feed is the same combination of incredibly vulnerable and apocalypse-proof as AOL’s dial-up business: it will continue minting money for as long as the parents and grandparents of the world start their day with Facebook, and it will stop growing the second all of their kids move on to something better.” Facebook is the new AOL, writes The Verge.

Lastly, Matt Mullenweg carries around a lockpick. (He’s even taken a class in basic lock picking.)

All the best for a wonderful and productive Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #150 – Wednesday, January 7

Hello dear reader,


Thousands more WordPress tweakers and developers joined WordPress Development StackExchange last year – 15,000, in fact, bringing the total to 45,000. Stats for 2014 posted on the site last week reveal the question and answer site go 17 million page views last year. Users submitted 14,000 new questions and 13,000 new answers. WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding interviewed WPSE moderator Andrey Savchenko on the site’s culture and ethos.

And more stats! WordPress.com’s year in review reveals some impressive numbers. There were 18,300,771 new blog last year (up 12.5% from 2013), and 555,782,547 total posts – that’s 1.5 millions posts a day.

As we mentioned earlier in the week, WordPress tweaking service Elto has suspended its services. Post Status takes another look at where the company is headed.

WP Engine has announced password protection for sites in development so you can control who previews you site before it goes live.

The WP RSS Aggregator project is looking for translators to translate the core plugin and add-ons into several languages.

Webloggerz has teamed up with EngineThemes for a special offer on the theme shop’s theme package.

Drop It Like It’s Hot

With more than 20,000 sales worldwide, Visual Composer is easily CodeCanyon’s best selling plugin. In our latest review, we put the drag and drop product to the test.

Find great images for your posts, and get tips on how to use images effectively, at Elegant Themes.

If you work from home in your pajamas (or even no pants at all), this post is for you. WebDevStudios offers some tips on how to stay healthy while working from home.

Have you developed a mobile strategy for your business? AppPresser offers some advice on what you should consider and then, of course, suggests getting a mobile app for your site.


WP Beginner picks its favorite (and must-have) plugins for 2015.

Easy Footnotes, Single Background and Idea Factory are just some of the latest plugins to join the WordPress Plugin Repository. WebDesignerDepot looks at some other highlights for this month.

Herschel is a new Builder theme by the folks at iThemes that’s aimed a photographer and artists.

WP Explorer rounds up 30 new premium themes from December.

Hack your functions.php file with these simple WordPress snippets at Hongkiatthat let you do things like change the length of excerpts and disable links from user comments.

Programmed to Love

How To: Increase Your Mailing List with Premium Opt-in WordPress Plugins(WP Lift).

Why and How to Use Class Autoloading and Namespacing to Improve WordPress Development (Torque).

Options for 301 Redirects in WordPress (tuts+).

How To Check if a WordPress Term Has a Child (Tom McFarlin).

Programmatically Assign Menus To Theme Locations In WordPress (Paul Underwood).

Universal Language

Vox took some of 2014’s biggest news stories and translated them… into emoji. See how many can you translate back into English.

Finally, here’s a Buzzfeed video (of all things) to help put your existence into perspective.

All the best for a cool Wednesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #151 – Thursday, January 8

Hello dear reader,

I’m Lovin’ It

“The goal with the new Post Status is to provide useful and informative free content for everyone, but go above and beyond for members.” Brian Krogsgard has relaunched Post Status with a new design ahead of plans to add a new members area to his WordPress news site.

WordPress for Android 3.5 has been released with updates to the app design, and smaller improvements like mentions auto completion in comments and a redesigned the media grid on tablets.

The folks who manage the Advanced WordPress Facebook group are planning an offshoot website. Matt Cromwell, who administers the group, says WP Engine has donated hosting and Devin Walker from WordImpress has designed it, they’re just stuck on building the site. WP Tavern’s Jeff Chandler takes a look at the ethos behind AWP, and says his highlight from an unscheduled Q&A by Matt Mullenweg was finding out he like McDonald’s. (Scroll to the comments in the link to find out more about the AWP website.)

iThemes has announced updates to iThemes Security, including new file permission checks and the ability to allow multiple two-factor authentication app passwords.

If you’re still not on top of the EU VAT legislation and how it affects you, Torque have a fantastic rundown on how the changes to selling digital products affects WordPress users.

The Theme Foundry has a new Community Manager. Former WPMU DEV writer Melissa Hill is hanging out in the site’s held center and looking after social media.

Happy Joe will hold its first WP Boot Camp in San Antonio, TX on January 23. The non-profit organization helps US military veterans re-enter the workforce through training in WordPress and web technology.

Crystal Ball

Envato has made seven UX predictions for the year ahead, including the proliferation of testing, that we’ll pay less attention to time-on-site, and that consumer mobile use will ultimately takeover desktop web usage. Oh, and hamburgers. Menus, that is.

Show your support for the victims of the Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris with theJe suis Charlie plugin, which places a black ribbon with the words “#JeSuisCharlie”on the top right corner of your website. It links to the hashtag.

Better Search Replace is a new plugin for updating URLs and text in WordPress databases. WP Tavern gives it a test run.

Beckett is a new, elegant content-focused theme by the guys at Theme Trust.

WooThemes checks out six free tools for building eCommerce landing pages.

And WP Kube looks at how to use the Nelio A/B Testing plugin for conversion rate optimization and creating heatmaps specifically designed for WordPress.

Quick and Dirty

A Quick (and in-Depth) Guide to WordPress Hooks (WPMU DEV).

How to Add Custom After Post Widgets in WordPress (WP Beginner).

How To Monetize Your WordPress Website Using Adsense (Elegant Themes).

Adding Deposits & Partial Payments to a WooCommerce Site (WP Mayor).

Check To See if a WordPress Post Has a Term (Tom McFarlin).


“Unfortunately, when the last leap second was added back in 2012, more than a few sites had trouble keeping pace. As reported by Phys.org, Foursquare, Reddit, LinkedIn, and StumbledUpon all crashed when the leap second ticked unexpectedly into place.” On June 30th at precisely 23:59:59, the world’s atomic clocks will pause for a single second. The phenomenon is forcing web engineers to create workarounds, as The Verge explains.

Lastly, Noel Tock from Human Made has published his 2015 predictions for WordPress and writes that we’ll see a diversity of custom dashboards, front-end editing will become the norm, and that it’s time for the community to become decentralized (shock horror!). Food for thought.

All the best for an inspiring Thursday.

P.S. Thank you to everyone who filled out our survey. You gave us so many great ideas and we’ll be making small changes (nothing too dramatic!) to The WhiP in the coming weeks. Stay tuned. If you haven’t had your say, it’s not too late. You can complete the survey here.

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This Week in WordPress: SoakSoak Attack and Accessibility Push http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-10/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-10/#comments Thu, 18 Dec 2014 12:00:00 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=135506 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

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The WhiP Newsletter #145

Hello dear reader,

Soak up Some Sun

John James Jacoby will spend the first half of 2015 working exclusively on BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress after raising $51,500 on Indiegogo. WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding talks to John about how he’ll be spending his six months.

ManageWP’s news aggregation site has added a cool new plugin discovery feature where you can browse the latest new plugins and even compare plugin features.

Google has blacklisted more than 11,000 domains with the latest malware campaign from SoakSoak.ru. According to Sucuri, hundreds of thousands of WordPress websites have been affected.

Sucuri also reminds you how easy it is to inadvertently introduce malvertising on your WordPress website.

On the WooThemes blog, the team have wrapped up 2014 with a post about their highlights of this year.

The duo behind ThemeForest’s top-selling theme Avada have surpassed 100,000 sales.

Lastly, WordPress 4.1 is due out tomorrow.


On the AppPresser blog, find out how Reactor, a hosted app building environment, works and why it’s different.

As part of Elegant Themes’ Customer Spotlight series, digital strategist Marie Poulin writes about how she learned WordPress by taking apart themes and putting them back together.

If you haven’t used bbPress, Jeff Chandler from WP Tavern has put together a great newbie’s guide to using the forum plugin.

Tedious Tasks

Brad Parbs and his colleagues at WebDevStudios have created a new tool for developers who use Varying Vagrant Vagrants for WordPress development.Variable VVV is a script that automates the creation and deletion of new WordPress sites using VVV. The script is based on Alison Barrett’s VVV Site Wizard.

Idea Factory is a new plugin designed to make it easy for WordPress admins to set up a voting system where users can submit new ideas from the front-end. The plugin was created by Nick Haskins, author of the Aesop Story Engine.

On the WPMU DEV Blog, here are seven free plugins to make quick work of tedious tasks.

We’ve also put together a collection of 20 stunning photography themes.

And here are 26 responsive multipurpose themes at Webloggerz.

Over at WP Mayor, the best Google Analytics plugins for WordPress.

A Bit Rich

8 Flexible WordPress Recent Post Plugins (WPMU DEV).

How To Integrate Google Calendar With WordPress (Elegant Themes).

How to Export and Import WordPress Widgets (Kevin Muldoon).

A Simple Guide To Rich Snippets For WordPress (Elegant Themes).

How to Save and Preview WordPress Posts Using Ctrl+S (WP Beginner).

Add Videos To WordPress: 5 Plugins (WP Solver).

Customize the Behavior of the WooCommerce Sale-Flash (tuts+).

Fifty Actions of WordPress – 50 Examples (21 to 30) (tuts+).

Gaming the System

A gamer claiming to work for Microsoft has proven how lazy game review websites are and that you shouldn’t believe everything you read.

All the best for a lovely Monday.

The WhiP Newsletter #146

Hello dear reader,

Failed Revolution

“When a project starts out that way, it’s really hard to guesstimate what the future holds for it. As I continued building on the plugin and making more generalized features that had a wider audience than just my site, it became apparent pretty quickly that others were looking for some of the same things.” Pippin Williamson had no idea his plugin Easy Digital Downloads would become his full-time job.

If you’re using an old version of the Revolution Slider plugin, bad! It turns out the SoakSoak malware campaign is piggybacking on the slider plugin vulnerability exposer a few months back. The latest scare has already compromised more than 100,000 WordPress sites. Find out more at Sucuri and WP Tavern.
WordSesh 3 is on soon. The 24-hour online event feature presentations from people around the world, with one presentation every hour, on the hour. WordSesh will kick off at 12am UTS. If you’re not sure about the time in your timezone, go toWorldtimeserver.com.
The latest round of updates to the WordPress.com dashboard includes a few feature that allows site owners to manage their sites and content from one central hub, no matter what device they’re using.
On the latest episode of WP Watercooler, host Jason Tucker and friends (WebDevStudios Designer Suzette Franck, Automattic Developer George Stephanis and others) discuss cheap WordPress hosting and the factors to consider when choosing a host.
WP Lift has teamed up with CSSIgniter to give away one of three developer accounts.

A Lonely Business

Curious about Qards? Designmodo’s new plugin is basically a collection of pre-designed cards that you can simply put together and customize in order to create a WordPress website. Kinsta have a great overview of Qards on their blog.

“Freelancing can be a lonely business. You’re often working at home, by yourself, getting little interaction with the outside world. Freelance relationships are hard to come by. Which is a problem, because relationships drive freelancing.” On the iThemes blog, Kevin Hendricks writes about how to develop freelance relationships.
Interested in contributing to WordPress? Developer Tom McFarlin explains how.

On our blog, here’s a round-up of 10 highly customizable and responsive free themes.

And over at Webloggerz, here are some creative WordPress themes for artists.

Peak Performance


As if Elon Musk wasn’t already well-known as an innovator, his early patents from the 1990s predicted how we use the internet today.
If you’re anticipating serious Serial withdrawals ahead of the last episode this week,Slate have attempted to list the 25 best podcasts ever.
All the best for thoughtful Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #147

Happy holidays dear reader,

Hark! The Accessibility Angels Sing

The WordPress Accessibility Team is pushing for all new themes submitted to the WordPress Theme Repository to be accessible. The team have been increasing their efforts to educate theme authors on accessibility best practices and have created a GitHub repository for sharing WordPress-specific code examples for accessibility, with plans to add resources in the near future. New guidelines are expected to be announced in April, which would then be required from November.

ManageWP have officially announced their new Plugin Discovery Tool, which we linked to earlier in the week. Just like the ManageWP news site helps users browse the best and latest news, the discovery tool helps users browse and search for the best and latest plugins. Torque talks to ManageWP founder Vladimir Prelovac about the new tool.

The release of WordPress 4.1 has been delayed this week, though it’s imminent and should be out today (fingers crossed).

JetPack 3.3 is out and introduces a new centralized dashboard that allows users to manage multiple Jetpack-connected WordPress sites and WordPress.com sites from one location in WordPress.com.

The SoakSoak attack just goes to show why it’s important to regularly update WordPress, themes and plugins. Sucuri breaks down how the attack works.

Post Status’ Brian Krogsgard will be joining WordSesh 3 on Saturday and says he’s got some news that will help explain his recent radio silence.

The folks at WP Engine are getting festive with the launch of GIF the Halls, a free and creative alternative to greeting cards. The service allows you to create your own customized online card and from December 20-24 submitted cards will be projected onto the site of buildings in downtown San Francisco.

Developer Tom McFarlin has teamed up with ThemeFuse to give away a theme and hosting package.

Silent Search

Christmas may be just a week away, but it’s not too late to decorate your website. Torque have listed some great free and premium plugins for dressing up WordPress.

On the WP Explorer blog, Tom Ewer gives a rundown of the WP Product Review plugin.

If you’re looking for a new search plugin, check out the collection at WP Mayor.

And over at WP Squared, 20+ WooCommerce themes.

O Come All Ye Webhooks

Catch MailChimp Updates in WordPress Using Webhooks (WPMU DEV).

How to: Prevent Bruteforce Login Attacks on Your WordPress Installation (WP Lift).

How to Build a Mobile App for Your WordPress with Reactor (WP Beginner).

Manage WooCommerce Customer Fields with Profile Builder (Cozmoslabs).

Get a Fast Start with the Mailgun Plugin for WordPress (tuts+).

Goal Setting For WordPress Web Designers (Elegant Themes).

Removing PHP4 Compatibility in WordPress Custom Widgets(WebDevStudios).

WordPress Shortcode – Compare Values (Cozmoslab).

We Wish You a Merry WordPress

“…the web in December 1998 was a much different, much lamer place.” The Washington Post on the 20 most popular websites every year since 1996.

Finally, Google takes a look at the moments that defined us in 2014 in A Year in Search.

All the best for a fun festive season and a happy New Year.

P.S. This is our last edition of The WhiP for 2014. Thank you for your support as we’ve launched and experimented with The WhiP. We love bringing you the latest in WordPress news and will be back on January 5 after two weeks of sun and surf down under.

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This Week in WordPress: JJJ Reaches $50k Goal, WP 4.1 Pushed Back http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-9/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-9/#comments Thu, 11 Dec 2014 12:00:00 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=135495 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

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The WhiP Newsletter #140 – Monday, December 8

Hello dear reader,

Second to None

“I don’t think any one thing will put WordPress in second place. Instead, a combination of factors would likely need to take place.” It would take project leadership arrogance or a huge scandal at Automattic to topple WordPress says Jeff Chandler at WP Tavern.

WordPress web host Kinsta have launched a brand new site design. There’s also more information on the site about their CDN service.

Qards is a gorgeous new responsive page builder plugin for WordPress that makes creating websites really easy. Check out the demo video.

“In recent years WordPress has become the go-to platform for people looking to start their own website. It is easily installed and set-up, relatively light on resources, and has a high level of functionality. This feature list is not only appealing to everyday users, it is also appealing to spammers for the exact same reasons.” On the Sucuri blog, Keir Desailly dissects some fascinating examples of how hackers use WordPress to serve spam.

Content recommendation service nRelate will shutdown its service on December 31.

45AIR is a new WordPress hosting service that was born from a once private infrastructure built for VIPs of the music industry and billboard top ten artists.

WooThemes’ latest client case study focuses on Trendy Resumes, a WooCommerce-powered service that offers, you guessed it, trendy resumes.

Do you follow social media blogs? Brenda Barron over at Elegant Themes lists her top nine.

Lastly, John James Jacoby has surpassed his $50,000 crowdfunding goal. The BuddyPress project lead will now work six months full-time on the social networking plugin, bbPress and GlotPress. Woo!


The Roots starter theme will become framework agnostic next year. Roots currently uses the HTML5 Boilerplate, Bootstrap, Grunt, and Bower in the starter theme but will will soon be moving to Gulp.

Minnow is a beautiful, new and free ultra-minimalist blogging theme from Automattic.

Here’s a great list of essential plugins to load up on any new WordPress blog install at WPMU DEV.

WP Explorer has put together its monthly round-up of new plugins.

And here’s 24 great marketing themes for agencies at Webloggerz.

Back to Basics

How to Organize and Declutter the WordPress Post Editor Using Tabs (WPMU DEV).

Avoiding Common WordPress Image Issues (WPMU DEV).

How to Show Before and After Photo in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Back to Basics With WordPress CSS: Understanding the Native Classes (CSS-TRICKS).

How To Hide The Fact That Your Website Runs On WordPress (Elegant Themes).

How To Create Your Own Job Board Using WordPress (Elegant Themes).


Creating the Starting Files for Your WordPress Theme Framework (tuts+).

Customizing the WordPress Dashboard by Creating a Simple Admin Theme Plugin (WebDevStudios).

Fifty Actions of WordPress – 50 Examples (1 to 10) (tuts+).

Export Your Gravity Forms Submissions to a Google Spreadsheet with Zapier(tuts).

WordPress as a Service in the Wild (Torque).

On the Eighth Day of Christmas…

Christmas Experiments is an advent calendar featuring digital artists and their web experiments each day leading up until Christmas.

All the best for a marvelous Monday.

The WhiP Newsletter #141 – Tuesday, December 9

Hello dear reader,

Status Update

Torque have released a mobile app for their site using AppPresser’s Reactor service.

On the latest episode of WP Watercooler, Jack Tucker talks to WordPress Meetup organizers around the world about their tips for running successful events.

WordPress.com has been given a bit of a revamp. The site now boasts upgraded stats, mobile-friendly navigation, My Sites updates and a new My Profile section.

WP Mayor is celebrating its fourth birthday.

Speaking of WP Mayor, the site has teamed up with KeyCDN to give away two accounts with 1 TB of traffic, and PremiumPress to give away a 50% discount on all themes.

Post Status has been lying dormant since October. Back in September Brian Krogsgard said the future of the news site was in yearly memberships. What’s the status, Post Status?

Chip Off the Old Block

If you run an online store, you may want to check out WooThemes’ check list of 10 things you need to do for the holiday season.

“The reason for the significance of client testimonials is the main characteristics of human nature: if others are satisfied with your product/service, your visitors will be more likely to become clients themselves.” Web host Kinsta writes about how to boost conversion rates with client testimonials.

Rainmaker is ditching its monthly billing option in favor of quarter and annual billing options only. If you haven’t yet checked out the WordPress hosting platform built for media marketers, it’s by the folks at Copyblogger.

“There’s a lot of great information in the presentation, especially if you’re running a bootstrapped business. I also admire Ta’eed’s delivery as he comes off as a straight shooter. He reminds me of myself when I tried to launch a business several years ago.” WP Tavern’s Jeff Chandler see something of himself in Envato CEO Collis Ta’eed, who talked about his company’s first six months at The Sunrise conference in Sydney earlier in the year. Envato paid out US$140 million to its community of authors, affiliates, freelancers and instructors last year.

Dash Off

WPDASH is a new service kinda like ManageWP or InfiniteWP that provides a centralized dashboard where you can manage multiple WordPress. WP Tavern have a great write up on what’s it’s all about.

If you regularly use Chrome when managing your website, here are some handy browser apps and extensions for WordPress at WP Lift.

If you’re a Multisite user, check out writer Joe Fylan’s round-up of useful tools and services for managing a network over at WP Squared.

And here are 30 WordPress themes for writers.

Auto Reply

How to Create a WordPress Review Site Using Themes & Plugins (Elegant Themes).

WordPress On-Page SEO: How Do to It Perfectly (Torque).

Add an Auto Reply to Your Jetpack Contact Form (WP Tavern).

How to Add YouTube Video as Fullscreen Background in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Let’s Get It Started

How to Use AJAX in WordPress to Load Search Results (WPMU DEV).

Working with the Eventbrite API Plugin (ThemeShaper).

Fifty Actions of WordPress – 50 Examples (11 to 20) (tuts+).

When You Export All WordPress Data… (Tom McFarlin).

Webinar Replay: Getting Started with iThemes Security (iThemes).

A Tasteful Hue

“This tasteful hue embodies the satisfying richness of a fulfilling meal while its grounding red-brown roots emanate a sophisticated, natural earthiness.” Marsala is this year’s Pantone Color of the Year.

Barack Obama is down with JavaScript after becoming the first president to write a line of code.

All the best for a thoughtful and productive Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #142 – Wednesday, December 10

Hello dear reader,

Echo Chamber

WordPress.com have teamed up with illustrator Mads Berg to release a WordPress theme for the holiday season called “Together.”

“I definitely recommend every WordPress developer step out and learn other technologies. Get familiar with other programming languages, cloud services such as AWS, etc. It will make you a better WordPress developer and it’s good to get outside of the “echo chamber” that is the WordPress community.” Rocketgenius’ Carl Hancock has his say on former WooCommerce developer Coen Jacobs’ decision to step back from WordPress. Read more at WP Tavern.

iThemes has announced a partnership with web host ClickHOST and to kick things off are offering three months of free WordPress hosting.

Catch Me If You Can

No CAPTCHA reCAPTCHA is a new addition to the WordPress Plugin Repository that allows you to add Google’s new “I’m not a robot” API to WordPress login, registration and comment system to protect against spam. WP Tavern have a write up on how it works.

WP Stagecoach is a new service that aims to create the most convenient way to stage a WordPress site, with one-click copying from production to stage and one-click to merge and changes back into the live site.

Download Monitor, an eight year old plugin in the repository with over 600,000 downloads has been adopted by developer Barry Kooji. If you’re interested in adopting a free plugin to maintain, check out WP Tavern.

Envato names their top 50 new WordPress themes from ThemeForest of this year.

If you don’t back up your site, you’re just plain silly. WP Mayor reviews the top backup plugins of 2014.

And here’s WP Lift’s round-up of the best, free WordPress theme of this month.

Land Ahoy

How to Build a Landing Page with WordPress from Scratch (WP Explorer).

Opencast, Magento or WooCommerce: Take Your Pick! (Torque).

12 Vital Tips and Tools to Combat Comment Spam in WordPress (WP Beginner).

A Guide to 404 Errors and the Plugins to Fix Them (Torque).

What Is Bounce Rate, Is It Important, and How Do You Lower It? (Elegant Themes).

Captain Hook

15+ Must-Have Tools For Every WordPress Admin (WPMU DEV).

Adding Action Hooks to Your WordPress Theme Framework (tuts+).

10 Useful WordPress Functions You Might Not Know About (Hongkiat).

Teenage Mutant Ninja Dogs

From mutant dogs to bendy iPhones and devil babies, YouTube has unveiled its top 10 videos of this year.

All the best for a peaceful Wednesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #143 – Thursday, December 11

Hello dear reader,

Big Bucks

It looks like John James Jacoby will be knee deep in all things BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress after his crowdfunding campaign to work full-time for six months on the projects reached its goal of $50,000 – and with less than a day before it wraps up. To find out more about JJJ, his campaign and his early career, Torque talks to the man himself.

WordPress 4.1 was supposed to ship today, but due to a few unresolved tickets the release has been pushed back to December 16.

BuddyPress 2.2 will include support for Composer and a basic member type API that will allow developers to create different user types. It will also introduce the ability for new activity items to be generated when content is created by registered post types. Sarah Gooding previews the upcoming release, now in alpha, at WP Tavern.

WP Mayor are looking for a plugin developer for their WP RSS Aggregator plugin and other projects.

Sucuri have warned of a critical vulnerability affecting the HD FLV Player plugin(known as FLASH PLAYER PLUGIN in the WordPress Plugin Repository) for WordPress, Joomla! and custom website. The vulnerability allows malicious users to take control of a website.

Rough Around the Edges

iThemes Security is one of the top ranked WordPress security plugins with a huge customer base. In our latest review, we take the free version of the plugin for a test drive.

Not only does LoopConf have an excellent speaker line up, but there are companies who focus exclusively on building enterprise-level WordPress projects for VIP clients, says developer Tom McFarlin, who sees the value in the upcoming Las Vegas conference.

“My initial experience is rough around the edges and at times frustrating, as I couldn’t easily find the help I needed. I can only imagine how many others have gone through the same experience.” First-time bbPress user Jeff Chandler documented his experience setting up the forum plugin and didn’t find it easy.

If you’re thinking of making the switch to Managed WordPress hosting, WP Lift have put together a guide to hosts and what they have to offer.

You can use WordPress for memberships site but you don’t have to if you don’t want to, is what I think Crowd Favorite’s Chris Lema is saying in this post about whether WordPress is the right solution for association websites.

If you’re looking for stock images, blogger Kevin Muldoon has a great collection of image websites.

Switch it Up

ManageWP’s Vladimir Prelovac says the secret to increasing the visibility of your products in the WordPress Plugin Repository is your readme.txt file.

The new Twenty Fifteen default WordPress theme has been released to WordPress.com users.

The Post Type Switcher plugin, authored by John James Jacoby, provides a simple way to change a post’s type in WordPress. It’s been around a while, but has beenrecently featured on WP Tavern.

WordFence and iThemes are among Webloggerz top 15 best WordPress security plugins heading into the new year.

WP All Import is a new premium plugin that offers a simple solution for WordPress Importing.

If you like sliders, WP Lift has put together a big collection of free and premium options.

And if you’re looking for a theme for an online store, WP Mayor have a round-up of this year’s top themes.

Time Saver

Using the WordPress Customizer for Saving User-Specific Options (Torque).

How to Add Image Icons With Navigation Menus in WordPress (WP Beginner).

WooCommerce vs Shopify: Which Is Better For E-Commerce? (Elegant Themes).

2014 Is The Damn Future

While we may not be getting around on hoverboards (yet!), here’s a timely reminder that the times they are a changing’ and we are living in the future.

All the best for an awesome Thursday.

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Our 5% for WordPress: Meet Ivan, Calvin and Bojan http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/five-for-the-future-wordpress-support-team/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/five-for-the-future-wordpress-support-team/#comments Thu, 11 Dec 2014 12:00:00 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=135515 In October we committed to contributing 2.5 full-time, dedicated support people to the WordPress Support Forums.

This was in response to WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg’s proposal that companies directly involved in WordPress should give back Five for the Future, specifically that they:

…Should dedicate 5% of their people to working on something to do with core — be it development, documentation, security, support forums, theme reviews, training, testing, translation or whatever it might be that helps move WordPress mission forward.

We absolutely agree with Matt’s sentiment. After all, we use WordPress everyday, make a living from the software, and wholeheartedly want to give back to the WordPress community.

So we put a call out for friendly new people to join our support team, but unlike our regular crew these new people would hang out in the WordPress.org Support Forums all day, 40 hours minimum per week, helping folks out with anything and everything.

After initially trialling 12 people over a few weeks of intense training, we’re pleased to announce our WordPress Support Forums team.

Introducing Ivan, Calvin and Bojan

Bojan Radonic.

Ivan Denkov, Calvin Roger Canas, Bojan Radonic will be our full-time staff in the WordPress Support Forums and have already been getting stuck in to helping out users.

These guys will be helping out WordPress users with ANY issue, not just users with questions about WPMU DEV products (we already have other staff members doing that!).

So if you’re having problems with changing backgrounds colors on your site, editing your CSS, or even customizing another company’s theme, our guys will be in the forums throughout the week ready to help.

You can even track these guys, just check out their profiles – Ivan, Calvin and Bojan.

Jumping Through Hoops

Calvin Roger Canas
Calvin Roger Canas

Joining our support team is no easy process and involves a lot of jumping and a lot of hoops.

For Tim Bowers, our Head of Support, it’s been a busy few weeks and, unfortunately, not everyone who applied to join our support team was successful.

Tim said Ivan, Calvin and Bojan initially worked through tickets in the WPMU DEV support forums so he could assess them through our own system and collect feedback from members before letting them loose in the WordPress forums.

“The initial training is actually all about our system, how we work, working with our team, interacting with our members, breaking down answers, making sure they’re understood and can work through issues,” Tim said.

“The rest of the time it’s a continuous process of feedback every day or two. Sometimes twice or more a day on occasion.”

Ivan Denkov
Ivan Denkov.

Tim said he was “happy” and “nervous” to unleash these guys on WordPress users, though he and other long-time WPMU DEV support staff members would also step in to help in the WordPress forums when needed – meaning our contribution to WordPress will likely exceed our promised 2.5 full-time staff.

“I’m just hoping we’ll do both WPMU DEV and WP.org really proud. I’m certain we will. I’m also certain we’re going to be learning here, too, so mistakes will be made. But this is what being human is all about, learning,” he said.

Let Us Know What You Think

We’re excited to have Ivan, Calvin and Bojan working in the forums, and if you see them say hello!

As always, we would love to have your feedback on our contribution to WordPress and hear any ideas you have on how we can improve our offering and help WordPress users.

We would love to see other people of all WordPress skill levels help out in the forums, so if you’ve got a bit of time, check out our guide to helping in the forums.

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This Week in WordPress: JJJ Almost There, and 4.1 Plugin Recommendations http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-8/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-8/#comments Fri, 05 Dec 2014 15:30:00 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=135230 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

Subscribe to The Whip daily for lashings of WordPress goodness.

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The WhiP Newsletter #135

Hello dear reader,

Just Another Manic Monday

It’s Cyber Monday and your last chance to make the most of the WordPress deals currently doing the rounds. For details on what’s on offer, check out the round-ups atWP Beginner, Elegant Themes and Code In WP.

WordPress management service ManageWP has reached a couple of exciting milestones: one million downloads of the ManageWP WordPress plugin and 250,000 websites being managed through ManageWP.

John James Jacoby is just $6000 away from reaching his $50,000 goal. John is crowdfunding so he can work full-time on BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress for six months. There are just 10 days left of his campaign.

WordCamp Hawaii has been announced for February 13-14 in Maui. Organizers are looking for speakers and sponsors.

The latest episode of Matt Report features Brian Casel, who recently launched Productize, a service that helps you productize your consulting service.

Drop It Like It’s Hot

The ability to drag and drop has come a long way since WordPress 2.7 introduced drag and drop widgets. To help you wrap your head around how drag and drop has evolved, Elegant Themes have put together a guide to all the WordPress systems that allow you to use drag and drop.

Here’s one for theme designers/developers: Envato have posted tips for getting through the ThemeForest review process.

There are lots of WordPress groups on Facebook, not just the Advanced WordPress Group. Check out WP Mayor’s round-up of groups.

If you regularly have the grammar police on your tail, have you stopped and wondered whether your typos are also impacting your code? Sucuri explains how typos can have a bigger impact on your site than you may think.

Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It

WooThemes’ new default theme for WooCommerce racked up almost 10,000 downloads during its first week.

Major performance improvements are coming to Jigoshop 2.0. The upcoming release will be three times faster than version 1.x when comparing the performance of browsing product lists, adding shopping cart items and other tasks. The Jigoshop plugin was forked by WooThemes in 2011 to create WooCommerce.

On the WPMU DEV Blog, we name our picks for the best, free WordPress gallery plugins.

“We know what you’re thinking. No, this isn’t too good to be true, and no, these WordPress themes are not crap. In fact, we think they are pretty great. We created Modern Themes to give back to the web community. Well coded, great looking, bloat-free WordPress themes reasonably priced at $0.” ModernThemes is a new WordPress theme site dedicated to giving away free themes. And the themes are actually really nice.

Lastly, WP Kube lists 45 parallax scrolling themes.

Sweet Child O’ Mine

How to Create a WordPress Child Theme (WPMU DEV).

Creating Cool Custom Controls for the WordPress Theme Customizer (WPMU DEV).

Creating WordPress Theme Options With the Theme Customization API(WPMU DEV).

How to Fix Missing Admin Bar Issue in WordPress (WP Beginner).

How To White Label The WordPress Dashboard (Elegant Themes).

Getting Started with WordPress Taxonomies (Tom McFarlin).


Some Japanese have invented a prawn cannon that gives new meaning to “throw another shrimp on the barbie.”

If you’ve ever been stuck talking to someone you thought would never shut up, here are some research-based tips on how to politely end a conversation.

All the best for a kick-ass Monday.

The WhiP Newsletter #136

Hello dear reader,

A Space Odyssey

“If each spam comment were one kilometre, the total number of spam comments Akismet flagged in November would be enough for 9 one-way trips to Saturn.” Last month, Akismet caught 12,204,897,000 spam messages, and broke 500 million spam message caught in a single day.

A whole bunch of people, from WebDevStudios’ Suzette Franck to Crowd Favorite’s Chris Lema join the latest episode of WP Watercooler to talk about their favorite plugins, and even those they don’t like so much.

Everything is 40% off at iThemes for the rest of this month.

With Twenty Fifteen almost here, Torque has put together an in-depth review of the upcoming default theme.

Developer Tom McFarlin mulls over the idea of extensions in WordPress, and debates whether they will become popular or not for WordPress themes and plugins.

A Christmas Carol

The countdown to Christmas has begun! To help you get into the Christmas spirit, we’ve put together a fun list of free Christmas plugins.

Elegant Themes gives an overview of Gravity Forms and what it has to offer.

Fifty Shades of Actions

How to Move Comments Between WordPress Posts (WP Beginner).

Fifty Actions of WordPress – An Introduction (tuts+).

Getting Started with Bootstrap (Envato Market Blog).

3 Principles For Perfect Typeface Pairing (Sitepoint).


“One study, published in 2012, of nearly twelve thousand adolescents in eleven European countries, found a 4.4 per cent prevalence of what the authors termed “pathological Internet use”… through a combination of excessive time spent online and that time interfering with necessary social and professional activities, Internet use would result in either mental distress or clinical impairment, akin to the type of inability to function associated with pathological gambling.” Internet addition is a thing.

24 ways is an advent calendar for web geeks. Each day in the lead up to Christmas, a new design or development tip will be released on topics like what it takes to build a website and how to deal with Git emergencies. Happy holidays!

All the best for a beautiful Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #137

Hello dear reader,

Pressed For Success

WP Engine is sponsoring John James Jacoby, the BuddyPress project lead, to work on HHVM compatibility for the social networking plugin. During this month, John will work with the WP Engine Labs team and web development agency 10up to make the experience for performant BuddyPress on HHVM a reality. The web host launched its new enterprise HHVM WordPress hosting platform last week.

While we’re on the topic of JJJ, he has just eight days left of his crowdfunding campaign to work six month full-time on BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress. He needs another $6000 or he’ll have to pay huge fees on the cash that’s been donated. If you can spare a few dollars, pitch in before it’s too late.

Dawn Patrol, a community experiment featuring video clips of WordCamp participants from across the world, has been updated with clips from WordCamp Cape Town and WordCamp Poland.

The guys at WP Tavern are thankful in the latest episode of WPWeekly, and mull over the upcoming release of WordPress and the fact there are now more than 20 WordPress podcasts.

Speaking of podcasts, developer Tom McFarlin is thinking about setting up his ownmonthly, 20 minute round table conversation featuring opinions on some of the news and happenings in the WordPress community.

Security service Sucuri is warning InfiniteWP users to update ASAP after discovering a vulnerability that could be used by hackers to disable a website by putting it in maintenance mode and also control the content of the maintenance page.

Salmon Rushdie, Just Because

If you haven’t yet checked out Reactor, new app builder by the team behind AppPresser, here’s Torque’s glowing review.

And if you want to give Reactor a go, try it for free for 14 days or take advantage ofAppPresser’s December sale.

If you want to use just one module in Jetpack, say Markdown, and you don’t need the other gazillion modules, web engineer Anas Sulaiman has created a set of extracted plugins. WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding talks to Anas about his work.

Nested Pages is a new plugin that enables drag and drop page management, allowing you to sort your pages to reflect your menu structure.

Following on from our post earlier in the week featuring plugins to add Christmas cheer to your site, WP Lift has put together its own round-up of free holiday plugins.

Here are 20 themes to revamp your site for the coming new year over at Hongkiat.

At Webloggerz, 10 lazy load plugins to make your site faster.

And over at WP Tavern, find out how to add wedding registry links to your website with the Bean Registry plugin.

Turn Them on or Off

Learning PHP for WordPress Development: A Comprehensive Guide (WPMU DEV).

The WordPress Visual Editor: Tips And Tricks for Beginners (WP Explorer).

How to Notify Post Authors of New Disqus Comments in WordPress (WP Beginner).

How to Send a Quick Email With an Attachment From The WordPress Admin(WP Tavern).

Automatic WordPress Updates: How To Turn Them On Or Off And Decide Which Is Right For You (Elegant Themes).

How to Create a High-Converting Email Opt-in Form (WooThemes).

What You Need to Know about Authentication for the JSON REST API (Torque).

Don’t Leave It to Salmon Else

“The development of full artificial intelligence could spell the end of the human race… Humans, who are limited by slow biological evolution, couldn’t compete, and would be superseded.” Stephen Hawking has warned artificial intelligence could kill us all. Still, he’s been an enthusiastic adopter of new technologies that help him speak.

And the difference between Java and JavaScript, for all the coders out there.

All the best for a wonderful Wednesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #138

Hello dear reader,

Tina Tuna

WordPress 4.1 will introduce plugin recommendations. After a recent update to the API, users will be able to access a list of recommended plugins. The recommendations will take into account the plugins a user has installed and suggest other plugins based on which ones are commonly used together, kind of like a shopping cart that recommends products based on what’s in the cart.

The first WordCamp Salvador is on this weekend. WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding talks to co-organizer Leo Baiano about the growing WordPress community in Brazil.

“I don’t know what the answer is to having a great community engagement/discussion experience in WordPress but Jetpack Comments, bbPress, IntenseDebate, and the native comment system isn’t cutting it.” Jeff Chandler over at WP Tavern talks tough after jMonkeyEngine announced it was ditching bbPress in favor of Discourse for its game developer community hub.

Security service Sucuri is warning WP Download Manager users to update right away after discovering a dangerous remove code execution and remote file inclusion vulnerability in the plugin. The vulnerability allow malicious users to take control of a website by uploading backdoors and modifying user passwords.

Lastly, WordPress 4.1 is due out next week. Our verdict? It’s distraction free in anyone’s language.


“You can easily assemble a crew of WordPress developers and designers, buy decent hosting, pick one of the free or premium WordPress themes, install some plugins, begin creating WordPress products, and start your own WordPress shop. Weeell no, not exactly.” ThematoSoup co-founder Dragan Nikolic writes about his experience starting a WordPress company.

On this latest episode of Matt Report, Clint Warren, the founder of web design and marketing agency Stacked, talks about how WordPress saved his career after time in jail.

ManageWP founder Vladimir Prelovac offers some advice to WordPress web development agencies looking to expand business, namely, how you can almost automate the influx of quality leads.

And WP Mayor offers an overview of the All In One WP Security & Firewall plugin.

Cod Stewart

ThemeZilla have released a new portfolio and blog theme called Hanna and it’s lovely.

ThemeShaper have offered Eventbrite integration on WordPress.com for a while with two dedicated themes. The Automattic theme division have now released the plugin that powers those themes, plus an Eventbrite API plugin.

WP Kube looks at six drag and drop page builders (WP Beaver Builder, VelocityPage, Visual Composer etc).

WebDevStudios offers some tips on how to create a living style guide for your next project.

sur.ly is a new plugins designed to keep user-generated outbound links on your website under control

Nina Salmone

How to Use Multiple Themes for Pages in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Choosing the Right WordPress Theme (Envato Market Blog).

What Is The ROI Of Social Media? (Elegant Themes).

Don’t Get Lost In Translation: How To Conduct Website Localization (Smashing Magazine).

The Beginner’s Guide to WordPress Taxonomies: Themes or Plugins? (tuts+).

And Salmon Rushdie

Sony Pictures seems to have suffered the most embarrassing and all-encompassing hack of internal corporate data ever made public. And they’re blaming North Korea.

There are more than 1200 active satellites orbiting earth right now, taking pictures, relaying communications, broadcasting locations, even spying on you. Thanks to a database compiled by the Union of Concerned Scientists, Quartz has put together a fascinating look at the world above us.

All the best for a cool Thursday.

P.S. What’s your best celebrity-fish pun? Tweet us @wpmudev with the hashtag #thewhip.

The WhiP Newsletter #139

Hello dear reader,

Game of CMSs

“If there’s one thing Matt and his team have done well, it’s branding… What is WordPress known for? Simplicity… The funny thing, however, is that it simply isn’t the easiest CMS out there but none of that matters because for years, they’ve been telling you it is and so has everyone else… That’s in no way a slam against WordPress or the people using it either. It’s simply the way marketing works and has worked for years. Word of mouth is a powerful thing and WordPress certainly wins that battle.” CMS Critic’s Mike Johnston sets out what it would take to dethrone WordPress.

On this week’s episode of WPWeekly, WP WP Tavern’s Jeff Chandler talks to Happy Joe founder James Dalman about how his non-profit organization is helping US veterans with entrepreneurship and employment opportunities.

And in other podcast news, this week’s episode of Dradcast features designer and developers Chris Coyier, who is the founder of CSS-Tricks and co-founder of CodePen.

Here’s another look at what’s coming up in WordPress 4.1, this time at Web Designer Depot.

The team at WooThemes are still on cloud nine after WooConf. They’ve posted ashort video from the conference where they asked participants what they thought of the event.

Graphic designer Michelle Schulp writes about improving designer and developer collaboration in a lesson on how to speak unicorn at Torque.

Choose Your Own Adventure

Choosing a WordPress theme is easy for some and difficult for others. In a typically comprehensive article, Smashing Magazine looks at what you need to consider when choosing a theme for your website.

Five Beers is a free AJAX-powered child theme for Twenty Fifteen.

It’s been barely two weeks since Storefront was released and WooThemes have already put together a lookbook.

iThemes Security has been updated with WP-CLI commands, the ability to disable proxy detection and temporary whitelisting via Sync.

WP Solver lists 15 themes for lawyers and legal professionals.

WP Mayor is promoting Visual Developer, which allows custom CSS for WordPress, and WP Media Folder, which lets you organize your media files.

All the Things

How to Show Live Preview of Links in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Simplify Your Online Presence With WordPress: Themes, Plugins, Products and Services (WP Explorer).

How to Find the Number of Feedly Subscribers to Your Blog (WP Tavern).

How to Make a Line Break Instead of a Paragraph in WordPress (Steven Liebe).

Configuring Product Settings in WooCommerce (tuts+).

Using Transients with WordPress to Cache All the Things! (WebDevStudios).


From the Polaroid camera to Facebook, the Euro and Kitty Litter, Bloomberg Businessweek lists 85 of the most disruptive ideas in our history to celebrate 85 years of publication.

Looking for a cheap car? (This is the best website ever. Look out for the random chicken!)

All the best for a top Friday and a brilliant weekend.

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What to Expect in WordPress 4.1: Distraction Free in Anyone’s Language http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/what-to-expect-wordpress-4-1/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/what-to-expect-wordpress-4-1/#comments Wed, 03 Dec 2014 13:00:54 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=134717 While WordPress 4.0 was “just another release” as far as semantic versioning goes, many in the community were disappointed. After all, “4.0” seemed like such a nice, round number and thinking back to the huge number of features in WordPress 3.0, people had high hopes. In a sense, the public has been trained to hear a x.0 release as being a step forward and WordPress 4.0 didn’t deliver.

So with WordPress 4.1 expected to drop sometime next week, what can we expect?

For a start, we can look forward to at least three great features – a new default theme, an improved distraction-free writing mode and easy language access.

To me, it seems like 4.0 and 4.1 should have been merged into one big 4.0 release; this would have made everyone a lot happier!

In this post, we’ll go on a mini journey through WordPress 4.1 and what we all (hopefully!) will be updating to next week.

Twenty Fifteen

One of the most prominent features of the upcoming release is the inclusion of a new default theme. I recently reviewed Twenty Fifteen and my verdict is that it is one of the best default themes to date.

It will feature a much cleaner look than Twenty Fourteen and focuses on getting back to basics. It’s a great example of how less is more; more can always be added with plugins. I recommend checking out the demo website to get a feel for it.

Twenty Fifteen
Twenty Fifteen is a clean and modern bloging theme.

Better Distraction Free Mode

The new distraction free mode is an effort to streamline the post editing process. Existing version of WordPress give you access to the fullscreen mode, enabling you to write without distraction. The problem is, it also hides everything and you can only access all your tools if you exit fullscreen mode.

The new distraction free mode solves this by hiding everything except for post editor when you start typing. When you click escape, or move your mouse outside the editor, everything floats back in.

Distraction Free Writing
Float-in, float-out – not bad, but takes some getting used to

This feature is somewhat disorienting at first, but after using it for a while, I quite like it.

One downside of this mode is that as soon as your mouse moves out of the editor, things slide back in. If you tend to wiggle your mouse about quite a bit, this may be a bit annoying.

The problem is dampened by the fact that the position of the editor always remains fixed, so your eyes don’t need to wander, but I think some people will still prefer the old fullscreen editor. It would be a good addition to enable the new mode by default, but allowing people to switch back to the old version in the settings.

Easy Language Access

Languages In WP 4.1
Select any language available from WordPress

Languages can now be installed with minimal hassle. There’s a new language switcher in the general settings, which shows you installed and available languages.

Choosing an available language will download the selected one from WordPress in the background and apply it to your installation. Very smooth and very fast.

Better Inline Image Formatting Toolbar


A new toolbar has been added to images on hover in the post editing area. This is now much more handy with easy access to alignment, and looks the part as well.

As with all UI additions from 4.0 and 4.1, I really appreciate that WordPress is making an effort to make existing systems better instead of just jamming in new features.

Better Title Tags

Outputting the title of the website (seen in the browser tab) has been a bit difficult. With 4.1, we’ll finally see that change through add_theme_support( 'title-tag' ). The header.php file for Twenty Fifteen simply doesn’t have a title tag in it anywhere, it is added through the declaration of theme support and in the end it is added through the wp_head() hook.

The plan is to enable users to manage these titles from the backend a bit later. Right now this feature will not be terribly plugin friendly and authors are discouraged from building functionality around it at the moment. To add full backwards compatibility but still leverage the new way you can use the following:

Query Improvements

Many improvements to WordPress queries are slated for 4.1. Most prominent of these is WP_Meta_Query which has been rewritten quite a bit, resulting in quite a few improvements. I use meta queries extensively so this is a welcome improvement for me.

The official blog entry from the end of October has an excellent example. Say you work in real estate and you store the city and the state of each item in a meta field. You can now get posts from the city Miami in Ohio or Augusta in Maine. The query would look like this:

In addition, WP_Comment_Query is getting some features, namely the addition of ‘comment__in’, ‘comment__not_in’, ‘post__in’ and ‘post__not_in’ to the query arguments.

Theme Customizer Improvements

A number of modifications are being added to the Theme Customizer API. You can read about the efforts in detail on the WordPress website.

Contextual panels and sections will be available, which serves to de-clutter the interface. When using $wp_customize->add_section() you can pass a callback, which can enable/disable the section based on the currently viewed URL.

As a theme author I would recommend using this cautiously. Those users who know about the customizer at all think that it is a compendium of all options. If you make sure search options are hidden except when on a search page your users may never find these options.

While I think the direction is good, additional UI improvements will be needed to make sure that users can get to all options even if not on a relevant URL.

Keeping Up With Development

If you are interested in keeping up with the status of WordPress 4.1, I suggest reading make.wordpress.com, specifically posts tagged with 4.1. This is an especially good idea for developers. For example, right until November 26 it seemed we would be seeing term splitting in 4.1.

Due to some complications the core team have discussed that it would be best to defer this to 4.2. While the big features we’ve discussed here won’t change too much, it’s always worth taking a peek at the current status every now and again.


My conclusion is that I very much like the direction WordPress has been/is moving these past months. I like that existing systems are being revisited and there is considerable focus on UI. For my part I was pretty happy with 4.0, even though it didn’t bring that many new features.

I think that adding exciting new things is great but it only leads to short-term gain if done hastily. A huge system like WordPress can only thrive if they take care of their existing systems and focus on their users like they are doing now.

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This Week in WordPress: WP Drama, WP 4.1 Beta and Mercury Rising http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-6/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-6/#comments Fri, 21 Nov 2014 15:30:41 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=134599 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

Subscribe to The Whip daily for lashings of WordPress goodness.

Subscribe to The WhiP

* indicates required

The WhiP Newsletter #127 – Monday, November 17

Hello dear reader,

WP Drama

The first best version of WordPress 4.1 is out and available for testing. It features the Twenty Fifteen default theme, a new distraction-free writing mode, the ability to automatically install new language packs, and a new inline formatting toolbar for images embedded in posts. For developer, there are new features under the hood, including improvements to meta, date, comment and taxonomy queries, a new and better way for themes to handle title tags, and improvements to the Customiser API. The final version of WordPress 4.1 is due out next month.

“What’s drama to some is an important issue to others… It’s the same people that end up creating this rift, this WP Drama, and if there’s one thing that Sarah (Gooding) and I definitely do not do – I especially don’t aim to do – is create rifts in the community.” In the latest episode of WPWeekly, Jeff Chandler rants about WP Drama following the site’s article on LoopConf and defends WP Tavern’s reputation.

Speaking of events aimed at developers, WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding interviews Flynn O’Connor, who co-organized WordCamp Vancouver, BC Developer Edition.

After last week’s announcement that Microsoft plans to open up access to .NET and Visual Studio, Torque has interviewed 10up’s Jake Goldman, Pods Framework community manager Josh Pollock and Yoast’s Joost deValk about what Microsoft can learn from the WordPress project.

CatsWhoCode.com is running a competition to win five Multipurpose HTML templates from DealFuel.

Matt Mullenweg has shared dozens of lovely photos taken at WordCamp San Francisco.

Chest Beating

Tuts+ have hailed the success of their translation project, with 100+ volunteers translating 300+ tutorials and articles into 25+ languages since the project began.

Feeling let down by a membership plugin you’ve installed? Crowd Favorite’s Chris Lema says you need to rethink your expectations. (Have you tried Protected Content…?)

How do you gauge feedback from your users? Intercom looks at five mistakes we all make (talking to all users, failing to get ongoing feedback…) and offers some straightforward and simple fixes.

Elegant Themes offers an in-depth and complimentary overview of the ManageWP dashboard.

And web host Kinsta beats its chest over two positive reviews.

On Trac

Masonry is a new free WordPress theme with a one-column design, created as a collaboration project between WordPress theme designer Emil Uzelac and DeviX, a development company founded by Mario Peshev and Stanko Metodiev.

While we’re on the topic of themes, blogger Kevin Muldoon has put together a list of45 themes with vertical menus.

If you want to contribute a patch to WordPress Trac, but aren’t sure how to go about it, WebDevStudios have put together a screencast to show you how.

And on the WooCommerce blog, the story of Arthur Lhermitte, a Parisian fashion designer who set up his first eCommerce story and had Striiiipes.com up and running and shipping his products worldwide less than 48 hours.

Easy Fix

How to Add CAPTCHA in WordPress Login and Registration Form (WP Beginner).

Tracking Your Ranking in WordPress Just Got Awesome (WPMU DEV Blog).

The Easy Way To Create Content Grids in WordPress (WPMU DEV Blog).

Stop Printing Ugly WordPress Pages With This Easy Fix (WPMU DEV Blog).

How To Schedule Tweets For Your WordPress Blog Posts (Elegant Themes).

How To Integrate Twitter With WordPress (Elegant Themes).

50 Filters of WordPress: 21-30 (Tuts+).

50 Filters of WordPress: 31-40 (Tuts+).

Smarty Pants

A five-year-old boy from the UK has become the youngest computer specialist in the world after passing the Microsoft Certified Professional exam. The ambitious youngster hopes to one day launch a UK-based IT hub similar to Silicon Valley. (I’m suddenly feeling really old…)

All the best for a wonderful Monday.

The WhiP Newsletter #128 – Tuesday, November 18

Hello dear reader,

One Click Wonder

Security service Clef has partnered with one-click web app installer Installatron. The deal means if you ever use Installatron to install WordPress, Clef will work out-of-the-box.

Public Service Announcement: Composer has been delayed. (If you’re thinking, “WTF is Composer?” like I did, it’s a plugin that allows you to create interactive, voice-guided walkthroughs for any website or web app.)

ManageWP’s Nemanja Aleksic shares lessons on how the WordPress management service have grown their support team, not to mention the fact everyone at the company – even CEO Vladimir Prelovac – pitches in to answer support tickets.

The latest edition of Matt Report features Nelson Joyce and Andy Cook, the guys behind LeadIn, a marketing automation and lead tracking plugin for WordPress.

According to the recent WordPress Survey, 25% of WordPress users make a full-time living from the software. So how do you get in on that? Torque gives a brief overview of the opportunities available for those not afraid of a little elbow grease.

“None of us started out knowing exactly what it is that we’re doing, and none of us know the right way to do everything. Kinda trite, isn’t it? Our behavior doesn’t make it look like that.” Developer Tom McFarlin says we shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help or learn from others.

Lift Off

WP Lift checks out Oasis Workflow, a plugins for automated WordPress editorial workflow.

Over at WP Beginner, a look at free author bio box plugins.

And WP Slack is a new plugin that sends notifications to Slack when events are triggered in WordPress.

Basement AJAX

Making SlideShare Shine in WordPress (WPMU DEV).

How to Create a Landing Page in WordPress (codeinwp).

Cleaning Up Your WordPress Database To Optimize Your Website’s Performance (Elegant Themes).

Adding Ajax to Your WordPress Plugin (Sitepoint).

All About That Baste

“Three years ago, he was flipping burgers at McDonald’s. Today Mr. Haag, 22, skinny and blindingly pale, makes his living playing Call of Duty.” The story of a professional video game player who earns almost $1 million a year.

It’s all about that baste for the Holderness family, whose Thanksgiving-themed parody has racked up more than 100,000 views.

A Japanese artist trekked across Japan to create the world’s largest GPS drawing for his marriage proposal.

Lastly, how well do you know pixels? Now there’s a fun way to find out. (I’m terrible at it.)

All the best for a super duper Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #129 – Wednesday, November 19

Hello dear reader,

Community ’n’ Stuff

Automattic has open sourced its DMCA process documents on GitHub. The company has made the legal documents available in the hope they will helpdemystify some of the issues surrounding the DMCA process.

WordPress community managers Jen Mylo and Andrea Middleton are stepping down from their roles. Andrea, who looks after WordCamp Central, and Jen, who does, well, community stuff, are both staying in their jobs at Automattic, but will be focusing on other things.

If you’re in New York on December 4, WP Engine and WebDevStudios are hosting a networking event with guest speaker Cameron Barrey, who will share his story of how he built Newark Public School’s websites using WordPress.

Gimme Five

How are you contributing your Five for the Future? All it takes is just two hours a week, which you could be spending in the WordPress Support Forums helping others out. We show you how.

Tech news site Gigaom has used a couple of neat solutions to speed up search on its WordPress-powered site – search server Sphinx and the Scriblio plugin.

Meanwhile, at WP Tavern, 20 people give 20 reasons why you should attend a WordCamp.

“We should have done this a long time ago and this is fully my fault for not recognizing the magnitude of this issue. I honestly didn’t understand what we were lacking, the gap of WordPress internationalization within our community, or that so many of our existing theme buyers were coming from outside of the United States.” Design and development agency Web Savvy Marketing are producing more than 35 translation-ready themes for localization, multilingual use and right-to-left language support. CEO Rebecca Gill explains why she wishes the company had embraced i18n sooner.

There are a ton of WordPress podcasts. Seriously, a ton. WP Explorer checks out more than 20. (Okay, so there’s not a ton, but 20 is still a lot!)

If you don’t have a WordPress Meetup in your area, why not organize one?WooThemes offer some tips on how to get one started.


Our CoursePress plugin gets top marks in WP Mayor’s round-up of the best WordPress LMS, course building and eLearning plugins.

Postmatic is a new plugin that allows visitors to subscribe to a new post or comments via email and leave a community by simply hitting reply.

WP Lift has put together a round-up of November’s best free themes so far.

LaunchKey is a free plugin that allows you to login to your WordPress site with biometric face scan and fingerprint scan. DoItWithWP takes the plugin for a spin.

Want to turn your site into a mobile app? The folks at AppPresser look at the pros and cons of some of the builders available and then, of course, spruik Reactor.

Font pairing isn’t easy, so the 25×52 initiative has done it for you with Google Fonts pairing suggestions.

White Screen of Death

Getting The Most Out Of WordPress Shortcodes (Elegant Themes).

Fixing the White Screen of Death (Torque).

Top 10 Most Important Things To Do After Installing WordPress (WP Beginner).

Building a Loyal Community By Adding a Forum to Your Website (Torque).

How to Use Mandrill to Send Email in WordPress (Tuts+).

Use Source Control and Diff Tools with WordPress (Tom McFarlin).

Shark Attack

Twitter has made its humongous archive of tweets searchable, so now you cantrack down any public tweet since 2006.

Now this is creepy: Can you spot the snipers hidden in these photos? (I couldn’t find them, hence why I suck at laser tag.)

And this is mental: A visual timeline of the future based on famous fiction. (Not looking forward to 2023, though 2188 and 2966 won’t be so bad.)

All the best for a wacky Wednesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #130 – Thursday, November 20

Hello dear reader,

A Drop in the Ocean

Jean Galea from WP Mayor has launched WP Security Bloggers, a website offering a central source for WordPress security news and updates. The site pulls updates from a number of leading security sites and blogs, including WP White Security, Securi and iThemes.

Genesis fans can now get news about their favorite theme framework in one place.The Daily Bolt pulls in Genesis/WordPress related posts and publishes excerpts, saving you having to scroll through your RSS feeds.

WP Commerce have changed their domain name from GetShopped.org toWPEcommerce.org

Web host DigitalOcean, now the third largest hosting provider in the world, isgaining popularity amongst WordPress users. WordPress “droplets” with the company now account for 3.74 percent of the company’s total active users running a cloud server.

The USA Today shares how it uses WordPress to power multiple sites with WordPress.com VIP in an insightful transcript published on the VIP site.

If My Calculations Are Correct…

As the release of WordPress 4.1 draws ever so closer, WP Beginner have put together an overview of the version’s key features.

After WP Kube calculated the cost of starting a WordPress website at $298 last week, Elegant Themes has had another go at the numbers and arrived atsomewhere between $72.99 and $33,162.18.

WooThemes have begun regular updates on their support crew. Here’s the latest instalment about the WooCommerce Conference and the WooCommerce 101 Video Series.

Chris Lema has been at Crowd Favorite eight weeks now and shares an inside look at what he’s been up to during that time.

Boiling Point

If you use developer Tom McFarlin’s WordPress Plugin Boilerplate, you may want to check out a new generator by WP Chat’s Enrique Chavez. It’s a handy web app that generates a plugin without you having to replace any text strings.

WP Kube offers an overview of Bluehost web hosting and how to set up a new account.

Circles Gallery is a premium gallery plugin that allows you to display your images in, well, circles.


How To Create An Awesome Newsletter Signup Popup For Your WordPress Site (WPMU DEV Blog).

Are You Avoiding These Common WordPress Code Issues? (WPMU DEV Blog).

How To: Sell User Customized Products Online with WooCommerce (WP Lift).

WordPress Comment Moderation: A Guide For Beginners (WP Explorer).

Advantages and Disadvantages of WordPress Frameworks (tuts+).

Back to the Future

Every time you look down at your phone, the amount of force your head exerts isroughly the weight of four bowling balls. Eek!

And here’s an awesome video of skateboarder Tony Hawk on a hoverboard. For reals.

All the best for a brilliant and productive Thursday.

The WhiP Newsletter #131 – Friday, November 21

Hello dear reader,

Mercury Rising

If you have automatic updates turned on for your site/s, you may have noticed you’ve been updated to WordPress 4.0.1. This critical security release fixes cross-site scripting vulnerability. If you haven’t updated to the latest version, go do it now!

WP Engine have launched Mercury, a new enterprise WordPress platform built to provide HHVM (with PHP-FPM failover) to customers who require better PHP performance. The web host partnered with development agency 10up to make the platform a reality.

Twitter has released a WordPress plugin to get people embedding more Vines in posts. The plugin is available to download in the WordPress Plugin Repository.

Security service Securi are encouraging anyone using the WP-Statistics plugin to update to the latest version after discovering a few security vulnerabilities.

WordPress developer Steven Gliebe says would kill off developer packages and bonus themes on every theme shop if he had the chance. Fair enough.

The latest episode of WPwatercooler explores whether WordPress should go corporate.

And the DradCast podcast features John Eckman, the CEO at 10up.

Why, Hello There

WooThemes have launched an official theme for WooCommerce. Say hello toStoreFront, a lightweight and robust theme designed to help you get an online store up and running with minimal effort.

WP Explorer has a list of 20 minimal theme for “discerning designers.”

WP Kube’s reviews Flow Flow Social, a plugin that adds social feeds to your WordPress site.

Meanwhile, the folks over at Hongkiat check out 10 plugins to improve user management.

Picking a Perfect Theme

How to Add New Users and Authors to Your WordPress Blog (WP Beginner).

Maximum Character Length Add-On for Profile Builder (Cozmolabs).

12 Factors For Selecting A Perfect WordPress Theme (Webloggerz).

How To Get More Followers On Facebook And Twitter (Elegant Themes).

Developing for the WordPress.org Plugin Directory (Sitepoint).

Improving WordPress Plugin Development With Composer (Torque).

Yes or No To WordPress Frameworks? (Tom McFarlin).

Mastering the post_class() Function (ThemeShaper).

Use Your Noggin

When it come to your noggin, you either use it or lose it. Researchers who studied a group of 70-year-olds who had worked intellectually demanding jobs, found they were smarter and had better memories compared to others whose jobs were less cognitively demanding.

Everybody’s favorite search engine has launched Contributor, a crowdfunding tool for publishers. Basically, it allows you to pay sites to turn off Google their ads. Kinda like AdBlock, really.

“Passwords do more than protect data. They protect dreams, secrets, fears and even clues to troubled pasts, and for some, they serve as an everyday reminder of what matters most.” The New York Times explores the secret life of passwords.

And we’ll end the week with this annoying time waster. Enjoy. Or don’t enjoy.

All the best for a lovely Friday and a frivolous weekend.

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This Week in WordPress: JJJ Set to Work Full-Time on BuddyPress, and LoopConf Controversy http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-5/ http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/this-week-in-wordpress-5/#comments Fri, 14 Nov 2014 15:30:00 +0000 http://premium.wpmudev.org/blog/?p=134314 This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

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The WhiP Newsletter #122 – Monday, November 10

Hello dear reader,


Did you know a quarter of WordPress users make a full-time living off the open source software? Torque has published 13 WordPress statistics you may or may not find surprising.

We shouldn’t be striving for work/life balance. Instead, we should be working towards alignment, and not the chiropractic kind. Crowd Favorite’s Chris Lema says we’re all amazing in his latest post.

iThemes Training will be running their 12th WordPress Developer Course from December 1-5. The course covers everything from installing WordPress on a localhost to working with the WordPress loop, managing clients and launching your site.

Theme Hybrid’s Justin Tadlock writes about the misconceptions around the Hybrid Core framework in a follow up post to our guide to WordPress frameworks on the WPMU DEV Blog.

WordPress or Blogger? Elegant Themes compares the two (Does anyone even use Blogger anymore?).

Death and Taxes

Beautiful Taxonomy Filters is a new plugin that adds filtering to your custom post type archives, based terms, categories and tags.

WP Tavern takes a look at iThemes’ new Sync Pro Client Dashboard, which allows users to manage multiple WordPress sites from one place.

Chris Lema is in love with Zippy Courses, a course management plugin, but still says it’s a selfish plugin.

On the WPMU DEV Blog, we look at free plugins for retouching images, and how to keep your WordPress clients out of trouble.

And if you’re looking for a new theme, WP Mayor checks out 10 free themes added to the WordPress repository in October.


Creating A Customizable Post List Template in WordPress With Advanced Custom Fields (WPMU DEV).

How to Override Comment Deadline in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Combat Blackhat SEO Infections with SEO Insights (Sucuri).

Using The Jetpack Plugin To Supercharge Your WordPress Website (Elegant Themes).

Best Practices For Using Categories And Tags In WordPress (Elegant Themes).

Understanding The WordPress Template Hierarchy (Elegant Themes).

Persistent Object Caching (WP Tavern).

50 Filters of WordPress: The First 10 Filters (Tuts+).

Too Many Cooks Spoil the Broth

One of Audrey Capital’s companies, OnBeep, has launched their first product,Onyx, and it’s a lot like the communicator from Star Trek. In case you didn’t know, Audrey Capital is Matt Mullenweg’s angel investment and research company.

“Language barriers in globalization are hardly a new issue. So why the sudden drive for polyglotism? It’s simple: As mobile operators and web giants try to expand their markets by bringing more people online, we have reached a tipping point where the imbalance of content on the internet has become too stark to avoid.” As English speakers, Quartz reckons we probably won’t understand the web of the future because we won’t speak its language.

If you haven’t yet come across Too Many Cooks, put aside 11 minutes and watch it, or don’t watch it. It’s like all the family dramedies you used to watch (think Full House, Brady Bunch, Family Matters etc) mashed into a twisted and bloody nightmare.

All the best for a productive and purposeful Monday.

The WhiP Newsletter #123 – Tuesday, November 11

Hello dear reader,


“Our number one goal is that everyone leaves feeling like it was a great investment, and if it ends up we risk a portion of our profits to make that a reality, then we’re fine with that.” How much are you willing to pay for a WordPress conference? With tickets at $800, LoopConf will surely put a hole in the pockets of those who attend. For those complaining? Just watch the presentations online afterwards for free.

“If you’re interested in blogging and have yet to experience Ghost you’re missing out. This has to be one of the most powerful and best engineered blogging platforms ever.” NetworkWorld’s Mark Gibbs reckons Ghost may one day scare off WordPress. (Ghost? More like Casper the Friendly Ghost).

WebDesy.com is offering 30% off their WordPress SEO crash course.

Cool Story, Bro

Now this is cool: ThemeBro takes the headache out of searching for the perfect WordPress theme. Simply select the website features you want and ThemeBro displays a lovely list of all the themes that sit your search.

Shore is a lovely, clean multipurpose theme. WP Lift walks you through the details.

Over at Hongkiat, 12 plugins for managing front-end content – front-end uploading, front-end guest posting, front-end theme switching, front-end pizza delivery etc.

Easy Reading Mode is a new plugin that lets your users read your website content in a distraction-free reading mode. Cool stuff.

If you’re interested in building WordPress themes using Bootstrap, BootstrapWPoffers online courses for doing just that.

Work Your Mojo

Zephyr is a gorgeous WordPress blog theme that’s doing well over at MOJO Marketplace.

WP Core is a relatively new plugin that allows users to create plugin collections and install them in one click.

Widget Menuizer is a new plugin that allows sidebar regions to be placed into WordPress menus.

Similarly, sort of, Menubar Widgets helps you add multiple widgets to navigation menu items.

Wifeo.com has some really cool CSS, like a 3D Facebook button and a jQuery slide form.

Save the Date

How to Change Date and Time Format in WordPress (WP Beginner).

How to Choose the Best WordPress Hosting For Your New Website (WP Kube).

Write For Readers or Search Engines? Here’s How to do Both (Torque).

How To Create A Private WordPress Blog And Good Reasons For Doing It(Elegant Themes).

10 Design Elements to Avoid for a Professional-Looking Site (WooThemes).

50 Filters of WordPress: Filters 11-20 (Tuts+).

How to Write a Blog Post That Converts: The Definitive Guide(InMarketingClub).

The Internet of Things

“‘Net neutrality’ has been built into the fabric of the Internet since its creation — but it is also a principle that we cannot take for granted. We cannot allow Internet service providers (ISPs) to restrict the best access or to pick winners and losers in the online marketplace for services and ideas.” US President Barrack Obama has pitched his case for a free and open internet. He has called on ISPs to follow four basic rules: no blocking, no throttling, increased transparency and no paid prioritization, aka no slow lane. Let me hear you say, yeah!

And is less important, frivolous news, bananas don’t grow trees, they grow on massive herbs that look like trees. That’s just one of 52 widespread myths and misconceptions that have been debunked.

All the best for a truly awesome Tuesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #124 – Wednesday, November 12

Hello dear reader,

JJJust Doing What You Can

John James Jacoby wants to work full-time on BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress. The longtime WordPress developer/contributor and project lead on BuddyPress and bbPress has started an Indiegogo campaign with the goal of raising $50,000 so he can work on the projects for six months. Twenty-four hours into the campaign andhe’s already raised more than 25 percent of his goal. (So if he raises $1 million, does that mean JJJ will work on BuddyPress for 10 years? Let’s lock him in!)

Have you checked out Focus? It’s a rethink on the distraction-free writing experience in WordPress and it’s beautiful and awesome. Core developer Mark Jaquith has posted a video at Make WordPress Core that demonstrates why it should be integrated into WordPress 4.1.

Who do you follow on Twitter? Writer Tom Ewer has put together a list of 12 people you may want to follow, like core contributor Helen Hou Sandi and developer Tom McFarlin.

WP Lift compares three eCommerce solutions – Magento, OpenCart and WooCommerce – and picks a favorite. Guess which one.

As this year eges closer and closer to the end, Web Design Ledger has predictedthe “crucial” design trends of 2015. Things like more flat design, flexible typography and the decline of web coding.

Strawberry Shortcake

Shortcake is a new UI project by the folks at Fusion designed to make shortcodes a piece of cake for users.

Speaking of UI, Torque checks out some “style-enhancing” plugins for WordPress that includes everything from Aesop Story Engine to Canva Design Button.

Note is a new widget plugin by Slocum Studio that lets you edits text – live – in your WordPress front-end Customizer.

Prove your social worth with our list of free plugins for ratings, testimonials and subscriber counts on the WPMU DEV Blog.

If you’ve got a terribly memory (like me), check out these awesome WordPress cheat sheets at Web Resources Depot. Definitely a post to bookmark.

Kinsta reviews the nTopic Content Relevancy SEO plugin and its potential to help improve your search rankings.

You’re a Poet and You Didn’t Know It

The Beginner’s Guide to Installing Social Media Plugins on a WordPress Site(Torque).

20 Helpful Google Chrome Extensions for WordPress Bloggers (WP Beginner).

How To Send Newsletters with MailPoet WordPress Plugin (WP Kube).

How To Integrate Facebook Login And Facebook Comments With WordPress(Elegant Themes).

Configuring W3 Total Cache: Advance Database Cache (Tuts+).

Hide a Taxonomy Metabox in the Post Editor (Do It With WP).

99 Problems

“The Internet, that throbbing, fractious hydra of whirring, blinking hard drives, which serves as the collective sum of all human though, knowledge, and testicle pictures, was founded on one principal: all information must be treated equally.” When it comes to net neutrality, the Oatmeal tells it like it is.

The 99 things you should have seen on the internet by now, otherwise you’re a loser, apparently.

And here are some cats bouncing. Just because.

All the best for a bodacious Wednesday.

The WhiP Newsletter #125 – Thursday, November 13

Hello dear reader,

Ready, Get Set, Indiegogo

John James Jacoby is on track to reach his $50,000 goal sooner rather than later, having reached more than 70% of his target. The longtime WordPress developer wants to work full-time on BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress. Head over to Indiegogo to donate to his campaign.

There’s been a lot of hoo-ha over the high cost of attending LoopConf, the upcoming WordPress developer conference. Torque talks to organizer Ryan Sullivan aboutwhy you should fork out $800 for the Las Vegas event.

“Personally, WordPress has allowed me as a veteran to launch very successful businesses in the marketplace, in addition to helping other veterans do the same. I am not the most tech savvy person in the world, but WordPress has provided me with the ability to make a great living, doing work I love to do.” Happy Joe is a non-profit group using WordPress to train and help veterans find careers in web technology.

bbPress now has Slack integration, thanks to Josh Pollock, the Pods Framework community manager.

The psychology behind why you are getting hacked is because you aren’t worried. In their latest post, Sucuri says you lock your doors at night even when you haven’t been burgled, so why not secure your site in case you get hacked?

It’s official: Focus, the beautiful new distraction-free writing experience for WordPress, is being merged into core. WordPress 4.1 will also feature Session UI, a button that displays when a user has more than one active session. When clicked, the button will log the user out of all other sessions.

Get On With It

The WordPress post editor doesn’t suck, we’re just lazy and should get on with working out how to fix it, so says developer Tom McFarlin.

If you dabble in WordPress and want to make the leap into full-time work, Torque has whipped up a helpful post on how to score your first job.

Weebly or WordPress? Elegant Themes compares the two in an interesting match up of customization versus drag and drop.

Are you a designer and don’t code? Envato offers some tips on how designers can best work with developers.


If you use GitHub in your development, here are 10 useful features you may find handy.

Type Genesis is a neat tool that helps you find perfect font combos for your website projects.

You can now view Gravity Forms forms from within the iThemes Sync dashboard after the most recent update.

WooThemes have released a content drip extension for their online learning plugin Sensei, allowing you to offer students a “little-by-little” approach to courses.

Coming to You Live

Create a Multilingual WordPress Website With WPML (WPMU DEV).

How To: Live Edit WordPress Themes CSS with the CSSHero Plugin (WP Lift).

How to Disable Lost/Changed Password Emails in WordPress (WP Beginner).

Creating Maintainable WordPress Meta Boxes: Refactoring (Tuts+).

WordPress Plugins for Comment and Registration Anti Spam Protection (WP Kube).

The Awful Truth

“Trust me when I say that you don’t know how truly awful things are in the U.S. when it comes to broadband and wireless until you leave.” VentureBeat’s Chris O’Brien reckons Americans are a bunch of suckers when it comes to broadband.

All the best for a winning Thursday.

The WhiP Newsletter #126 – Friday, November 14

Hello dear reader,


With four weeks still go in his crowdfunding campaign to work full-time on BuddyPress, bbPress and GlotPress, John James Jacoby’s has raised more than $40,000. The biggest public donations so far have come from Envato’s Collis Ta’eed ($10,000), Pippin Williamson ($5000) and Copyblogger Media ($5000).

Speaking of Envato, the company’s former WordPress evangelist Japh Thomson features on this week’s episode of DradCast. Japh now works at UK-based web development agency Human Made.

A week on from WooConf, a conference all about WooCommerce, the folks at WooThemes look back on the event’s success and the possibility of holding two conferences next year (including one in the US).

Theme shop Theme Foundry is looking to hire a community manager.


Cloud hosting is quickly becoming a popular option for large websites. But what’s suitable for WordPress? We round up the best options available on the WPMU DEV Blog.

How much does a WordPress website cost? WP Kube has calculated it at $298.

How do you determine something’s value? In a post about window squeegees and World Book Encyclopedia, Crowd Favorite’s Chris Lema wants you to support John James Jacoby’s Indiegogo campaign.

Do you prefer to say premium or commercial themes? For developer Tom McFarlin it’s a no-brainer.

The Pen is Mightier Than the Sword

“A pen, some paper, and my brain.” Over at PSDtoWP.net, 126 designers talk about their favorite web design and graphic design software. Well, not all of it is software.

Dyslexie is a font designed especially for dyslexics, making text easier to, faster and more enjoyable to read.

Taxonomy Filter is a new plugin that allows you to filter taxonomies in the WordPress admin.

The JP Markdown plugin lets you use Jetpack’s Markdown module without actually using Jetpack. WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding looks at other Jetpack extensions created by developer Anas H. Sulaiman.

If you’re a WooCommerce fan, here are 40 WordPress themes designed for the eCommerce platform at WP Lift.

iThemes Sync is celebrating its first birthday.


Automate WordPress with IFTTT (Sitepoint).

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About The WordPress Lightbox (Elegant Themes).

How to Stop Search Engines from Crawling A WordPress Site (WP Beginner).

Integrating Zendesk With WordPress (Tuts+).

Debugging with Xdebug, VVV, and Sublime Text (WebDevStudios).

Building the Front-End for the JSON REST API-Powered Single Page Web App(Torque).

Why Choose WordPress to Power (Part Of) Your SASS (Torque).

Gunning for Survival

Cosmonauts used to carry machete guns for “survival” when returning to Earth. I guess you never know what you’re going to find in space…

All the best for a fantastic Friday and a lovely and relaxing weekend.

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