WordPress 4.0

WordPress 4.0, “Benny,” was released on September 4, 2014. Here’s a summary of “What You Need to Know” from an article by Adrian Spiac and posted at CozmosLabs: More Focus on Content — Improved WYSIWYG text editor Visual Media Embeds — “As soon as you’ve entered a URL, the video, tweet or any other embedable media will load directly in the editor box.” Improved Media Library — “A grid view, giving you a much better overview of your media files. [and a] new details preview, which speeds up viewing and editing any media file.” Language Selection UI — Improved selection … Continue reading

12 WP books

The folks at Elegant Themes, in addition to creating truly elegant themes, also post lots of great information for WP users; many of them are lists, like “Best WP portfolio plugins,” “Best contact form plugins,” “Best WP tutorial websites,” and so many more. Here’s a new one (8/30/2014) from them, “12 WP books to add to your collection.” The 12 books they list are: WordPress: The Missing Manual by Matthew MacDonald Web Designer’s Guide to WordPress by Jesse Friedman WordPress All-in-One for Dummies by Lisa Sabin-Wilson Digging Into WordPress by Jeff Starr and Chris Coyier Professional WordPress Design and Development … Continue reading

Tables in WP

“Tables are a pretty common content component but are unsupported out-of-the-box by the WordPress Visual Editor. “Not surprisingly then, there are a number of plugins that solve the table problem from those that make the TinyMCE table buttons live again, to Admin interface visual table builders and pure shortcode plays. “But which is best for you? Which WordPress table plugin will help you turn the tables, into works of art?” This is from the good people at WPMU, and their recent post, “7 WordPress Plugins To Help You Turn The Tables (Into Works Of Art).” The 7 plugins they review … Continue reading

Great Overview of Free WP Themes

From the amazing crew of writers and developers at WPMU, comes this new article: “Free WordPress Themes: The Ultimate Guide” by Raelene Wilson and published 16 July, 2014, at premium.wpmudev.org/blog/free-wordpress-themes-ultimate-guide/. There are so many free WordPress themes out there it can put your head in a tail spin. So in an effort to help you sift through the good and the – let’s face it – crap, we’ve put together this ultimate guide to free WordPress themes. This post is your one-stop, all-you-can-eat resource for information about free WordPress Themes. There’s an overwhelming number of free themes available – just search … Continue reading

What I’ve learned from a few years of training people on WordPress

This is an initial outline for what I plan to expand as soon as I can… I’ve been working with WordPress since around 2000, and quite actively since 2008 or so. Over the last 5+ years I have not only built dozens of WP websites, but I have also trained dozens of clients on how to use WP to manage and maintain their own websites. I have also been a guest speaker in John Govsky’s Web Publishing 3 class at Cabrillo College many times, presenting on WordPress. Here are some of the things I’ve learned about training people on WP … Continue reading

Another successful training session

I met today with three of the four editors/writers of the teen-produced magazine Tangerine Moon. Maggie, Gina and Athena are all high school sophomores (just finished their freshman year), and have recently taken the reins as the main writers/editors of the magazine. We spent two hours at Maggie’s computer, and went over the basics of how WordPress works, how to create and edit pages and posts, add and format images, work with the menu, and a bit more. They did really well, and said they think they understand it enough to continue to work on it on their own. The … Continue reading

Understanding the “Layers” of WordPress

In trying to explain how the different parts of WP (WP itself, plugins and themes) work together, I’ve come up with this conceptual model to help people visualize this: WordPress itself is the “engine” that runs the website. Plugins are additional “apps:” small software tools that add functionality to WordPress. These include tools like image galleries, contact forms, calendars, SEO tools, and many more. There are thousands of free plugins, and thousands more “premium” plugins for which you’ll pay anywhere from $10 or $20 to $50 or more. See wordpress.org/plugins/ to see the more than 29,000 free plugins that have … Continue reading

Best Frameworks 2014

SitePoint (www.sitepoint.com) is one of the great sources of information on WordPress and other web design topics. They posted an article on the best current design frameworks (www.sitepoint.com/best-web-designing-frameworks-2014/), and listed these frameworks: Twitter Bootstrap 3 (getbootstrap.com) There are scores of WP themes based on the Bootstrap framework Foundation Framework by Zurb (foundation.zurb.com) As of today (1/3/14) there are 15 themes based on Foundation, at wordpress.org. Compass (compass-style.org) Four WP themes found based on Compass Yahoo Pure CSS (purecss.io) Two WP themes mention “YUI (Yahoo User Inter face) Grid layout support.” I’m guessing this might be similar to Pure CSS, perhaps … Continue reading

WP: Turn off auto-hyphenation

Almost every theme I’ve worked with has auto-hyphenation turned on as the default setting, which might be OK if it worked better… but it doesn’t. I often see goofy hyphenations with 2-letter syllables split off the rest of a word. So I usually go in there and turn it off. Of course we should do this in a child theme, but if don’t otherwise need a child theme, then you can just edit style.css – knowing that you’ll have to go back and do so again, after you update the theme. To turn off auto-hyphenation: Go to Appearance → Editor … Continue reading

WP Remote: A lifesaver for managers of multiple WP sites!

The count of WordPress-built sites I have now built and continue to manage (or assist with) is approaching 2 dozen, and I’ve learned the very hard way the importance of security —starting with keeping current with all your installation updates (WP, plugins and themes)! So, wouldn’t it be great if there was some way I could simultaneously check all the websites at once, and even run updates on WP, plugins and themes all at the same time? Indeed there is —using WPRemote, a free plugin by Human Made (hmn.md). It’s very simple to install and use: Go to Plugins → … Continue reading