Monthly Archives: January 2018

WooCommerce 3.3 Increases Theme Compatibility, Auto Regenerates Thumbnails

WooCommerce 3.3 is available and is considered a minor release. Based on the project’s new release process, it should be fully backwards compatible with previous releases up to 3.0.

The orders screen has been redesigned with large buttons that indicate an order’s status. You can also view an order’s details from the order screen without having to edit the order.

WooCommerce 3.3 Orders Screen

For products that are on backorder and have stock management enabled, WooCommerce 3.3 will automatically transition from ‘In stock’ to ‘On backorder’ or ‘Out of stock’ as the inventory decreases. Once inventory is added, the status will switch back to ‘In Stock’.

WooCommerce 3.3 Order Status Screen

For full compatibility, users generally needed to use a WordPress theme that specifically supported WooCommerce. In 3.3, improvements have been made so that WooCommerce renders on themes that don’t fully support it, making it compatible with nearly every WordPress theme.

Users can now set the number of columns and rows for shops with the ability to preview the results live via the Customizer. The columns will resize to fill the entire width of the area and is available on all themes.

In earlier versions of WooCommerce, shop owners needed to use the Regenerate Thumbnails after updating a product’s image as WordPress did not automatically resize the image and generate new thumbnails. WooCommerce 3.3 adds on-the-fly thumbnail regeneration and background thumbnail resizing.

In addition, users can customize the aspect ratios of product images. The choices are classic square images, custom cropped images, or uncropped images

WooCommerce 3.3 Image Aspect Ratio Options

Shop owners can now view logs of product downloads with a couple of built-in filters including, by order, by product, by customer, and by file. You can also search for extensions now from the Extensions administration screen.

WooCommerce 3.3 includes more features and changes than what’s listed here. For a detailed overview of what’s new in 3.3, check out the changelog. If you think you’ve discovered a bug, please report it on the project’s GitHub page.

Source: WP Tavern

UpdraftPlus Acquires Easy Updates Manager Plugin

UpdraftPlus, a popular WordPress backup plugin actively installed on more than 1 million sites has acquired the Easy Updates Manager plugin for an undisclosed amount.

Easy Updates Manager disables core, theme, and plugin updates in WordPress and provides granular control over them. It was created in 2015, is actively installed on more than 100K sites, and is maintained by Matthew Sparrow, Ronald Huereca, Roary Tubbs, and BigWing Interactive.

Easy Updates manager User Interface
Easy Updates manager User Interface

Burnout was a contributing factor for selling the plugin. “Matthew Sparrow and I were both burnt out on the project, so the offer to sell was a no-brainer,” Huereca said. “It’s bittersweet letting our baby go, but it’s in good hands.”

Without proper vetting, selling established plugins to individuals or companies can be harmful to sites and tarnish its reputation. Because UpdraftPlus is a well established company, Huereca didn’t have to do a lot of research.

“We were looking for more backend plugins that we understand and it’s a great plugin, highly rated and growing,” A company representative said. “Updates and backups go hand-in-hand as people should really backup before updating.”

UpdraftPlus will focus its marketing efforts towards UpdraftCentral later this year. UpdraftCentral provides the ability for users to update, backup, and manage their sites from one dashboard. Easy Updates Manager and UpdraftCentral are complimentary products.

Users can expect to see more updates later this year and continued refinement of the user interface.

Source: WP Tavern

WPWeekly Episode 302 – Brian Gardner, Founder of StudioPress

In this episode, John James Jacoby and I are joined by Brian Gardner, founder of StudioPress. We talk about the past, present, and future of the company including various milestones such as the Genesis framework and merger with CopyBlogger Media in 2010. We also discuss the community surrounding StudioPress’ products and the role it plays in the company’s continued success.

Picks of the Week:

Ahmad Awais Create Guten Block toolkit.

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Next Episode: Wednesday, January 31st 3:00 P.M. Eastern

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Source: WP Tavern

WordPress Turns 15 Years Old

WordPress, the free open source project, turns 15 years old today. Here is the comment that started it all.

Mike Little's Comment
Mike Little's Comment

In addition to celebrating 15 years as a successful software project, it's also a good opportunity to reflect on the number of people across the world who are making a great living and turning dreams into reality thanks to the project.

Thank you Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little for creating WordPress, its contributors for keeping the ball rolling all these years, and providing opportunities for so many people. Happy birthday WordPress!
Source: WP Tavern

WordCamp Miami Celebrates Its 10th Consecutive Year March 16-18

WordCamp Miami is celebrating its 10th anniversary on March 16-18th. This year's event is organized by twelve people and organizers expect more than 800 people to attend. Speakers will arrive from Italy, Germany, London, Brazil, and other international locations to share their knowledge.

In addition to a two-day Kids Camp with a Kids Panel, WordCamp Miami will feature two new workshops. The first is developer focused and will prepare developers for the future of WordPress. The second is focused on eCommerce.

Attendees will receive their own site and be able to apply what they've learned to it. The sites will have pre-installed plugins and access to various tools mentioned by the workshop teachers.

The 'Learn JavaScript Deeply' track is returning this year, featuring local and international JavaScript developers. This is the third time WordCamp Miami has had this track and according to David Bisset, one of the organizers, the focus will be on JavaScript basics, React, plus using JavaScript to create 'cool and unique' projects with or without WordPress.

Joshua Strebel, Syed Balkhi, and Christie Chirinos will highlight Saturday's business track.

For the first time in recent years, WordCamp Miami will have a closing keynote on Saturday, March 17th by John James Jacoby. Jacoby was one of the founders of WordCamp Miami a decade ago, and his talk will cover both nostalgic moments and what the future of WordPress holds for users.

Finally, WordCamp Miami will be doing a 'game show hour' before the official after party. "We wanted to do something fun and interactive for everyone – and we think we found a great way to segue people from the talks to unwinding at the after party," Bisset explained.

"We are even planning on having our sponsors form teams in a trivia contest battle. There will be provisions at the party for those who want to network or just relax in a quiet setting."

Bisset praised volunteers and organizers for helping make 10 years of WordCamp Miami a reality.

"Each and every one of our organizers and speakers deserve a huge amount of thanks and praise for their hard work." He said. "We couldn't have done ten years without the support of the WordPress community."

Tickets are on sale with a number of purchasing options. Workshops cost $15 each and general admission tickets are $40 each. General admission tickets provide access to Saturday and Sunday sessions, lunch, swag, and the after party.

Source: WP Tavern

New Toolkit Simplifies the Process of Creating Gutenberg Blocks

Ahmad Awais, who created the Gutenberg Boilerplate last year, has released a Guten Block Toolkit. The toolkit substantially simplifies the creation of Gutenberg Blocks by providing no configuration, one dependency, and no lock-in.

Awais created the toolkit after receiving feedback that configuring things like Webpack, React, ES 6/7/8/Next, ESLint, Babel and keeping up with their development was too difficult.

"Developers told me that they built Gutenberg blocks with ES5 because the amount of time required to configure, set up, and learn tools like Babel, Webpack, ESLint, Prettier, etc. wasn’t worth it," Awais said.

"So, yes! I went ahead and built a solution — a zero-config-js #0CJS WordPress developers’ toolkit called create-guten-block!"

Creating blocks using the toolkit is a three-step process.

Developers begin by installing Node version 8 or higher on a local server. The next step is to run the create-guten-block command and provide a name for the plugin that will be created. This command also creates the folder structure necessary to maintain the project. The last step is to run the NPM start command which runs the plugin in development mode.

Once these steps are completed, the WordPress plugin will be compatible with Gutenberg and have React.js, ES 6/7/8/Next, and Babel, which also has ESLint configurations for code editors to detect and use automatically.

The Guten Block Toolkit comes with the following:

  • React, JSX, and ES6 syntax support.
  • Webpack dev/production build process behind the scene.
  • Language extras beyond ES6 like the object spread operator.
  • Auto-prefixed CSS, so you don’t need -webkit or other prefixes.
  • A build script to bundle JS, CSS, and images for production with source-maps.
  • Hassle-free updates for the above tools with a single dependency cgb-scripts.

The project has received positive feedback, including from members of Gutenberg's development team.

With a stable release now available to the public, Awais is working on 2.0.0. "The next step is to get this toolkit tested and mature the entire app to release version 2.0.0 for that not only do I need your support, I ask that you hop on board and contribute — that’s the only way forward," he said.

Create Guten Block Toolkit is MIT licensed and available for free on GitHub. Contributions are welcomed!

Source: WP Tavern

Free Conference Dedicated to WordPress in Higher Ed Takes Place January 30th at 9AM CST

If you’re interested in learning how WordPress is used in Higher Ed, tune in to WPCampus Online, January 30th at 9AM Central Standard Time. WPCampus Online is a virtual conference that people can watch for free, no traveling necessary. The event uses Crowdcast allowing viewers to switch between rooms, interact with each other, and ask questions.

Some of the topics that will be presented include, WordPress and Real-World Data with Students, Headless and Brainless WordPress, and Using WordPress to Support and Run Student Government Elections. If in-person conferences are more your style, keep an eye out for information on WPCampus 2018 tentatively planned for this Summer.

To learn more about WPCampus and the people behind it, listen to our interview with Rachel Cherry on episode 301 of WordPress Weekly.

Source: WP Tavern

WPWeekly Episode 301 – WordPress in HigherEd, Accessibility, and More With Rachel Cherry

In this episode, John James Jacoby and I are joined by Rachel Cherry, Senior Software Engineer for Disney Interactive and Director of WPCampus. Cherry describes how she got involved with WordPress, its use in higher education, the inspiration behind WPCampus, and her thoughts on accessibility both in WordPress and across the web. She also assigned everyone the following homework assignment.

If you want to learn how WordPress is being used in higher education, tune in to WPCampus Online Tuesday, January 30, 2018. Viewers will be able to watch sessions and interact with the speakers for free. Near the end of the show, Jacoby provides a review of the Nintendo Switch he received for Christmas.

Stories Discussed:

Gutenberg 2.0 Released
WordPress 4.9.2 Patches XSS Vulnerability
Zac Gordon Launches Gutenberg Development Course, Includes More Than 30 Videos

Picks of the Week:

Pippin Williamson’s 2017 Year in Review

WPWeekly Meta:

Next Episode: Wednesday, January 24th 3:00 P.M. Eastern

Subscribe to WordPress Weekly via Itunes

Subscribe to WordPress Weekly via RSS

Subscribe to WordPress Weekly via Stitcher Radio

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Listen To Episode #301:

Source: WP Tavern

DesktopServer 3.8.4 Includes A Gift to the Community

DesktopServer has released version 3.8.4 of its local development software. This version includes a lot of refactored code, setting the foundation for faster updates in the future along with design-time plugins.

One of the major changes in 3.8.4 is the use of the top level domain.

Due to the latest changes with the .dev Top Level Domain and the fact that many browsers now force SSL on anything with the .dev extension, DesktopServer will now use as its TLD extension. This is a legitimate top level domain owned by ServerPress, LLC and will ONLY be used for local development purposes.

Release Announcement Post

Marc Benzakein says the domain will work no matter which local development solution is being used and that it's a gift to the community. Other domains such as .test will continue to work as expected.

Other improvements include speed optimizations for Windows installs, a Windows compatibility plugin to fix long filename problems when updating from third-party plugin repositories such as Easy Digital Downloads, and a WordPress 4.9.1 Blueprint.

If you use an Apple device with a Retina screen or Hi-DPI in Windows, you'll likely appreciate the user-interface changes that are vastly improved on high resolution screens. Josh Eby does!

DesktopServer 3.8.4 also includes a number of enhancements for premium service customers. To view these and other notes related to the release, check out the announcement post.

Source: WP Tavern

WordPress 4.9.2 Patches XSS Vulnerability

WordPress 4.9.2 has been released and patches a cross-site scripting vulnerability in the Flash fallback files in the MediaElement library. According to Ian Dunn, the Flash files are rarely needed and have been removed from WordPress.

If you need access to the Flash fallback files, they can be obtained using the MediaElement Flash Fallback plugin. Enguerran Gillier and Widiz are credited with responsibly disclosing the vulnerability. 

In addition to the patch, this releases fixes 21 bugs. JavaScript errors that prevented saving posts in Firefox has been fixed and switching themes will attempt to restore previous widget assignments, even if no sidebars exist.

You can view detailed information about the changes in 4.9.2 by reading the following Codex article.

Source: WP Tavern

Gutenberg 2.0 Released With Numerous Accessibility and Keyboard Navigation Improvements

Gutenberg 2.0 is available for testing and includes a changelog that's a mile long. Accessibility, keyboard navigation, and the ability to drag-and-drop multiple images to the Gallery block are among the improvements listed.

Clicking the Publish button displays options in the sidebar rather than a drop-down menu to add polish to the publishing flow.

Publish Button Options In The Sidebar

The Table of Contents has been redesigned to increase readability and copying and pasting has also significantly improved. 

Gutenberg 2.0 covers a lot of ground and the changes are too numerous to list here. However, Matias Ventura does a great job listing the changes with links to Pull Requests on GitHub where people can see how they were made.

If you haven't tried or tested Gutenberg, now is a great time to check it out.

Source: WP Tavern

Zac Gordon Launches Gutenberg Development Course, Includes More Than 30 Videos

Zac Gordon, a technology educator, has released his Gutenberg Development course. The course is $79 but is available for $49 using the coupon code earlyadopter.

Gordon says the course is aimed at developers who want to update their themes, plugins, shortcodes, etc. to work with Gutenberg and take advantage of blocks.

"There is also some content I am adding geared towards theme developers, but honestly there is not much to that," Gordon said. "I think plugin developers will fill a lot of the needs of theme developers and help prevent them from having to build too many custom blocks.

"Also, in my opinion, blocks belong in plugins, so maybe some theme developers will migrate into plugin development through working with blocks."

The course includes more than 30 videos, a dozen example blocks, access to support forums, and the community run Slack channel. It covers how Gutenberg works, how to extend and customize it, and using a modern JavaScript development approach.

Gordon learned quite a few things about Gutenberg while creating the course. "Specifically, I learned Gutenberg is really just React under the hood, and then the more traditional WordPress PHP under that," he said.

"Digging deeper into the source attributes system that Gutenberg has to keep track of dynamic data was interesting. Also, there are far more possibilities with server-side code hooking into blocks than I thought ahead of time. I also came to the opinion that I'm not sure why someone would build a block in anything other than React, so I'm interested to see what common practices evolve."

Creating the course has allowed Gordon to dive deep into Gutenberg. So does he think it's a suitable replacement for the editor?

"I think most users will feel Gutenberg is an improvement of the editing experience," he responded. "We are definitely moving in the right direction. Ironically perhaps, I still like site and page builder plugins when editing or creating content in WordPress."

Gutenberg is still in a high state of flux with rapid development. According to Gordon, if there is one thing developers should know about Gutenberg, it's that learning JavaScript deeply will pay off.

"Matt Mullenweg was right when he said 'Learn JavaScript Deeply'," Gordon said. "In terms of Gutenberg, that means a foundation with ES+, JSX/React, and webpack/babel/etc. You can learn as you go, but we are definitely moving from the time of learning to a time of doing."

Source: WP Tavern