This Week in WordPress: Nacin Joins White House, Yoast Acquired

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This week’s round-up of WordPress news, views and reviews summarized in our daily email newsletter, The WhiP.

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Monday, March 30

Uncle Sam Wants You

(WordPress News)

Core developer Andrew Nacin, who led work on WordPress 3.5, 3.7 and 3.9 has joined the White House’s US Digital Service – and wants you to join, too.

Venture capitalists North Bridge has invested $23 million in web host WP Engine. The money will be largely spent on sales and marketing, and expanding outside the US, with some going on “fortifying” the company’s feature-rich platform so “sudden growth doesn’t become sloppy service.”

On the latest episode of WPWeekly, the WP Tavern guys talk to Pagely CEO Josh Strebel about the competitive nature and lack of integrity in the web hosting industry.

WordPress 4.2 is inching closer to release, with Beta 3 now available.

The ability to automatically activate plugins after installation has beenscrapped from the upcoming version of WordPress, however improved plugin updates will remain.

“Based on my own personal experience, I think the only way for people to truly understand why it is that we do this (accessibility) is to sit with someone who is blind or who doesn’t have use of their limbs or something like that, and watch them use a website that has not been optimized for accessibility…If you built the site, you come out of that going ‘We have to be doing better than this.’” WP Engine’s latest Finely Tuned Consultant Q&A features Shawn Hooper of Ottawa Canada-based Fivesense Technologies.

Sucuri has detected what they believe is a new version of the Darkleech malware infection.

WordPress Ain’t Perfect

(Opinion)

WordPress ain’t perfect – but neither are the people who use it, according to developer Daniel Pataki.

“When you know how the sausage is made, things tend to taste a little bit differently.” Matt Medeiros talks to developer and consultant Jason Resnick about setting web design and budget expectations on the latest episode of The Matt Report.

Are you using the force to your social media advantage? asks Torque.

All Cached Up

(Plugins and Themes)

WordPress lead developer Mark Jaquith has released Cache Buddy, a new plugin that works alongside caching solution, such as WP Super Cache, Batcache, and W3 Total Cache, to enable WordPress to better serve cached pages to logged-in users.

CodeInWP has reviewed some of the most popular review plugins, including WP Product Review Lite and WP Review.

And at WP Beginner, six of the best plugins for YouTube publishers.

Not-So-Obvious

(Tutorials, Tips and Tricks)

12 Not-So-Obvious WordPress Tweaks to Improve Posts and Pages(WPMU DEV).

The Best Way to Build Custom Meta Boxes in WordPress? (OS Training).

Using WordPress Admin Filters to Easily Find Custom Content (Envato Market Blog).

Avoid Loops With save_post in WordPress (Tom McFarlin).

A Guide to Overriding Parent Theme Functions in Your Child Theme (tuts+).

Simple User Reviews With Gravity Forms and a Custom Post Type (tuts+).

How To Create an Auto-Updating Widget Using WP-API (WebDevStudios).

Staying Safe and Dry With register_meta() (Torque).

Whatcha Thinkin Bout?

(Off-Topic, Random Stuff)

Anti-vaxxers, God and how to be a man like a Wall Street banker are just some of the things the internet is thinking about lately, according to popular media.

All the best for a thoughtful and productive Monday.


Tuesday, March 31

Making the World a Better Place

(WordPress News)

“The WordPress Community is my passion. The tool is just a tool. I’m not a developer or a designer, so I don’t do much with WordPress on the backend. But the community—it draws you in. It is full of self-driven, independent, out-of-the-box thinkers. People who are passionate about living a life set apart from the flow, driven by a strong desire to be producers – not just consumers – who, for the most part, want to make the world a better place.” Happy Joe’s Sarah Pressler talks to Cloudways about her work with military veterans.

Edublogs, the largest and most popular education blogging service around (which just so happens to use WordPress), is looking for a new Account Manager.

On the latest KitchensinkWP podcast, host Adam Silver talks shortcodes and WordPress 4.2 Beta 3.And the folks on the WPwatercooler podcast recap the recent WordCamp San Diego.

Do Gooders

(Opinion)

“So don’t take for granted who’s paying attention to you. You’ve likely got a lot more influence than you think you do.” After seeing a couple of keen kids sitting in his presentation at WordCamp Atlanta, developer Tom McFarlin wants you to use your WordPress powers for good.

Over 50% of all Google searches come from mobile devices, which means if your e-Commerce site isn’t mobile-ready you’re probably losing business. WooThemes offers some tips on how to improve your site on its blog.

If you’ve ever banged your head on the wall while trying to improve your Google Pagespeed numbers, Six Revisions has a very thorough “modern approach” to improve website speed.

WP Engine CFO April Downing writes about the who, when and how much of how to seek funding for your business.

Full Access

(Plugins and Themes)

Best Free WordPress Plugin is a new site that allows you to compare plugins listed in the WordPress Plugin Directory.
Top e-Commerce shipping plugins for WordPress and the WPMU DEV MarketPress plugin.
The latest version of WooThemes’ Storefront theme is now fully accessible.
Here are some automated tools at WinningWP for discovering which themes websites use.
Lastly for this section, here’s a bunch of great plugins for photographers.

Harder Better Faster

(Tutorials, Tips and Tricks)

Create WordPress Video Tutorials For Clients That You Can Sell (WP Mayor).

Comprehensive Guide to Improving WordPress Speed (Envato Market Blog).

Create WordPress Pricing Tables within 6 Minutes (Sell with WP).

How to Create a School Website with WordPress (Elegant Themes).

Eat Pray Type

(Off-Topic, Random Stuff)

Why work in a depressingly sterile office environment when you can go on a cowork vacation in Bali?

We’ve reached 200 editions of The WhiP! Thanks for sticking around! If you enjoy reading our little newsletter, please share it with your friends.


Wednesday, April 1

I Bet You Look Good On the Dance Floor

(WordPress News)

“We discussed potential modes of working together and in the end came to the conclusion that we’re better off together. As CrowdFavorite is by far the bigger company in this “spiel”, they’re acquiring us in an asset acquisition.”SEO company Yoast has joined WordPress agency CrowdFavorite. (I’m more interested in what the acquisition will mean for all the Joost cartoons…)

User engagement on the WordPress Theme Directory site has jumped significantly since its recent redesign.
“Shortcake Is Now a #WordPress Feature Plugin; My Little Ponies, Care Bears, Snorks Hardest Hit.” WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding talks to the anonymous person behind the satirical DerpPress Twitter account.

Life Advice

(Opinion)

WordPress agency 10up recently worked with StoryCorps to help the site engineer a reliable, scalable WordPress implementation for their new, TED prize winning project. StoryCorps.me enables anyone to record and share powerful stories using an iOS and Android app; the app’s infrastructure is built on WordPress, and leverages the WP REST API.  PostStatus has published a detailed and insightful write up that describes the project and technical implementation.

Do you know what the Happiness Bar at a WordCamps is for? Does it hand out swag? Offer life advice? Jeff Chandler at WP Tavern and WordCamp Vancouver co-organizer Morten Rand-Hendriksen say it’s time the support desk was given a new name.

WPShout offers four reasons to fall in love with Sass for WordPress if you haven’t already.

WebDevStudios asks the question that never gets old: WordPress.com or WordPress.org?

And online tools that help WordPress trainer Bob Dunn in a pinch.

Help!

(Plugins and Themes)

Hew, a new personal blogging theme by Automattic’s Ola Laczek, is now available in the WordPress Theme Directory.

WP Lift reviews WPHelpDesk, a premium plugin that allows you to create a complete ticket support system.

And Torque shows you how to improve your workflow with localhost software DesktopServer.

Traffic Jam

(Tutorials, Tips and Tricks)

Managing Access to Plugins (So Clients Don’t Break Their Site! (WPMU DEV)

Scaling WordPress For High Traffic: A Developer Guide [Free Download](WP Engine).

Safely Add Code Snippets To Your Functions.Php File With A Free Plugin(Pagely).

WordPress Meta Data: Use IDs (Not Titles) (Tom McFarlin).

How to Boost Your Ecommerce SEO With a Few WordPress Tweaks(CodeInWP).

Using HHVM With WordPress (tuts+).

WordPress Functionality Plugins (CSS-Tricks).

Fool Me Once

(Off-Topic, Random Stuff)

Amazon has launched a dedicated STEM toy shop, and it’s not to encourage more kids to develop science, technology, engineering and/or math-related skills but, of course, to make more money.

It’s April Fool’s Day! Google’s having a bit of backwards fun, letting you turn any map location into a game of Pac-Man.

All the best for a thoughtful and productive Wednesday.


Thursday, April 2

Hardcore

(WordPress News)

Automattic theme wrangler Konstantin Obenland and Scott Taylor, a senior software engineer on the interactive news team at The New York Times, have been announced as the release leads for WordPress 4.3 and 4.4, respectively.

Pagely interviews 10up’s Chris Wiegman, who is probably best known as a WordPress security pioneer, having developed the iThemes Security plugin.

And meet Wapuujlo, and official mascot of WordCamp Belgrade.

Anti-malware firm Malwarebytes has warned some WordPress sites are being redirected to a Pirate Bay copycat site, which in turn is being used to sling malware.

Sold Us Out

(Opinion)

WordCamp Birmingham co-organizer and WordCamp London presenter Rachel McCollins says you can’t afford not to attend a WordCamp.

Envato recently asked Derek Herman, who’s responsible for building and managing the company’s WordPress-based publications for many years, to contribute to WordPress core. Here he writes about his experience.

WordPress has sold us out, according to Review Signal, in an interesting analysis of the official web hosting recommendations.

Meanwhile, Donnacha MacGloinn writes for WP Mayor about the end of the web hosting industry.

Mini Me

(Tutorials, Tips and Tricks)

Using CDNs, Compression, and Minification to Speed Up WordPress (tuts +)

WordPress Tips: Common WordPress Errors And How To Fix Them (Part 1)(Inbound Rocket).

Jack Lenox on Building Themes with the WP REST API (WP Tavern).

Fool’s Gold

(Off-Topic, Random Stuff)

Here are some of the best April Fools’ jokes from WordPress companies:”The CEO of Automattic worked with the co-founder of WordPress directly, mediated by the head of the WordPress Foundation. Matt Mullenweg said the meetings were very productive.” WordPress will now be bundled with Jetpack.

Suffering writers’ block? No problem! WordPress.com has releasedAutoMatton so you’ll never have to write another blog post again.

Pagely has teamed up with U-Haul to deliver new cloud data storage service.

Ever wished your new WordPress blog looked like an old Geocities site from the Nineties? Probably not! Regardless, Organic Themes has released a free retro theme.

All the best for a thoughtful and productive Thursday.

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