Top 30 Expenses You Can Expect When Launching a WordPress Business

Top 30 Expenses You Can Expect When Launching a WordPress Business

As WordPress gains more and more of the global CMS market share, there are a lot of opportunities to help businesses establish a strong digital presence with it. Needless to say, launching a WordPress business in this environment is a smart move. That said, no matter how slow of a start you have with your […]

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Matt Mullenweg Unveils Gutenberg Roadmap at WCEU, WordPress Agencies and Product Developers Sprint to Prepare

Matt Mullenweg Unveils Gutenberg Roadmap at WCEU, WordPress Agencies and Product Developers Sprint to Prepare

photo credit: WordCamp Europe Photography Team

At his WCEU keynote address in Belgrade, Matt Mullenweg laid out a detailed roadmap for Gutenberg to land in WordPress 5.0 within the next few months, garnering mixed reactions from attendees. Gutenberg’s timeline is one of the most pressing questions for those who work in the WordPress ecosystem.

The Gutenberg team has sustained a rapid pace of development over the past year with 30 releases since development began. There are currently 14,000 sites actively using the plugin and Mullenweg plans to roll it out to WordPress.com users in the near future. He announced that the WordPress 5.0 release could be ready as soon as August. In the meantime, the Gutenberg team will continue to refine its current features according to the roadmap Mullenweg outlined in his keynote:

June 2018

  • Freeze new features into Gutenberg
  • Hosts, agencies and teachers invited to opt-in sites they have influence over
  • Opt-in for wp-admin users on WP.com
  • Mobile App support in the Aztec editor across iOs and Android

July 2018

  • 4.9.x release with a strong invitation to install either Gutenberg or Classic Editor plugin
  • Opt-out for wp-admin users on WP.com
  • Heavy triage and bug gardening, getting blockers to zero
  • Explore expanding Gutenberg beyond the post into site customization

August 2018 and beyond

  • All critical issues resolved
  • Integration with Calypso, offering opt-in users
  • 100k+ sites having makde 250k+ post using Gutenberg
  • Core merge, beginning the 5.0 release cycle
  • 5.0 beta releases and translations completed
  • Mobile version of Gutenberg by the end of the year

Mullenweg said he hopes to increase Gutenberg usage to 100,000 sites with 250,000 posts made over the next few months. WordPress.com will be instrumental in that goal with a call to action for opt-in that will appear on several hundred thousand sites. In July, WordPress.com will switch the Gutenberg editor to opt-out. Mullenweg said he hopes to gather data from how users respond, especially those who have third-party plugins active on their sites.

Switching between editing posts in the mobile apps currently breaks but Mullenweg anticipates this will be resolved by August, with full mobile versions of Gutenberg available by the end of the year.

Mullenweg opened his keynote by drawing attendees’ attention to a new “Public Code” link in the footer of WordPress.org. This campaign, organized by Free Software Foundation Europe, aims to require any publicly financed software developed for the public sector be made available under a Free and Open Source Software license.

Mullenweg also announced St. Louis, MO, as the next location for WordCamp US in 2019-2020. The local WordPress community in the city spans two states with members from both Missouri and Illinois who have hosted seven WordCamps since 2011.

Developers and Agencies Double Down on Gutenberg Preparation, “Playing for Keeps”

The process of getting products and client websites ready for Gutenberg is a leap for nearly every company and freelancer invested in the WordPress ecosystem. Mullenweg said he cannot guarantee a specific date for release but thinks that “5.0 is going be ready within a relatively short time frame.”

Although many WCEU attendees expressed skepticism about the accelerated timeline for Gutenberg’s inclusion in core, most recognize the importance of working towards making their clients and products compatible with the new editor.

Gutenberg technical lead Matias Ventura said it’s too early to tell whether the WordPress community will be ready by the time Gutenberg is included in core. “I think people have already been trying to get ready and we’re already seeing many major sites being launched using Gutenberg,” Ventura said. “From what we’ve seen with plugin authors building compatibility for Gutenberg, it seems there’s already enough momentum going on that it could be achievable.”

Brad Williams, CEO of WebDevStudios, said his company’s team of engineers has been actively preparing for Gutenberg since late last year and is “very excited about what it means for the future of WordPress publishing.” Williams assigned two Gutenberg Leads internally to head up everything related to the new editor and conducted internal training with staff. WebDevStudios also built and released its own Gutenberg add-on framework called WDS Blocks, a framework that includes new custom blocks that many WDS clients use.

“Having a potential release date, even if it’s only a target month, is incredibly helpful,” Williams said. “This gives us a goal to work towards with each of our clients to verify we are ready for the release. I expect the majority of our clients will not enable Gutenberg on release, but we still need to make sure we have an upgrade plan ready for WordPress 5.0. We are working closely with each of our clients so they understand what is coming, the benefits Gutenberg can provide them, and what a potential roll-out plan will look like. We are also making sure any new leads coming in the door are aware of Gutenberg and the impact it will have on their new WordPress project.”

Gary Jones, plugin developer and WordPress engineer at Gamajo, expressed apprehension about the timeline. He also plans to make use of the Classic Editor plugin to opt sites out of using Gutenberg.

“With 737 open issues, I think the August timeline may still be a little short,” Jones said. “That’s only for the ‘critical issues’ to be resolved but introducing such a massive change to the basics of managing content like this needs more than just the critical issues resolved; it needs all of the workflow to be very smooth as well.”

Jones said he doesn’t think the typical rhetoric of getting a ‘1.0’ release out the door applies in the case of Gutenberg. “There’s too much riding on it for it not to make a great first impression for the user base who haven’t been following its progress,” Jones said. “A plugin can have a much quicker release turnaround time for non-critical improvements and fixes than what WP core would have.”

Jones said he plans to wait until the merge proposal before tackling plugin compatibility and will wait until 5.0 is out to start improving the experience for his clients. He said this may require creating custom blocks or installing plugins that add custom blocks clients might need. “By then we’d also know how ACF, Pods. and other plugins we use, and the Genesis theme, are supporting Gutenberg editor (or not),” Jones said.

Jake Goldman, President and founder of 10up, said his company already has an internal mandate that all new public plugins and major plugin updates must have at least “beta” support for Gutenberg. 10up’s Distributor product is already Gutenberg-ready and the company has several Gutenberg-ready plugins and updates expected to ship in the next 1-2 months.

“Clients are trickier,” Goldman said. “We have two big client projects started in the last couple of months that are using Gutenberg, and some pretty complicated custom blocks and extensions. We have a couple of other customers who are curious or in the exploratory phase. Two big client projects have us a bit gun shy about adopting [Gutenberg] as the ‘standard’ on newer projects until it matures a bit more and begins to focus a bit more on the ‘enterprise use case / user stories’ – there are some real challenges with those user stories.”

Goldman also said he was encouraged to hear that Calypso will adopt Gutenberg in the next couple of months, because he hopes it will address some of the confusion and fragmentation issues.

He doesn’t anticipate Gutenberg actually landing in August, however. “I don’t see August, frankly, because I don’t think the core team has a clear vision for ‘how’ an upgrade with Gutenberg will work,” Goldman said. “That said, I suspect Matt is knowingly putting timeline pressure on the team – a bit of ‘if I say August, we can probably hit November’ type mentality.”

Mason James, founder of Valet, said he is confident his clients and products will be ready after testing Gutenberg on hundreds of sites. His team is watching a few products that have compatibility issues but he is hopeful these will be resolved soon.

“The timeline of August seems a bit optimistic,” James said. “I’d be surprised if that is met, but our clients will be in good shape if that happens. We’ve also been sending information to our clients via email, a whitepaper, to try to mitigate any surprises ahead of time.

“We decided last year that Gutenberg was a tremendous opportunity for us to reinforce our value proposition to our clients,” James said. “It’s an ongoing important initiative for us this year; We’re playing for keeps.”

Carrie Dils, a WordPress developer, consultant, and educator, has also jumped head first into getting her products compatible with Gutenberg ahead of the new timeline.

“I’m feverishly working to get an updated version of the Utility Pro theme (my primary product) out the door,” Dils said. “The Gutenberg updates are just one part of a larger overhaul (including a minimum requirement of PHP7 and WP 5.0+). I’ve also made the decision not to incorporate Classic Editor theme styles. All looking forward, no looking back.”

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Doc Pop’s News Drop: Live Recap from WordCamp Europe 2018

Doc Pop’s News Drop: Live Recap from WordCamp Europe 2018

Doc’s WordPress News Drop is a weekly report on the most pressing WordPress news. When the news drops, I will pick it up and deliver it right to you.

After months of talking about it, it was great to finally be at WordCamp Europe in Belgrade, Serbia. We had an amazing time and will be posting a bunch of video interviews here throughout the week. If you would like to know more about Matt’s announcements, check out Emily Schiola’s recap here.

Thanks to all of the WordCamp Europe organizers for putting together this fantastic event.

Doctor Popular is an artist and musician living in San Francisco. As a full disclaimer, he is neither a doctor nor popular.

The post Doc Pop’s News Drop: Live Recap from WordCamp Europe 2018 appeared first on Torque.



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Doc Pop’s News Drop: An Interview With WCEU’s Jenny Beaumont

Doc Pop’s News Drop: WordCamp US Call For Speakers

Doc’s WordPress News Drop is a weekly report on the most pressing WordPress news. When the news drops, I will pick it up and deliver it right to you.

Over the past few months we’ve been lucky to have Jenny Beaumont, the lead organizer of WordCamp Europe, join us for weekly updates and behind the scenes news about the upcoming event in Serbia. In this week’s episode, we chat face-to-face with Jenny about the final week before WCEU.

Now that WCEU is just a month away, it’s great to finally have a chance to talk one on one about this big event.

Doctor Popular is an artist and musician living in San Francisco. As a full disclaimer, he is neither a doctor nor popular.

The post Doc Pop’s News Drop: An Interview With WCEU’s Jenny Beaumont appeared first on Torque.



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Sustainability + WordPress = SustyWP

Sustainability + WordPress = SustyWP

Jack Lenox, a Software Engineer at Automattic, has launched a new site called SustyWP that focuses on web sustainability using WordPress.

By removing the parts of Underscores he didn’t need, using one inline SVG image, no sidebars, limited CSS, and no webfonts, Lenox was able to launch a WordPress site that only has 7 Kilobytes of data transfer.

As you might expect, the site crushes page speed and performance benchmarks. The site is also hosted in a data center that uses 100% renewable energy.  To learn how and why he built the site, check out his detailed blog post.

While only transferring seven kilobytes of data is commendable, these days, websites are feature-rich. I wonder how practical his methods are for large and complex sites.

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Doc Pop’s News Drop: WordCamp US Call For Speakers

Doc Pop’s News Drop: WordCamp US Call For Speakers

Doc’s WordPress News Drop is a weekly report on the most pressing WordPress news. When the news drops, I will pick it up and deliver it right to you.

WordCamp Europe is only a few weeks away, but we are already thinking about WordCamp US in Nashville. In this week’s video we talk about the latest news with WCEU and WCUS.

WordCamp US call for speakers
WordCamp Europe site
Amazon Translate

Love WordPress news but hate reading? My name is Doc and this is Doc Pop’s News Drop.

WordCamp Europe is only a couple of weeks away? Have you started packing yet? This week we’ll have one final update from Jenny Beaumont the lead organizer of WordCamp Europe, but first:

WordCamp US is 6 months away… whoa… That’s… time is flyig by this year, right?
WordCamp US has put out an open call for speakers and if you are interested you can check out the website https://wcus-speakers.org/ for more details. The deadline for submissions is July 1st, so don’t wait too long.

I’ve always wanted to give a WordCamp talk, but I just can’t figure out what to speak about. If you have any ideas or suggestions, leave them in the comments below. Maybe something about what it’s like to make weekly WordPress cartoons and videos for the past two years? I need a hook though.

Speaking of time flying, we’ve been lucky enough to have Jenny Beaumont sharing exclusive WCEU updates for the past few months and we’ve really appreciated it. Lets check in one more time for WCEU news:

That was the last of Jenny’s weekly video updates, but on next week’s News Drop we’ll have a great interview with here. So stay tuned for that.

One more note, Amazon has announced a brand new product called Amazon Translate. This is a real time translation tool that can be tied in with other products like Amazon Polly, the text to voice app that also has a WordPress plugin. We’ll share a short interview with one of the developers from Amazon Translate later this week, so stay tuned for that.

That’s it for this week’s news drop, do you have an idea for a WordCamp US talk that you’d like to give? Leave it in the comments below and we’ll help workshop it. We’ll see you next week for more WordPress news.

Doctor Popular is an artist and musician living in San Francisco. As a full disclaimer, he is neither a doctor nor popular.

The post Doc Pop’s News Drop: WordCamp US Call For Speakers appeared first on Torque.



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Community Spotlight: James Huff (MacManX)

Community Spotlight: James Huff (MacManX)

Providing support on the WordPress.org forums is one of the easiest ways to contribute to WordPress and those who do are some of the unsung heroes of the project. One of those heroes is James Huff known as MacManX on the forums.

Huff has been supporting users for 13 years and recently celebrated an awesome milestone reaching 50K replies.

In this spotlight, we learn what drives Huff to provide support, what he’s learned, and what users can do to improve the likelihood a support request will be resolved.

What drives your desire to help people with WordPress on the support forums?

I like helping people succeed with WordPress. It’s kind of a legacy for me, because you never know if solving one blocker will lead to a life-changing site or service. If anything, I hope I made a few days better for a few folks.

Any trends or common issues you’ve noticed in the past few months/years?

Nothing out of the ordinary. Plugin and theme conflicts will always be the most common.

What tips or suggestions do you have for users to increase the likelihood of solving their problem?

Try the Health Check plugin first, its Troubleshooting Mode is great!

What lessons have you learned by providing support in the forums?

I learned about almost everything I have done to customize my sites first by helping someone else do it. Overall, I have learned quite a bit about WordPress just by helping other people.

To learn more about James and how he got involved with supporting the WordPress community, watch this presentation by Andrea Middleton from WordCamp Seattle 2017.



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Doc Pop’s News Drop: Hijacked Jetpack Plugins via WordPress.com

Doc Pop’s News Drop: Hijacked Jetpack Plugins via WordPress.com

Doc’s WordPress News Drop is a weekly report on the most pressing WordPress news. When the news drops, I will pick it up and deliver it right to you.

This week we talk about hijacked WordPress.com accounts, WordPress’s 15th birthday, and more WordCamp Europe news.

WordPress Milestones
WordPress Jetpack infection (Wordfence.com)
WordCamp Europe 2018

Love WordPress News but hate reading? My name is Doc and this is Doc Pop’s News Drop.

This week we’ll talk about WordPress’s 15th birthday and WordCamp Europe, but first:

Did you know that even if you are self hosting your own WordPress website, it can still get hacked if your WordPress.com account gets compromised? That’s a lesson I learned the hardway last week when hackers compromised my WordPress.com credentials then installed malicious code and plugins onto my self hosted site via the Jetpack plugin. I always hear people talk about Jetpack being bloated, but I had no idea it could be used to install malware on WordPress.com. I’m usually pretty good at using complex passwords and changing them all on a yearly basis thanks to my password manager tool, but I have to admit my WordPress.com password was from back when security wasn’t quite as big a concern for me. Since I never use WordPress.com, I hadn’t realized it was so out date. Of course I never realized that it had so much access to my personal site too.

If you are running a WordPress site with Jetpack installed, you should probably check and see if your site was compromised too. The easiest way to check is to go to your plugins page and see if there are any unrecognized plugins there. Specifically you should look for one called “pluginsamonsters”. Whether or not that plugin is activated, if you see it in your plugins then your site has been compromised.

Simply removing these plugins will not solve the problem though, so here’s what I would recommend. First off, go to WordPress.com and change your password to something secure and unique, then enable two factor authentification on WordPress.com and on your site, you can install a plugin like Authy for this. Then you’ll need to reach out to your host to see if they can help scan and remove the malicious code from your site. I use WPEngine for my hosting and their support team helped remove the malware for me. If you are running on managed hosting, there’s a good chance this scan has already happened since the “pluginsamonster” hack was reported by WordFence last week. If you aren’t using managed hosting and can’t get support, then try installing a security plugin like WordFence or Sucuri to scan your site and remove the malicious php.

So let that be a reminder to always keep your passwords up to date, use two factor on everything (even on WordPress.com) and maybe reconsider using Jetpack. For more info on this recent hack, check out the great article on WordFence.com which we’ll link in the description.

WordPress turned 15 this weekend? Did you celebrate it? WordPress meetups across the globe celebrated, including the East Bay WordPress group here in the Bay Area. If you missed out on the fun, you can search the hashtag #wp15 to see what happened, and you should also check out our post on TorqueMag.io about the big WordPress milestones in the past 15 years. We’ve also created a spotify playlist featuring all of the jazz musicians whose names have graced various WordPress versions throughout the years.

Speaking of WP15, Jenny Beaumont has another great update about WordCamp Europe, extra WP events in Belgrade, and WP15 celebrations.

Thanks Jenny!

That’s it for this week’s news drop, be sure to check the links in the description for more info on this week’s topics and stay tuned next week for more WordPress News.

Doctor Popular is an artist and musician living in San Francisco. As a full disclaimer, he is neither a doctor nor popular.

The post Doc Pop’s News Drop: Hijacked Jetpack Plugins via WordPress.com appeared first on Torque.



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