OUT OF THE BOX

OUT OF THE BOX

20 WordPress Core Functions That Don’t Scale and How to Work Around Them

An interesting list including some very commonly used functions in Wordpress. Some of the comments and advice is specific to Wordpress.com VIP hosting, but it's a useful reference nonetheless.

WordPress comes with a set of core functions that are globally accessible. Most theme and plugin developers rely on these function to extend the functionality of the WordPress framework. There are however a collection of functions that are not necessarily fast when used repeatedly, in other words, they do not scale. Fortunately, Automattic, the company behind the paid VIP WordPress service, has released a set of functions that do not scale properly because they are not cached and possible workarounds around those functions.

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When You Should (and Shouldn’t) Use a WordPress Plugin

Proper testing and risk evaluation are key when deciding whether or not to introduce a plugin into your WordPress site.

The key to effective use of plugins is to deploy them only from properly vetted sources, and only when necessary. Plugins should solve a specific problem or provide an essential function. They should not indulge our vanity or our desire for a “shiny new object”. In this post, let’s get specific and discuss a decision-making framework for a specific type of plugin that can be applied across many different plugins. We’ll focus on a type of plugin that we see often, and whether it’s needed or not — plugins for Google Analytics.

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WordPress 4.8 Improves Accessibility on Admin Screens

As accessibility reaches the foreground of web design and development, more and more users are able to access the web than ever! Increased accessibility surrounding the WordPress Admin screens now means that more and more people are able to manage and use WordPress admin screens!

In WordPress 4.3, the Accessibility Team restored H1 headings to the admin screens. This paved the way for the team to change the headings hierarchy in WordPress 4.4. In WordPress 4.8, admin screens are more accessible thanks to organizing the header text on pages.

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WordPress 4.8 “Evans”

Wordpress 4.8 was released a few days ago. As they've said themselves many of the updates seem fairly minor, but there are some significant improvements to a number of areas. The new option in widgets is certainly one we'll be diving into a bit deeper - we've avoided using widgets in the past due to their inflexibility and lack of user-friendliness, so we're keen to see whether this update means they should find their place back in our toolbox. If you subscribe to our Managed Maintenance service we'll be looking at updating Wordpress to 4.8 for you early in July.

Though some updates seem minor, they’ve been built by hundreds of contributors with you in mind. Get ready for new features you’ll welcome like an old friend: link improvements, three new media widgets covering images, audio, and video, an updated text widget that supports visual editing, and an upgraded news section in your dashboard which brings in nearby and upcoming WordPress events.

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Creating Better, Faster And More Optimized WordPress Websites

There are some great pointers here - such as making sure you have a development version of your site, and using tools like Cloudflare. Definitely worth a read.

There is a reason why WordPress is used by over 28% of all websites on the internet. And that is because it’s a very robust, easy to use and feature rich content management system (CMS). Everyone from stay at home bloggers to fortune 500 companies rely on it every day. Just like with most platforms, if it isn’t properly used or optimized it can turn into a big headache very quickly.

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What is PHP 7 and How to Start Using it With WordPress?

Not sure what php 7 is and why it's important? - Check out this article to find out!

PHP 7 is one of the most significant updates in the history of a server-side software that powers more than 82% of the internet, and, in this guide, we’ll discuss the ins and outs of using it with WordPress.

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How to communicate the value of WordPress website maintenance to your clients

Maintenance is an incredibly important component of running a successful website, here are some key items that'll help you highlight its importance to your clients.

Maintenance as a concept isn’t sexy. Who enjoys maintaining their car, or technical appliances, or even taking their skis for a service after a fantastic ski season. In that case, how can we get excited about offering website maintenance as an additional value to our clients, and better yet how do you explain to them it’s essential to their website’s success.

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WordPress Plugin Directory Redesign: Why So Many People Feel Their Feedback Was Ignored

If you've been to the Wordpress Plugin Directory in the last couple of weeks you will have noticed it's been completely revamped, and there are many users who aren't happy with the changes. This article provides an interesting insight into the process of the rebuild, particularly around the way that feedback was managed.

Many of the issues ... are known and have been known for months. While it may seem like a lot of people are suddenly complaining and didn’t participate in the feedback loop, it’s important to look back to see how the plugin directory redesign reached this point.

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Save time, not money

Sometimes spending money can provide you with the opportunity to free up your time and allow you to spend it in places that will return a stronger investment. This article is a great example of this concept in action!

We humans are inherently flawed when it comes to money. If it’s a new iPhone or a pair of sunglasses, we’ll dish out $500 in a heartbeat. But if you ask $40 for a year of managed WordPress hosting, a lot of people will look at you like you’ve just insulted their grandma’s crochet skills. WordPress is fantastic because you can find so much for free, but at the same time it spoiled us. We expect fully functional themes and plugins to be free, with stellar support that has nothing better to do than to solve our every inane issue.

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Improve the WordPress Editor by Contributing to the Gutenberg Project

Wordpress is in the process of completely rewriting the editor - i.e. the way that you write your post content. The goal is to make it far more user-friendly and easier to build richer content using a "block"-based approach. Early signs are good, though we wonder how well the new editor will play with themes that are based on various responsive frameworks like Zurb Foundation or Bootstrap. Either way it's certainly a space to watch over the coming months!

WordPress is used by more than 27 percent of the entire internet. The editor plays a huge role in the overall usability of the CMS and the future of it will influence its adoption.

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How Many WordPress Plugins is Too Many? The Answer Might Surprise You

This article makes a very good point - in the majority of cases it's not the raw number of plugins that impact your site's performance or security, but which plugins you use. Of course, the more plugins you have the higher the chances that you'll have one that can cause problems - but if you select carefully (and keep them up to date!) you can run as many plugins as you want with minimal impact.

If you’ve used WordPress for a while, I’m sure someone has told you that you “shouldn’t use too many plugins”. It’s obvious – using too many plugins will slow your WordPress site down, right?

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Disable Comments Without Deleting Them (WordPress)

For those looking for information on disabling comments on WordPress - check out this article.

I have recently discovered how difficult it is to temporarily remove all comments site wide, without deleting these comments forever. This website receives a massive number of comments; a huge number that are spam, a large number that are real (but do not add to the conversation, or the article as a whole), and a small number that are generally insightful and create conversation. The management of these comments take up a large number of man hours, and I am simply unsure whether my time is justified.

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WordPress SEO Checklist – 45 Tips for 2017

A very thorough look at how to make your Wordpress site the most search engine-friendly it can be. While there are some points there that are out of most site owners' control (and that's where we come in), so much of SEO is about content - and that ball is firmly in the owners' court.

SEO, or search engine optimization, is the methods and or strategies used to rank a website and content higher in search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo, to result in more organic traffic. There are really two sides to SEO, the first is the technical part of it and the second can sometimes be more of a natural branding play among online businesses.

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Wordpress Plugin Guideline Change

A couple of major updates have just been made to the guidelines for plugins listed in the Wordpress plugin directory. If you're a plugin author, you should definitely check them out to make sure you're not going to have any problems. If you're not a plugin author you may not need to understand the details, but you should still care - because these changes will hopefully mean less potential security and compatibility issues down the track.

While minor updates to the guidelines (with regard to spelling, grammar, etc) are common, major changes are rare and we are striving to be more transparent about them. Hence this post

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Hooks, Line, and Sinker: WordPress’ New WP_Hook Class

Even if you're an experienced developer, this article may make your head spin - but it's a fascinating insight into a major update to one of the most central parts of the Wordpress core.

One of the bigger changes introduced in WordPress 4.7 is that there is a new WP_Hook class. This new class is now used to handle all the internal hooks within WordPress core. It’s kind of a big deal.

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W3Techs Ranks WordPress as the Fastest Growing CMS of 2016

Not only does Wordpress far outstrip its competitors in terms of pure market share, but for the last 7 years it has also been the fastest-growing Content Management System - meaning that its lead is growing all the time. Wordpress is used on more sites than every other CMS combined, and more than 1 in 4 of all web sites (including those that don't use a CMS) use Wordpress.

W3Techs ranks WordPress as the fastest growing content management system with 58.5% market share.

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WordPress Multisite: Practical Functions And Methods

Making site management that much easier

Multisite is a powerful new feature that arrived with the release of WordPress 3.0. It allows website managers to host multiple independent websites with a single installation of WordPress. Although each “website” in a network is independent, there are many ways to share settings, code and content throughout the entire network. Since the beginning of the year, I’ve been developing themes and plugins for a WordPress Multisite-powered content network. During that time I’ve learned many powerful tips and tricks unique to Multisite. This guide will introduce you to a few Multisite-specific functions, along with real-world programming examples that you can begin using today. Hopefully, it will open your eyes to a few of the new possibilities available in Multisite.

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Sucuri Review

Is your website secure from hackers?  We recommend Sucuri. Sucuri Inc is a reputable, globally-recognized company that offers website security software and services to business of all sizes around the world.

Worried about hackers bringing down your site, or spreading malware to your visitors? Then you need a security plugin to keep your site safe. Sucuri is the leading name is software security, and their security plugin for WordPress is among the most popular. Find out if Sucuri is right for your website in our Sucuri review.

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