This weeks WordPress news – Covering The Week Commencing 29th April 2019:
Plugins / Themes
Not WordPress, but useful anyway…
Transcript (if available)
Nathan Wrigley: 00:00 Hello there. Good morning and welcome to this, the WP Builds weekly WordPress newsletter. This is number 61 and it's covering the WordPress weekly news for the week, commencing on the 29th of April, 2019 and it was published on the 6th of May, 2019 a few things before we begin head over to WP Builds.com the website and use the links at the top. The first one is the subscribe link and it will enable you to get onto our newsletters so that we can keep you updated about this, the podcast, product updates, coupon codes, all of that kind of stuff. You can also join us on our slack channel, our Facebook group. Um, we put everything out on youtube as well. Literally every single piece of content goes out on there. So if that's the way you like to consume things, maybe that's a good thing. And also you can use iTunes and Google podcasts and submit reviews on iTunes and all that good stuff.
Nathan Wrigley: 00:53 The next one that I want to mention is the deals link WP Builds.com forward slash deals it. I keep saying it but I'm going to keep saying it. Basically if you're in the, if you're in the market for some WordPress products, go and check out that page cause we've got coupon codes for absolutely loads of things. If you are a plugin or theme developer and you want to add something on there, just reach out and let me know. WP Builds.com forward slash contribute. If you would like to join me on, I'll be mentioning somebody that did this week but yes, go to there and fill out the form if you'd like to come on and share some experience of something that you did that you think is nice and clever and the last one is forward slash advertise. If you are a product owner and you would like to bring your product to a wider audience, well WP Builds is certainly becoming that and we could put your product on our podcast.
Nathan Wrigley: 01:46 We've got banner ads and we do audio inserts and the audio insert sound a bit like this. The WP Builds newsletter was brought to you today by Kinsta are you tired of unreliable or slow hosting? If so, checkout Kinsta who takes managed WordPress hosting to the next level, powered by the Google cloud platform. All their plans include PHP seven ssh and 24 seven experts support migrate today for free at Kinsta dot com okay, let's get stuck into the news itself. Two items this week under the banner of WordPress core. The first one is over on WordPress.org and it's entitled WordPress 5.2 release candidate two and it is exactly that. WordPress 5.2 is allegedly going to be released into the wild on May the seventh so the day after this podcast episode has gone out, there's not really a lot to say as we're very, very close now to the release dates.
Nathan Wrigley: 02:45 Most of the bugs have been tied up, but there's a couple of track tickets here. The release candidate includes the final about page redesign. It also contains fixes for proper translation of the recovery mode, notification emails, improvements in the way site health, the works with multisite installs. So there we go. That's basically the roundup of that article. The next one is over@WordPress.org again, and this kind of is a nice little article that called the month in WordPress, April, 2019 and if you haven't been listening to these episodes of the WordPress weekly news tots tots, but should you not, you can go back and find out all of the important things that have happened in WordPress over the last month. Just core. So for example, it's got headings for site health check, fatal error recovery mode, privacy and accessibility updates, new dash icons, block editor upgrades. And there we go.
Nathan Wrigley: 03:41 I've mentioned all of those things as well as I should do, but uh, they're all captured in this one page, which is quite nice. It also mentions that on the 11th of May, 2019 so this week, WordPress translation, day four, we'll begin, it's a 24 hour global event dedicated to the translation of all things WordPress from quarter themes plugin to marketing. And you can find that on that page as well. So if that's your thing and you know, multiple languages, it might be a nice project to get stuck into. I said, there was only two articles in WordPress core. I was wrong. There's a third one and this one is over on the WP tavern website. It's entitled Word Campus Gutenberg accessibility audit fines, significant and pervasive accessibility problems. This article written by Sarah Gooding is a, is a summation of all of the Gutenberg accessibility audit, which was begun in January last year.
Nathan Wrigley: 04:37 They, WP campus put out a request to raise some money because it was decided that the, the core team weren't going to carry out an accessibility audit. Slightly later, Matt Mullenweg stepped up and said, actually, we'll pay you the difference. Whatever you find, we'll pay, pay the difference. And so a company called Tenon put together this accessibility report and it's quite damning. Essentially they're saying that it's a step backwards, that it's a very, very long thing. I didn't read it. 300 and 329 pages of technical detail. There's a 34 page executive summary, but basically it's a step backwards now. It was done in January. Things have moved on where I've seen now in May, so about 120 of the issues that were raised have allegedly been stamped out since then. But it the, the report says Gutenberg has significance of pervasive accessibility problems, the likes of which amount to a step backwards for users with disabilities over the legacy editor.
Nathan Wrigley: 05:39 Our userbase testing backed by data from our technical review indicates that the accessibility problems are severe in nature. Uh, what they're saying is if you have accessibility concerns or you have clients basically get them at this point to use the legacy. You know, the classic editor and this will no doubt infuriate those people who said, let's not put Gutenberg out for these exact reasons. A WordPress obviously touts its accessibility credentials, but obviously it's been done. We now need to move on and get the thing updated. Okay. We've got one article today under the banner of community. Those of you who like going to WordCamps, one of the biggest ones, I think it's the second biggest after word Camp Europe is WordCamp us. It is going to be in Saint Louis on November the 1st of November, the third 2019 and tickets are now available. You can, I've linked to the WP tavern website, which then links back out to the place where you can go $50 for attendees.
Nathan Wrigley: 06:41 Um, this whole speaker thing hasn't started up yet, but the dates are all on there. You're allowed to take your children, um, free of charge. And I, I'm not entirely sure whether that means there's going to be things for them to do or you know, do they go around with you? Not entirely sure, but nevertheless, get yourself a ticket soon. They do sell out rather quickly and if you get in quite soon, they have booked out a whole block of Marriott St Louis Grand rooms at a special rate. There's only a few of those. So if you follow this article, you can find the rates for those things is $149 per night, which is a reduction. So if you're going to go and you know you're going to go and you want to get snap up a a good hotel room deal that that might be, it might be the way to go.
Nathan Wrigley: 07:26 Okay. We've got, well I did have three articles. I've paired it down to only two, but they're good about exactly the same thing. I thought it was quite interesting that there were three articles concentrating on the exact same security patch or vulnerability from this week. I've linked to two of them, the first, but the first one is over at Wordfence. The second one is over at threat posts, but I'll only talk about it once because it is only one thing. It's entitled on Wordfence on authenticated media deletion vulnerability patched in WooCommerce checkout and manager plugin. Basically if you are using WooCommerce checkout manager plugin, one of the capabilities that it has is it allows you to, allows people in the checkout process to upload files. Not entirely sure why they would wish to do that, but presumably they would. There's a specific need for that and it means that in this case, because there is a a problem with the plugin, they were able to arbitrarily upload any kind of file, which obviously causes a bit of a problem.
Nathan Wrigley: 08:31 Not only that afterward fence started digging around, they also discovered an on authenticated media deletion floor. So that means that they could basically delete things from your media library, which could be I suppose catastrophic. So the plugin has been updated, go and get the new version. The Wordfence premium users have got this as a firewall rule already, so it's not too much of a, but you know, go and fix it, get it updated if you need to. And like I said, there's a second post on threat to post to that I've linked to as well. Quite a few bits of plugin news this week. And all of these come the plugins and themes. First one is all about genesis feels to me like genesis is kind of lost. It's Mojo. I don't mean that in the sense that it's not working and not brilliant. I mean it in the sense of it doesn't seem to occupy the once revered space that it did.
Nathan Wrigley: 09:22 It's being talked about less. I feel they have a new update, its genesis two point 10 and it's now genesis is now overseen by WP engine and so this is on the WP engine, a website. There are new automations with WP Cli so you can get, I'll read what it says, it says WP genesis setting will retrieve the value of genesis settings. WP genesis setting update. We'll update the value of a genesis setting and WP genesis db version retrieves the current database version. So if you're a developer those hooks might be quite useful to you. It also allows you to access genesis plugins so you can modify the plugins a bit more easily and there's also an update to the whole one click theme set up. In 2.8 they introduced one click setup for themes and they've made it a whole lot better. I think now you can organize which plugins are going to be installed as part of the setup as well.
Nathan Wrigley: 10:22 And they've also began, began the process of putting everything, all of the settings are going to be moved into the WordPress customizer. It's quite an interesting approach at every setting apparently will be moved over. They say Genesis two point 10 we'll begin the process as previously mentioned of moving genesis settings management to the WordPress customizer rather than having their own pages theme and Seo settings will now appear in the customized window with w within WP admin. So there we go. A significant update. The next one is over at buddy press. Um, it's actually an article on WP tavern but it's about body press. We mentioned over the course of WordPress 5.2 coming about, we've got this new site health option which hopefully will stop white screens of death and it will give you some data, some feedback about what has gone wrong if something has gone wrong so that you can go and fix it.
Nathan Wrigley: 11:11 Well Buddy press have stepped up and with body press 5.0 they have integrated a lot of their data into the site health check. So if you go and install this and you've got site health enabled and you are looking at that, it shows you all sorts of data about the, about what capabilities have been enabled by buddy press. Now I'm not really a body press user but it's nice to see somebody doing this. And obviously in the future if you've got a plugin, this is the sort of thing that will become expected. It will be expected that you're giving data over to site health so that should things go wrong. We can see where those problems might lie. So it kind of the first iteration of people stepping up and doing that talk mag have had a plugin madness competition going for four years now.
Nathan Wrigley: 12:01 And whilst you may not agree that it's fair, it is a bit of fun I suppose, you know, comparing um, completely different plugins that do utterly different jobs is a bit of an interesting way of going about it. But there you go. But it is to say that this year after all of the permutations have been calculated element or page builder was this year's winner. Last couple of years, it's been one by wpm you Dev smush plugin and this year it was won by elemental. So I suppose it's just saying congratulations for doing that. We obviously know that it's incredibly popular and this certainly demonstrates that from one page builder to another. Now we're moving on to beaver builder, not beaver builder itself, but an add on called power pack for beaver builder this week. They've got a new update. They had one last week as well, so they're on fire at the minute and it's all about search forms.
Nathan Wrigley: 12:53 The strapline is create stunning search forms with beaver builder. Essentially, if you're a power user, you've now got the capability to customize the way that your search forms look. There's some really nice examples on the web page. They're very elegant and beautiful, so yeah, nice little update from power pack this week. Two articles following about the same thing. The first one is over at lazyblocks.com and the second one is uh, the exact same plugin over on WordPress.org. So you can download it. It say's lazy blocks is a Gutenberg Block of visual constructor. For WordPress developers, you can create custom Meta fields as well as blocks without put html and ad editor controls. So your blocks using drag and drop visual constructor create post templates with predefined blocks. Any post type, it's completely free. You download it looks really nice. It's a nice way of using the block editor to create blocks of your own.
Nathan Wrigley: 13:51 It can be cumbersome and difficult to do that. There's absolutely loads and loads of controls available. Repeater texts, text area, range URL, Password Gallery and code editor and loads more and it's got a few ratings over at wp.org um, 13 five staff, three four star and that's it for now. But um, yeah just if you're using blocks and you want to carry on using the block editor, then this might be a way of creating your own with with less hassle a theme. Now this is generate press generate press premium 1.8 2.0 has now come around. This article is massive because they've really done a great job. This is Tom Usborne who's been on the podcast a couple of times, loads and loads of updates. I'm going to just stick to the headlines. There is a menu, many carts which allows you to put your WooCommerce products at the top right of your website, number of menu items in the cart or shown, so that's in your navigation as well.
Nathan Wrigley: 14:52 Sticky panel to add to cart, so essentially this little sticky panel at the top of your website, sticky out to carp menu available and that drops down as you scroll up. Improved quantity fields, single product image width. Although WooCommerce tweaks, there's about a dozen of those navigation as a header off canvas overlay, mobile header branding, better spacing controls, content separators sites, library redesign, content area with customizer shortcuts, sticky navigation logo and multilanguage elements. So if you're a generate press user and certainly if you've got premium there's absolutely loads coming down the wire in with the next update, go check it out. Last one this week under the banner of plugins and themes. We've got project huddle, 3.3 0.0 beater come out, Andrea Gagnon has been on the podcast a couple of times now and now we've got some new options be to testing. If you are a Beta tester of this plugin then you know you'll know that these are around but it's client login registration without a password so you can now set it up so that the people looking at your project, a little projects will no longer have to login, assign mockup conversions, improved email notification rules and website commenting, performance improvements, so for example, con conditional rendering, lazy loading and so on and so forth.
Nathan Wrigley: 16:18 So yeah, that can be expected soon. As soon as it's finished in beta, it will roll out. We've actually done quite a lot on WP bills this week. The first one I'm going to mention is that we put out our podcast episode, David and I called is web design dead. It was a bit of a click baity title. I don't really think looking back on it that web design is the correct word for this because we were talking about is is agency work, is the work of building websites, is this going to be around for much longer? What with all the wonderful new simple tools, we have a nice discussion about it and we ended up thinking you know as you might expect, no we don't think it is but it's nice discussing all of those processes with David. The other one I'm going to mention is that we did a contribute episode this week with Brandon toll.
Nathan Wrigley: 17:02 It's entitled using gravity forms and Zapier to create gift certificates. These contribute episodes if you're not come across them. I share my screen with you and we do a short visual podcast, a screencast if you like and in this case Brandon told came on and he showed us how we'd connected these things. It's really interesting. A few bits of bespoke PHB so that you can use a gravity form and then generate gift certificate, unique random numbers to put in the gift certificates. It's really good. The last one this week is that we have a webinar with Ben Dell from HeySummit. He's also from missing letter and help shelf. Well, he came on because he's currently selling his HeySummit product over on Appsumo and he came to tell us what it all does. The idea of this SAS product is that if you're running online summit, you can make the whole process run a lot more smoothly.
Nathan Wrigley: 17:51 It's essentially makes things easier. It sends out all of the registration details to your attendees and it sends out all the details to the presenters and creates images and so on and and he explains how the product works. Very interesting. I would say if you've got any, any hope of getting this product now is a good time because it's so cheap on a lifetime deal with appsumo. Okay. We've got three things which are nothing to do with WordPress but are interesting. Anyway, over on search engine journal, Mark Zuckerberg at the f eight conference that they run each year announces a new commerce, sorry, new e commerce and payment platform all built inside whatsapp. And I suppose the idea here is that in the future you'll be able to directly sell products inside of whatsapp. He showed how it works and what it might look like and the idea is that you'll have a whatsapp product catalog.
Nathan Wrigley: 18:43 So it's kind of feels to me like Facebook has got undergoing some changes, some much needed changes. I would say perhaps moving away a little bit from the advertising model and in this case, moving to an ecommerce model. So very, very interesting indeed. The next one is all about the fact that the creative Commons has now got a search engine creative Commons. You can find images and they've got a search engine. Now it's in Bita. It's got 300 million images. I've not used it, so I can't tell you what the quality of those images is, like all where they're sourced from. But the intention here of course is to supply 300 million images that don't have any royalty attached so that you can use them as they are on your clients or your own websites. So it might be worth looking to see if you can find anything for your next web project.
Nathan Wrigley: 19:30 And finally, this is astonishing. I love this. It's a very simple, simple website. It does one thing. It's called colourized.sg and its colour spelled in the English sense of the word with a u in it. And it enables you to take black and white photos and within seconds it will create a colour version of the exact same image. Now I tried it on a few old images that I've got lying around and it was breathtakingly good. And what I mean by that is it just knew that trees should be green and that human faces should be this colour and the clothes ought to be this colour. And it knew, for example, that that this was hay. And so it gave it a hey colour and I did one of a Christmas tree and it knew that tinsel should be bright and sparkly. Absolutely amazing. So if you need to colour some images that are black and whites, goodness knows why you would have to do that.
Nathan Wrigley: 20:21 But there you go. It can now be done that to colourize.sg. Okay, that's all the news we've got for you this week. I hope you found something useful in that the WP Builds newsletter is brought to you by Kinsta can stir, takes managed WordPress hosting to the next level. Powered by the Google cloud platform. Your site is secured like Fort Knox and runs on speed obsessive architecture. You get access to the latest software and developer tools such as PHP seven ssh and staging environments. And the best part, their expert team of WordPress engineers are available 24 seven if you need help. So you can migrate today for free at Kinsta dot com and as I said before, much obliged to Kinsta for helping keep the lights on on the WP Builds podcast. Okay. We'll be back next week with a news bulletin. We'll be back on Thursday. If you want to listen to our regular podcast and we're doing a brand new thing each week. I'm going to be having some people on a live Webinar, three or four guests, so me and two or three other people, and we're going to be talking about the WordPress news. We did one last week with Paul Lacey and Chris Badgett and Kyle van Deusen and it w it was a bit of a hit. Really enjoyed doing it. So we're doing another one this week and hopefully each week from now on, so maybe we'll see you on that live webinar over in the Facebook group. Okay. Thank you for listening. Bye Bye for now.