It’s Friday and we could probably all use a little more positivity in our lives, especially on social media. Morten Rand-Hendriksen recently asked his followers on Twitter how WordPress has changed their lives. Here are a couple of the responses that stood out to me.
As a beginner web designer, who was struggling to find a job/work, WordPress opened the door to web development and enabled me to offer clients control over their websites. That was nearly 10 years ago and I’ve been building with WP ever since.Keith Devon
I graduated in 2008 right into the thick of the recession. No jobs, nothing – the only way I could put food on the table and pay rent was to build WordPress sites for people. This led to my entire career in UX design, and my life would be very very different without WordPress.Scott Sullivan
Here’s one you won’t expect. I was in an agency job I hated. I had an interview with Automattic and failed. Devastated, it forced me to look at what I really wanted. I now have my own consultancy.Chris Taylor
I’d been working in the social field for more than 30 years. In 2015 I had to change and decided to work in the digital world. I casually met the Turin Meetup community and joined them. Then I started to contribute to the Polyglots team. Now, I’m one of the Italian GTELaurasacco
I’d been working for a hosting company and noticed how many of our users were enjoying it. Decided to go to WordCamp in 2008. The software was great, but the community was what really drew me in. I’ve been using WordPress in my career ever since then.Ms. Velda
Made a WP website for a friend, then another, then someone who paid me… Today is 6 years and 120 clients later.
#WCSEA and specifically @adspedia reminded me that WordPress is about the inspiring people I meet at so many occasions. Beautiful minds & souls who inspired me to build a new and better life 2 years ago. It’s way more than software and individual ego.Carole Olinger
I started by own consultancy doing WordPress for nonprofits straight out of college. Somehow, I’m still here and still loving it almost a decade later. Meetups and WordCamps (#wcsea!) were so crucial to my learning, developing as a speaker, and networking.Mark Root-Wiley
I started working with #WordPress in 2012 after my business was sold out from under me by a ‘partner’. I ended up losing everything. Developing WordPress sites contributed to getting my Family out of debt, back on our feet. @Mor10 you’ve been an inspiration along the way…Damian Saunders
There’s always a lot happening in the WordPress ecosystem and every once in awhile, it’s nice to step back to see how this software, which is used by millions of people across the world, is impacting lives.
I highly encourage you to read the thread in its entirety. If you’d like to read similar, more in-depth content, check out HeroPress. HeroPress publishes inspirational essays from members of the community once a month.
We are more than happy to announce that November brings new long-awaited updates and features to the Sooperthemes products! In this September's Sneak Peek blog post we talked about introducing an interface for site administrators to create user profiles that limit elements, buttons and CKEditor toolbar items a user sees in the Glazed Builder interface. This feature is now LIVE and ready-to-use. Moreover, new documentation is available and can be found on our Help Center page. Last but not least - Automatic Product Installation is back in business!Glazed Builder User Profiles
Take content authoring one step further with the new User Profiles feature. Site administrators can now limit what users with specific Drupal roles get to see in the Glazed Builder Interface. Profiles give you total control over who has access to specific Glazed Builder elements, Drupal blocks, views display and CKEditor buttons. We made profiles into configuration entities, therefore they are also exportable in both Drupal 8 and Drupal 7 - this could be achieved by using the feature module.
To set up a new Glazed Builder Profile go to Configuration>Content Authoring on your Drupal administration panel and select Glazed Builder. By clicking "+Add Glazed Builder Profile" button we are now able to configure a new User Profile based on: Roles, Glazed elements, Drupal blocks, Views, CKEditor buttons (inline & modal editing).
We are continuously working towards making Sooperthemes products easy and convenient to use. On our Documentation page you are going to find 30 new tutorials explaining how every Glazed Builder element works. In the near future, short explanation videos are going to be added to each docs page. Longer video tutorials with the focus on how to build complete Drupal websites with Sooperthemes' products are on their way to our YouTube channel as well!Automatic Product Installation
Our free installation service has been refactored to be compatible with Drupal 8 and is now back online! You can install complete Sooperthemes demo websites on your a2hosting or other SSH/Drush capable web-server. All you have to do is head over to Automatic Hosting Installation Service page, and choose:
- The Drupal version you want to install (Drupal 8 or Drupal 7)
- The Glazed Demo of your choice
- Fill in the form for your automatic webhosting installation
- Grab a tea or coffee and watch your website come to life in under 5 minutes
We listen to our customers and actively seek out advice on how we can improve the experience with Sooperthemes products. Thanks to your input on Sooperthemes Support Forum we were able to fix several issues that some users might have encountered. Also expanded the features for some Glazed Builder elements.
- Fixed a bug where mobile automatic playback for full screen videos wouldn't work properly
- Better Pantheon hosting: fixed an issue where images wouldn't load properly on Pantheon dev environment
- Fixed an issue where a "Data you have entered may not be saved" error would appear when leaving a Saved page
- Fixed an issue where a section with a video background disappears on small screens
- Added additional options to the background video player for disabling playback on mobile devices
- Added additional options to the background video player for showing player controls
- Added a new option for aligning breadcrumbs
- Added an option to "not play video on mobile"
- Added an option for adding styles to Glazed Builder text editor
For more details on the latest update check out the CHANGLOGS:
WordPress’ Accessibility team will be hosting a hackathon at Contributor Day on Sunday, December 9, at WordCamp US in Nashville. The team will be joined by lead developers from Deque Systems, a widely respected accessibility firm in the industry, with the goal of setting up automated accessibility testing for WordPress core.
The event has been in planning since JSconf EU 2018 in June when Jenny Wong met with Caitlin Cashin from Deque. They discussed how Deque could help WordPress with their accessibility expertise at WordCamp US. Rian Rietveld worked with Aaron Campbell, who is organizing the WCUS contributor day, to put the hackathon in motion.
Deque’s site is built on WordPress and the company specializes in helping teams get hooked up with automation tools. The company created aXe, an open source library and testing engine that can be customized to integrate with all modern browsers and testing frameworks. Deque open sourced aXe in 2015 and the team was invited to contribute the library to the W3C WAI Evaluation and Repair Tools Working Group, when the group worked to develop a normative set of rules for evaluating WCAG 2.0 conformance.
Deque is volunteering their lead developers to help WordPress make improvements to its development workflow. The company has hosted similar hackathons in the past.
“By focusing primarily on projects with broad adoption, accessibility fixes have potential to trickle down to every website or web application including that library,” Deque Developer Advocate Marcy Sutton said after the 2017 aXe hackathon in San Diego. “Ultimately, this kind of work will have the most impact on the lives of people with disabilities, as it contributes to the creation of a more accessible workplace environment. A more accessible web also means a better user experience for everyone, part of the reason why digital accessibility is so important.”
In order for the hackathon at WordCamp US to be successful, Deque will need to connect to contributors who can collaborate on setting up automated testing.
“From the WordPress side we would like to invite core developers to join in and help find solutions to set this up,” Accessibility Team rep Jean-Baptiste Audras said. He and contributor Rachel Cherry will be representing the accessibility team during the hackathon and they need help from core committers who know their way around the automated testing system in WordPress core. Audras also said the team will need help from Gutenberg contributors.
“The tools can/will provide automated tests for the block editor since it’s based on testing the DOM (Document Object Model) of each admin screen generated by WordPress,” he said. “But we have to build it together with the people involved in Gutenberg to see how we can handle it the best way.”
Audras said the Gutenberg phase 2 release leads have already been in touch with the accessibility team and communication across teams is improving.
“If we find a technical solution, there should ideally not be technical problems to implement it,” Audras said. “As usual, it will be a question of priority and communication. I am confident that Gutenberg developers will be interested to add some automated checks to the Gutenberg stack.”
Audras said he doesn’t know when the automated tests for accessibility will be operational but he believes they will be very helpful in the future, especially in cases where new releases are being put out quickly. Anyone interested to contribute to the effort can get in touch on WordPress Slack’s #accessibility channel.
From the vantage point of a school, some of the features that prove its greatness are a library with a superabundance of books, science laboratory with advanced scientific instruments, projection with 3D technology and so on. Today, where almost everything is happening through the internet, the education sector is not left far behind. E-learning platforms have taken the world by storm with its unprecedented provisions of online learning. And E-learning platforms need great features as well to be able to disseminate knowledge across multiple channels efficaciously.
A lot of significant features can spring up in your mind that you think should be in an e-learning platform. It can be tons of courses on a plenitude of subjects for the learners. Or it can be digital certifications that can be provided for a successful completion of a course. Drupal comes with some amazing set of modules to essential features of an e-learning platform. Let’s look at some of the important features and see how Drupal has the answer for that.
Modern learners are infatuated with the notion of getting a top-quality education and love to choose from an extensive list of courses on an e-learning platform. Some of the Drupal modules that can be helpful in creating courses include:
Course module lets you build e-learning courses with any number of tracked requirements for completion. It allows any content type to be used as an e-learning course comprising of graded or ungraded course subjects. It offers course object API for defining learning objects that can be added to a workflow.
For assigning and mapping credit types to learner profiles and courses, Course Credit module is useful. On successful completion of an activity, online learners will be able to receive or claim credit for which they are eligible.
To expose Course module as a Course object, Course relationships module is effective which allows parent courses to include sub-courses. It can grant access to sub-courses by enrolling into or purchasing a parent course.Quiz
Through online tests and quizzes, an instructor can track the progress of students and analyse the effectiveness of the curriculum. Simultaneously, it paves the way for the students to track their own progress and improve their skills accordingly.
Quiz module allows you to build graded analytics in Drupal where a quiz is given as a series of question and the answers are, then, stored in the database. During or after the quiz, the scores and results are displayed. Administrators can also provide automatic or manual feedback. This module can be leveraged as an object in a larger Learning Management System (LMS) or a supplemental classroom activity.Certification
Skills and certification tracking is one of the important features of an e-learning platform.
Certificate module helps in creating and awarding PDF certificates with the help of tokenised HTML templates. It provides the interface for governing custom certificate templates and mappings and allows integration with Wysiwig for rich certificates.
Open badges, which are digital images are used to recognise an individual’s skills and achievements, can be created with Drupal. Open digital badging module helps in providing a Mozilla OBI compliant badge empowered by the learning system.
To create badges earned by students on their successful completion of a course or a class, Opigno Mozilla Open Badges App module lets you integrate Opigno LMS with Mozilla Open Badges. In this, badges will be exhibited in the user profile and can be automatically synchronised with Mozilla Backpack.Social learning/ Message boards
E-learning platforms should allow students to learn from one another
Modules like Opigno Messaging and Opigno Forum, which are related to Opigno LMS distribution, govern the private messaging feature to let users share messages between them. It allows you to select a list of recipients and start a discussion thread with the selected users. It is worth noting that these modules are not covered by Drupal’s security advisory policy.
Social Login and Social Share modules eliminate the need of creating a username and password by allowing you to log in using the social network sites and helps in sharing the content with your network.Consistent instructor presence
The role of the instructor is significant in e-learning as he or she is instrumental in encouraging and inspiring the students.
Opigno instructor-led training module helps in implementing instructor-led training (ILT) entity. It can be added to learning paths in combination with online modules and virtual classrooms. ILT sessions let you register attendance of users and provide them with a grade. These sessions can be made mandatory in the learning path and are automatically added to the user’s calendar. Also, note that this module is not covered by Drupal’s security advisory policy.A well-designed LMS
A streamlined and a well-designed LMS means that it should be easy to navigate, well-organised, and must contain high-quality content.
The LTI Tool Provider module allows a Drupal site to act as a Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI) Tool in any LMS that supports the LTI standard. LTI compliant LMSs include Angel, Blackboard Learn, Moodle, and Sakai. Please note that this module is not covered by Drupal’s security advisory policy.
Kaltura module helps in integrating the Kaltura video platform capabilities into Drupal thereby allowing you to instantly enrich your Drupal site with video, audio, and images.
Chamilo integration module allows integration of Drupal with Chamilo LMS by offering ways to see Chamilo resources into Drupal blocks.
Would love to have a starter kit for building the LMS? Open LMS distribution, which is developed and actively maintained by OpenSense Labs, is a learning management system based on Drupal 8 that comes with robust features.
Open LMS offers numerous kinds of content type like textual study material, video lectures, documents that can be utilised as a course material for students. Also, it lets you add H5P, HTML5 based interactive video content type, to the course.
Moreover, it provides a quiz and subjective test functionality, assignment functionality powered by Webforms, and calendar functionality to schedule courses. Please note that Open LMS is not covered by Drupal’s security advisory policy.Conclusion
E-learning platforms have changed the landscape of education. And Drupal as an open source software and a robust content store helps in innovatively build an efficient e-learning platform.
Some of the significant features have been discussed in this blog post that is fulfilled by Drupal’s incredible set of modules. OpenSense Labs has been powering digital experience dreams of its partners with its expertise in Drupal development.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to build a great e-learning platform with Drupal.
Although Drupal has reputation for being a developers' platform, lots of user rely on Drupal's admin area for key tasks.
For typography in Drupal sites, the best way to change your site's fonts via the admin is a module called @font-your-face
The @font-your-face module allows you to work with webfonts like Google Fonts or Font Squirrel. It also provides the ability to work with paid font services like Typekit or fonts.com.
In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to configure and use this module in Drupal 8.
When the whole world works on the simple facet of fellowship how can the healthcare industry not constitute to the same concept?
Development and marketing collaborations between the healthcare organizations and web development agencies can be mutually beneficial. Whether your healthcare organization is built on Drupal or if you are looking for redesign and new prospects with Drupal, there are a number of things that have to be kept in mind, and if the main agenda is to collaborate, a series of questions have to be answered.
Reasons Why the Healthcare Industry Should Choose Drupal
What is it about Drupal that makes leading healthcare organizations chose this platform? How has Drupal evolved to help healthcare organizations serve better to their patients?
- Web Accessibility
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 commands that all the websites should be accessible to everyone regardless of their age, ability, or a combination of technology and ability. With the release of Drupal 7, the Drupal community is committed to providing universal accessibility not just for the end users but for the developers too.Web accessibility is the comprehensive practice of guaranteeing interaction with, or access to the web, for all the people irrespective of their abilities.
Flexible and fully customizable theming, and features make it possible for Drupal sites to meet WCAG accessibility and section 508 requirement. Some of the web accessibility features may include:
- The provision of HTML5, which provides new and better semantic components that tell the browser and assistive technologies about the type of content coming forward, and how the complementary information provided (HTML) is related to the content.
- The provision of “Drupal.announce()”, a method which helps the pages update in a non-visual manner.
- Without breaking the tab order in local navigation flow, Drupal directs non-visual and non-mouse users to access prime element on the page in a logical order. With its tabbing manager, Drupal defines tab orders explicitly for keyboard users.
- Other Drupal web accessibility modules such as text resize, style switcher, alt text, CKEditor abbreviation, high contrast, it makes it easy to make a universal user-friendly website.
- Drupal also uses fieldsets which give a visual diagram around the field gathering. It breaks the form into subsections, making it easier to understand for visually impaired people.
The Drupal accessibility handbook and theming guidelines ensure that the Drupal themers are well aware of the best practices while they are building their website. themes
- Third-Party Integration
The ability of Drupal to integrate with third-party applications is the primary building block of generating a robust functional system. Making the task easy for developers, seamless third-party integration allows a bonus for marketing strategic stand too.Integrating Drupal with an EHR system
The Electronic Health Record (EHR) system is steadily gaining its ground in the healthcare industry. Used for electronically storing up data of the patients in the digital format it offers a completely new level of playing field for both the patients and providers.
Bestowing the physicians with faster access to the medical records, EHR avoids errors and minimizes the cost which is associated with paperwork.
Drupal, when integrated with an EHR keeps the data protected at all times and prevents duplicacy of the content, while still permitting the user to interact with the view and input the information which is necessary for the role.
It securely shares the information with patients and other clinicians assisting providers more efficiently diagnose patients, reduce medical errors, and provide safer care
Some of the most adopted EHR systems in use that can be integrated with Drupal are NueMD e-MD, PHI etc.
- Mobile first design
Around 61.2% of the worldwide population is indulged in the use of a smartphone, and in such an innovative environment the manipulation of mobile compatible websites is hard to ignore upon.
Incorporated with mobile friendly themes which is suitable for any screen size, Drupal works well for almost all devices which include iPhone, iPad, Android, and even blackberry. There is no doubt that having a medical based mobile website armed with all relevant information to target a diverse group of people and partners is a profitable mechanism for every medical organization.
Drupal makes it easy for users to have a better mobile experience on healthcare websites. The mobile first designs let them set up online profiles, helps them in maintaining records, and other medical practices.
According to HIPAA Journal, there have been about 2,181 healthcare data breaches (2009-2017) involving more than 500 records.
Healthcare industry is massively reliant on technology these days, not just the hardware to cure illnesses, but also when it narrows down to send, retrieve, and store data.
Drupal’s lockdown security and publishing of detailed security reports have been a major shield to the organizations. With the evolution in the Drupal system, the platform has conquered a huge reputation for its security and robust performance. Hospital websites store an ample number of data, records, reports, digital assets in their database.
The modules and extensions are provided with a layer of extra security to the website, marking Drupal a highly secure CMS.
Not only this, but Drupal also contributes to resolving security issues that are supported by the security advisor. It also offers help for contributing module maintainers in fixing security issues.
- Multilingual feature
With medical tourism getting popular and healthcare technology advancing sparingly forcing people to look for better medical assistance across various parts of the globe. It is not uncommon to encounter patients who speak a language other than English.
To expand the access to people across the globe in healthcare, Drupal grants 4 easy modules to translate the website into more than 94 languages providing healthcare websites a better scope of communication with the patients. It is also easy to build a custom language not available in Drupal.
- Better user experience and engagement
Medical healthcare websites are often used by people in distress. And if operations, like finding the right health care provider, or finding medical records, and paying bills, should be tough and unintuitive, it would leave people more frustrated.
In fact, Google tells us that website speed has a great impact on how people perceive it. Therefore engagement through media features and at the same time uninterrupted communication online with faster loading is important.
With an excellent array of modules, Drupal 8 has to be the right choice for creating an engaging user-friendly website in the healthcare sector. Over the past few years, Drupal has evolved to be more flexible and better for technical as well as non-technical users, presenting a customizable administration dashboard and responsive web designs.
Drupal lets the user personalize the website in a way they desire. Acquia Lift Connector, Drupal module, offers integration with the Acquia Lift service with an improved user experience for personalisation.Important Factors to Look for in a Drupal Partner
Now that organizations have started using Drupal as their CMS to revamp or build their organization’s website, the next step would involve choosing up of Drupal vendors.
Every Drupal vendor is different and posses a unique set of skills, thus choosing the right partner makes it important. This can be done by checking some vital factors which can include:
Points to remember
The organization has enough experience and capabilities to manage projects of healthcare
Experience with diverse business verticals to prove its worth.
Look out for reference and portfolios
Verify the ranking on Drupal.org Marketplace
Monitoring and Processing
Ask for case studies for its previous clients.
Look out for the credentials of the technical team.
Verifying about the site performance
Enquire about the development plan and ways to improve it
Check their knowledge on best practices.
Maintenance and technical support
Robust customer support service for regular updates and maintenance services.
Things to Remember Before Choosing a Drupal Partner
- Do they have the right amount of healthcare experience?
Every healthcare marketing agency has creative resources available in their vanity, but only an experienced partner adds up to the plans, solutions and original thinking.
Thus, no matter if the firm has beaten up with high-quality challenges or low-key struggles, every potential partner should have capabilities of providing solutions, and it can only be done when that potential partner has knowledge and experience of solving the health-related travails.
Patients expect a very specific functionality in the health website, from providing directories to patients reports, it becomes really important to find a partner that is able to build modules and timely update them.
Not only this but healthcare organization are apprehended to follow HIPAA compliance guidelines which protect individuals' medical records and other personal health information. The healthcare industries can’t afford to take risks when it comes to HIPAA and PCI compliance.
One wrong or missed encryption and the company's reputation is put under the radar. Which is not only bad for the branding but also violates the rules. Therefore, demanding experience to be an important factor.
- Do they have an adequate content strategy?
Content strategy is important to all the healthcare websites. It is important to team up with the partner that would help you to organize your site in a way that clearly reflects the main objectives of the visitors.
There is a need of a partner with an agency that will help to organize the site content in a manner that is clearly reflected on the visitor’s objectives, and build out the information architecture in Drupal.
Drupal’s content model can be complicated if the user is not familiar with the platform. If you operate with an experienced strategist that would help you to see the long-term vision before you start adding content into Drupal, it will help in the long run.
- Do the goals and services match?
A true healthcare organization partners should deliver greater cerebral and inventive values. Which includes the delivery and projection of the agendas. How to conquer it?
Have a serious talk about money management.
Many firms work on a plan to meet or exceed the possible budget. However, a partner minded organization has a cost-effective way of meeting or exceeding goals. The aim is to construct a strong measure of results, outcomes, and high return-on-investment.
- Do they have a plan for performance measurement?
Every organization would have projects with a certain goal. Here, it becomes an important factor for you to know how does your potential partner measure the scale of performance towards that goal?
Benchmarking is the term which is used to compare the current performance and the overall standard. Every Drupal based agency measures and quantifies the results based on the - manual page. It describes various methods to measure the performance of the web server, allowing you to witness the performance and even improve it for the future.
Performance measurement can also be analyzed with the help of Performance Bucket model. This model helps in making the detect-triage-diagnose process more efficient.
Applications insights is a service that lets the developers monitor the performance, availability, and usage of the entire applications. It becomes an essential part of the application lifecycle.
As mentioned above, a user tends to abandon a website if it doesn’t load after 3 seconds, and when it comes to healthcare websites, loading time becomes an important factor. Having a predefined performance budget would allow you to enforce better results.
Your long-term potential partner should be induced by a good design team and development cycles which would help in maintaining the value limits that takes care of the website performance. Performance Budget is one such design and development which would help the user to establish and maintain the culture of an organization, helping them to deliver a smooth.
- Long-term partnership
It is true that Drupal healthcare websites are quite amazing but on the other hand, they are big and complex. Thus, make sure that you pick an organization that would be there to support you even after the procedure of website-went-live is done. A long-term partner is needed if the custom modules built on the website requires regular updates and security patches.
- What methodologies and tools do they use to manage their project?
Drupal has several modules several distribution and modules developed to perform several project management functions. A clearer idea on which methodology is right for what project contributes to the desired goals in the end. There are several project management frameworks which should be used by an organization to build a successful project. Agile frameworks like:
Produce Market Guide is a product of a Farm Journal which shares information on fresh fruits and vegetables. The advanced search feature on the website was slow, which resulted in a poor user experience.
To fulfill the needs and the standards of loading time, the site was mapped and decoupled with the Elastic search. The new website now is a lot user-friendly with search application and better loading result. Because of the third party integration like Kibana and Logstash, the admin can now track the user behavior and personalize the user experience. The project was completed within a month which followed the principles of SCRUM and AGILE with team fluidly arranging the needs accordingly.Future of Healthcare Marketers using Drupal
As an organization, the requirements are bound to change from time to time and using a single vendor or a specific partner can sometimes be the hindrance. This is a common scenario in healthcare industries. Fortunately Drupal makes a lot of things easy for healthcare marketers or organizations.It prevents everyone from getting caught up with a single vendor
Drupal exponential growth in the healthcare industry has been rapidly increasing. With the healthcare industry in the third position of top 10 industries using Drupal, it continues to grow mature.
High profile hospitals like C.S Mott Children’s Hospital, Duke medicine, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Northwest medicine etc has further elevated Drupal’s profile. It’s these types of reputed organizations with a progressive digital team which tells us that Drupal has a bright future in the healthcare sector.Conclusion
The Drupal platform is an open source CMS, there are many agencies around the country that have developers familiar with Drupal. Having developers who are familiar with Drupal isn’t the same as having a team that understands the inherent complexity of healthcare websites.
OpenSense Labs believes in providing the best Drupal partnership for you. Contact us at email@example.com for a rich and conducive partnership.
BLT (Build and Launch Tool) provides an automation layer for testing, building, and launching Drupal 8 applications. It is the default recommended tool used by Acquia Professional Services.
We use BLT in Professional Services to sync databases, manage configurations, create artifacts for deployments, and tons of other things that -- most of the time -- save us time. If you have not tested it yet I’d recommend you to have a look: https://github.com/acquia/blt
DDEV, on the other hand, is a Docker-based, open source tool that helps you to quickly spin up a (local) environment in applications like Wordpress; Drupal 6, 7 and 8; Backdrop, and Typo3. Have a look at https://github.com/drud/ddevTags: acquia drupal planet
BP 4.0.0 Release Candidate 1 is now available. This package contains the code that we think we’ll ship as BuddyPress 4.0.0 later in November. If you build BuddyPress plugins or themes, you’re encouraged to give the RC a thorough look in a test environment.
Important changes in 4.0.0 include:
- BuddyPress data exporters (for WP 4.9.6+), including a new ‘Export Data’ Settings subtab, where users can request an export from the front end
- Improvements to Nouveau and other BP interfaces on mobile devices
- Bug fixes for emails, Nouveau, BP’s nav tools
- Improved compatibility with WP 4.9.x and 5.0
See the 4.0.0 milestone for more info.
Download the 4.0.0 release candidate from wordpress.org: https://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/buddypress.4.0.0-RC1.zip. As always, remember that this is pre-release software, and we don’t recommend running it on a production site.
WordPress 5.0 Beta 5 is now available!
This software is still in development, so we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version.
Reminder: the WordPress 5.0 release date has changed. It is now scheduled for release on November 27, and we need your help to get there. Here are some of the big issues that we’ve fixed since Beta 4:Block Editor
The block editor has been updated to match the Gutenberg 4.4 release, the major changes include:
- A permalink panel has been added to the document sidebar to make it easier to find.
- Editor document panels can now be programmatically removed.
- The uploading indicator for images and galleries has been replaced with a spinner and faded out image.
- The text and code editing blocks will now use the full width of the editor.
- Image handling has been improved. Images now take up the right amount of space for themes with wider editors (like Twenty Nineteen).
- Hover styles are now correctly disabled for mobile devices.
- The i18n module has been refactored to benefit from significant performance gains.
Additionally, there have been some pesky bugs fixed:
- Better handling for links without an href attribute, which were showing as undefined.
- Japanese text (double byte characters) are now usable in the list block.
- Better handling for different text encodings (e.g. emoji) within a block in block validation.
A full list of changes can be found in the Gutenberg 4.4 release post.
The final known PHP 7.3 compatibility issue has been fixed. You can brush up on what you need to know about PHP 7.3 and WordPress by checking out the developer note on the Make WordPress Core blog.
- Add .button class support.
- Fix editor font-weights for headings.
- Improve support for sticky toolbars in the editor.
- Improve text-selection custom colors for better contrast and legibility.
- Fix editor to prevent Gutenberg’s meta boxes area from overlapping the content.
Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!
If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.
WPTavern: Full Gutenberg Compatibility Coming Soon to Automattic’s Free Themes on WordPress.org, Including Storefront for WooCommerce
If your site is hosted on WordPress.com and you are trying out the new Gutenberg editor, there are currently 24 themes with full Gutenberg support available and more on the way. In response to questions about how to find Gutenberg themes on WordPress.com, Automattic’s Theme Team has given an update about the status of the .com themes, as well as the company’s free themes on WordPress.org.
There is currently no way to search for Gutenberg-ready themes on WordPress.com themes because there is no filter set up for this. However, the team said users should not any experience any issues with themes breaking with the new editor:
All existing themes should still work with Gutenberg. At worst styles in the editor might not exactly match styles on the site itself, and styling for individual blocks might cause conflicts if the theme treats that type of content in a specific way. But that is true of all WordPress themes, not just the ones on WordPress.com.
Users can activate any theme they want with Gutenberg. The new editor is not going to break any themes, but a theme does need to add support for users to take advantage of specific features like wide alignments and block color palettes. Gutenberg-ready themes also include editor styles to ensure a consistent editing experience between frontend and backend.
Automattic is also working to bring some of those updates from its current set of Gutenberg-ready themes to its free themes hosted on WordPress.org. The company has 109 themes in the directory, which have cumulatively been downloaded more than 17 million times. The majority of its more popular themes fall into the business category, such as Dara (10K active installs), Argent (10K), Edin (6K), and Karuna (5K). Several of these themes are already Gutenberg-ready with the code available on GitHub.
Storefront is by far Automattic’s most popular free theme on WordPress.org with 200,000+ installs and is well on its way towards being ready to support Gutenberg’s new features. Development towards this goal is happening on GitHub. Users can run beta versions of the Storefront theme ahead of time using the Storefront Beta Tester plugin.
In this episode, John James Jacoby and I discuss the news of the week. We talk about the delayed release of WordPress 5.0 and which day would be a suitable release date. We share our opinions on Matt’s answers from his Q&A appearance at WordCamp in Portland, Oregon. We also talk about the changes in WordPress core development, Automatticians in leadership roles, and last, but not least, WordCamp budgeting.Stories Discussed:
Next Episode: Wednesday, November 21st 3:00 P.M. Eastern
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It's almost time for NEDCamp, and I can't wait!
Redfin will be presenting a session there on our toe-dipping foray into the world of "progressively decoupling" Drupal.
This is Part 2 of a three part series about choices you can make with the news of Drupal 9’s release. Part 1 is an overview. Part 2 is what to do if you choose to stay on Drupal 7. Part 3 is what to do it you choose to upgrade to Drupal 8.
With the recent news of the release date of Drupal 9, and that Drupal 7 & 8 will be end of life Nov 1, 2021, our Director of Engineering Kat White wrote Part 1 of a blog post series with an overview of how you should next approach your Drupal site . . . is it best to stay on Drupal 7? Or should I upgrade now to Drupal 8?
In that article, Kat outlined the pros and cons of going from D7 to D9, or upgrading now to D8.
In Part 2 of this series, let’s assume you’ve decided to stay on Drupal 7 for now. What next?
The average lifetime of a website is three years. So if you have had your Drupal 7 site for a three years, hurrah! You’ve done well with your return on that investment. And Drupal 7 is robust and supported enough that there’s still a lot of growth and life in your site. So unless there’s a specific module or item that only D8 can offer, you can feel confident that your D7 site will be solid for a few more years.
But this also means you have about two years to maintain that D7 site: in Fall of 2020, you’ll need to start prepping for that Drupal 9 upgrade (or — gasp! — switching to another CMS). This also buys you two years to secure funding, and get all the stakeholders on the same page for the next upgrade.
So here are some of the incremental bites we recommend you take over the next two years of maintenance:
- Review your website strategy: assuming you built your site a few years ago around business goals, how is the site working towards those goals? Have your goals shifted? Does your site still achieve your mission? It’s always good to revisit your strategy to ensure any changes you make are on the right path.
- Always audit your content: Content has a way of getting out of control quickly if there are multiple editors and the lines of governance get blurred. Archive or delete unnecessary content. Also review it for your authority voice and mobile strategy.
- Review your SEO: In addition to keywords, make sure your content is mobile-focused, that your URL structures are meaningful, and schemas are used to describe the content of a page.
- Code Quality: How clean are your code standards? Are the styles that drive the look and feel of the site well-structured and easy to extend? Is there good documentation? Completing a code audit would be smart to make sure your code is as quality as possible and fits your goals.
- Optimize your user experience: There are many tweaks that can be made to a site to make sure users are finding things. Can you run a usability test on a red button vs a blue one? How about using heatmap software to see where users are clicking and scrolling, and tweaking accordingly? Between surveys, interviews with users, looking at analytics, and testing, you can constantly improve the user experience of your site.
If you’re a more visual person, I gave a talk at BADCamp just last month about going from D7 to D9 if you prefer video.
And if you need extra help with nurturing and growing your existing D7 site, we can help. Kanopi Studios has a dedicated Support Team that currently maintains over 75 Drupal 7 sites, and will be taking on new Drupal 7 support clients at anytime. Additionally, we will be an official long-term Drupal 7 support provider once the application on Drupal.org is available.
If you want help or want to talk through anything do with your Drupal 7 site, please call Anne directly at 1-888-606-7339 or contact us online.
The post Drupal 9 is Coming, Part 2: Choosing to Stay on Drupal 7 For Now appeared first on Kanopi Studios.
For the second year in a row, Acquia was named a leader in the Forrester Wave: Web Content Management Systems.
The report highlights Acquia and Drupal's leadership on decoupled and headless architectures, in addition to Acquia Cloud's support for Node.js.
I'm especially proud of the fact that Acquia received the highest strategy score among all vendors, ahead of Adobe, Sitecore and everyone else.
In this blog post, I'm going to show you how embed Drupal entities using the "Entity Browser" module.
This tutorial was requested by an OSTraining customer who is building a book review site. The customer wanted to use Entity Browser so that they can create this feature:
- The site has two content types: Books and Book Reviews.
- When users create a new Book Review, they can use a view to search for and select the book they're reviewing. For example, if they're reviewing "War and Peace", they can search for the exisiting "War and Peace" node.
- When the book review is published, the selected node will be embedded inside the book review.
If you’re a NextGEN Gallery plugin user and have been wondering about Gutenberg compatibility, Imagely CEO Erick Danzer announced today that the plugin will ship a gallery block in a release planed for next week. The plugin is currently used on nearly a million WordPress sites (900,000+ active installs). NextGEN Gallery’s Gutenberg block has been in beta testing since May and the plugin will support users who update to use the new editor as well as those who stick with the Classic Editor plugin.
In a post titled “A Plea to Defer the Release of Gutenberg,” Danzer outlined his concerns with the timeline for WordPress 5.0. His thoughts echo many other prominent members of the development community who have written their own calls to delay the release. He cites feedback on WordPress.org and urges the Gutenberg team not to discount the validity of these reviews:
Some people have been dismissive of those reviews and questioned whether they are a legitimate reflection of user experiences with Gutenberg. The reviews often lack detail and can be quite harsh.
But that’s the experience of ALL plugin developers on the WordPress repository. Gutenberg is being reviewed in precisely the same way as every other plugin on the repository. If any other major plugin maintained a 2.3 star rating and refused to accept the feedback as legitimate, it would not be a major plugin for long.
Even without detail, reviews on the repository represent a fair reflection of overall user feelings about a plugin. In the case of Gutenberg, it is clear the plugin is not ‘wowing’ potential users.
Danzer also referenced a release the NextGEN Gallery team shipped in 2013 that included “major and breaking changes” that had been “tested aggressively but in limited ways.” This release broke an estimated 10 percent of the plugin’s installations as well as compatibility with many extensions. It has had a lasting impact on NextGEN’s reputation for the past five years. Danzer said he fears WordPress may be headed in the same direction, except at a much larger scale.
As a postscript to his plea, Danzer assured users reading his post that NextGEN Gallery will have support for Gutenberg in time for the WordPress 5.0 release:
Despite the concerns expressed in this post, I want to assure NextGEN Gallery users that we’ll be ready regardless of the final release decision for Gutenberg. We’ll be officially in the next week. We’ve tested and ensured that your existing galleries will work when you update. We’ve developed our block so that if you add galleries via Gutenberg, they will continue to work if you roll back or install the classic editor. And we’ll have all hands on deck to deal with any issues that arise when Gutenberg is released.
NextGEN Gallery’s Gutenberg support includes a block that launches a modal where users can select a gallery to insert. Unless it has significantly changed from the beta preview video published, the gallery block doesn’t seem to offer a preview of the gallery inside the Gutenberg editor once it has been selected and placed within the content. Users who want to test the beta version of Gutenberg support in the plugin can download the latest from the NextGEN Gallery beta page.
This blog has been re-posted and edited with permission from Dries Buytaert's blog. Please leave your comments on the original post.
After months of hard work, the Drupal Governance Task Force made thirteen recommendations for how to evolve Drupal's governance.
Drupal exists because of its community. What started from humble beginnings has grown into one of the largest Open Source communities in the world. This is due to the collective effort of thousands of community members.
What distinguishes Drupal from other open source projects is both the size and diversity of our community, and the many ways in which thousands of contributors and organizations give back. It's a community I'm very proud to be a part of.
Without the Drupal community, the Drupal project wouldn't be where it is today and perhaps would even cease to exist. That is why we are always investing in our community and why we constantly evolve how we work with one another.
The last time we made significant changes to Drupal's governance was over five years ago when we launched a variety of working groups. Five years is a long time. The time had come to take a step back and to look at Drupal's governance with fresh eyes.
Throughout 2017, we did a lot of listening. We organized both in-person and virtual roundtables to gather feedback on how we can improve our community governance. This led me to invest a lot of time and effort in documenting Drupal's Values and Principles.
In 2018, we transitioned from listening to planning. Earlier this year, I chartered the Drupal Governance Task Force. The goal of the task force was to draft a set of recommendations for how to evolve and strengthen Drupal's governance based on all of the feedback we received. Last week, after months of work and community collaboration, the task force shared thirteen recommendations (PDF).
Me reviewing the Drupal Governance proposal on a recent trip.
Before any of us jump to action, the Drupal Governance Task Force recommended a thirty-day, open commentary period to give community members time to read the proposal and to provide more feedback. After the thirty-day commentary period, I will work with the community, various stakeholders, and the Drupal Association to see how we can move these recommendations forward. During the thirty-day open commentary period, you can then get involved by collaborating and responding to each of the individual recommendations below:
- Create a Community Governance Group
- Improve collaboration between the Drupal Association and the community
- Clarify and expand local Drupal Associations
- Grow the Community Working (CWG) group to offer more support
- Create a Community Strategic Plan
- Expand onboarding and mentoring to increase contributor pipeline
- Provide greater support for in-person events
- Build a new community website to centralize communication and promote opportunities
- Create community training offerings to develop leadership skills
- Define key community terms in clear, translatable language
- Create a Drupal Community Diversity Statement
- Improve definitions of representation, leadership, and the expected higher standards
- Establish processes for handling conflict of interests
I'm impressed by the thought and care that went into writing the recommendations, and I'm excited to help move them forward.
Some of the recommendations are not new and are ideas that either the Drupal Association, myself or others have been working on, but that none of us have been able to move forward without a significant amount of funding or collaboration.
I hope that 2019 will be a year of organizing and finding resources that allow us to take action and implement a number of the recommendations. I'm convinced we can make valuable progress.
I want to thank everyone who has participated in this process. This includes community members who shared information and insight, facilitated conversations around governance, were interviewed by the task force, and supported the task force's efforts. Special thanks to all the members of the task force who worked on this with great care and determination for six straight months: Adam Bergstein, Lyndsey Jackson, Ela Meier, Stella Power, Rachel Lawson, David Hernandez and Hussain Abbas.
For the last seven years, the maximum amount of money WordCamp organizers could charge for ticket prices was $20 per day. In 2019, this will increase to $25 per day.
The new amount accounts for inflation and provides breathing room for organizers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator, $20 in January of 2006 is equal to $25.51 in October of 2018.
Organizers don’t have to charge this amount and are encouraged to keep the ticket price as low as possible. The increase is also part of a delicate balancing act between not being a financial burden and getting 80% or more of attendees to show up.
“The ticket price does not reflect on the value of the event,” Andrea Middleton, Community organizer said.
“In an ideal world, all WordCamp tickets would be free just like WordPress is free but to avoid organizing a conference for 500 registrants and only having 50 people show up on the day of the event, we charge as little as we possibly can for tickets, but just enough that people will show up for the event if they’re sleepy that morning or got a last-minute invitation to a pool party or something.”
When the proposal to increase the maximum ticket price was published in September, many commenters approved of the increase with some suggesting an even higher amount to account for inflation for the next few years. Ian Dunn questioned whether or not budget shortfalls were due to organizing teams spending money on extra things.
“Beyond that, though, I’m curious why camps are having more trouble today than they were 5 or even 10 years ago?” Dunn said.
“Is it harder to get sponsorships? It seems like the opposite is true, especially given how much the global sponsorship program covers.
“Based on experiences in my local community, I suspect that the primary reason for budget shortfalls is that the organizing team is choosing to do extra things, beyond what’s necessary to meet the goals of a WordCamp. For example, holding after-parties at trendy venues, expensive speaker gifts, professional A/V (which I’ve advocated for in the past, but not at the cost of higher ticket prices), etc.”
It is interesting to ponder how much money WordCamps could save globally by eliminating the materialistic aspects of the event such as t-shirts, speaker gifts, lanyards, badges, signs, etc.
At there core, WordCamps are about gathering the local community together in a physical location to share knowledge. Not every WordPress event needs to mimic WordCamp US or WordCamp Europe, two of the largest events in the world.
Although the WordPress Community team tracks data such as how much each WordCamp charges for ticket prices, the information is not readily available. This is because of the large volume of data that would need to be calculated and displayed. It would be interesting to see an info-graphic of this data where you can compare the average ticket price for WordCamps per country.
Hugh Lashbrooke, a WordPress Community team contributor who has access to the data says that, “globally the majority of camps have lower prices.”
WordCamp organizers are highly encouraged to keep track of attendance as the data is used to help make better informed decisions. The team will review the no-show rates at WordCamps at the end of 2019 to determine if the price increase had any effect. If not, the team may increase the price again for 2020.