Archives: Podcast

  • #61 – Robert Rowley on Securing Your WordPress Website

    #61 – Robert Rowley on Securing Your WordPress Website

    On the podcast today we have Robert Rowley. Robert is Patchstack’s security advocate, where his time is spent interacting with open source communities to share the word about security best practices. Given his background, the podcast today is all about internet security. We start off with a topic which is very much in the news at the moment, the LastPass security breach. LastPass is a password manager. It will lock up your passwords, and any other data for that matter, in a secure vault, which can only be read if you decrypt it with the correct password. Towards the end of 2022, LastPass announced in a series of blog posts that customer vaults had been taken from their cloud storage. The way that this was communicated left many of their customers questioning their use of the service, and whether they now could trust LastPass with their data. Robert explains how the incident occurred, and if you should be concerned. This then leads to a conversation about the broader issue of website security and the security of WordPress websites in particular. If you’re curious about website security, then this is a podcast for you.

  • #60 – Mike Demo, Tracy Apps and david wolfpaw on LGBTQ and WordPress

    #60 – Mike Demo, Tracy Apps and david wolfpaw on LGBTQ and WordPress

    On the podcast today we have Mike Demo, Tracy Apps and david wolfpaw. Unusually, it’s less of an interview and more of a roundtable discussion about their experiences in the WordPress community. A few weeks ago, I put out a call for anyone who might be interested in coming on the podcast. Mike Demo reached out to me and said that it would be good to discuss how the WordPress community deals with LGBTQ matters. We start things off with each of the guests introducing themselves and telling us how they ended up working in tech and, more specifically, WordPress. This leads to a discussion of how the job market can be different for people with different identities. We then move onto WordPress and talk through some of the ways that the community has responded to underrepresented groups. We also get into the open source nature of the WordPress project and whether this makes it more or less difficult for change to take place, given that authority is structured differently from most for-profit entities. And we round it all off with the sharing of resources and websites which listeners may find useful, which you can see below.

  • #59 – Corey Maass on How To Use WordPress To Kickstart Your SaaS App

    #59 – Corey Maass on How To Use WordPress To Kickstart Your SaaS App

    On the podcast today we have Corey Maass. Corey is a full-stack web developer who works with agencies and businesses, large and small. He specialises in advanced WordPress functionality and building products for, and using, WordPress. Over the last decade or so, SaaS apps have become more and more popular. Not only are we using our computers more, but with the rise of smartphones, we’re connected to our services all the time. There does not appear to be any corner of life where online platforms don’t have some presence. From email to taxis, fitness to food planning and delivery. You can find it all in a SaaS app somewhere. Corey is on the podcast today to talk about why he thinks that building a MVP, or minimum viable product, app on top of WordPress is a good way to start your product journey. We talk about how WordPress comes bundled with many of the features that apps require, user login, roles, permissions and the REST API. This means that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel for the things that WordPress already does. If you’ve toyed with the idea of creating a SaaS app in the past, but never quite got there, this episode is for you.

  • #58 – Lax Mariappan on How Headless WordPress Works

    #58 – Lax Mariappan on How Headless WordPress Works

    On the podcast today, we have Lax Mariappan. Lax is a web developer based in the Philippines. He’s an Open Source enthusiast, and lover of all things WordPress, and has been tinkering with websites since high school, but it all changed when he discovered WordPress in 2010. Lax currently works as a Backend Engineer at WebDevStudios. We talk today about Headless WordPress, and it’s a complex topic. Headless is the concept of decoupling the WordPress admin from the frontend of the site. WordPress will continue to work as expected, but the presentation layer will be done by a different technology. React, Gatsby and Remix being some popular choices. This implementation of WordPress is complex, requiring technical knowledge above and beyond that needed for a more typical WordPress install, but it has its benefits. Lax explains how problems can crop up, and how it’s possible to plan ahead and build in solutions for all the problems that you might encounter. If you’ve ever thought about going Headless with WordPress, then the podcast today is for you.

  • #57 – Damon Cook on the Future of Website Styling in WordPress

    #57 – Damon Cook on the Future of Website Styling in WordPress

    On the podcast today, we have Damon Cook. He’s a longtime user of WordPress, trying it first in around 2008. He’s worked for some of the largest WordPress agencies over the years, but his current role is that of Developer Advocate with WP Engine, where he engages with the WordPress community, trying to figure out where WordPress is headed. Damon is on the podcast to talk about styling WordPress, and how it’s changing. Block-based themes are revolutionising website styling. You’re going to be able to change any aspect of your website from the UI that you’re familiar with. The hope is that it’ll make styling more accessible to a wider audience. Damon talks about the fact that we’re in a period of flux right now. The documentation and tooling needed to work with website styles is maturing, but is by no means complete. We talk through some new concepts which are underpinning all of this.

  • #56 – Chris Badgett on Using WordPress for Online Courses

    #56 – Chris Badgett on Using WordPress for Online Courses

    On the podcast today we have Chris Badgett. Chris is behind LifterLMS, which is a learning management system built as a WordPress plugin. He’s been in the WordPress space since 2008, and has moved his agency away from general website building to concentrating upon e-learning membership sites, course creation and marketing automation. He’s on the podcast today to talk about how WordPress and e-learning are a good fit. Although there’s a flourishing SaaS side to e-learning, Chris is convinced that WordPress allows you to make your LMS site exactly what you want. You won’t be facing the limitations imposed upon you by the platform, and can, if you have the time and skills, modify almost anything to suit your brand and niche. We begin by talking through how well a WordPress based LMS site can scale. We then get into a broad conversation about how online courses have taken off in the last few years. Even before global lockdowns, individuals and businesses were adopting online courses in innovative ways to educate their customers, staff, and the wider public. It’s an interesting podcast and digs into yet another area where WordPress can help people thrive online.

  • #55 – Dennis Dornon on How Partnerships Have Helped Grow His WordPress Plugin Business

    #55 – Dennis Dornon on How Partnerships Have Helped Grow His WordPress Plugin Business

    On the podcast today, we have Dennis Dormon. Dennis is the founder of MainWP. A WordPress plugin which enables you to manage multiple WordPress websites from a single dashboard. As you’ll hear, the business has changed over the years, as Dennis has learned more about the plugins’ target audience. Dennis talks today about how, in the recent past, he’s been trying out working with partners as an effective way to increase the plugins reach. As you’ll hear, it’s a strategy that he’s enamored with, given the right partner. We talk about why Dennis built MainWP, and who the plugin was originally aimed at. And it’s not what you might expect. It turns out that MainWP is a business which is in just about the perfect spot for bringing on partners. But if you’re a developer and have not considered this type of approach with your business, this podcast is for you.

  • #54 – Steve Burge on Where We’re at With Multi-Author Collaboration in WordPress

    #54 – Steve Burge on Where We’re at With Multi-Author Collaboration in WordPress

    On the podcast today we have Steve Burge. He leads the team at PublishPress, which is a plugin company focusing on improving the publishing experience for WordPress users. The topic of today’s podcast is very much in his wheelhouse. If you’ve been following recent developments, then you’ll know that we’re currently in the site editing phase. When that’s done, it will be time to turn our collective attention to multi-author collaboration. But what is that and what does it mean? Steve talks today about why this is an elegant and necessary update to WordPress, but also why it’s a difficult feat of engineering to pull off. WordPress has a history of working with all manner of hosting configurations, and it’s one of the reasons that it’s so successful. Will it be possible to run WordPress on more affordable tech stacks given the burden that multi-author collaboration will require? We also get into the projects that Steve has found from community members which try to lay some of the foundations of how this might be implemented, as well as talking about how Steve’s finding it hard to discover new information concerning this important topic.

  • #53 – Matt Medeiros on the State of the WordPress Landscape

    #53 – Matt Medeiros on the State of the WordPress Landscape

    On the podcast today we have Matt Medeiros. Matt is the driving force behind many WordPress initiatives. That could be the creation of plugins, WordPress news media, as well as podcasts about all manner of WordPress specific subjects. He likes to juggle multiple projects at once. Currently he’s the Director of Podcaster Success at Castos, which is a podcast hosting company with a WordPress plugin. He’s on the podcast today to give his take on the past, present and future of WordPress. The Matt Report and The WP Minute have enabled us to hear about what the community is doing, what it wants and where its points of friction are. He’s talked to hundreds of people about what WordPress was, is, and might be, and so is in a unique position to pontificate about what WordPress, beyond the software, is. It’s a lovely chat with a thoughtful and far sighted member of the community.

  • #52 – Hannah Smith on Why We Need To Be Making Websites More Sustainable

    #52 – Hannah Smith on Why We Need To Be Making Websites More Sustainable

    On the podcast today, we have Hannah Smith. Hannah is the Operations and Training Manager for the Green Web Foundation and founder of the Let’s Green The Web campaign. It’s pretty easy to forget that the device that you’re reading this post on is consuming power. We plug things in or charge them up, and they just work. They are sleek and sterile. No pollution comes out of the device directly. In fact, I’d go as far as to say that many of us never make the connection between our use of technology and the impact this has on the environment. Enter Hannah Smith. She’s been thinking about this for years and is on the podcast today to highlight the issue, and hopefully get your ideas about what users of WordPress can do to make sure that the websites we create are having the smallest impact possible. Her approach is not that we need to cease and desist using our technology. Rather, it’s about coming up with new and innovative ways that we can reduce the impact that we have. It’s a fascinating and thought-provoking topic.

  • #51 – Adam Lowe on Building Websites With Pinegrow’s New WordPress Plugin

    #51 – Adam Lowe on Building Websites With Pinegrow’s New WordPress Plugin

    On the podcast today we have Adam Lowe. He’s here to talk about a new website building plugin from Pinegrow. Adam does not represent the company, but is an avid user of their products, and experienced in how they work. The ‘Pinegrow Web Editor’ is a desktop tool that lets you build websites with a GUI. The closest comparison would be a page builder, but this is not entirely accurate. Unlike most page builders, which require very little technical expertise, Pinegrow does require an understanding of key technologies to make use of the platform. Given the popularity of WordPress, the Pinegrow developers have created a WordPress plugin, which is just about to be released. It’s been in closed beta, and Adam has been using it as his go-to solution for several months now. We also get into a discussion about the fact that Pinegrow is intended to be a ‘no dependency’ solution. Once you’ve finished creating your theme, block or whatever else you might want to create, you can export that in a way that no longer needs Pinegrow at all.

  • #50 – Fränk Klein on How Gutenberg and Full Site Editing Are Bringing New Opportunities for WordPress Developers

    #50 – Fränk Klein on How Gutenberg and Full Site Editing Are Bringing New Opportunities for WordPress Developers

    On the podcast today we have Fränk Klein. Fränk is a self-taught developer. He started out learning PHP in 2011 and from there found his way to WordPress. Over the years he’s worked for Automattic at WordPress.com and WordPress VIP, and is now a principal developer at Human Made, an enterprise WordPress agency. We talk about how Fränk decided early on that he was going to start developing with blocks and, more recently, with the full site editing capabilities now built into WordPress Core. Fränk explains how he sees the adoption of Gutenberg as inevitable. WordPress is moving away from the classic approach of content creation to a more visual, block-based experience. He thinks that it’s important to become an expert at building websites and custom solutions for clients, and for taking the time to learn the new tools that this future will require.

  • #49 – Matt Cromwell on the Effectiveness of the WordPress.org Repository for Promoting New Plugins

    #49 – Matt Cromwell on the Effectiveness of the WordPress.org Repository for Promoting New Plugins

    On the podcast today we have Matt Cromwell. Matt is Senior Director of Operations and Marketing at StellarWP, and also one of the founders of GiveWP, a donations plugin which uses the freemium model. He’s on the podcast today to talk about whether the WordPress.org plugin repository is still an effective place to host your free plugin. Over the past few weeks, the repository has been in the news for the unexpected removal of stats which many plugin developers said they relied upon. The podcast focus’ on a post by Alex Denning in which he spells out why he thinks the repository is no longer viable. Matt disagrees and puts his side of the argument. Can you get noticed given the enormous reach of the incumbent plugins? Is it possible to convert enough users to your paid plugin to make it worthwhile? What can be done to improve the repository for plugin authors? It’s a fascinating chat and is sure to interest anyone thinking about starting a freemium plugin.

  • #48 – Christina Deemer on Making Digital Content Usable for People With Cognitive Disabilities

    #48 – Christina Deemer on Making Digital Content Usable for People With Cognitive Disabilities

    On the podcast today we have Christina Deemer. Christina is a senior UX developer at Lede, where she champions accessibility and headless WordPress in her work with publishers and nonprofits. At the recent WordCamp US, Christina gave a presentation called “embracing minds of all kinds, making digital content usable for people with cognitive disabilities”. And it’s this talk which is the foundation of the podcast today. First, Christina talks about what the term cognitive disabilities actually means, and what it encompasses. It’s a wide range of things, and so we talk about how people may differ in the way that they access the web. Memory, over complicated interfaces and readability are a few of the areas that we touch upon. We also discuss what legislation there is in place to offer guidance to those wishing to make their sites more accessible, and as you’ll hear, it’s a changing landscape. Towards the end, Christina talks about her own late diagnosis of autism and how this shapes her experience of the web, particularly with auto-play content and when web design includes elements which flash or flicker.

  • #47 – Adam Silverstein on the State of Images in WordPress

    #47 – Adam Silverstein on the State of Images in WordPress

    On the podcast today we have Adam Silverstein. Adam is a WordPress core comitter where he works to fix bugs and improve modern web capabilities. As a Developer Relations Engineer in the content ecosystem team at Google, he works to invigorate the open web by empowering and educating developers. At the recent WordCamp US, he gave a presentation entitled ‘Images on the Web – past present and future’. In it, he outlined his thoughts on where the web is going in terms of support for different image formats. This then forms the basis of the podcast. How do browsers actually display images to your website visitors, and what formats are most appropriate where? We also talk about the new image formats, which are seeing more widespread adoption; WebP, AVIF and JPEG XL. We learn about the roll out of browser support, how they have smaller file sizes and when we can safely to use them.

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