The latest release of WordPress is out and a mandatory upgrade. Before you get too excited at the awesome new features, alerts are coming in around the web that WordPress 2.2 may break some WordPress Plugins and I have the news you need to know on this. Any minute, WordPress.com will break 1 million blogs. You can now blog to your WordPress blog from WordPerfect and many other sources. WordPress now beats Blogger on Google. WordPress.com offers email for domain mapped blogs. More tips and techniques via videos and podcasts for WordPress users. And there is even more WordPress news you can use this week.
WordPress 2.2 is now a Mandatory Upgrade: If you are using WordPress 2.1.3, WordPress 2.2 is now a mandatory upgrade, according to WordPress developer, Mark Jaquith. He explains:
WordPress 2.2 is a mandatory security upgrade for WordPress 2.1.3 users. There will be no further releases in the 2.1.x branch. 2.2 includes security fixes that 2.1.3 lacks, so your only upgrade path is to 2.2.
WordPress 2.2 Released: WordPress 2.2 is now available for Download. You can find a list of version changes including many bug fixes and improvements such as the TinyMCE (Rich Text Editor) now works with Safari, instant update of comments after deleting comment spam, full Atom support, it’s faster, elimination of duplicate code bugs, fixing problems with PHP 5 not flushing output buffers, the Widget Plugin now included the core programming (the Plugin is not needed), and more among many other improvements and fixes. Tags have been pulled and should be in the next version of WordPress. See the WordPress Version 2.2 Features list for more information on what’s new in WordPress 2.2.
Things to Know About WordPress 2.2: Some older WordPress Plugins that may have kept on working without updates through previous versions of WordPress may break with WordPress 2.2. These include Plugins with rely upon old table structures and global functions. For example, the Ultimate Tag Warrior, Customizable Post Listings, More Smilies, and other Plugins which modify
the_content() template tag and rely on deprecated structures and functions.
Check the WordPress 2.2 Plugin Compatibility List and WordPress 2.2 Theme Compatibility List to make sure your Plugin and Theme works with WordPress 2.2 if you are having trouble. As always, disable WordPress Plugins before you install and make sure you have the latest version of the WordPress Plugins on your blog.
To Disable WordPress Plugins: The fastest method to disable WordPress Plugins is to rename the
/wp-content/plugins directory on your blog. After the upgrade, rename the directory and then visit the Plugins Panel to reactivate them one by one, testing throughly to ensure each is working properly before continuing. Work is ongoing for an easy “disable all active Plugins” option in the next version of WordPress. Note: If you think disabling all Plugins is dumb, check out WordPress Upgrade Almost Broke My Blog from Blogopreneur.
Troubleshooting New Problems After Upgrading: If you are finding problems after upgrading, turn off your WordPress Plugins one by one until the problem goes away, or turn them all off and see if the problem is still there. If it is still there, it’s a problem with your installation or Theme. If the problem is gone, it’s likely to be a problem with a Plugin or two Plugins conflicting with one another. It could also be a bad upload, as discovered by Quick Online Tips. Make sure to delete all the files before uploading, and upload them one folder at a time if you are on an “iffy” Internet connection.
See When the Blog Breaks: Fixing Your Broken Blog and My WordPress Theme is Broken to help troubleshoot your WordPress blog, and always check the WordPress Support Forums and WordPress Codex, the online manual for WordPress Users, for more resources and information.
WordPress and PHP 5: Ryan Boren discusses the issues of WordPress moving to PHP 5 and how WordPress is also determined to move forward while still staying backwards compatible, a very tough job for a program used in dozens of different countries around the world.
WordPress Beats Blogger: Angsuman Chakraborty reports on “WordPress Beats Blogger in Google Search & News” that according to Google search Trends, WordPress is ahead of Blogger with Typepad and Movable Type are far behind and declining in interest and use.
Cleaning Out Your Blog: Knowledge Constructs offers “WordPress 2.2 (Getz): Widgets & Cleaning Drains”, a delightful look at how WordPress Widgets and the new version of WordPress is helping one WordPress users “clean some blog drains”.
How Many Ways Can You Post to Your WordPress Blog? Abhijit Nadgouda of ifacethoughts offers “More Options For Posting To WordPress” which includes using WordPerfect Lightening, WordPy, Google Docs, Zoho Writer, and other blog clients and email options. It’s amazing how WordPress is becoming more and more a blogging standard, integrating with other programs and services, making it even easier for you to blog with WordPress. Note: Read/Write/Web reviews Corel’s WordPerfect Lightning integration with WordPress if you would like more information on this new WordPerfect feature.
WordPress Videos and Podcasts: Each week I feature videos and podcasts about WordPress tips, tricks, and techniques to help you learn and do more with WordPress. It’s hard to find good ones, so if you have any recommendations, please let me know.
- Setup a Blog (with WordPress) Guide – Episode 108 (podcast)
- How to Add Google Adsense to Your WordPress (video)
- Creating A Static Front Page In WordPress (video)
- ZEPREZ WordPress Video Guides – How To Use Trackbacks In WordPress To Get Inbound Links To Your Site (video)
Your Ideas Wanted! Do you have a suggestion to improve WordPress? Or want to vote on one you think is a must-have for WordPress users? Have your say on the WordPress Ideas, or at least vote one way or another to support or defeat an idea for a new and/or improved feature.
Verify Your WordPress.com Blog with Google Sitemaps and Webmaster Tools: After many experiments, Jalaj P. Jha has come up with “Get your WordPress.com Blog Google Verified”, an easy to do method to get your WordPress.com blog verified with Google Webmaster Tools.
Domain Mapping and Emails: WordPress.com announces domain mapping and emails through Google Apps email service. Any blog set up with domain mapping can now get email. See the FAQ for more information.
What’s Hot on WordPress.com? The hottest blogs on WordPress.com were:
- I CAN HAS CHEEZBURGER?
- passive-aggressive notes from roommates, neighbors, coworkers and strangers
- Ubuntu Blog
- Web Worker Daily
- 38 Pitches
- Will Work For Food
- A Hot Mess!
- Imran On Tech
The hottest blog posts on WordPress.com were:
- How To Make Love To A ______ Fan: The New York Mets
- But my mom says I’m handsome…
- Whose bright idea was scheduling?
- An Embarrassment of Riches.
- The 25 Best Indie Rock Albums Ever . . . According To The Blogosphere
- Google Trends
- The movie is finally here
- Fox Clearly Stating That People Who Question the Government are Absurd
- 300+ Easily Installed Free Fonts for Ubuntu
- The Worst C Example Ever
- The Hubble Space Telescope vs. New James Webb Space Telescope
- Why I’m in a malaise…
- Sick Days 2.0: 6 tips to handle illness in Web 2.0 world
WordPress Plugins and Themes News
Styling Those Widgets: Nathan Rice of the Blog Herald offers Styling Those Widgets, helping you present your WordPress Widgets in their best clothing and style. And Gary King takes you through the process of Enabling sidebar widgets for your WordPress Theme.
Is Your Theme and Plugin Compatible with WordPress 2.2? As should be the normal protocol, if your WordPress Theme and/or Plugin is compatible with WordPress 2.2 or upgraded accordingly, make sure it is on the WordPress 2.2 Plugin Compatibility List and WordPress 2.2 Theme Compatibility List.
Theme and Plugin Authors Take Note: While I’ve ranted on this subject before, Tan Kian Ann of Blogpreneur rants on “WordPress Theme and Plugin Developers Please Document Your Code” and makes a very good point. If you develop and design for yourself, who cares what you do. But once you release it to the public, you have an obligation to document your efforts in readme files and within the code. Do it.
Widgetize Anything: The Widgetize Anything WordPress Plugin allows you to add text widgets to your WordPress blog but it also works with non-widgetized WordPress Plugins by allowing you to add their Plugin template tags inside of the sidebar widget in order to work from within your Theme without accessing the template files.
SRG Clean Archives Bug Fix Release: SRG Clean Archives 3.0 For WordPress Released was released and then SRG Clean Archives 3.0.1 quickly followed from Geek With a Laptop’s Sean Rox with a bug fix release. If you are using this, make sure you update your WordPress Plugin. If you are looking for a date-oriented chronological listing of your blog posts, give it a try.
Disable the Ultimate Tag Warrior WordPress Plugin: If you are having trouble on your WordPress blog version 2.1+, or complaints from your web host, disable the Ultimate Tag Warrior WordPress Plugin. This much beloved Plugin is not working consistently with the new versions. WordPress has announced adding tags to the next major release of WordPress, so development on the Plugin seems to be at a standstill. As soon as we get more information on this, we’ll let you know.
Taming PDFs: Emphatically Static discusses using PDF support in a WordPress blog with the WP2PDF WordPress Plugin, offering tips to make the Plugin work in the latest version of WordPress and to overcome a few bugs in the Plugin.
Developing Plugins to Interact with the WordPress Database: Devlounge offers “WordPress Plugins and Database Interaction”, a tutorial as part of their ongoing series on how to write WordPress Plugins. The series includes:
- How to Write a WordPress Plugin – Introduction
- Seven Reasons to Write a WordPress Plugin
- How to Get Ideas for WordPress Plugins
- Structure of a WordPress Plugin
- WordPress Plugin Actions
- WordPress Plugin Filters
- Constructing a WordPress Plugin Admin Panel
- Constructing a WordPress Plugin User’s Panel
- WordPress Plugins and Database Interaction
Copyblogger Theme Released: Chris Pearson has released the old Copyblogger WordPress Theme for use.
Most Popular WordPress Themes: The WordPress Theme Viewer now features 2,959 Themes and 4,420,399 Themes downloads. The top WordPress Themes are:
- Vistered Little 1.6
- MistyLook 3.1
- WP-Andreas01 1.5
- Water 1.1
- ChaoticSoul 1.0
- Japanese Cherry Blossom 1.0
- Cordobo Green Park 0.9.2 BETA 12
- Mandigo 1.16
- Mesozoic 2.0
- Sky3c 2.0
WordPress Plugin Directory: The new WordPress Plugin Directory is going strong and improving as it develops. According to their list, the most popular WordPress Plugins downloaded are:
- Sidebar Widgets
- Subscribe to Comments
- Google Sitemap Generator for WordPress
- Automattic Stats
More WordPress Plugins can be found on the WordPress Plugins Database.
WordPress Community News
PostNuke Goes Akismet: PostNuke users can now use Akismet, the popular comment spam fighting tool by Automattic.
Akismet Comment Spam Counter: The Akismet Comment Spam Counter now reads 1,493,570,381 spams caught so far, 7,065,233 so far today, and 95% of all comments are spam. If you want to see comment spam catching live, check out Akismet’s Spam Zeitgeist.
Looking for a WordPress Expert? Do you want a custom WordPress blog? Want to convert your website into a WordPress blog or use WordPress as a CMS? If you are looking for an expert in WordPress Themes, WordPress development, WordPress Plugins, or other WordPress-related expertise, check out the list of WordPress Consultants on Automattic, the parent company of WordPress, and the WP-Pro mailing list.
WordPress Installed For Free: If you have problems installing the full version of WordPress, visit Installing WordPress for Free (aka Install4Free WordPress). This free, volunteer-driven service is limited to personal blogs only, and they help only with installations, not upgrades.
Are You Involved With a WordPress Group? If you are involved with a WordPress group that meets regularly or as part of a special event, please let me know so I can promote the event here and elsewhere. If your group isn’t listed with Incoming.org or Meetup.com with WordPress as a keyword, I and others might not find you. Help us to help you promote your WordPress group.
Looking for Past WordPress Versions? The placeholder for past versions of WordPress releases is at the WordPress Release Archive.
WordPress Techniques and Tips
Know of any great WordPress tips and techniques articles? Let me know and it may end up on our weekly list.
- Be Careful When Upgrading to WordPress 2.2 If You Have the WP-Cache Plugin — Adventures in Backing Up and Restoring WordPress Databases
- WordPress in Macromedia Dreamweaver – Edit WordPress Templates the better way
- WordPress Hack – Category And Authors Without Posts
- Customize the Blog Author Comments
- WordPress Theme Design is 75% CSS
- How to Move Your WordPress Blog to a New Host
This week, I’m adding some featured articles from the WordPress Codex, the online manual for WordPress Users, the source you need to turn to first for your WordPress help.
- Getting Started with WordPress
- WordPress Version 2.2 Features
- WordPress Backup
- Upgrading WordPress
- Using Permalinks
- Moving from Another Source
- WordPress Coding Standards
The following are upcoming WordPress group meetings and meetups, and a few special blogging events you may want to attend. If you know of any I’ve missed, please post them or contact me on my WordPress Events Page.
- Houston WordPress Meetup – May 26
- San Fransisco WordPress Meetup – May 26
- NY Bloggers May Meetup (includes WordPress) – May 30
- New York City WordPress Meetup – June 16
- WordCamp 2007 – San Fransisco – July 21-22
- BlogHer Conference ’07: A World of Difference – Chicago – July 27-28
- Blog Business Summit – Chicago – September 17-19
For a WordPress Meetup near you and other blogging events, check out the WordPress Meetup Group List.
For more news on WordPress, see:
- WordPress Planet
- WordPress Development Blog
- WordPress.com Blog
- Weblog Tools Collection
- BloggingPro’s WordPress News and Tips
- The WordPress Community Podcast
- Lorelle on WordPress
Extra Tip of the Week
Rules to Develop By: Professional Web Software Development has written “10 Rules to Code By”, a brilliant and realistic satire on the rules software developers should code by which also apply to blog developers and WordPress Theme and Plugin authors.
Two favorites of mine are:
Not every browser renders a standards-compliant document correctly or completely, but some do. Develop the system entirely for one browser that IS standards compliant (say FireFox 2.x), get everything working and validating then go back and add specific hacks for poorly built browsers like Internet Explorer.
…Good, clean, high quality inline code comments make everyone’s job a lot easier. With a team that has dozens of projects on the go at any given time, your uncommented code could become someone else’s code nightmare seemingly overnight as teams are rearranged to meet the demands of new projects.
A good habit to get into is to begin a new file and then write out your entire plan of attack using only comments before writing any code. Once the strategy is laid out using comments go back and fill in the code between them.
With a great outline and plan, all things are possible if not practical. ;-) And when designing a website or blog, design to meet web standards first, Internet Explorer last.
Each Wednesday on Blog Herald is WordPress Wednesday, featuring the news around the WordPress Community.
Lorelle VanFossen blogs about blogging and WordPress on Lorelle on WordPress.
The author of Lorelle on WordPress and the fast-selling book, Blogging Tips: What Bloggers Won't Tell You About Blogging, as well as several other blogs, Lorelle VanFossen has been blogging for over 15 years, covering blogging, WordPress, travel, nature and travel photography, web design, web theory and development extensively as web technologies developed.