Issue #32
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This week in WordPress

Fighting climate change with sustainable web design

In the fight against climate change, what takes less effort than not eating meat? Green programming, writes Clive Thompson for Wired. His piece How ‘Sustainable’ Web Design Can Help Fight Climate Change features self-employed developer Danny van Kooten who built and maintains the popular Mailchimp for WordPress plugin.

Earlier in the year, he refactored his plugin to make it more efficient, so it sends 20 KB less data. Since 2 million sites use Mailchimp for WordPress, every kilobyte adds up. He estimates that trimming his code has reduced global CO2 emissions by 59,000kg. That’s roughly equivalent to charging 7.5 million smartphones.
As Danny highlights on his blog in CO2 emissions on the web, the average website is about four times as big now compared to 2010. On mobile, where data transfer is way more expensive in terms of energy usage, it’s increased from 200 KB up to a whopping 1.9 MB. "As web developers we have a responsibility to stop this madness," he writes.
"Congrats to Danny van Kooten who has been a real leader in nudging WordPress towards sustainable web design," tweets PublishPress. While back in February, Bryce Adams, who founded Metorik, tweeted, "Never underestimate the impact one person can make on the world. Incredible work by @dannyvankooten 👏🏼"

ManageWP.org shuts down

ManageWP.org the news aggregator, not ManageWP.com the website management platform — is no more. "After many years of serving the WordPress community, we've made the difficult decision to shut down ManageWP.org," reads the announcement on the landing page that has replaced the site. "Several factors" led to the closure, but it "ultimately came down to the team being unable to give ManageWP.org the attention it deserves."

ManageWP launched in 2013. It was the brainchild of ManageWP founder Vladimir Prevolac who wanted to change the way WordPress news was distributed. (Editor: Digging back through my emails with Vladimir in 2013, he told me: "What came to life as a side project of mine grew to be a major obsession and personal quest.")

GoDaddy acquired ManageWP — both the aggregator and the management platform — in 2016. By some accounts, ManageWP.org fell by the wayside. "The minute [GoDaddy] bought it, they chose to completely forget about it. I reported issues many times. After a month or so my account (top 5 contributors at that time) was locked, I couldn't [log] in, and I eventually stopped visiting it," tweets open source engineer and developer advocate Ahmad Awais.

"😦 This is terrible news. ManageWP has always been my source of WP-related news. So sad that @GoDaddy decided to shut it down," tweets Jeffrey Carandang, who co-founded Iceberg and CoBlocks. Meanwhile, Content Snare co-founder Jimmy Rose tweets, "I'm so bummed about this too. Wish there was some warning so I could subscribe to a few of my favorite sources on there. @GoDaddyPro any chance of an archive?"

Push to improve Gutenberg developer docs

WordPress developers Milana Cap and Jonathan Bossenger are working on a plan to improve Gutenberg developer documentation ahead of announcing a fundraiser to support their efforts.
As WP Tavern’s Sarah Gooding writes in WordPress Contributors Seek Sponsorship for Improving Gutenberg Developer Docs, part of the challenge of documenting the block editor is that it is in active development. And as Milana points out on Twitter, "When your community is unable to learn your software then you have no contributors. Documentation and tutorials are far more important for Open Source Software projects than people realise. Until they are forced to use it.. 🤷‍♀️"
Anyone who wants to contribute to improving the block creation documentation can join the GitHub discussion.

In other documentation-related news, The Best Documentation Is No Documentation, writes WP Tavern's Justin Tadlock.

And in Gutenberg-related news, "This is big move forward for WordPress! All core blocks are now registered on the server and available via the block types api. https://core.trac.wordpress.org/changeset/48262 🎉🎉🎉" tweets WordPress core contributor Jonny Harris.


In-person WordCamps may be on hold this year, but GoWP is doing its best to keep the WordCamp spirit alive with the #WordCampWednesday hashtag on Twitter. The white label services agency is encouraging people from all over to share their WordCamp photos from the past to keep the connections and memories we’ve made alive, albeit virtually.

As GoWP’s Growth Manager Caylin White tells The Repository, "We try to encourage people to keep the WordPress love going by tagging them and sharing their key takeaways and photos. We would love to grow this as a bigger thing for WordCamps and WordPress."
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In other news...

  • WooCommerce 4.3, due out on 7 July, will introduce a new home screen, reports WP Tavern. The WooCommerce core development team will be introducing new features to help store owners see shop activity at a glance. The news comes after an ACI Worldwide report revealed ecommerce sales were up 81% in May compared to the same time last year due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
  • Freelancers Risk Missing Out on the Future of WordPress, according to Premiumcoding. With full site editing quickly becoming a reality and more people now able to create websites without the help of a developer, freelancers need to stay ahead of the curve to protect their livelihoods. Find out how the WordPress economy is changing and how to prepare for the future with Premiumcoding and Convesio hosting. Sponsored post
  • – Security company Sucuri has launched Sucuri Academy, a free collection of website security courses. There are just two so far with more in the works. You can learn about website security, test your knowledge with quizzes, and get a free certificate at the end of each course.
  • Flywheel Relaunches Local Pro with Revamped Live Links and New Host-Agnostic Pre-Launch Tools, reports Sarah Gooding for WP Tavern. More than 300,000 developers have tried Local since it first launched in 2017 and active users are up 90% year over year.
  • Correction: Last week we incorrectly wrote that Gutenberg Times owner Birgit Pauli-Haack created the free Full Site Editing Course, when in fact it was Carolina Nymark who created the course. We apologize for the confusion. If you haven’t yet checked out the course, please do. It’s excellent — props to Carolina!
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