Horizon

My 2017 WordPress resolutions.

Last year I caught the State of the Word on WordPress.tv after the event. This was mainly because a) I was fairly new to all things WordPress and b) I didn’t actually even know it was a thing. This year I knew about WCUS well in advance so I registered for the live stream and planned my life to be able to watch Matt’s talk. I am so glad I did.

The new things planned for WordPress in 2017 are really going to shake things up. I’m not here to report on those changes, I’ve leave that up to people way better than me, Brian  from PostStatus and Sarah from WPTavern.

My take away from Matt’s talk was a deep introspection into what areas of WordPress I want to grow into next year. My goals this year were a) become fully self employed b) focus on WordPress as a platform c) speak at WordCamp. I’ve managed to achieve those goals, so it’s time to push myself a little harder in 2017.

As Matt put it so well (quoting Krista Tippet)

“We only learn to walk when we risk falling down, and this equation holds — with commensurately more complex dynamics — our whole lives long.”

It’s time for me to fall down a bit (again).

A more stable work environment

This past year has had it’s ups and downs (in more areas than one). For 2017 I want to focus on doing three things better.

1) A better work/life balance
2) A 25%/70% split on client work and plugin development
3) Project estimation

That last one is pretty important. One thing I have learned is that I still (after 12 years of doing this) tend to under estimate my time when it comes to project work. For 2017 I want to manage this better, not only when it comes to how long I think something will take, but also to value my experience more. This in in turn will allow me to split my development time in a way that I control (not the projects I’m working on) and be able to spend more time with my family

5 for the future.

You’re probably wondering about that 25%/70% split above, and where the other 5% is. That 5% of my development time I want to use in contributing better to WordPress. Some of the areas I want to become more involved in next year include:

WordPress Core, Calypso

Two areas that fall under the 5 for the future banner above are core and Calypso. By the end of 2017 I want to have contributed at least one patch to WordPress core and one patch to the Calypso project. This will help me become both a better WordPress developer and force me to learn React and Redux, two areas I have wanted to look into for some time now.

WordPress theme review

The WordPress theme review team is extremely under supported so I want to try and learn how to review a theme with the goal of being able to actually do one theme review once a month. I don’ know how long it will take me to get up to speed, but I need to start somewhere.

PolyGlots

This year saw the inclusion of a new locale for South Africa (Xhosa) and two new locales soon to be submitted. While I do not speak these languages I am excited to assist the new Global Translation Editors in getting these languages up and running for WordPress.

WordCamp

This year I spoke, next year I plan to be a part of it, either as a volunteer or a member of the organising team. Watch this space…

REST API powered plugin

Next year I want to either build a new plugin or rewrite an existing plugin that uses the REST API for at least some part of it’s functionality. I already have an idea for which plugin I will be doing this with and I hope to get started on it very early in the new year.

Twenty Seventeen theme

Another thing I would like to do is have my personal blog run the Twenty Seventeen theme. I’ll probably need to spend a bit of time learning all the new stuff that has been released, but I am hoping this will lead to a continuing trend of my blog always running the official WordPress theme.

WPHackerCast

This is a personal project of mine, a podcast by developers aimed for developers. I have a specific idea in mind here and it’s really a passion project that I know I will enjoy and I hope you all do to.

 

That’s a whole list of things I want to achieve. I’m not fooled into thinking I’ll be able to do all of them, but at least I can try.

What are your resolutions for the new year?

Horizon

Remembering Why – Part 2

Some time ago I wrote a blog post on remembering why I got into developing web applications in the first place. At the time I was struggling to find my focus as a developer. I’m happy to report that since then I have (more or less) figured that out.

I’ve since realised that one of my problems is that when I started out, I didn’t have a vision, mission statement or personal creed for why I wanted to do what I am doing. I just knew that I wanted to do it. Being on my own I didn’t think of such things, I tend to just rush in where angels fear to tread and then figure it out as I go along.

Today I was introduced to the Automattic creed and I was blown out of my socks. It really resonated with me, as every point in the creed is something that I believe in, a reason why I became a web developer and why I support and believe in open source as more than just a decision on software licensing. So, going into 2017 I am going to remind myself of this as much as possible.

Here is the Automattic creed:

I will never stop learning. I won’t just work on things that are assigned to me. I know there’s no such thing as a status quo. I will build our business sustainably through passionate and loyal customers. I will never pass up an opportunity to help out a colleague, and I’ll remember the days before I knew everything. I am more motivated by impact than money, and I know that Open Source is one of the most powerful ideas of our generation. I will communicate as much as possible, because it’s the oxygen of a distributed company. I am in a marathon, not a sprint, and no matter how far away the goal is, the only way to get there is by putting one foot in front of another every day. Given time, there is no problem that’s insurmountable.

That’s pretty powerful stuff!

Turn any button into an add to cart button

Turn any button into an Add to Cart button

The thing I love about blogging about WordPress is how many great questions come out of the comments of previous blogs.

Today, on my post on ‘Adding the cart button to your shop pages in Divi‘, I was asked the following:

I am trying to put an Add-to-cart button in the main Divi slider. Now Divi slider only gives an option to input a URL for the default slider button. But i was wondering is there a way to modify that button and convert it into a WooCommerce AddtoCart button?

So, there’s no way to make a slider button (or any other button for that matter) an add to cart button. But what you can do is replicate the Add to Cart functionality on any button by entering the right url.

What a lot of people don’t know is that all the Divi add to cart buttons are doing is performing the add to cart action behind the scenes. To add a product to your cart all you need to do is pass a a variable called ‘add-to-cart’ with a value that is the id of a product and WooCommerce will add that product to your cart.

So lets say your site url is http://www.myawesomeshop.com/. To turn that url into an add to cart url you just need to add ?add-to-cart=[ID] to the end of it, where [ID] is the id of the product you want the customer to add to their cart.

http://www.myawesomeshop.com/?add-to-cart=[ID]

If you aren’t sure what the product id is, just look at any product. It’s the value that appears next to ID when you hover over a product. If you edit a product, its the value for post that appears in the address bar

http://www.myawesomeshop.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=[ID]&action=edit

Also, make sure you include the trailing slash at the end of the site url, otherwise things won’t work.

So that’s it, append ?add-to-cart=[ID] to the end of your site url ( don’t forget the trailing slash ) and turn any url into an ‘add to cart’ url.

Happy Diviing.