20 Years of WordPress

As anniversaries go, I’m really not sentimental. My wife just had to remind me that we’re hitting ours this week. I’m glad WordPress is sticking around, though, and I do appreciate the schmoozy posts and all that. If I have to pick one anniversary to try to remember, it should probably be my own wedding. Then again, when I ramble on for more than a few hundred words, WordPress doesn’t literally fall asleep on me.

There have been some great #WP20 posts shared around the past few weeks. I’d recommend Jonathan Wold’s 20 Years of WordPress. He’s also been on a few podcasts sharing some of his ideas on where WordPress should go next. Speaking of podcasts, my friend Aurooba Ahmed was on a roundtable discussion all about the big anniversary. Give it a listen.

Similarly, I’m a huge fan of this discussion to get rid of the Q&A format for WordCamps- especially when it comes to Matt Mullenweg. What a colossal waste of time. Imagine instead an in-depth conversation with someone like Jonathan Wold, Remkus de Vries, or Lesley Sim- someone with a lot of knowledge, practical experience, and the ability to dig deeper on a few topics, instead of the same old questions about multilingual and new Slack channels.

Podcasts & Videos

One more note on podcasts, our WordPress development show viewSource ended it’s first season with a three-part finale. In the last three episodes we cover what we learned about podcasting, our WordPress wish lists, and our favorite community conversations over the last year. We’ll be back with season two in the fall.

One of the things I learned from doing viewSource was how much I enjoyed crafting video tutorials. If you’re learning how to develop for the block editor, I have a few new ones up that might help you out:

  • 🎥 Custom Lists in WordPress with Register Block Style – Register a custom block style in Gutenberg with simple PHP and CSS- no JavaScript or build process required.
  • 🎥 Custom Responsive Settings in Gutenberg Blocks – Add custom settings fields to any Gutenberg block. In this tutorial, we add a responsive display setting to Gutenberg using 10up’s Block Extension API, the WordPress Scripts build process, and the WordPress Base Styles Sass library.
  • 🎥 ACF Blocks Post Carousel Tutorial – We’re building a post carousel block using ACF Blocks. We’re doing everything from start to finish, including loading a third-party resource (Flickity) and default Gutenberg supports like colors and alignment. No build process, no fancy JavaScript, just Advanced Custom Fields.

Any topics that need to be covered? Let me know.

Other things around WordPress and the web.

  • 10up is opening up their headless WP+Next.js framework: HeadstartWP
  • WordPress is adding a Command Palette feature but of course has to make things difficult by giving it a weird name. Chime in on the discussion if you can. That said- the feature is going to start slow and only be available in the site editor, so I’ll be sticking with my favorite extension Turbo Admin for the time being.
  • Great interview of Mike McAlister by Nathan Wrigley– a must listen if you’re interested in the commercial future of block themes.
  • MRW released a CSS reset for The Events Calendar plugin. More importantly, his post highlights the major gap in WordPress design tokens- most plugins aren’t using them. Plus there’s a lot of basic HTML elements that can’t be styled properly in theme.json.
  • I’ve recently switched away from using the Arc browser after noticing way too much cooling fan activity for my M1 Macbook. Looks like I’m not the only one seeing performance issues. (Ok, it was also the tabs in a sidebar. I couldn’t handle it anymore.)

Is that everything? Did I miss anything cool in WordPress the past month? Let me know. Did I make it through this whole thing without mentioning AI or the Apple Vision Pro? Almost. Happy twentieth!

Brian Coords
Modern WordPress Development