Curious About Quality WordPress Plugins
It's Episode 613 and we have plugins for Dark Mode Security Headers… and WordPress News. It's all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!
– ‘good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you happen to be hiding out there on the globe today! Coming to you LIVE from …'
Welcome to Episode 613 – Curious About Quality WordPress Plugins – We've got a couple of great in-depth plugins to cover for you, some recent news in both the WordPress World and the Tech World in general, and some awesome WordPress Tips!
We are moving towards the time when we all lose one hour of sleep – the true sign of winter! Time to pull out the hot chocolate and extra fuzzy things that are stored away! I think that is one of my favourite things about fall – the ability to pull out all, the fuzzy things once again.
Some reminders before we start the show today….
- Remember that the show starts at 12:30 PM Pacific Time, with a pre-stream starting around 12:15 PM Pacific Time. Pre-stream is where we twiddle with the dials and knobs and really just warm up our voices, so join in for some entertainment value!
- Our show notes for each episode can be found at wppluginsatoz.com – the newest show notes will be up within 24 hours and on our front page!
- Don't forget that this is a value for value show, and that you are a big part of it's creation! You are our producers, and we need you to help us produce! Get out there and hit some like buttons, share an episode or two, and let people know that you help to produce the longest running WordPress Plugins podcast!
That's it for reminders, don't forget to stick around until the end of the show for some possibly life altering advice!
...When you see this in the notes, it means we didn't read this on the show. The only way to find this information out is to read our Show Notes!
…You can send any questions/suggestions or notes saying ‘hi' over to me at email@example.com, or hit up our site wpppluginsatoz.com/contact – Be creative with the title so that the spammer eater doesn't eat your note though!
Let's start the show with this weeks Featured Artist:
Angel Lemus — http://www.koadigital.com
I can't tell if the kitten is looking at something it's about to destroy… or looking at a tasty treat… although I suppose one is just as good as the other to a kitten. Maybe he's looking at a new plugin?
Going through the Art Vaults is awesome, but we would love some new art! You can send it into us at https://wppluginsatoz.com/artwork/. You can also check out the art vaults yourself there too!
…We can NEVER have too much art!
Breaking News in the WordPress World at large!!
…If I missed something, shoot me a link at firstname.lastname@example.org – it may show up on the next show!
News this week:
WordPress Vulnerability Report – October 11, 2023 (https://solidwp.com/blog/wordpress-vulnerability-report-october-11-2023/) – iThemes is back! They have a brand new look, more sleek and streamlined, and they have their weekly vulnerability report!
Between October 2 and October 9, there have been 101 new vulnerabilities reported. there are 42 plugins with security patches, so be sure to have a look through the list yourself to determine which security patches are badly needed for your or your clients sites. The ones I most easily recognize are:
Simple SEO, Order auto complete for WooCommerce, GEO my WordPress, AI ChatBot, and WP Mail SMTP Pro. Be sure to have a look at iThemes new sleek design! I think it's great!
WordPress Vulnerability Report from PatchStack
(https://patchstack.com/database/) – This is a great link to keep in your saved list for more information on vulnerabilities and things to look out for.
WordPress 6.4 Font Library Feature punted to 6.5 release (https://wptavern.com/wordpress-6-4-font-library-feature-punted-to-6-5-release) – The Font Library feature has been added to the 6.5 release after core maintaners found major gaps in the font APIs that cannot be resolved in time for the upcoming release. There was apparently a lack of filter or actions alongside the limited developer API, missing functions. There is no way to unregister font collections, and a few questions like ‘If fonts are stored as post object, can I query to get all fonts from a collection? So this feature is going to have to wait before it will be released. It appears much tweaking is needed still.
WordPress Contirubtes speed up Twenty Twenty-Four default theme performance by 40% (https://wptavern.com/wordpress-contributors-speed-up-twenty-twenty-four-default-theme-performance-by-40) – WOrdPress 6.4 will be shipping a new default theme – Twenty Twenty-Four (TT4), and this will be expected in early November. This theme is more feature-rich then previous default themes, and contributors have been working on identifying potential performance improvements that can be made ahead of the release. The reason they had to do this is because it was slower due to providing a lot more feature rich content out of the box then TT3. This article breaks down where they sped it up and the server side performance. To learn more details you can follow the link!
WordPress.com enters the fediverse with ActivityPub support (https://wptavern.com/wordpress-com-enters-the-fediverse-with-activitypub-support) – WordPress.com has added support for ActivityPub as of October 12, a decentralized social networking protocol that is now available for across free and paid plans. This allows users to join the fediverse from their WordPress.com sites, and interact with content across federated platforms like Mastodon (and many others) with replies automatically published back to the blog as comments. If you are interested in joining the fediverse through your WordPress.com, this article will walk you through the basics on how to do this. Follow the link for more information!
WordPress reverts live preview button on plugins after developer backlash (https://wptavern.com/wordpress-reverts-live-preview-button-on-plugins-after-developer-backlash) – Recently WOrdPress meta contributors implemented a ‘live preview button' for plugins in the official directory, with the intention of allowing users to safely test any plugin in one click. The button went live across all of WordPress.org's 59,000+ plugins but took plugin developers by surprise as it was pushed through without any communication or input from stakeholders. The implementation was thrown in too soon, and failed to take into consideration the different types of plugins that appear to be broken due to inadequate support in the playground testing environment. This caused a serious backlash as the developers had not been told, and it caused some things to appear broken when they were not. The feature was removed, and is now in further development to be redeployed down the road.
Google's AI could soon consume as much electricity as Ireland, study finds (https://thenextweb.com/news/googles-ai-could-consume-as-much-electricity-as-ireland) – The one concern that has been overlooked when talking about AI is the amount of electricity it consumes. This article goes through a new study that was published recently suggesting that the AI industry could consume as much energy as a country like Argentina, Netherlands, or Sweden by 2027. And the research estimates that if Google alone switched its whole search business to AI, it would end up using 29.3 terawatt-hours per year – equivalent to the electricity consumption of Ireland. This is a very well written article and worth the time to read!
State of the Woo 2023: WooCommerce highlights AI-powered future and continued core blockification (https://wptavern.com/state-of-the-woo-2023-woocommerce-highlights-ai-powered-future-and-continued-core-blockification)
Why NASA chose WordPress for revamping its flagship website (https://wptavern.com/why-nasa-chose-wordpress-for-revamping-its-flagship-website)
Gutenberg 16.8 makes cover block smarter, adds experimental pages list in site editor (https://wptavern.com/gutenberg-16-8-makes-cover-block-smarter-adds-experimental-pages-list-in-site-editor)
Behind the lens: WordPress photos directory surpasses 10,000 images, moderators explore future enhancements (https://wptavern.com/behind-the-lens-wordpress-photos-directory-surpasses-10000-images-moderators-explore-future-enhancements)
Ollie theme now available on WordPress.org (https://wptavern.com/ollie-theme-now-available-on-wordpress-org)
AI coming to White Castle Drive-Thrus with help from SoundHound, Samsung (https://www.technewsworld.com/story/ai-coming-to-white-castle-drive-thrus-with-help-from-soundhound-samsung-178678.html)
Study warns age bias can threaten workplace cybersecurity (https://www.technewsworld.com/story/study-warns-age-bias-can-threaten-workplace-cybersecurity-178673.html)
Spotify AI-Powered translation tool has podcasters speaking on global tongues (https://www.technewsworld.com/story/spotify-ai-powered-translation-tool-has-podcasters-speaking-in-global-tongues-178649.html)
New technique makes AI hallucinations wake up and face reality (https://thenextweb.com/news/ai-hallucinations-solution-iris-ai)
UK plan to lead in generative AI ‘unrealistic' say Cambridge researchers (https://thenextweb.com/news/uk-plan-lead-generative-ai-unrealistic-say-cambridge-researchers)
Dragon Rating Time!
Strict Security Headers
Strict Security Headers is a straightforward and lightweight plugin.
This plugin is designed to enhance the security of your WordPress website by implementing modern security headers.
Simply activate the plugin, and the headers are automatically added; there’s absolutely no configuration needed!
Works like a charm.
Rating 5 Dragons
We would love to hear some tid bit tips from some of our producers out there – what did you figure out by breaking something? Or what did you need to learn in order to help someone? You can send these tid bits into me at email@example.com
When you are working on a site that needs rebuilding and recreation from scratch, it's a good idea to get another set of eyes on it. There are things that you WILL miss, there is no real way around it – and by having another set of eyes – or 2 or 3 if you can – that will help you to keep from missing those things.
Really this can go for any aspect of site creation – getting another set of eyes, a set of fresher eyes, on the site you are recreating or creating, will help you a lot.
If you don't have another set of eyes to go over something, walk away from the site for a full 24 hours, and come back to it every time you think you are done. And you will likely find more things each time you come back that need fixing.
I found that at first I was fine with regular white screen background – but after hours and hours of starting at a screen, I found I was starting to get headaches and eye strain – this will happen as you go along. Try out the dark mode for some things – for some like myself, this removed the strain on my brainmeats. For others, it makes it too hard to see. There are other options, such as blue filter, lowering your brightness, sunset mode – try them all out until you find one that works for you.
A bit of an aside note, if you have any amount of dyslexia, did you know that white writing on black background makes it a lot easier to read things, and it helps with dyslexia? Same kind of thing goes with images and other things.
There are things that you will have to do in regular mode if you find that dark mode is working for you though – there will be entire sites you will have to build in regular mode, unable to use dark mode. For these, twiddle with the dials and knobs until you are able to ease the brightness on your brainmeats.
…Some random entertainment in the World of WordPress!
…Matt's Famous Quotes
…The hall of shame via Automattic:
WP Dark Mode – Best Dark Mode Plugin for WordPress with Social Sharing
I reviewed this plugin a while ago, though I wanted to go through it again as some things have been added, and some things have been changed.
This plugin is designed to give you a dark mode in both dashboard and front end. It's got a toggle, so the various accounts have the ability to toggle this on and off as desired. Unfortunately one of the side effects is that if one person in one account toggles the dark mode on or off for the dashboard, it changes the setting for all accounts – however, when two or more people are logged in at the same time and the toggle is set by each – one on dark and one on light, it has no effect on the other account.
Once you have downloaded and activated this plugin, you will find the settings under ‘WP Dark Mode' in your left hand menu. Here you will find many options for setting up your dark mode. The General Settings offers you the option to set this up for your frontend, backend, and your block editor so that you can do your creation of the site in dark mode as well. This works in both Elementor and Gutenberg, along with other popular page builders. You will also have the ability to set it so that if the user has dark mode set as their own default on their computer, the site will just be dark mode for them automatically.
You can make dark mode default, time based, or sunset mode which means that the dark mode is set to turn on at sunset of the time on client's device timezone. Although that last setting may ask for the device location for the first time.
One of the newer features is that the various dark mode color preset's are now behind a paywall – you have access to two preset colours for dark mode and no access to the custom colors.
The dark mode in this plugin is still the best one I have found as of yet – the various areas of the site look right and not confusing. The writing properly changes, images look correct, and when you are in the plugin dashboard, it's not an issue figuring out which ones need an update – which is a big one for me using dark mode. I have found that a lot of dark modes make it very hard to properly read information on the plugins page, as well as other pages because the colour's don't change right, the writing becomes unclear and harder to read – this one does not have any of those issues.
Now unfortunately, in the free version, you don't really have much access to the 10 other settings options – though in the free version you will be able to create a keyboard shortcut, enable/disable the dark mode using URL/domain parameter, and turn on dynamic content mode. You can also turn on dark mode for animation, and you have access to basic support through the WordPress.org Support area.
The Social Share is a new addition as well, and is available in the basic setup for the social share buttons. You have basic control over how these look.
You also have the option for exporting and importing settings, or resetting everything to default.
Overall, this plugin gives you a decent amount as a free plugin, though if you really want to get the best out of this plugin you will need to upgrade.
Rating: 4 Dragon
Onto Our Producer Know How and Donations Segment!
Earn yourself a Producership Credit!
We have 3 levels of Producers that help to keep the show's larders stocked to bursting – Free-Lance Producers, Back-Room Producers, and War-Room Producers. There are special perks for Back-Room and War-Room Producers that you can learn about on our site wppluginsatoz.com. Click on Time, Treasure, or Talent Donations in our main menu to learn all the nitty gritty details on how you can add your 2 cents!
… Free-Lance Producers always show up when least expected, and often times when most needed! No donation required to become a Free-Lance Producer – you just are one if you're here!
… If you have listened to even 10 minutes of this show, or shown up a single time to one of our live shows on YouTube, you are one of our many Free-Lance Producers! Although you guys are always popping in and out at unexpected times, we appreciate your support and periodic help with one thing or another – thank you!
Back Room Producers:
… Back Room Producers always seem to be about the place helping with our contests, artwork, site organization, notes, questions, suggestions, and even more! While they tend to hang out a lot in the back lounge and consume massive amounts of coffee and doughnuts, it's well earned through both hard work and their donations – never above $50 dollars and absolutely equal to their Time and Talent donations!
… Back Room Producers, if you ever notice something that needs some work feel free to reach out to us and let us know – you can offer to take it up yourself, or just let us know and we will add it to our list. We always appreciate your help in organizing and changing of the coffee – thank you!
War Room Producers:
… War Room Producers receive a few extra perks with their donations of $50 or more – an official A to Z Handle of their choice, a spotlight in that weeks show for a short speech, and an official Executive Producership Credit! These credits are real and can be used in the real world to your advantage! Only draw back is that they sometimes gotta make fresh coffee when the Back Room Producers emptied the pot…
**If you prefer to stay anonymous, please let us know at the beginning of your note to us regarding your donation! We are more than happy to keep you anonymous from the world – nobody is ever forced out of the tender embrace of the shadows on this show!**
… Official A to Z Handle means you will receive a specialized login to our site. We are working to update our site where we will have a Members Only section, and you will have access to a variety of things through your personalized handle for our site! To receive your Official A to Z Handle, think up an original name, and send it in to us along with the show number and the show name.
… Your spotlight can be an elevator pitch for your business, a note, or you can just skip it – just be sure to let us know your choice and we will adhere appropriately.
… The Producership Credit we offer is REAL! When you send your donation in to us of $50 or more, please be sure to note down the number and title of the show your donation appeared on, and we will back up your right to claim Producership!
… You don't ACTUALLY have to make the Back Room Producers coffee, but you might want to make yourself a fresh one. 😉 Especially if you are planning on pointing out things going wrong on the site… we got a long list and will likely try and convince you to help us out a little!
… War Room Producers, same as for the Back Room Producers, reach out to us if you notice something that needs work! Whether you are wanting to take up the job yourself or just inform us and leave it, we will add it to our ever-growing list!
Join in and be part of your own production and support the show at the same time!
There are loads of ways to use us as your tool to get on out there like getting an interview, leaving a review for a plugin or donating your own plugin review, or your own plugin license! I recommend you give it a go and see how it helps – you can check out our show notes in this section to see all the ways to be part of your own production!
…Reach out to John and get yourself Interviewed – use us as your tool to get out there!
… Looking for a way to get your name and work out there? Use us as a stepping stone! Hit us up at https://wppluginsatoz.com/interview
…Send in your Plugin Reviews, or suggestions for a Plugin reviews!
… Have a plugin you love? Or one you really think people should avoid? Reach out to us and get your words and opinion out into the world by hitting us up at https://wppluginsatoz.com/submit-plugin-review/
…Send in your own Plugin License and add it to the contest – this is a great way to get your name and your work out there!
… Is your plugin worth its salt in Dragons? If so, send it on into us and add it to the contests! You can do this by hitting us up at https://wppluginsatoz.com/plugincontest/
…Send in questions and/or comments – we always love hearing from our Producers!
… Have a thought to share? Send it in! You can stay anonymous or belt your name out in all caps! Stitcher Radio, Google Play, or the iTunes Store. Doing this will also help you in producing the show for your own benefit too!
…You can support the show by Subscribing to our Newsletter, Donating, or reviewing us on Stitcher Radio, Google Play, or the iTunes Store. Doing this will also help you in producing the show for your own benefit too!
… YouTube Channel and joining us live every Monday at 12:15 PM PDT is a FANTASTIC show of support – and since you're already on the net's, might as well check out the Facebook page and hit that ‘like' button and share it out!
… Just showing up to our YouTube Channel and joining us live every Monday at 12:15 PM PDT is a FANTASTIC show of support – and since you're already on the net's, might as well check out the Facebook page and hit that ‘like' button and share it out!
… Don't forget – if you leave a review of us on any platform, that will help the show get noticed too; and if you happen to add your name to the show via questions or that awesome spotlight offered with a War Room Producership, that will get YOUR name out there too!
Questions, Notes, and Feedback from our Producers out there:
… No such thing as a stupid question people! I was new not too long ago, and I know how overwhelming it can be stepping into this world at this stage – I know for a fact that questions you have are the same questions others out there have!
Miscellaneous Announcements from us and Producers:
Have an announcement like a meetup, or to announce you'll be on stage at a WordCamp? Let us know and we will add it here and help get your news out to the world!
If you are interested in finding a WordPress Meetup somewhere around the world you can go check out the places here: https://www.meetup.com/pro/wordpress/
If you are in Victoria BC, you can keep an eye on the WordPress Meetup's at WordPress Victoria Meetup: https://www.meetup.com/yyjwordpress/
There are 5 notable WordCamps planned for this month around the world:
WordCamp Masaka 2023 – October 6-7
WordCamp Biarritz, France – October 6
Community Building Workshop Japan – October 6
WordCamp Bhopal 2023 – October 7-8
WordCamp Taiwan 2023 – October 14
If you are interested in finding out more regarding the other WordCamps going on across the world, you can check out the link for the page here in our show notes, and click on ‘More WordCamps' just at the bottom of the list of 5: https://central.wordcamp.org/
Keep checking back every week to find out what else is going on!
And remember, the show notes found at wppluginsatoz.com has a whole lot of extra information to grab up that we don't read on air so be sure to check them out!
How to reach us:
We have a real brick and mortar address where you can send in art and/or notes – you can find the address in our show notes!
WP Plugins A to Z
C/O John Overall
20-754 E Fairview Rd.
Victoria, BC V9A 5T9
We also have virtual addresses too!
- My website: http://www.johnoverall.com/
- WordPress Emergency Support: http://wppro.ca/wpemergency
- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- email: email@example.com
Today's Plugins we covered were:
Strict Security Headers By Dual Focus
- Simple and Lightweight: No configuration needed, just activate the plugin to enhance your website security.
- Enhanced Security: Helps in protecting your website against various types of attacks and vulnerabilities.
- No Performance Impact: Strict Security Headers is developed to have minimal impact on your website’s performance.
Rating: 5 Dragons
WP Dark Mode – Best Dark Mode Plugin for WordPress with Social Sharing By WPPOOL
- Dark mode for your dashboard and front end of your site with toggle.
- Works in Elementor and Gutenberg, and other popular page builders.
- Social Share buttons available within the plugin.
Rating: 4 Dragons
Q & A Time with Amber – Catch this info on our YouTube Channel
If you have questions you would like to have asked on the show, send them in to me at Amber@WPPro.ca – let's see if we can stump my dad!
- How many different things need to be added to a plugin before the plugin becomes too bogged down, and starts causing issues on the site itself?
- Is it possible for a plugin to have a lot of different things available, and not slow down the site? If so, what would be needed to pull that off?
Questions asked after closing credits:
- As we move away from all in one themes and move into Gutenberg and page builders such as Beaver Builder and Elementor, do you think these page builders and Gutenberg are going to have the same sort of issues down the road as the themes with trying to add in too much and offer too many options, causing problems with getting too full and moving too slowly?