Affordable websites shouldn't look cheap!

WordPress

All of Our Organizations’ Websites have been Updated

All of the organizations that we work with are running the latest version of WordPress (5.0). Everything seems to be working properly. You may not see much difference since the Classic Editor is still set as your Default Editor. However, you may notice a slight speed increase.

As I said last week, there are some good introductory videos on the new editor, Gutenberg. I highly encourage you to watch a few of them to familiarize yourself. I will hold off until January before making Gutenberg available for you to use (unless you want to jump in now, in that case just let me know).

Videos:

  • WordPress for Non-Techies released this video six weeks ago using a pre-release version of Gutenberg on WordPress 4.98:
  • This short video was released earlier today with WordPress 5.0: 

New WordPress Update December 6, 2018

Gutenberg

This is a much-anticipated major update and it includes several enhancements, most notably a new visual editor called Gutenberg. The release date has been very fluid with the date pushed out a little more and a little more as developers worked to fix the reported software bugs. For instance, the update was supposed to be released the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, but because of the holiday, it was pushed out further. Many people were expecting Automattic (the company that develops WordPress) to push the release date into January.

However, I was very surprised to read yesterday that WordPress 5.0 with Gutenberg will be released tomorrow, perhaps in a lead up to this week’s keynote address at WordCamp US by WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg.

Because this is a major update and the perceived issues with client confusion regarding Gutenberg, many developers will postpone the update until the New Year. Others are allowing their clients’ websites to update tomorrow, but without the Gutenberg Editor enabled.

Rather than automatically rolling out all of my clients’ websites at once, I have backed up everything on your website and I will manually install the update on each website over the next few days, individually ensuring that the update runs smoothly.
For those of you who do not log into your website to update the content, all of this is just academic. But for those of you who do update your own content, Gutenberg will take some getting used to.

For this reason, I will install the WordPress update without initially enabling Gutenberg. Unless you advise me otherwise, I will plan to enable the new editor in January. But before that, I’ll email some links to some introductory videos so you’ll have an idea of what to expect.

Note: You do have the option to not install the Gutenberg Editor. I believe that Automattic is planning to continue to support the Classic Editor “for many years to come“. Please let me know if you do not want Gutenberg installed. However, I recommend that you try the new Editor at some point. After getting past the learning curve, I think you’ll find an easier editing experience.

I’m sorry to have taken so much of your time. I will keep you updated on the WordPress 5.0 rollout.

As always, please let me know if you have any questions.

In the meantime, here is a good preview of Gutenberg.


How Much is a Website?

A snicker crept across the auditorium as a room full of website developers awaited a panelist’s answer when asked this question last weekend at WordCampDFW.

Her response? “How much is a house in Dallas? That all depends on what size house you want and the neighborhood you want to live in!”

Website developers are often asked the question. And many of us hesitate to give a cut-and-dry answer. Because it depends.

Do you want a website that is basically a business card that includes your logo, color scheme, and a way to contact you?

Or do you want a website that helps you establish and maintain a connection between your organization and a website visitor? Do you want to include a slideshow of a recent event? Do you want your website visitors to complete a survey? Do you want to sell something on your website? Do you want to give something away? If you’re a church, do you want to provide audio or video your pastor’s recent sermons on your website?

The answer to how much a website costs has everything to do with what you want to accomplish with your website. That’s why it’s difficult to get a straight answer to a vague question — from a quality website developer.

That’s why we ask questions. We don’t want to merely sell you a website. We want to help you establish and maintain a connection with other people.

 

 

Countdown to WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg

If all goes according to schedule, WordPress 5.0 and the new content editor Gutenberg will be released in three weeks (November 19). With this new major version upgrade, Gutenberg will move from being a WordPress plugin to being integrated into the WordPress Core.

If you have not installed the new editor, it’s time to do so and get acquainted with the new features.

Until recently, it seemed everyone was cautioning against using Gutenberg on a “live” site because it was seen as being “not ready for prime-time”. Well, we’re down to three weeks, so it’s time to get acquainted with it, even on a live site if you don’t have an option to check it out on a local or a staging site.

You may already have Gutenberg installed on your website as a plugin. If so, go to your WordPress Plugins Menu and enable Gutenberg. If it’s not installed, just Add New and type Gutenberg. Next, Install and Activate it. If you see a plugin called Classic Editor, you will need to disable it.

When you go to create a new Post or Page (or edit a Post or Page you already have written), your screen will look very different.

You are used to seeing this:

WordPress Classic Editor Screen Capture
WordPress Classic Editor

Now you are greeted with this:

The new Gutenberg editor screen capture
The New Gutenberg Editor

As you navigate around, you’ll find that Gutenberg is more than a little bit different than you’re used to. But that’s ok.

Admittedly, this is the first post I’ve written with Gutenberg. And actually, it’s not been as bad as I feared. It was surprisingly easy to navigate and insert the pictures.

If you want a little more about navigating around Gutenberg, check out WPCrafter’s tutorial geared for non-techies.

 

Join Me at WordCamp DFW 2018!

WordCamp DFWWordCamp is a gathering of WordPress enthusiasts. This year’s WordCamp for the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is November 10-11 in Fort Worth. I’ll be speaking on WordPress 101; it’s an introduction to WordPress. I’ll cover what WordPress is, how to install and navigate it, some basic troubleshooting tips, and some best practices when using it.

Regardless of your experience with WordPress (or lack thereof), there’s something for you at WordCamp. This is the only WordCamp in the entire state of Texas this year.

Here’s a bio about my background with WordPress.

 

Honored to Speak at 2018 WordCamp DFW

I’m honored to be one of this year’s speakers at . If you use WordPress, is a great place to meet other users, and developers. Don’t be intimidated! There’s something for everyone! Last year was my introduction to WordCamp; I learned a lot and met some new friends who are very active in the local WordPress community.

Note: This is the only WordCamp this year in the state of Texas. Don’t miss it! Sign up!

 

We Don’t Use Flash

I tried to attend a webinar a few minutes ago. Unfortunately, the webinar required Adobe Flash. My current computer has never had Flash installed on it. And I will not install it. Hence, I was unable to watch the webinar I was looking forward to.

Flash is old. Flash is not secure. Flash will be abandoned by Adobe soon in favor of current standards.

Now, if Adobe is abandoning its own product, why would any website developer still use it? I suspect it’s because either the developers don’t want to abandon a platform they know well; maybe they’re too lazy to learn newer things. Or perhaps the people who are paying them don’t know any better.

We know better. We care about security. And we care about the security of our clients and the people who visit their websites.

We don’t use Flash.

 

Is WordPress Secure and Capable?

Are you hesitating to build your organization’s website on WordPress because you don’t think it’s secure enough or it’s too lightweight?

Think again! Here are some heavy-hitters that are using WordPress for their organization’s websites.

Security? How about the US White House!

http://bit.ly/2IqTCgn

 

Give us a shout and let us design a custom WordPress solution for your organization!

 

WordPress at 30%

Happy 30% WordPress

Several sources reported yesterday that WordPress runs on a whopping 30% of the top 10 Million most popular websites on the entire Internet.  Also, WordPress currently powers 60.2% of those websites that run a Contact Management System (CMS). One of the sources notes that my alma mater, UNC-Chapel Hill has recently moved its website to WordPress!

This means several things:

  • WordPress has a very high brand recognition.
  • WordPress is powerful enough to run some of the most popular websites.
  • WordPress is secure enough to run some of the most popular websites.
  • WordPress continues to grow in popularity.

This is great news! It’s also chilling news. Why?

Just as we have seen with Microsoft Windows over the years, being the “800lb gorilla” means that a lot of hackers are going to take aim at discovering and exploiting vulnerabilities. And just because WordPress is powerful and secure enough to run some of the most popular websites doesn’t mean that all of those WordPress installations are as secure as they can by, including running the most recent version. And there’s the rub.

Plugins and Themes are the most vulnerable vector for malware attacks. The WordPress Core is securevery secure… at least the most recent version is. And that is true with every new version of WordPress. Automattic, the company that writes and maintains the WordPress Core pushes out minor updates of the Core files very quickly whenever a new vulnerability is discovered in the WordPress Core. So long as the website administrator has enabled automatic updating, the website will be secured when the update rolls out. That was until the February 5, 2018 release of WordPress 4.93. The day after 4.93 was released, 4.94 was released that fixed a “serious bug” in 4.93 that disabled automatic updates.

But if your WordPress website administrator hasn’t run the 4.94 update, your website will never be automatically updated! Never.

Unfortunately, many people who have written Plugins and Themes are not as diligent with their updates as Automoattic is; some developers have completely abandoned their Plugins or Themes, either because they aren’t around anymore, they aren’t writing code anymore, or they don’t care anymore. If there is any exploitable code in the Plugin or Theme, all a hacker needs to do is find the website and load it with malware.

“But why would anyone want to hack my website?” I can tell you that many of my websites — even those that have very few visitors every month — are probed for vulnerabilities more often than they receive legitimate visitors! I have witnessed this nafarious probing increase a great deal in the past few weeks on all of the websites that I maintain.

Unless you have a static HTML “business card” webite that very rarely has changes, you need to step up to the WordPress platform! WordPress allows you to make your own content changes, letting you keep more of you money since you don’t have to call a “web guy” and pay him/her anytime you need to make content updates. Please contact me! Let me save you some serious money!

If your website is already running on WordPress and you don’t know if you’re running the most recent version of the WordPress Core, Plugins, or Themes, please contact me! Your WordPress website may already be infected with Malware!

Let me take a FREE quick look “under the hood”. If I find something, it may need a quick fix, and for a small fee ($30) for the small fix, you’ll be on your way (and I’ll even install some security measures to protect your website in the future!). If it’s more involved and needs a larger fix, we’ll need to talk for a few minutes about how much (or little!) I’ll need for the larger fix. I also offer WordPress Maintenance packages that keeps things updated for an entire year. Contact me if you’re interested!

WordPress is now powering 30% of the web. How high will it go?

 

Uh Oh!

WordPress 4.9.3 was released on February 5 and included several bugfixes. The next day, WordPress 4.9.4 was released to fix a "severe bug" in the previous day's bugfix. If your WordPress website was automatically updated to version 4.9.3, you must manually update your website to version 4.9.4, otherwise your website will never automatically update again. If you don't know how to do that, it's time to call your webhost or developer! And you may have to part with some of your hard-earned money!

However… if your website was developed and maintained by All-In Web Services, your website was updated within a few hours after these WordPress maintenance releases rolled out. We've got you covered! And we will continue to keep your website running the latest, most secure version of WordPress.

Wordfence has more information here.