WordPress Membership Plugin WP-Members 2.8.6 Release Announcement

An update for the WordPress membership plugin WP-Members was released tonight.  This is the 2.8.6 release and it is a minor code update along with some minor changes to the stylesheets for the forms.

For a full description of update (and of course, more information on the plugin in general), see the release announcement at the plugin’s support site.

RocketGeek.com Rebuild on Genesis 2.0 Framework

With the launch of Genesis 2.0, I have been getting my hands dirty with the Genesis Framework.  I’ve always liked the framework, and I’ve owned it for quite some time; but I never really got in there and made full use of it.

After giving butlerblog.com a makeover with Genesis 2.0, I moved on to rocketgeek.com where all of the support goes on for WP-Members.

RocketGeek.com had launched in 2012 for supporting WP-Members and was built around Twitter Bootstrap.  At the time, I liked what I could do with Bootstrap, and since part of the site’s function is to show how flexible the WP-Members framework is, that gave me the opportunity to do some pretty cool things with the plugin framework.  To make these reproduceable for users of the plugin, these were all written up as example code on the site in the “How I Did It” category.

But there is always room for improvement.  With Genesis 2.0, I decided to get in there are give that site a makeover.  It is not fully complete, but the Phase 1 build is launched.  Go over to rocketgeek.com and take a look.  The site is running on Genesis 2.0 and WP-Members.

Here are some of the cool custom features that I did (and I’ll be adding these as new tutorials in the “How I Did It” category):

  • Unique login page makes use of the Genesis full width template so we don’t show two login forms (body and sidebar widget).  Also, this page uniquely styles the login form and adds some text for non-members inviting them to learn more about joining.
  • Now running the WP-Members with the Genesis Stylesheet Pack Add-on.  There will be additional stylesheet add-ons in the future, but I am still trying to get through plug-and-play stylesheets for the plugin to integrate with the various StudioPress child themes.  And as Brian Gardner continues to roll out new versions of the various child themes for the 2.0 Framework, that will likely keep things pretty busy over here.
  • Site continues to run with the WP-Members PayPal Subscription Add-on, which will be getting a major update after we roll out and test it on the site.
  • More to come!

There is still a lot to do for Phase 2, but I am excited about the project.  For those of you that liked the Bootstrap Tabs that I had done as an example on the old site, I’ll be doing another tabbed customization of the login/registration form combination as part of Phase 2.  The Bootstrap version was pretty tricky to implement.  I hope that this new one turns out to be an easier customization for general users to implement.

Site Review: Digging Into WordPress

Digging Into WordPress (DigWP.com) is a great site and resource for WordPress powerusers, theme developers, and plugin developers.  This is a blog by Chris Coyier and Jeff Starr that focuses on the finer points of fine tuning your use of WordPress with excellent (and well documented) tips and code snippets.

Both Chris and Jeff are WordPress veterans with several sites under their direct tutelage.  They both have been involved with WordPress as long as I have, taking us all the way back to 2005 (which seems like a long time ago).

Digging Into WordPress is set up to be full of useful information about tuning your WordPress site – code snippets, how-tos, widgets, design, and more.  It also serves to promote their book Digging Into WordPress.

10574-1259010890I personally own a copy of the book and I heartily recommend it for your library.  You can get a print version (currently sold out) or a PDF version.  The print version includes a copy of the PDF version, and both versions include lifetime updates – very nice plus.  You also get access to a few other extras including some exclusive themes.

The site is loaded with how-tos and code snippets, and both Chris and Jeff operate under a similar school of thought as I do, which includes the following:

  • Less is more
  • Do it the right way
  • Don’t do it with a bulky plugin when roll-your-own will be a better fit

A favorite post of mine is their tutorial on how to make WP’s Visual Editor actually WYSIWYG.  If you freelance and you do this for a client site, I guarantee they will be amazed!  Especially if they are already using WordPress.

If you want a good overview of their best articles, take a look at their Best of DigWP.com.  This has a list of their top posts for the last few years and should give you a good idea of what you can find on DigWP.com.

Whether you are looking to improve your self hosted WordPress site or you are a WordPress developer, there is going to be some good material for you on DigWP.com.  Check them out.