This week’s roundup focuses on what’s new in Gutenberg, WordPress 5.0, (of course!) but we also discuss WooCommerce’s upgrade instructions and we have a cool bonus for you! Let’s get to it!

It’s been a bit of a slow week when it comes to news in general. Well, that is, if we ignore the usual suspects: Gutenberg & WordPress 5.0 😉.

Last week’s big announcement was that WordPress 5.0 would be postponed to the 27th of November. This pushes the release date back until after the most intense e-commerce weekend online: Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Postponing the release for roughly two weeks addresses only some of the arguments out there, but it’s good to see the Core team is listening to outside input.

The last Gutenberg beta

Gutenberg had its last beta release with the release of Gutenberg 4.4, yesterday. Next up are the Release Candidates. The most important updates in 4.4 are:

Some long-standing usability issues were improved around image uploads, permalinks, columns, video backgrounds, etc. It’s now also possible for plugins to remove core panels from the Document sidebar.

Per usual, you can read the rest in the release post over at Make WordPress Core: there are quite a lot of improvement and bug fixes. Furthermore, this release saw a decent amount of refinements with regards to Accessibility and Performance. Two topics we at Yoast hold very dear to our heart.

WordPress 5.0 beta 5

You could easily be fooled thinking the upcoming WordPress 5.0 release is all about integrating the Gutenberg editor, but there’s more!

PHP 7.3 compatibility

WordPress 5.0 also introduces full compatibility with PHP 7.3. The last known PHP 7.3 compatibility issue has been fixed with the release of WordPress 5.0 beta 5. If you’re curious to find out what you should know about PHP 7.3 and WordPress, check out the developer note on the Make WordPress Core blog.

Twenty Nineteen

I’ve mentioned before that WordPress 5.0 will ship with a new default WordPress theme. This beta release saw a lot of small but important improvements for Twenty Nineteen.

WooCommerce & WordPress 5.0

Usually, when there’s an update to any WordPress plugin, it can be processed fairly smoothly. However, in some cases, you should test updates in a staging environment first, before you do this on the live site. And in some cases, you should test in a staging environment and follow a specific sequence of steps.

With the upcoming WordPress 5.0 release and WooCommerce, this is the case. The tl;dr is that, before you update to WordPress 5.0, you first need to update WooCommerce to the 3.5.1 version. If you’re running WooCommerce, as we do, make sure you read their announcement first.

Bonus

If you have many different types of content on your site, you’ll know it can get a little bit confusing at times. This week, I saw an interesting new product trying to tackle exactly that problem. OrganizeWP aims to provide a new and improved way for editors to manage their content. Learn more about their features here.

The post WordPress 5.0, Gutenberg, WooCommerce updates and a bonus! appeared first on Yoast.

It’s been a busy week! With the focus fully on getting WordPress 5.0 ready, we’ve seen a lot of news around the Gutenberg integration in the past few days. So let’s dive right in!

Release date concerns

There’s isn’t much time left until the planned release of WordPress 5.0. With the WordPress 5.0 beta 3 still not being stable enough with the inclusion of Gutenberg, there has been a lot of concern about the release date.

Of most note, our CEO, Joost de Valk raised some hefty concerns in a personal blog post where he calls for WordPress 5.0 needing a different timeline. Now, this may seem odd to you given the fact that we as a company have invested so heavily into Gutenberg this past year. Ten people, including the only real accessibility developer for most of the time, to be exact. However, Joost raises two really good reasons for not sticking to the current timeline:

For the full reasoning, do check out his post in full.

Similar concerns are voiced by, for instance, Mark Root-Wiley where he states WordPress 5.0 isn’t ready. Additionally, there are folks like Ned Zimmerman over at Pressbooks, for instance, that don’t see enough parity in Gutenberg features for them to integrate into yet.

Matt Mullenweg, the WordPress 5.0 release lead said after yesterday’s Core chat:

I am luke-warm on the 19th, but not because of the number of open issues (which isn’t a good measure or target) — more that we’ve been a day or two behind a few times now.

–Matt Mullenweg

There is another reason why releasing WordPress 5.0 next Friday is not favorable and that’s Black Friday. There have been many voices arguing that releasing such an impactful WordPress upgrade right before, arguably, the busiest weekend for is bringing too much risk. Especially e-commerce sites.

WordPress 5.0 is postponed!

So, ultimately all the issues outlined above have made the Core team make the decision to postpone the 5.0 release. The new release date is set at the 27th of November. Matias Venture says the following:

After listening to a lot of feedback — as well as looking at current issues, ongoing pull requests, and general progress — we’re going to take an extra week to make sure everything is fully dialed in and the release date is now targeted for November 27th.

More information can be found on the Make WordPress Core blog.

WordPress 5.0 beta 3 has been released

WordPress 5.0 Beta 3 has been officially released, and it includes an updated version of the Twenty Nineteen theme. Of course, it also includes the latest version of Gutenberg, 4.2. The previous default themes were updated as well.

Building sites with Gutenberg

Yes, there may be reasons to postpone WordPress 5.0, but that doesn’t mean you can’t already build great things with Gutenberg. Bill Erickson published an interesting post yesterday. In it, he explains how he’s already built sites integrating with Gutenberg. From simple to more complex sites, Bill has some solid advice for those of you building websites.

What if you’re not ready for Gutenberg?

So, you don’t think your site(s) are ready for Gutenberg yet yourself? Well, then it’s good to know that the WordPress Core team has committed itself to officially supporting The Classic Editor plugin until the 31st of December, 2021. You can read more about that in Gary Pendergast post over at Make WordPress Core.

JavaScript Language packs have landed in WordPress

Fresh off the press: JavaScript Language packs have finally been merged into WordPress. Our CTO, Omar Reiss explains on the Make WordPress Core blog:

We can now translate strings in JavaScript files and distribute them via https://translate.wordpress.org. This functionality will soon be expanded to also work for plugins and themes. This is a major milestone for JavaScript development in WordPress and completes the JavaScript package inclusion focus.

– Omar Reiss

One more step into making sure WordPress is as inclusive as possible when it comes to translations. And a great one at that!

Bonus

If using one of the available WordPress hosting companies isn’t hardcore enough for you, then maybe SpinupWP is! It’s a new service released by Delicious Brains Inc. and it looks like a very neat solution for self-managed WordPress servers.

The post WordPress 5.0 is postponed, Gutenberg site building tips and more! appeared first on Yoast.

“I love that WordPress allows you to raise your voice, no matter who you are, and where you are located.” That’s just one of the many inspiring quotes of Carole Olinger, our third interviewee in this series on open source. Carole is Community Manager at Plesk, and a true WordPress Community junkie. Learn why she feels every single contribution matters!

Q. Why is open source so important to you?

So far, I’ve only been in touch with the WordPress project and its inspiring community. The contribution of all the fellow open source contributors allows to grow and to maintain projects like WordPress which today covers one third of the internet.

I love that WordPress allows you to raise your voice, no matter who you are, and where you are located. This is true when it comes to spread a message that is important to you, but also, it gives everybody incredible opportunities to run their own businesses, get hired remotely by companies all around the globe and make a living. Open source projects help to reduce boundaries like the local economy, limited travel opportunities and disabilities, to name only a few.

I’m convinced that open source communities, in general, share values that I would consider important to myself, as the WordPress community does.

Carole Olinger at WordCamp Utrecht

Q. In what way do you contribute to open source projects?

Since I joined my very first WordCamp two years ago, I consider myself a WordPress community junkie. I wanted to get more involved with the inspiring people that make WordPress so I started to volunteer at WordCamps very soon. In the meantime, I’m a triple WordCamp organizer myself, I continue to volunteer and I speak at multiple conferences. Since August 2017, I am the WordPress Community Manager for (WebOps and hosting platform) Plesk, which allows me to contribute a considerable amount of my work time to the open source project. Also, I arrange sponsorships for WordCamps, which allows me to act as an enabler, always on the lookout for win-win situations.

WordCamps would not be as affordable as they are right now (average is 20€ per conference day), without the help of all the sponsors. On the other hand, getting involved with the community in person during an event allows sponsors to find out about the needs of actual and potential customers and to collect valuable feedback about their own product.

Q. Who is your open source hero?

There are for sure some people that come to my mind, but I think it would be unfair to name only a few, just because it happens that I know more about them and their individual contributions.

I’m deeply convinced that every single contribution matters, independent of the amount of time (or money) they spend or the impact they might have. I’m aware that I’m in a very privileged situation as I can partly contribute to open source projects during paid work time. Other people have to make choices, because contributing time equals unpaid hours and/or less time with their families. I see people getting into trouble, because they are so passionate about open source, that they don’t put themselves first anymore. And I think, it’s also our duty as a community to have an eye on these people.

Therefore, everybody who manages to contribute to an open source project in a healthy way is my open source super hero.

Q. Does your company encourage people to be involved with open source?

The company I work with allows me to contribute a considerable amount of my work time to the organization of WordCamps. Also, some of my colleagues are regularly contributing to WordPress and other open source projects inside and outside their work time. In my opinion, it’s important to understand that it is necessary to give something back to open source projects, if your business is mainly or partly running on these. I’m happy to be able to work with a company who shares these values.

Carole Olinger presenting

Q. When and what was your first open source contribution?

I remember that pretty well. I volunteered in autumn 2016 at 2 German WordCamps. During the second one, WordCamp Cologne, people convinced me to attend the Contributor Day. I was totally scared, that it wouldn’t be the right place for me, as a non-technical person. I joined the Polyglots team. At the end of the day, I had localized a theme into German, which got committed the same day. This made me very proud and empowered me to get more involved into the community. Only a few days later, I got involved into the organization of a WordCamp.

Q. Do you have to be a developer to be involved with open source? How about diversity within the open source community?

That’s what probably most people think and that’s what I thought as well. But from my own experience in the WordPress project, I can tell that it’s not true. You can get involved in many ways. You can translate plugins or themes, write documentation, help to organize events or the community itself, to name only a few possibilities.

The community I belong to has strong values, also when it comes to strive for more diversity. As a non-technical woman, I totally appreciate the efforts and the Code of Conduct, which in my eyes is the reason why WordCamps are mostly welcoming, inclusive and safe events.

But there are still things that can be improved. Representation matters and I personally don’t see enough women and other underrepresented minorities as team leads, part of event organizer teams or speakers. I’m convinced that this has an impact on the repartition of people. Whether they’re willing to contribute to the different teams of open source projects, to speak up in general and to attend events. And diversity does not just increase because we call for it. Proactive initiatives are the way to go!

Q. I want to contribute to open source! Where do I start?

Get involved with the community, online and in person. Attend meetups, conferences, online meetings. Talk about what you like about your open source project but also about what you want to see improved. Find out, how you can help with your own skills. In the end, you could be the one to initiate the change that you need to move forward.

Read more: 3 reasons why open source is awesome »

The post Open source: reducing boundaries and creating opportunities appeared first on Yoast.

This week, we talk about the updates in the Genesis Framework. Also, learn what StudioPress is planning to do with it. Of course, we have some Gutenberg and WordPress 5.0 news as well. Let’s dive in!

Genesis Framework receiving love again

One of the oldest WordPress theme frameworks out there is the Genesis Framework by StudioPress. In fact, it’s been around for almost 9 years now! A couple of months ago, WP Engine acquired StudioPress and with that, the Genesis Framework started receiving much-needed attention again.

This week, the 2.7 beta was released which prepares it for the future, for the most part. Additionally, they announced that the framework will get an overhaul from an SEO point of view. Something we applaud, of course.

In related news, Array Themes is now part of StudioPress as well. Or WP Engine, depending on how you look at it. This is great news for StudioPress’s portfolio with both Mike McAllister (the owner of Array Themes) and the themes themselves.

And, as I understand it, most of the Array themes will be ported over to a Genesis Child theme as well. You can read more about that in Mike’s announcement post. As an early adopter of, and contributor to the Genesis Framework, I’m very excited to see where this is going.

A large portion of improving Genesis will go into integrating it with the Gutenberg editor. Both internally in Genesis as well as with the Atomic Blocks plugin that came over from Array Themes to StudioPress.

Gutenberg updates

My roundup wouldn’t be complete – as we’re ramping up to the release of WordPress 5.0 – without mentioning Gutenberg’s latest updates. One of my favorite improvements is this one:

The inserter between blocks has been tweaked so that the experience is consistent with all “add block” buttons — it opens the full inserter now.

For a full overview, read the release post here.

WordPress 5.0 schedule

Just as Gutenberg is being updated and refined, so is WordPress 5.0. Here you’ll find the release schedule for WordPress 5.0. The release is still being slated for November 19. Which is in 17 days!

The post Remkus’ Roundup: Genesis, Gutenberg, WordPress 5.0 appeared first on Yoast.

As we’re getting closer to the release of WordPress 5.0, the amount of WordPress 5.0 related news is increasing. Today, we have news for you on the new Default WordPress Theme, the Gutenberg integration of Advanced Custom Fields and GlotPress. Welcome to the third edition of my roundup!

New Default WordPress Theme is here:

Since the release of WordPress 3.0 – hello 2010! – WordPress shipped with a new default theme. We started with Twenty Ten as we’re approaching 2019, WordPress is getting ready to ship the next default theme with WordPress 5.0.

Twenty Nineteen will be a theme that focuses on writing great content for both bloggers and small businesses. And, as you may have been suspecting already, Twenty Nineteen will fully support the new Gutenberg editor. If you’re already curious to see what Twenty Nineteen will look like, do check out the introduction post.

ACF Gutenberg integration

If you’ve been building content-rich WordPress websites, there’s a good chance you’ve been doing this by using the Advanced Custom Fields plugin, or ACF for short. It allows you to easily add all kinds of metaboxes for all types of content. Given the fact that the Gutenberg editing experience changes the way metaboxes look and work, the team behind ACF decided to find a way to integrate ACF with the Gutenberg blocks. And they’ve succeeded.

Our friends at Delicious Brains have written a great post on how ACF lets you create easily create beautiful rich content Gutenberg blocks. I highly encourage you to check it out. It does get a little technical, but ACF’s solution is by far the easiest way to create Gutenberg blocks right now.

By the way, if you are using ACF, have you seen our ACF Content Analysis for Yoast SEO plugin?

WordPress 5.0 Beta 1 has been released

Slightly behind schedule, WordPress 5.0 Beta 1 has been released. From the release post:

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.0 beta 1: try the WordPress Beta Tester plugin (you’ll want “bleeding edge nightlies”), or you can download the beta here (zip).

It’s important to mention that this software is still in development. So we don’t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site to play with the new version. And if you are using an existing test site be sure to update the Gutenberg plugin to v4.1.1.

If you’re curious about the planning for the release of WordPress 5.0, do check out the granular timeline that’s available.

GlotPress 3.0

There’s a good chance, if English isn’t your first language, that you’re using an internationalized version of WordPress. In other words, WordPress is fully translated in your language. The software that powers the translation of WordPress, but also themes, plugins and more, is called GlotPress.

Greg Ross, who recently took over the lead-developer role from Dominik Schilling, has announced what needs to happen for the next big version of GlotPress. My favorite new feature is for GlotPress to support locale versions. What’s yours?

 

The post Remkus’ Roundup: Twenty Nineteen, GlotPress & ACF Gutenberg integration appeared first on Yoast.

Aaah, lovely Google Analytics. A tool some people love to hate. And I must agree, I have a tough relationship with Google Analytics as well. It has so many functionalities and so much to offer, which can make it quite overwhelming. But Google Analytics is really trying to help you get along with its data tool. In this post, I discuss some of the features Google Analytics offers to help you get to know and understand the tool.

Google Analytics Academy

One of the ways Google Analytics is trying to help you, is by offering instruction videos within the tool itself. If you go to the ‘Real-time’ section in the left sidebar and click on ‘overview’, you’ll notice an academy icon on the right. This is Google Analytics Academy.

Google Analytics Academy in Google Analytics

They used to have this feature for every section in Google Analytics. Unfortunately, that’s gone. But you can go to Google Analytics Academy to watch all videos about pretty much every section in the tool. On Google Analytics Academy, you can find free online courses that help you to learn Google Analytics.

Search bar and help functionality

Like any good tool, there’s a search bar that helps you with navigation. You can find it at the top left. You can look for all sorts of things like how to go to the Acquisition report. Or the mobile devices report. At the top right is a help functionality in which you can ask questions about the theory of Google Analytics. It beholds information about definitions, how Google Analytics tracking works and so on. It’s a portal to Google Analytics’ knowledge base. You can also visit the Help forum from here, email or chat with Google Analytics support.

search and help functionality in Google Analytics

Dimensions and metrics question marks

Understanding what you’re looking at, is pretty important. In Google Analytics there are a lot of dimensions and metrics of which you need to have some context to understand the report you’re looking at. There are question marks near all dimensions and metrics. If you hover over them, you immediately see an explanation.

Hover over question marks in Google Analytics

And I must agree, not all of them are explained very clearly. Some even make things more unclear than clear. But, that’s what search engines are for, Google it to get a better understanding of what you’re looking at.

Commonly used secondary dimensions

One of my favorite features is adding a secondary dimension because it gives your reports more context. But not all dimensions are useful to add. And Google Analytics is trying to help you with adding the proper secondary dimensions as well. There’s a recommended section when you want to add a secondary dimension.

recommended secondary dimensions

So you’ll know what other dimensions are commonly used. And that these are secondary dimensions that make sense. And that they can help you to get more specified data. For example, you can add landing pages as a secondary dimension to the source/medium report. Then you’ll know the first page people land from a particular source, like Google.

System segments

Another one of my favorite Google Analytics features is segments because it allows you to specify your data. Giving you more context and insights about the data you’re looking at. Google Analytics gives you a lot of segments by default. You can find them in the System section when adding a segment.

System segments in Google Analytics

There’s this segment called ‘Organic’ that you can use to find out how your SEO is doing in Google Analytics! But the other cool thing is that you can check how these segments are built. You can use this information to create your own segments, which I highly recommend!

Google Analytics insights

Just clicking your way in Google Analytics is fun at times, but you can get lost easily. Asking yourself a question before opening Google Analytics prevents you from getting lost and will make your analysis a lot more efficient. But asking questions can be hard, especially if you don’t know where to start. Google Analytics is helping you with that as well. At the top right you can find something called ‘Insights’.

Google Analytics insights

Opening up the Insights section, they show you questions you can ask yourself. And showing you the report where you can find it. They show you possible insights that might be interesting. And alert you with issues or anomalies in your data. This is the perfect place to begin if you want to do more analyzing and more understanding of what you can do with Google Analytics.

Import dashboards, custom reports and segments

In the left sidebar is a section called Customization. This is a place where you can create your own dashboards and custom reports. It might sound a bit advanced but here’s the cool thing, you can import dashboards and custom reports from others! You can even import segments. There are complete packages to add to your own Google Analytics reports for free!

Import Google Analytics dashboards

If you click on ‘Create dashboard’ you can see a button called ‘Import from Gallery’ which leads you to a gallery where you can import all sorts of dashboards, custom reports and segments.

Dashboards, segments, reports gallery in Google Analytics

There’s a package from the Google Analytics team itself, and there’s a popular package from Avinash Kaushik and Justin Cutroni. You can filter by category and check how the ratings are per package. That’s pretty awesome! Just a heads up: take the time to really understand what each dashboard or report actually means and what kind of insight it’s trying to give you.

Conclusion

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Google Analytics is a tool with a lot of sections and a lot of features. Trying to get to know every aspect of the tool can be hard. Luckily, Google Analytics is offering you a lot of help within the tool itself. Which is an easy way of learning how to use Google Analytics and a very good first step if you’re a beginner.

Read more: 3 exercises to have more fun with Google Analytics »

The post Annelieke’s Analytics: How Google Analytics wants to help you appeared first on Yoast.

It’s time for my weekly roundup again. This week of WordPress news has been an interesting one. So, let’s dive right in.

The focus of last week was mostly on the release date WordPress 5.0 with the inclusion of Gutenberg as a primary goal. As you can imagine, there was a lot of discussion on the various blogs about the suggested release dates. As soon as there’s something new to be mentioned about those release dates, we’ll let you know here. But for now, let’s dive right in!

WordCamp Nordic

An interesting new WordCamp was announced this week by lead organizer Marco Martins: WordCamp Nordic. As you can probably gather by its name, it focuses on the Nordic, or Scandinavian, countries in Europe. The first edition will take place in Helsinki, Finland and will include a Contributor Day and a Community Day additional to the event day itself. And yes, there will be saunas. How can you not when you’re in Finland, right?

If you’d like to know more about it, you can read WP Tavern’s interview with the organizers or head straight to the site of WordCamp Nordic.

I’m glad WordCamp Nordic is finally happening after two years of talking about it. I’m also excited to see other kinds of regional WordCamps happening outside of WordCamp Europe and WordCamp US.

WooSesh

WooSesh, an online conference about WooCommerce will host its first edition on October 18 and 19. If you build WooCommerce stores in any way, this all-new virtual conference for WooCommerce is for you. They have a very interesting line up of speakers and to top it all off, attendance is for free. Check out their website for more information.

Core Privacy Component Roadmap

Heather Burns, who led the introduction of the privacy component in WordPress 4.9.6 has suggested a roadmap. If you’d like to stay updated and/or help out, now would be a great time to get involved.

Gutenberg Release Candidate 1

The last versions of a software before go live are called Release Candidates. The Gutenberg project has released the first Release Candidate this week. If you’d like to know more about what exactly is in Gutenberg RC1, Mattias Ventura explains all in his introduction post. By the way, if you’re curious what’s planned for Gutenberg after it’s been included in WordPress Core, phase 2 and its focus was announced as well last week.

SiteGround WordPress Ambassadors

One of our WordPress hosting partners, SiteGround, announced they’ve started sponsoring, what they’re calling, SiteGround WordPress Ambassadors. So, much like our Yoast Diversity Fund, they’re helping out people being able to speak at WordCamps who otherwise might not be able to. I think this is a great example of contributing back to the WordPress Project and I’d love to see more companies in the WordPress ecosphere doing things like this.

That’s it for me for this week. Enjoy your weekend!

The post Remkus’ Roundup: New conferences, Gutenberg news and more! appeared first on Yoast.

I have a list of blog post ideas for my series here at Yoast.com. I have them written down in my bullet journal and refer to them whenever we’re discussing what my next blog post will be. Usually, when I’m inspired, I can finish such a blog post in about an hour. This time was different: I couldn’t get it done. I guess this happens to every blogger every now and then. So I asked myself: If I’m not up to writing new content, what can I do? So here’s my blog post idea: Focus on the improvement of your blog instead! How? Read on!

Although I still have around six ideas waiting to happen (and more to come, of course), none of them worked this time. After spending over an hour on 100 words for a future blog post, I told my colleagues I was temporarily blocked, swamped with other work and without inspiration. I voted to drop my blog post for this week and just focus on the next one due in two weeks. You can call it procrastination, and I think you’d be absolutely right. Luckily the blog team told me ‘nope’ – just kidding, they’re really understanding. So this made me think about what to do when you have a writers’ block: You can use the time you would normally reserve for a blog post, on the foundation of your blog. When your foundation is solid, you will take your blog more seriously. You can strengthen your foundation in several ways.

Write a media kit

If you wish to collaborate with companies or have the ambition to be taken more seriously to earn an income out of your blog, it’s a wise idea to have a media kit. A media kit is, usually, a PDF file that holds information about you, your blog, your statistics and possibilities to collaborate with companies. It should reflect who you are and what your blog stands for. On Pinterest, you can find a ton of Mediakit inspiration, or you can try Canva.com.

Look into your site structure

To increase the findability of your blog and to help your visitors understand your website, you should regularly review your site structure. Your site structure isn’t just about your menu, it’s about internal linking, removing duplicate content and fixing possible errors in your Google Search Console as well. You could also check, for instance, if you have orphaned content on your site and add some links to it. If you want to learn more about this, please see our ultimate guide for site structure!

Optimize for SEO

Chances are when you first started blogging; you didn’t look into SEO at all. You might get visitors now through Google, but could it be more if you optimize your blog posts properly? Do keyword research and optimize those blog posts that are important to you, for instance, your cornerstone content.

Work on your social media exposure

Your blog is more than just a place where you write; it’s your brand. This means that you need to reach people on social media as well. Creating a social media planning isn’t a bad idea at all. Every platform has its own unique power: use it to your advantage. You might want to share behind the scene photos on Facebook, a gorgeously styled feed on Instagram with relevant hashtags and witty comments on Twitter. Use it to your advantage to engage with your readers and potential readers. Often there are places where you can self-promote. Think of the numerous Facebook groups about blogging: there are often threads where you can drop your link.

Talk to and help other bloggers

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Networking is important as a blogger. It helps you to learn more about your niche, blogging, blogging culture, possible PR events and more. You have a reputation to uphold towards your readers, of course, you already knew that. But other bloggers are in a way your competition and your colleagues. You might see them during press events or blog events. Help fellow bloggers out by answering their questions on social media. If you do this often enough and consistent enough, people will know where to find you and you will become an expert on a certain subject within your network. As I answer a lot of questions about WordPress, technical issues, SEO and of course Yoast SEO, I now get tagged in questions in various groups. Annoying? Not at all. Helpful? Definitely. I’ll write about why networking is important next time, why you should do more of it and what it brought me so far.

Other ideas

Still looking for ideas what to do when you’re out of inspiration or want to quit your blog? Why not try one of our courses? Yoast offers a Free SEO training and several other trainings that will definitely help you get a better understanding of SEO, keyword research and content writing.

And if you really do not want to do any of the above things, then maybe it’s time to sit back, relax and leave your blog until the next day. Being creative is a process and today might not be your day.

Read more: Blogging: the ultimate guide »

The post Caroline’s Corner: No inspiration to blog? Work on your blog’s foundation appeared first on Yoast.

Welcome to the first of my weekly Remkus’ Roundup post. This is the beginning of a series where I’ll share what’s happening in the WordPress community. Let’s start with this week!

The road to WordPress 5.0

The most important news of this week revolves around two blog posts over at the Make WordPress Core blog. The first one is from Matt Mullenweg in which he explains his plan for WordPress 5.0.

In case you’ve missed it, WordPress 5.0 is considered a major release with the inclusion of a completely new editor experience named Gutenberg. We’re very excited about the possibilities that Gutenberg adds to WordPress. So much so, that if you’ve activated the Gutenberg plugin on your site, we’ve added two blocks to the editor already.

Matt Mullenweg explains in his post what the road towards 5.0 is going to look like. He also explains how the Core team is going to make sure all angles are covered via various focused teams. One of those teams, the JavaScript Packages team, will be led by our CTO: Omar Reiss. Omar will focus on integrating JavaScript packages on NPM.

Following Mullenweg’s post, the second post I’d like to highlight is Gary Pendergast’s post on the same blog. It’s about the Proposed WordPress 5.0 scope and schedule. In it, he outlines a proposed schedule that looks like this:

  • Beta 1: October 19, 2018
  • RC 1: October 30, 2018
  • Release: November 19, 2018

Meaning, that if all goes well, WordPress 5.0 will be available before the end the year. I myself, couldn’t be more excited about this!

Bonus blog post: Gary Pendergast’s call to action post on his own blog about to get involved with the integration of Gutenberg into WordPress 5.0 is worth a read as well.

WordCamp Europe tickets

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The next edition of WordCamp Europe will take place in Berlin next year. WordCamp Europe holds a special place in my heart, as I’m one of the co-founders. For that reason, I’m pretty excited about what the seventh edition will look like. If you’ve never been there, I highly recommend you take a look at what we did for this year’s edition. Without a doubt, we’ll do our best to make next year’s edition even better!

Tickets are being released in batches, so get them while they’re hot :) . See you in Berlin?

Read more: What is Gutenberg »

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Two weeks ago, Joost shared his vision on open source. Today, we introduce yet another WordPress fanatic: Felix Arntz. As a freelancer Felix works part-time for Yoast. Half of that time he’s working on and consulting with the SEO plugin, and the other half Yoast sponsors him to contribute to WordPress core, mainly focusing on the multisite functionality. Learn what open source means to him and get pro tips on how to start contributing to an open source project yourself!

Q. Why is open source so important to you?

“For me personally, there are tons of reasons other than that I simply believe in it. Open source has given me work, new friends, the chance to travel the world, the trust and resources to improve as a developer and as a person. It has given me a passion, and every day when I go to work (which means I get up out of my bed and turn on the computer, in whichever country that may be), I’m looking forward to it.”Felix Arntz - open source

Q. In what way do you contribute to open source projects?

“I have been active in the contributing to open source through the WordPress ecosystem for over five years now. It really escalated when I started contributing to WordPress core, which was in mid-2015 when I went to my first WordCamp. I am a core committer and regularly involved in WordPress core development, with weekly meetings, discussing tickets, writing and reviewing patches. I also quite regularly publish open source plugins or libraries, and even small code snippets that have helped me, but might also help someone else – that’s the beauty of open source: in some ways you’re crowdsourcing your development. Occasionally I also contribute to open source projects that I’m interested in outside of the WordPress bubble, to get some knowledge about other projects and how they are organized.”

Q. Who is your open source hero? 

“Phew, that’s a tough one. There surely are many folks I admire. For a long time, Joost de Valk was my biggest idol, no kidding! He achieved so much from initially just writing a simple, good plugin, which is amazing and Yoast is now able to influence the ecosystem in so many great ways. By now I’ve personally come to realize that running my own company is not something I strive for because I prefer to focus on development full-time. I guess we’re all different in our visions, and I am beyond grateful to be a part of the team that he, and the board, have created and shaped.

More recently, I’d say Alain Schlesser and Jeremy Felt are two people I want to highlight. I have learned a lot from them about development and open source, and they have enabled me to do great things around open source. I’m happy to call them friends, as much as the distance permits it, and to collaborate with them in the respective WordPress core areas, and I hope that through our discussions and with my contributions I am able to give them back something and support them as well.”

Q. Does open source say something about the quality of the product?

“I wouldn’t generalize that open source has better quality than closed source software. We all know how WordPress core is written, right? However, in my opinion, open source software has the better foundation to achieve high quality. Open source is powered by the developers, designers, accessibility experts, marketers, project managers, copywriters, translators, ambassadors, contributors of any kind, of the entire world – while closed source is usually powered by the folks from a single company.

Something else I want to highlight is security. Sometimes you hear arguments like “WordPress can so easily be hacked because its code is public”. While it is true that people with evil intentions can find a security hole easier in that way, the same goes for all the hackers that want to use their powers in a good way, and, believing in the good in the world, I think there are way more of the latter category. A large number of security issues in WordPress are uncovered by people who aren’t even typically active in the WordPress community, and this is thanks to open source. While companies that run a popular software usually have a solid security team, there is no chance that those few people are better than the entire pool of security experts who look at open source.”

Q. When and what was your first open source contribution?

“That would probably be the first WordPress plugin that I ever published, which was in early 2013. It made embeds in WordPress responsive, back then responsive was more of a buzzword than it is today. Many WordPress themes back then didn’t do a great job at it themselves. I would think that the plugin has been redundant for several years now, but there are still more than 2,000 people using it at this point, and even though I cannot maintain it anymore, it still has a special place in my heart.”

Q. How do you learn from open source? And how can others learn from open source?

“There are so many talented people in open source from which you can learn. Like I said, talents from all over the world can participate. In the same way, other people who contribute to open source will learn from you. Especially for me as a freelancer, contributing to open source meant being part of a team, which I didn’t have in my day-to-day job otherwise. The open source community and its spirit has elevated me to become a much better developer, and maybe even a better person.”

Felix Arntz workshop

Q. Why is open source important to everyone?

“WordPress’ goal is to “democratize publishing”. In that regard, I see the goal of open source to be democratizing software development. Anyone can get involved and influence a project in ways that would be impossible to do in a closed source project. If you see the project moving into a direction where it contradicts your vision, you are free to create a fork, and either maintain it just for your own usage or gather fellow folks who share the same ideas. The GPL for example, the license that WordPress is based on, allows you to do pretty much anything with open source software. The important restriction is that anything derived from it needs to follow the GPL itself, which in my opinion isn’t a restriction though. It just causes more people to learn about the benefits of open source.”

Q. I want to contribute to open source! Where do I start?

I love to hear that! How you start of course somewhat depends on the project you want to contribute to. Most open source communities I have gotten in touch with were supportive and welcoming. They always hope to chat to a new contributor that will stick around and get more involved – no pressure though! Due to my involvement with the WordPress community, I can only give more precise tips about that specific community, but I’m sure that a lot applies to other communities as well.

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Something I strongly recommend is to attend an event of the retrospective community. By meeting people in person, you get a much better impression of how the people think, how they act, what they believe in, compared to when you only sit in front of your screen. Really, don’t be scared to go to an event just because you are completely new. Meeting the community will definitely get you more excited if you had a good feeling about it, or it will keep you away from it if that community doesn’t feel right to you. The latter might sound negative, but if that happened, trust me, you wouldn’t want to be a part of that project anyway.

It’s much more likely though that you will fall in love with the community and become more passionate about contributing to it. This is important because by following up on your contributions, staying in the discussions around a bug or enhancement ticket, you can make a much bigger impact. If you are interested in contributing to WordPress core, there are several resources about getting started. I have also given a few sessions at WordCamps about it, as on-boarding new people is a high priority for me. I hope to see you around sometime!

Read on: 3 reasons why open source is so very awesome »

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