How to Auto Optimize Images Using NPM Scripts & Gulp for WP Development

Image optimization is one of the best ways to make your site speedy and lightweight. Because images are one of the largest aspects of your site, it’s important that you know how to properly optimize them. Visitors will leave your site if it takes too long to load. So, the fact of the matter is that you need to keep image sizes small and use them sparingly, and that’s why optimization is so important.
This process can be tedious, so here is how you can do it automatically using NPM Scripts and Gulp.
Image Optimization in WordPress
Image optimization means that you are using the most compressed yet visually acceptable image in the proper file format for your blog posts. Speeding up your site with image optimization brings in several benefits like:
Less bandwidth usage.
Preventing a high bounce rate.
Creation of quick and smaller backups for your site.
Increased conversion rates.
Improved SEO — which means rewards from the search engine like Google which loves speedy sites.
If you’re like me and enjoys having as much control as possible over the images in the dev-workflow then, you should optimize your images manually. There are several ways of doing it for formats

11 Best WordPress PDF Viewer Plugins

Imagine you’re a teacher with a simple WordPress site. You’re getting excited about the new school year yet you’d like to give your students some digital-friendly documents for them to prepare for classes and understand the material. Your first order of business is to share the class rubric with all of the assignments and tests throughout the semester. You have the PDF file, but you’re unable to make it all that printer-friendly as a blog post or page. Why doesn’t WordPress have a PDF viewer where visitors can view a full PDF and download it if they want? WordPress has plenty of features, but a PDF viewer isn’t one of them. Luckily, the wonderful world of WordPress PDF viewer plugins come to the rescue.
What’s a WordPress PDF Viewer Plugin and When Would You Use It?
Take our example of the teacher and the rubric above. In this situation, there’s no substitute for a viewable and printable PDF on the class website. Chances are, half of the students will throw out printed handouts and the idea of copying and pasting the PDF content into a blog post is a formatting and printing nightmare.
PDFs are great for many situations, and a PDF plugin

What’s new in Gutenberg? (18th August)

Added ability to change font-size in cover text using slider and number input. Added support for custom anchors (ids) on blocks, allowing to link directly to a section of the post.
Updated pull-quote design.
Created custom color palette component with “clear” option and “custom color” option. (And better markup and accessibility.)
Improve pasting: recognizing more elements, adding tests, stripping non-semantic markup, etc.
Improve gallery visual design and fix cropping in Safari.
Allow selecting a heading block from the table-of-contents panel directly.
Make toolbar slide horizontally for mobile.
Other changes:
Improve range-input control with a number input.
Fix pasting problems (handling of block attributes).
More stripping of unhandled elements during paste.
Show post format selector only for posts.
Display nicer URLs when editing links.
More compact save indicator.
Disabled arrow key navigation between blocks as we refine implementation.
Removed blank target from “view post” in notices.
Fix empty links still rendering ont he front-end.
Fix shadow on inline toolbars.
Fix problem with inserting pull-quotes.
Fix drag and drop on image block.

Quest for a Lean and Mean Font Awesome 5 – 66 KB down to 22 KB

I’m worried, Ray, it’s getting crowded in there and all my recent data points to something big on the horizon. Our team has been hard at work on Font Awesome 5. At the time of this writing we are 96% complete converting the older version 4 icons. We’ve added completely new styles: Regular and Light. There are tons of new brand icons and new features such as the SVG Framework and Power Transforms.
We’ve received a lot of positive feedback but something caught my attention while I was reviewing the issues thread on our private Font-Awesome-Pro GitHub repository.
To make working with SVG a piece of <i class=”fa fa-cake”></i> our new framework uses JavaScript. We’ve been focused on adding features and haven’t spent time optimizing performance or file size. As of beta 2 the main file had grown to an embarrassingly large size.
Part of this is intentional. We don’t want to waste time optimizing something that we aren’t sure is gonna stick or be rewritten.
But 66kb…
How large is Font Awesome 4?
With version 4 you often have two different files that must be loaded in order for it to work.
30kb css/fontawesome.min.css

Interview with Danny Van Kooten of MailChimp for WordPress – Scott Bolinger

I had the pleasure of interviewing Danny Van Kooten, author of the MailChimp for WordPress plugin. With over 900,000 active installs, and almost 8 million downloads, it’s one of the most popular plugins of all time.
Danny has built a very successful business selling a premium version of his free plugin, and I wanted to know what his experience has been like with the freemium model. Danny’s spoken English is not as good as he’d like it to be, so we conducted the interview by email.
Before we dive in, I’d like to give some context. It’s easy to read interviews like this and think it’s easy to build a plugin and have great success. Remember that MC4WP is an outlier, one of those products that does really well without a lot of marketing effort. We love to hear stories about unicorns, but it is very difficult to replicate this today.
Danny built this plugin in 2012, while WordPress plugins and MailChimp were both starting to have incredible growth. His timing was perfect, and he executed better than other products on the market. He mentions in the interview he still thinks there is room for success with WordPress plugins, and I agree. However, I think

Episode 73 – Gutenberg, WooCommerce and the Future of WordPress

In this episode, Donnacha MacGloinn and Mark Zahra take over as guest hosts. Donnacha has been involved with WordPress since the early days while working on various projects, while Mark is the Project Manager for WP Mayor as well as the WP RSS Aggregator and EDD Bookings WordPress plugins.
This week we delved into a current hot-topic in the WordPress community, the Gutenberg editor and what it means for WordPress. We look at what Gutenberg is, where it’s going, and what brought it about. The discussion then delves deeper into the macro idea behind such projects as Gutenberg, WooCommerce and many others that Automattic and Matt Mullenweg are under-taking. While the community seems to be happy with the new, modern approach being taken in WordPress, there is a lot of uncertainty about its future.
Shownotes & Links

So You Want to Hire a Contractor (Part 2)

Awhile back we covered the initial stages of hiring a contractor and now, we’re back to dive into part two of what you need to know. This time, we cover some basic logistics around payment, documents, and communication. Getting on the same page
If you’ve found a contractor you like, you’ll want to make sure you’re on the same page. That not only applies to start dates and payment, but the actual logistics of bringing them onboard.
Before they get started (or within the first week of when you’re starting), have a kick off meeting that covers the logistics below.
Ideally, you’ll have all of the paperwork you need saved in a folder in advance (organization is key!), so you can easily send copies to them before they start work. Then, the kick off meeting to cover the ins and outs of the work itself, as well as focus on your deliverables timeline.
Project management
As we all know, it’s easy for things to get lost in the shuffle. When you’re working with a contractor, especially if you do not have a designated project manager, knowing how they’re going to report to you and track deliverables is crucial.
Hopefully, you asked what kind