Sweet Plugin: Improve the DFW editor with Fullscreen Preview Button

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Fullscreen Preview Button is a simple little WordPress plugin that solves a problem I’ve been annoyed by for a while. It adds a preview button to the distraction free writing editor so you don’t have to exit out of the view in order to see what you’ve written on your site.

Alex King released this plugin on the WordPress.org plugin directory, which is where you should grab it if you’ve ever had this problem with the distraction free writing editor.

Do you have any favorite plugins designed to tweak and improve the distraction free writing editor in WordPress? Do you use the fullscreen editor as often as I do?

BuddyPress 1.7: Theme independence, BP_User_Query, and what else to expect

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BuddyPress and WordPress buttons

Word of what to expect from BuddyPress 1.7 has been trickling in, and while it’s not quite here yet there’s a lot to get excited about. Brand new users should pay attention, but longtime users may be the most excited by what’s on the way.

At last month’s WordPress NYC Meetup the lead developer of the BuddyPress project, Boone Gorges, led the group in a presentation showing off what can be expected in the next major version of the popular social plugin. Let’s take a look.

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Edit Flow 0.8 scope begins coming together

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Edit Flow website

Development has begun on the next version of Edit Flow, the editorial management plugin and big inspiration for one of the major advances coming to WordPress 3.6. The plugin, whose lead developer is Automattic’s Daniel Bachhuber, is lauded by many (including myself) as one of the best ways to organize an editorial team with WordPress.

Among the planned additions to next version, Edit Flow 0.8, are quick post creation, iCal support for the calendar, and dashboard widget for editorial comments. That on its own would make for a killer update, but those are just a few of what’s planned.

Bachhuber says the 0.8 release coincide with WordPress 3.6, which wouldn’t hurt because Edit Flow will likely be linked up by anyone writing about the new WordPress release. So if you’re a user of the plugin keep an eye out around April 22. And if you’re a heavy user, or a developer, run over to the Edit Flow Development blog and see about contributing to its development.

A question for the comments: is it accurate to see Edit Flow in a similar light as the BuddyPress and bbPress projects? At least in the sense of usefulness and depth of a project built on top of WordPress I’d say it’s comparable — certainly not as a blessed sister project to WordPress in quite the same way. What do you think?

Jennifer M. Dodd joins the bbPress commit team

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Photo credit: Jennifer Dodd

Photo credit: Jennifer Dodd

Jennifer M. Dodd joined the bbPress core commit team this week after contributing to the project since the plugin version of bbPress was introduced. bbPress lead John James Jacoby said, “Her ability to iterate and improve on core patches, her outstanding communication skills, and her knowledge of the codebase, make her a great addition to the bbPress team.”

Dodd blogs about WordPress at UncommonContent.com, and you can find a list of her (WordPress/bbPress/BuddyPress) plugins there too.

In the blog post announcing Dodd’s commit team status Jacoby said her first tasks for bbPress 2.3 will be focused on full forum searching. Her first commit after the announcement can be seen here.

Side note: has it really been more than a year since bbPress 2.0 became final? Holy. Wow.

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Plugin self deactivation

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Jake Goldman wrote up how to make a WordPress plugin deactivate itself given a specific version of WordPress. Why? His plugin was folded in core with 3.5, so there’s no point to running both the plugin and the latest version of WordPress. His technique includes a status message explaining why the plugin was deactivated.

Very clever. Though I would probably add a link to a blog post with more information on the update.

Miss links already? Add them back with the Link Manager plugin

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The recently released WordPress 3.5 dropped the Link Manager from core — unless you were already using the feature, of course. For many this was met with cheers of “good riddance”, but that might not be you. The Link Manager was there for a reason, of course, and folks still used it.

If you find yourself wanting to use the link system in a new install of WordPress, or would like to bring it back on an upgraded install where it went away, try out WordPress Lead Developer Andrew Nacin’s Link Manager plugin. It’s available on WordPress.org and will add back the classic featured back to your install.

If you’re using the Link Manager and reading a WordPress blog like this one, I’d be curious to hear what you’re using it for exactly. Drop by in the comments below and let me know.

BuddyPress 1.6.2 released, brings compatibility for WordPress 3.5

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Version 1.6.2 of BuddyPress is now available, and fixes a couple of compatibility issues with WordPress 3.5. John James Jacoby says that if you are running BuddyPress 1.5 or 1.6 and also upgrading to WordPress 3.5 (who isn’t?) this one should be a safe and painless upgrade.

11 tickets were closed for this release, which you can read through on the BuddyPress Trac.

Speaking of WordPress 3.5, we should be seeing that release in the next hour or two. Who’s excited?

WP Late Night #30: “Insane in the Maintainn”

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Back from our Thanksgiving hiatus full of tryptophan and nonsense, the crew has its thirtieth episode in the can. Thirty. Episodes. Milestones are fun. So are italics.

First things first: big thanks to Robert Nienhuis, one of the organizers of WordCamp Orange County, for putting together the new, awesome WP Late Night logo. You can expect to see it showing up in a few more places real soon.

In this week’s episode we discussed the first release candidate of WordPress 3.5, WebDevStudios acquiring Startbox, WordPress maintenance services, and of course our bar tricks. Special guest Brian Richards also joined us for a few minutes to discuss Startbox and WebDevStudios.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Or you can grab the show in a few other ways:

Full show notes are available just after the jump!

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bbPress version 2.2 now available for download

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If you’ve visited your WordPress update screen recently you’ve likely noticed that the latest point release of the bbPress plugin has been released. The fresh release brings “What’s New” and “Credits” pages, compatibility with the yet-in-beta WordPress 3.5 and BuddyPress 1.7, and improvements to theme compatibility and user roles and capabilities. 69 features and bug fixes in total made it into this release.

The bbPress Trac is the place to go if you’d like to dig into any of the specific tickets tied to this version.

As project lead JJJ points out in the release post, this marks the third major release for bbPress since it became a plugin. Speaking of which, how many forums have you established using bbPress as a plugin? Does anyone still use the old standalone version of bbPress anywhere?