Party Block Admin

Mel Choyce-Dwan posted an update to the “block directory” project. As Mel explains, building the directory in the WordPress admin interface presents some “opportunities to redesign certain existing patterns” there. 🚧

Check out Mel's post to see some mockups that might be turned into components for the new block directory UI.

Ultra Prominent Speak

Aaron Jorbin shared some “random thoughts” on his block about WordCamps and travel:

It’s important for people who can be considered ‘Names' to make space for the next group of contributors, and this includes not speaking all the time.

During WordCamp US Contributor Day 2019, the Design Team explored a number of ideas for an author card block. Joshua Wold has shared some of the mockups, along with the thinking that has gone into the process so far. 👤

If you are a front-end developer or just an admirer of clever JavaScript and CSS, then you might enjoy this gathering of the most popular pens of CodePen in 2019. 🖊️

Verge Engine Optimization

Max Rice, co-founder and CEO of SkyVerge — a prominent seller of plugins for WooCommerce — shares how his team started this $350k/month business. 🙌

Max walks the reader the process of designing, prototyping, and manufacturing their first product. He also shares the tools, books, podcasts, and other resources that were helpful along the way.

OOP Therapy

Tyler Smith discusses how WordPress's functions.php can be simplified with OOP.

What if we had a theme object that we could perform these actions on with a simple, object-oriented API?

Noriko Yamamoto comments on the PHP community and suggests how it can expand beyond linguistic and geographic barriers. 🗺️

Kinsta Replay

Brian Jackson reflects on the past year with Kinsta as it scaled to become a global WordPress hosting platform. Brian has some previews on what to expect in 2020 too.

🌏 12.7+ billion HTTP requests and 519+ terabytes of data moved through Kinsta’s servers in 2019.

Conflict of Public Interest

Jay Hoffmann explains why the past decade was not great for the web. “If we want a better web, we’re going to have to fight for it,” he warns.

While  Jay notes that “communities are splintering,” he sees hope in conversations about “a sector of the web that exists solely to serve the public good” where “the government has a role to play.” 🏛️

Jay references MIT Center for Civic Media‘s director Ethan Zuckerman, whose recent article in the Columbia Journalism Review calls for “a wave of innovation around imagining and building tools whose goal is not to capture our attention as consumers … but to connect and inform us as citizens.”

“We might think there’s no place for old tricks like negative margins, but I recently discovered otherwise,” writes Eric Meyer. This great te.chnique for flexible captioned slanted images tickled the front-end and CSS part of my developer's brain too. 🧠

Privacy Practice

We don't often share legal items here in our notes, but Rian Kinney tweeted this really interesting post about the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) risks we may be facing in 2020. ⚖️

Rian's post serves as a general reminder that many managers should be “vigilant and precise about the descriptions of privacy practices” in their companies — whether they are in California or not.

After many years without one, the internet now has an official Far Side website to help keep things weird.

Video and Podcast Picks of the Week

📹 More video watching to wind down the year: 🎄

🎙️ Podcasts have been light on content during the holidays with a lot of reflection on the past year and discussion of what's to come in 2020. Here are a few worth listening to: