Footnotes #418

Gutenberg 9.2 has been released. This is the final release to make it into WordPress 5.6 Beta, which also came out this week. ✨

Featured items in the Gutenberg release include:

  • Support for video subtitles.
  • The ability to transform multiple selected blocks into a columns block.
  • Background patterns in cover blocks.
  • Various enhancements and bug fixes.

Meanwhile, WordPress 5.6 is set to be released with a new default theme, an auto-update option for major releases, and increased support for PHP 8.

Sadly what isn't coming in 5.6 is the Widgets screen as block-based widgets have been deferred to 5.7. Josepha Haden Chomphosy says the team “will continue working on the Widgets screen, and will keep the new screen as the default option when using the Gutenberg plugin to encourage more feedback.”


There is a call for testing the WordPress for iOS 16.0 app. There are numerous updates to the block editor and reader. 📱


Chrome 86 is hiding full URLs, and slugs are no longer visible by default — they're only visible on hover. Remkus de Vries “finds it annoying as hell” (I agree!), and he shows you how you can turn this feature off. 😠


PushEngage, the maker of push notification software with “over 10,000+ customers in 150+ countries,” has joined Awesome Motive. 🙌

Awesome Motive founder and CEO Syed Balkhi notes in the press release:

“I first started using push notifications over 3 years ago and quickly realized that the click rate, engagement, and opt-in rate is significantly higher than my email newsletter or any other engagement channel.”

There is a free plan for PushEngage, and Syed hints at integration with other Awesome Motive products: “you can expect to see easier workflows to set up highly personalized push notifications campaigns.”


Eric Karkovack‘s list of WordPress plugin pet peeves made my neck sore from nodding in agreement so much! Eric, you had me at “an endless barrage of notifications.” 🔌🤯


I enjoyed this recent interview with Hichame Assi, the new CEO of Envato who is replacing co-founder Collis Ta’eed.

Hichame was CEO of HotelsCombined for 10 years and is a prior ThemeForest customer. 🏨


Daniel Lee has published a quick and straightforward guide to setting up WordPress in Docker. 🐳


Here's a great primer from Ido Shamun for developers on the different types of browser storage. It includes details on the localStorage API, IndexedDB API, cache, and URL storage. 👩‍💻


Some brief takes from Sarah Bird, CEO of Moz, on emerging SEO industry trends cover five “under-rated yet crucial parameters.” 📏

Marketers should monitor all five to make sure their brand has positively influenced their customers: keywords, external links, differentiation, omnichannel communication, and outcome alignment.


A recent interview with Patrick Pulvermüller, the president of Partners Business at GoDaddy, explains GoDaddy's relationship with WordPress and how WordPress professionals can build lucrative careers. 💸


Em Lazer-Walker has an interesting post suggesting how game design could be used to make virtual events more social. 🎮


New to me: PlacePress is a WordPress plugin described as an “elegant mapping solution for public historians, urbanists, and other humanities researchers.” 🗺️


Fränk Klein has a new online video course about WordPress Unit Testing. It's described as a “step by step roadmap for learning WordPress unit testing in a weekend, starting from scratch.”

I plan on diving into this over the holidays, and other developers may want to as well. 🤿


📅 Conference and Event Updates

  • WordFest Live 2021 is a 24-hour festival, celebrating all that is WordPress. Registration is now open, as well as a call for speakers and sponsors. Organized by Dan Maby, Michelle Frechette, Hauwa Abashiya, Paul Smart, and Cate DeRosia, this free event aims to raise awareness as well as funds for Big Orange Heart.  BOH is a UK-based charity that promotes positive well-being and mental health within remote working communities. 🧡
  • There are upcoming WordCamps, all being held online, for Bulgaria (October 24), Finland (November 12), and México (November 25-28). 🌐

DAVID'S PICKS 📬

Video Picks

📹 Here are my video picks of the week:

Podcast Picks

🎙️ Here are a few podcasts for this week:

  • Distributed: in episode #25, Matt Mullenweg chats with Davit Baghdasaryant on the science of sound. Davit is CEO of Krisp, a company that makes an AI-powered noise cancellation app. (If you prefer to read this interview, there's a transcript.) 🎧
  • Women in WP: Megan Rose takes the spotlight and shares how she got to be a WordCamp speaker and organizer. We get her origin story making websites for her Neopets as a kid. 😸
  • Hallway Chats: I've been on a streak with this podcast lately and really enjoyed the latest episode with Chris Ford. Chris is a hybrid project manager and designer at Reaktiv, a WordPress VIP partner. (If you prefer to read this interview, there's a transcript.) 👍
  • Do The Woo: Bob interviewed Igor Benic, a developer at Grow Development. 🌱
  • Delicious Brain Waves: This is a new podcast from Delicious Brains with an excellent first episode with host Brad Touesnard talking with Pete Tasker, the lead developer of WP Migrate DB Pro, about rebuilding the UI for that plugin in React. 🔌