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You know, we use ad-blockers as well. We gotta keep those servers running though. Did you know that we publish useful books and run friendly conferences — crafted for pros like yourself? E.g. our upcoming SmashingConf New York, dedicated to smart front-end techniques and design patterns.

Welcome To The Smashing WordPress Section!

Nowadays, WordPress is one of the biggest and most popular content management systems (CMS) available. Powering about 43% of the Web1, its influence is extraordinary and its dedicated open-source community keeps making it better day by day.

For the past few years, WordPress has kept ahead of the game by focusing on its general CMS functionality. With the introduction of hooks and (later on) proper custom post type and taxonomy support, the user friendliness permeated the code itself and has been keeping programmers just as happy as users.

The massive success of WordPress was initially due to its user friendliness. No coding knowledge — not even HTML — was needed to run a successful WordPress site. A small learning curve meant that you could get started within minutes and start focusing on content.


WordPress has arrived to a place where it can jump through hoops for you. Gone are the days of changing core files, gone are the days of hacking your way around a feature. WordPress has matured and become a flexible system which, when used properly, provides a great experience for the site owner, the site programmer and the site user alike.

WordPress: Then & Now

One of the strengths of WordPress is its very active development. Along with new features and goodies, each WordPress update aims to tighten security, optimize code, and squash bugs. For those of you who may be new to WordPress, here’s a snapshot comparing features then & now:

Feature Old way of doing it (WP versions 1 & 2) New way of doing it (WP version 3 +)
Updating the WordPress core Download latest version, put up a maintenance page, remove old files, upload new files, remove maintenance page Enter FTP info, click a button
Updating WordPress plugins and themes Same thing: download new files, remove old files, manual upload Enter FTP info, click a button
Tagging articles Install and configure a plugin or two Built-in functionality in the WP Admin
Replying to comments Visit the actual comment thread to reply to comments Respond to comments directly from the WP Admin
Saving revisions As often as you could remember, select/copy all text, and paste into a text file and archive locally Nothing. WP automatically keeps revisions of your work
Editing images Open 3rd-party photo editor, make changes, save & upload file to WordPress Log in and edit images directly in the WP Admin
Custom post types Required all sorts of theme hacking Add a line to functions.php
Post thumbnails Custom fields to the rescue Built-in functionality using simple code snippets and template tags
Multiple WP sites with a single install Install and configure WP MU Install and configure WordPress

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg – these are primarily functional improvements. Everything else about WordPress – performance, aesthetics, usability, and so on – continues to evolve and improve just as quickly.

What Type Of Content Can You Expect?

With WordPress’ phenomenal growth, we’ve seen an explosion in the amount of WordPress-related content available on the Web. There are plenty of beginner tutorials, round-up posts, and code snippets, but few good places to go for more advanced, in-depth content. With the Smashing Magazine WordPress2 section, we’re aiming for quality articles on intermediate-level topics, with an emphasis on developing smarter, faster sites with the world’s most popular publishing platform.

Also, we’ll be covering many aspects of WordPress, at a deeper level, and geared toward a more intermediate audience. If you’re new to WordPress, that’s fine too – we’ve got a series of tutorials lined up that will get you up to speed on techniques we’ll be exploring in future articles.

Introducing Daniel Pataki

Daniel Pataki3

“I’ve been working with WordPress since the good ol’ 2.0 release back in 2005. I learned PHP and object oriented programming basics through the WordPress source code and the love affair hasn’t stopped yet.

When not editoring (real word I made up) I make premium themes at my company Bonsai Shed. I’m the author of an upcoming Smashing Magazine book on WordPress development and I also contribute now and then to the WordPress Trac, the plugin repository4 and other projects on Github5.

You can get to know me a bit better on my personal website6 or by following me on Twitter7.”

Ideas? Thoughts? Suggestions?

It’s all about you! Let us know what you think — your comments and ideas inspire us to excel and improve Smashing Magazine as much as we can. If you want to be a part of our growing team of authors and contribute to the Smashing WordPress section, feel free to reach us via our contact form8, or contact Daniel9 directly. We look forward to hearing from you!


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The Smashing team loves high-quality content and cares about the little details. Through our online articles, Smashing Books, eBooks as well as Smashing Conferences, we are committed to stimulating creativity and strengthening the web design community’s creative forces.

  1. 1

    Huh, I thought there was already a WordPress section. Maybe it was just a sub-section of coding before. Either way, I look forward to seeing what you can do with an already-great resource, Daniel!

  2. 2

    New way of Updating the WordPress core – in most cases now, this is just automatic as of 3.7

    New way of adding Custom post types – it’s probably more than a line and it should really be in a plugin for portability, not functions.php

  3. 3

    Hope I could join the team someday!


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