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WordPress 4.0 Released

WordPress 4.0 (nicknamed Benny) is now available, and with it comes some notable updates. The Media Library has received a beautiful overhaul. Updating and editing media content is now more intuitive, and the details preview overlay loads super fast. You can also see which post a file is attached to right from that quick edit interface. New grid view quickly edit title, caption, and alt text For those who love to add videos and tweets to their posts, this newest version of WordPress makes it super easy to add this rich content. Check out the full list of natively supported oEmbed providers at All you need to do is drop a YouTube link or the link to Tweet in a post, and it’ll automatically embed into the visual editor. Check out an automatically embedded tweet in action: “When you realize how perfect everything is, you will tilt your head back and laugh at the sky.” – Buddha — Kristina Quinones (@kristinaQ) September 4, 2014 Other changes include changes to the editor (a sticky menu bar & a color picker!), a change in the way the plugins are displayed on the Add New page, and lots of backend fixes and improvements. As usual, if you’re planning on upgrading, make sure to back up your database and files! If you’re worried about plugins not working properly, or a custom feature on your blog not being compatible, it might be a good idea to wait until you know for sure your plugins (and any other customizations) are compatible. Have you upgraded to WordPress 4.0...

Dropbox Pro Users Now Get a Terabyte of Space

Dropbox users— huzzah! In a move that looks to have been made in response to Apple’s upcoming new iCloud Drive, Dropbox is now offering Pro users a full terabyte of space — the pricing stays the same: $9.99 a month or $99.00 for a full year. They’ve also improved sharing, with the ability to password protect and expire shared links, and added a device wipe feature, useful if your Dropbox-linked computer or mobile device is ever lost or stolen. Aside from the upgrade in storage space, the password protection and expiry functionality add so much more versatility to Dropbox. Check out Dropbox’s announcement here: Introducing a more powerful Dropbox Pro I am, admittedly, a bit of an Apple fangirl, and I’ve been waiting patiently for iOS 8 and the new iCloud Drive to roll out . . . mentally preparing myself to migrate my awesome Dropbox set up over to iCloud in spite faint misgivings (what happened to MobileMe, after all). But with Dropbox’s newest update, I won’t be moving my cloud full o’ files anytime soon. What’s your cloud-based storage tool or service of choice? Google Drive? Does the upgrade to the Dropbox Pro plan entice you upgrade your free Dropbox plan or switch over from another provider?...

Three Simple Steps to Secure Your WordPress Blog

WordPress is an amazing universe of code— it’s beautiful, complex, and for users who don’t deal with the intricate backend of maintaining a WordPress site, wonderfully simple. However, it’s not without its weaknesses; the biggest one being that, well, having been created and secured and perfected by people, sooo many people, it can also be exploited and hacked by other… people. Hackers and spammers don’t care how much time or cash or reputation you’ll lose trying to clean up after a security breach that’s been exploited, so the best measure is to be proactively diligent and take some precautionary measures to prevent an unwanted intrusion. Don’t be a chump! Secure your self-hosted WordPress installation for free in a few simple steps. If you’re still logging in using “admin” as your username, immediately change the main admin username for your site Change the login page from the default wp-login.php Install a security plugin to periodically scan your site and alert you of any unusual activity or login attempts Read more about how to do these things below:   The number one thing you need to do immediately to secure WordPress? Make sure the admin login for your WordPress installation isn’t actually “admin” (or your name) Why? When hackers attempt to get into your site, the top usernames attempted include admin as well as variations of your name and of visible usernames on your site. Is your main username admin but you’re not sure how to change it? Here’s a quick rundown of how to do that: Backup your database! (I have some of my sites on Hostgator, and they automatically perform weekly backups. I also use Updraft Plus Backup and Restoration...

Mind Your Manners: Blog Commenting Netiquette

Bloggers are story tellers. Quite simply, we’re grassroots reporters, whether our features cover personal reactions to the legalization of weed, our favorite organic baby foods, Hollywood’s latest disaster star, Apple’s latest innovation (or lack therof, depending on what camp you’re in), and anything and everything in between. As such, most, if not all, of us wholeheartedly want, welcome and wish for comments. We absolutely thrive on this interactive feedback from our oftentimes faceless audience, and after a small taste, we very nearly crave the dialogue created on our blogs through our comment systems. For many, comments comments comments are the fuel that keeps ’em blogging. So, to nurture some friendly dialogue, what’s the proper way to comment, as a blogger to another’s blog? Should we only strive for quality dialogue or should we allow bloggers to perpetuate the audacious acts of shameless plugging? Is there any way to reach a happy compromise? Is it okay to shamelessly plug your blog or company with a neutral though almost always unrelated copied-and-pasted and then slightly modified version of your “elevator pitch”? No, no, no. Well, sometimes. There are ways to do things, and most of the time that would not be one of them. Self-promotion is absolutely one of the pillars of being a successful blogger. It’s neither reasonable nor at all smart to completely cease shameless self-promotion, but one should most definitely be following certain guidelines when doing so. As of late, I am finding fully non-spammers’ comments being caught by Akismet because of the content and structure of the comments in question. Though these comments did in fact come from real,...

CoSchedule: A Blogger’s Best Friend and Arguably the Best Editorial Calendar Ever Made

If you write a blog, you should also maintain an editorial calendar. Seriously, you should. The word accountability is in danger of being relegated to the overused-new-media-buzzwords corner, but in this case that’s exactly what creating and maintaining an editorial calendar gives you—it keeps you accountable for what you’ve gotta do when you blog: post regularly. (erm . . yet another rule I’m not so good at following myself.) I’m an expert at putting off blog posts so long that it ends up making no sense to post the anything even similar to the original article idea anymore . . . which is exactly what happened to me back in the day —”back in the day” meaning like 3 years ago when I “mommy-blogged” on and off. Now I don’t quite mommy-blog . . .but I’m leading to something here, so stick with me. Enter: CoSchedule (above screenshots provided by CoSchedule) This marvelous and magnificent plugin for WordPress will prove to be undeniably invaluable within the first few minutes of your initial 14 day trial. So yes, this is a premium WordPress plugin—currently $10/month per blog, unlimited users. I have no doubt that after playing around with it, you’re going to seriously be wondering how in the heck it’s possible that something so intuitive, so practical (while still managing to be so aesthetically pleasing), and so awesome, didn’t exist until recently. I daresay this is one of the best things to happen in the world of WordPress plugins. Anyway, enough of my fangirl-ing. Read on for my review of CoSchedule. *If you write a blog, you should also maintain an editorial calendar.* Click To Tweet   Here are the deets:...

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