Content Notify 1.1

What's new in Content Notify 1.1 and what's coming up next.

IMG 4017
A park, near where I live
Jack
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It’s been just over a month since I released Content Notify. Getting the first version out the door felt brilliant and I’ve had some great feedback from people who have already bought the plugin.
I’ve also had some great suggestions for new features that I’ve been thinking about and working into my roadmap. With this, plus having all the documentation written, it’s really helped me to work out what Content Notify is, what it could be, and where I want it go next. It’s easier to see the path once you’ve already walked a little way along it.

Version 1.1

I’ve just released version 1.1 of the plugin which has some fantastic features and makes some progress towards styling and theming – something I’m going to tackle in a big way soon.

Styling

The front-end form is no longer using the same table-based layout as the form in the WP Admin and instead uses divs and standard Bootstrap CSS classes to make integration into a WordPress theme much easier. Many, many WordPress themes use a core set of Bootstrap features, such as the grid, buttons, alerts, etc. and so including these just felt like a no-brainer. The plugin also now comes with a tiny subset of Bootstrap features, if your theme isn’t using Bootstrap, so that the form looks better out of the box. If you do have Bootstrap, you can disable the plugin’s front-end CSS file via a new setting in Subscriptions > Settings > Styling. Additionally, CSS and javascript is only loaded on pages where the [cn_form] shortcode is used.

Author Field

There is a new author field that allows a user to subscribe to updates from a specific author. Only authors that have written something will show in the select box. Much like the post_types shortcode parameter, the new authors=”” shortcode parameter can be given a comma-separated list of authors that you’d like to limit the select box to. The field can also be disabled completely by using using false as the parameter value, e.g. [cn_form authors=”false”].

Auto-detect Post Type

The form can now auto-detect the post type of the page that the [cn_form] shortcode has been added to when setting the post_types parameter to ‘auto’, e.g. [cn_form post_types=”auto”]. This is handy for when you don’t want users to be able to choose a post type and instead, just want them to be able to subscribe to say, the default ‘posts’ post type when the form has been added to the bottom of all posts.

Various

Small changes, such as labels and a couple of other random bugs have also been fixed. Nothing major but they’re there.

Other

This release has also given me the opportunity to get into using gulp, npm, and composer to pull and compile the various assets required for the plugin, such as Bootstrap and Select2. I’m also using a script for stripping all of the unneeded files out of the plugin before zipping it up ready for each release in order to provide the smallest possible plugin size. I may end up using gulp for this at a later date, providing I can get it working as expected.

What’s Next?

I want to look at making the plugin more compatible with the various regulations and laws around the world. Out of the box it’s pretty good but there’s more to be added, which will feature heavily in the next release.

Until next time.

Jack
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