2014 Year in Review

Twenty fourteen was an interesting year. I lived in 3 separate countries (Laos, Australia & Thailand), travelled to San Francisco for WordCamp SF / WooTrip and (obviously) started working for WooThemes as a WooCommerce Ninja.

During the year I got to do a lot of cool stuff. After reaching Australia in April, I spent a few months catching up with family and friends, doing some plugin development and just relaxing. While there, I noticed WooThemes were finally hiring. I jumped at the opportunity to join a company I’d followed and admired from afar for years, and decided to apply (they’re currently hiring, by the way). A few weeks later, I had the job.

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Simple is Supreme

Today I want to preach to you the power of simplicity. There is a discreet and utter beauty in the very concept of ‘less is more’. I feel like we often use the expression in hopes of justifying our lack of effort or enthusiasm, but actually, we should strive to do less – strive to work less and think less.

Simple is Supreme

Remember those words next time you dream up the ultimate settings panel or try and take the toughest route.

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Keep Learning

When you get to the top of the mountain, with nothing but stunning views and steep edges surrounding you; the clouds so close, you can touch them, it’s easy to get comfortable. You deserve it. You climbed for weeks, months, years. You suffered through insufferable environments, trekked unknown terrain and conquered altitudes never thought possible.

Take a rest. Or keep going. That’s the next mountain to climb.

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Take the Easy Way Out

I’m a little bit confused at the moment. I’m stuck at a crossroads between the easy way and the hard way.

In life, I’ve always taken the easy way. If it’s time to eat, I’ll eat out. If something’s not working, I’ll buy a new one. But when it comes to stuff I’m more passionate about, things change.

I start to do things the hard way. My entire perspective changes and I begin to consider everything. My natural decision-making process goes from 5 seconds to 5 minutes. My palms start to sweat, my head aches. What the f@*k am I doing?

When we do something we love, something we have a deep and profound care and respect for, we want to do it right. And the right way, is often the hard way.

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Adding a WooCommerce Setting

I’d like to preface this by referencing a few resources that will definitely be of value to you if you’re interested in this topic. Firstly, read about the WooCommerce Settings API. Also, the Create a Plugin (for WooCommerce) document is pretty good too. Additionally, I wrote about how to add a section to the WooCommerce settings once upon a time – that’s pretty good too.

Regardless, if you’re still here, I’m going to take you through the process of adding a setting to WooCommerce. It’s going to be quick, simple, and hopefully easy to follow.

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Join Me at WordSesh on Saturday

If you’ve be listening to me blabber on for the last 3 weeks (actually 22 days – yes, I’m counting) during Blogging for Hippo, then you’ve either grown to love me or hate me. Either way, it’s cool.

But this weekend, from Saturday 0:00 UTC to Sunday 0:00 UTC, there’s something very special taking place – WordSesh – a “full day of live WordPress presentations from all over the world streamed live to you wherever you may be”.

And I’m speaking at it. Woo!

It’s awesome. It’s fresh. It’s WordSesh. (I’m came up with that myself!)

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Getting Started with WordPress Hooks – Actions & Filters

When I first started developing WordPress stuff years ago, I had no idea what ‘hooks’, ‘actions’ or ‘filters’ were. I saw them written about, used, discussed and explained countless times but I was afraid to try understand them. They scared me.

But I grew up. Like all good developers do, I eventually got over my fears and dedicated some time to really get my head around them. So I read a lot of guides, like this one, this one, and especially this one – it all started to make sense!

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A Quick Look at the WordPress uninstall.php File

Creating a plugin for WordPress is a fun experience. You get to build something that eventually gets used by countless people, makes their lives easier, perhaps makes you a profit and in general just makes the world a better place.

But don’t be the jerk that overstays their welcome. When your plugin creates ‘data’ on a user’s site, like a post type, page or setting, you have a responsibility to remove that data when a user decides to delete your plugin. If you neglect to clean up after yourself, you’re imposing a lifetime of DB clutter on your (ex-)user and making the world a worse place.

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Small Victories

I was sitting here, in the dashboard of my blog, staring at the screen trying to think of something to write about today. Nothing was coming to mind and I was getting a bit bored, so I decided to pass the time by checking my Recipe Hero WP.org page and seeing the downloads / support threads for today.

Today it finally reached 2,000 downloads. That doesn’t sound like much and in all honestly, it isn’t, but it felt good. Small victories feel good. They hold everything together and keep us going. You don’t get those huge, significant wins without the many, small victories that come beforehand.

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Being a WordPress Product Manager

I’m not a product manager. At least, I’m not paid to be a product manager. But I do manage products. All developers do. It comes with the job (as a developer).

So in my not-so-official role as the product manager of every single product I’ve ever built, I’ve started to realise a few things about what I believe makes a product great.

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