Following up on the soft launch post, I thought I’d share a few more things to document and credit some of the incredible people in the WordPress community that have taught me so much. This post by Nick Schäferhoff was the kick in the pants I needed to just build off my last theme instead of trying to start with someone else’s theme and trying to make it mine. That article really helped me focus on reducing the number of theme files (now just have index.php, single.php and page.php) and finally cleaning up my CSS style sheet.
Mobile-optimized hamburger navigation menus seem to be everywhere, but it took me a while to pick Rui Guerreiro’s WP Mobile Menu plugin. This seemed to be one of the most popular options, with both free and premium versions available. My problem was that it wasn’t the easiest to set up and customize, but all of the people that participate in the support forum (especially Rui) really helped get me across the finish line on that aspect of the project.
Speaking of plugins, I encountered a few issues that needed to be resolved. There were two plugins that I’ve been using for a long time that do not appear to be supported any longer, one breaking with PHP8 (timeago) and the other apparently pulled from the WordPress directory (add-meta-tags). I’ve been using the excellent WordPress security plugin Wordfence for many years and it now alerts me to issues like this, which is very handy. Timeago hadn’t been updated in 13 years and was based on a jQuery plugin of the same name (which was last updated in 2014). Decided to drop the custom dates and just use the standard get_the_date() call for now.
Add-Meta-Tags started development in 2006 and has officially been deprecated and is no longer recommended for production sites. It was easy enough to find another tag plugin – decided to use Meta Tag Manager, by Pixelite (which also has free and paid versions). I thought I previously wrote about the PHP Everywhere plugin issues, but in any case replaced that with Insert PHP Code Snippet by xyzscripts.com a while back. Looks like the Gmail SMTP plugin might be next on the hit list, according to WordFence…