The courtesy of explaining your issue properly to a developer

I don’t mind people emailing me about issues they are having with my code. Whether it’s some old snippet I posted on a GitHub gist, or when people contact me about something they stumbled upon with WooCommerce (even though I’m no longer working for WooThemes).

Sometimes I know the answer, sometimes I can only point them in the right direction. I my best to make sure they can overcome their issue, whatever it is.

In order to continue doing this, I maintain one strict rule: Explain the issue properly. Emails that just say “it doesn’t work” are likely to get trashed. You don’t drive you car into the garage and tell the mechanic that.
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Watching the WooCommerce ecosystem continue to grow

It’s little over 2 months since I left my job at WooThemes. As I explained in that post, this didn’t mean that I was never going to look at WooCommerce or any other WordPress project again. In fact, I’ve been working on a couple WooCommerce related projects since I’ve started my new job.

Not only did the WooCommerce plugin recently hit 4 million downloads, there is also a dedicated conference being held later this year. I think it’s safe to say that WooCommerce is still growing very fast.

With the recent addition of fellow Dutchman Barry Kooij to the team, I’m sure they have enough development power to make sure WooCommerce continues to grow. And because more and more people start to use the plugin (as a developer or a business owner), the ecosystem around it is growing as well.

Being outside of the WooCommerce core development team for 2 months now, made me look at the plugin with a different set of eyes.
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Moving on

I have some exciting news to share today. This month will be my last month at WooThemes. Starting June, I will be joining Radish Concepts. It’s a new company (note the lack of a proper website :) ), managed by RichardDavid and Arjan, in which I wil be forming the main development team with Gaya and Arno joins as designer. I’m really excited to jump in new challenges, continue to learn and develop my coding skills and work on cool projects.

Over the past months I’ve learned that I wanted to expand my knowledge on other programming languages, frameworks and get a larger toolbox for my web development work. In my spare time, I’ve always been investing in my development skills by coding on various side/test projects, based on different frameworks.

As much as I love WordPress and the growing ecosystem around it, I no longer want to be exclusively developing WordPress products. At my new job, I will be working with various projects, based on Laravel, OpenCart and others, but also WordPress powered projects still. This doesn’t mean I’m saying goodbye to WordPress, but will give me a broader set of tools to work with. Continue Reading…

Changing the number of product columns in WooCommerce 2.1

Some people asked me this question on Twitter and I always pointed them to the support forums we’ve got. When this question got asked for the 10th time this week, I figured I had to check if this was actually any different in WooCommerce 2.1 now. Turns out, it’s not. It still works the same as it did in previous versions.

Hi! In new WooCommerce 2.1.2, how can I change the number of shop columns? All fixes that I can find on Google are not working in this release.

Well, here we go. Let’s debunk this myth that it’s no longer working by showing some examples. Continue Reading…

While I’m sitting in the departure area at Schiphol Airport, sipping on a Starbucks drink, I suddenly realised that it was over three weeks since my last post here. So far so good with my blogging resolutions

And now there’s a special of the Dutch Webdesigner Magazine being published, with two articles by me in it. To top that off, I’ll be speaking at WordCamp Norway this weekend. People will visit this site and will see a very inactive blog, so this is just a quick update that I’m still alive and will get into blogging more soon.

If you are at WordCamp Norway this weekend, come say hi and we’ll have a chat. I’d love to talk to people using WooCommerce, or about any subject really.

Looking back at a great 2013

It’s the last day of the year, which is a great day to look at I have achieved and what happened this year. In my 2014 resolutions, I gave some parts away already and most events that I’ll mention in this recap already have explaining blog posts published.

Today is also the last day in the month December, which ends the Blogging for Benjamin competition. In the month December, I have published 31 posts (including this one), which leaves me in a 3-way tie with Patrick and Mike. Well done guys, we surely published a ton of great content in this month, keep up the good work!

Without further ado, here are my highlights of 2013. Continue Reading…

My 2014 resolutions

With little over one day left on the calendar of 2013, it’s about time I start thinking what I want to achieve in the new year. I’m never really good at making real resolutions, but I like to have some idea of what I’m going to focus on. These resolutions are not real goals, so they might be a little hard to actually complete. Continue Reading…

Blogging after the Blogging for Benjamin competition is over

The Blogging for Benjamin competition is coming to an end. In just two days time, we celebrate the end of another year. At the same time, our blogging competition is ending too. But our blogs live on, with a bunch of new content and ready for a new year.

It sure was a bit of a struggle to write and publish 31 posts this month. At first I started with a nice backlog of scheduled posts, but work and other things quickly made it impossible to keep that schedule going. I think that most posts I’ve published this month were mostly written on the same day. Continue Reading…

Why do you want my newsletter?

MailchimpFor a couple weeks now, I have a newsletter signup form in both my sidebar and in my comment form. I didn’t expect many people to subscribe, so it was basically just a test. Besides having the forms available on obvious positions, I didn’t do much promotion for it. So you can imagine I was a bit baffled when I saw there were already over 50 people subscribed to my newsletter (after weeding out the obvious spammers).

To all of you expecting a stunning designed and well thought out newsletter, I’m sorry. Nothing like that is going to happen. I want my newsletter to be a really personal message that I can directly push to your inbox. Continue Reading…

WordPress plugins should do one thing and do it well

I mentioned the Unix philosophy ‘Do one thing and do it well’ in yesterdays post already, the User Switching plugin was a prime example of a WordPress plugin sticking to it.

In the past, I’ve discussed easy to use and expand plugins. Patrick Rauland posted about adding functionality to lean plugins yesterday as well. It clearly is a hot subject, but what exactly is this all about? Why should WordPress plugin developers care about keeping the number of features in our plugin as low as possible? I like to explain why this is important and a couple best practices to make this happen. Continue Reading…