Josh Kadis is the web applications technologist at Quartz. At our August Big Media Meetup, he gave a short “flash talk” on building qz.com on WordPress, which we’ve shared here. Quartz just celebrated its one-year anniversary, and you can learn more about it by reading our case study here.
With the new Media Explorer plugin, you can now search for tweets and videos on Twitter and YouTube directly from the Add Media screen in WordPress. Media Explorer is a joint project by WordPress.com VIP and Code For The People (a VIP Featured Partner). In this post, CFTP’s John Blackbourn shares the technical and user experience decisions that were made while developing the plugin.
Embedding a YouTube video or a tweet into a WordPress post is powerfully easy.
There’s no HTML, no shortcode, no dialog box or Settings page – just the magic of oEmbed, baked right into WordPress core. But it’s so simple, and so unassuming, that many people just don’t know it’s there; and it’s not something they’d ever go looking for. With Media Explorer, we wanted to expose that magic within the user interface.
The end goal was to make retrieving externally-hosted content as easy as retrieving items from your own site’s Media Library, without even having to open another browser tab.
The initial plan concentrated purely on integration with Twitter with an architecture that would easily allow developers to add support for other web services like Flickr, YouTube, and Scribd.
Once the base of the plugin was completed with the Twitter search functionality, it was exciting to see YouTube support added in double-quick time, with no changes to the core plugin. It’s what WordPress development should be all about.
The site had been in the works for about a year prior to that and development started in earnest over the summer, a rather short window. The Quartz team agreed pretty quickly that they didn’t want a custom-built CMS and the problems that come with it, and instead felt like WordPress was the best CMS that suited their needs.
We spoke with Josh Kadis, Web Applications Technologist at Quartz, about the site and its incarnation on WordPress.
Dan Munz, Product Director at consumerfinance.gov, CFPB; Greg Boone, WordPress Developer at Excella Consulting & David Kennedy, Interactive Designer at Rock Creek Strategic Marketing present “The StartUp Government Agency – A Case Study on CFPB” at the recent WordPress in Government workshop.
The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau, consumerfinance.gov, was created a few years ago by the U.S. government, and they chose WordPress to run their popular consumer-facing site. The team explains the decisions they went through before choosing WordPress, how they use behavior-driven WordPress development, and the lessons they learned along the way.
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation recently relaunched their data-heavy site on WordPress.com VIP, bringing multiple websites and content management systems under one roof: KFF.org. The new site combines disparate databases into one state and global data table, and features fact sheets, reports, polls, and slides, all of which can be searched and filtered inside WordPress with the new faceted VIP Search.
We spoke with David Rousseau, Kaiser Family Foundation Vice President and Executive Director, Health Policy Media and Technology, and Robin Sidel, Associate Director, New Media and Marketing to learn more about the foundation’s innovative redesign, which was built by VIP Featured PartnerAlley Interactive.
When GigaOM launched their redesign earlier this year, they impressed us by cutting down their page generation time by more than half – and, they built it in just two months. How? We chatted with Casey Bisson, Director of Engineering at GigaOM to find out.
GlobalNews.ca is the online news hub for the Global Television Network, a large Canadian broadcasting network with 12 owned-and-operated stations across the country. In March this year, they launched a massive redesign of their site, built on WordPress by 10up and hosted by WordPress.com VIP. The new site consolidated their many local and national sites into one responsively designed site that displays relevant content based on a user’s location. We chatted with Keith Robinson, the manager of digital products at Global News, to learn more about the vision and technology behind this redesign.
Since launching our Liveblog add-on here at WordPress.com VIP, we’ve been impressed again and again by how fully the National Post newsroom has embraced the tool as a way to cover live events and breaking news.
We chatted with James Martin, Digital Managing Editor, to learn more about how they integrated Liveblog into their newsroom, how they prepare for big live events, and what his favorite Liveblog has been to date.
Interactive One is the digital link to urban consumers, reaching millions of Black and Latino audiences 24/7. They are currently #1 in the category with over 60 unique brands on both a national and local level. Their network of 70+ high-traffic websites are all hosted here on WordPress.com VIP Cloud Hosting.
We spoke with Grant Cerny, Senior Vice President Products, Operations & iOne Studios, about their decision to move from a self-hosted WordPress to WordPress.com VIP Cloud Hosting, and why it was the right choice for their network of sites.
We’ve been really impressed with the mobile sites that have launched on VIP recently, many of which are responsive websites. Here’s a quick roundup of recent mobile launches on WordPress.com VIP.
Quartz’s fully responsive theme is blindingly fast, and scales whether you’re looking at it on a phone, tablet or laptop. The site looks and feels like an application. You can read more about Quartz’s innovative design here and here.
LocalTV’s mobile app (available in both the iTunes and Android stores), is powered by a custom mobile theme that is wrapped into an app. It also receives “rich” push notifications, meaning they can push HTML updates.
When TIME.com started planning their Person of the Year coverage in 2012, they knew the whole world would be watching the announcement. They chose to publish the site on WordPress.com VIP, and in the first few hours of the site going live, traffic instantly skyrocketed – 3,000 retweets, 7,000 Facebook shares and links from every major media outlet around the world.
TIME.com’s managing editor Cathy Sharick took the time to answer a few questions for us about why they chose WordPress, how they approached creating the website, and how they assembled the site in just two weeks.
“We use WordPress as a flexible platform – it’s a CMS that we adapt to a whole bunch of needs,” – Sean Herron, Technology Strategist, NASA.
The NASA Open Government Initiative team is responsible for fulfilling the Open Government directive, which challenges federal agencies to become transparent, participatory, and collaborative.
“We’re dedicated to making it easier for citizens to interact with NASA and engage in what NASA is doing; to understand our mission and all the programs we have, and to leverage government data and technology in novel ways,” said Nicholas Skytland, Program Manager for NASA’s Open Government Initiative.
To accomplish this mission, NASA’s Open Government Initiative team hosts a series of related websites, many of which are powered by the Open Source WordPress Content Management System.
“Open Source is a core part of the agency’s Open Government Plan and we knew we wanted to base our site off of open source technology.” – Sean Herron, a NASA contractor and Technology Strategist on the NASA Open Government team. “We use WordPress as a flexible platform – it’s a CMS that we adapt to a whole bunch of needs.”
Summary:The Wall Street Journal uses WordPress in several different ways to power their content, as the engine of their popular blogs, and as a curation and organizational tool for their real-time news streams.
The Wall Street Journal Blogs
The biggest benefit of using WordPress in their site workflow is the time-to-market. They use standard templates which can be customized, and usually it only takes a few hours from the request being submitted to launching the site.When the WSJ started using WordPress with their editorial blogs several years ago, they launched with an initial four blogs. Today, they have 30+ active blogs, and 70-80 total blogs. Sites remain online in the WSJ Blog Archive after special events have concluded, such as Obama’s First 100 Days, the Olympics, and the G-20.
In particular their “Real Time” blogs, like India or China Real Time, are a tool for them to venture quickly into a new news market and to create ad hoc topic-focused news portals. They create localized, mini versions of WSJ.com in different languages using WordPress and can be up and publishing to that readership in a few hours.
The CBS Local team stopped by the NYC WordPress Meetup in February to share their custom mobile theme and the process and decisions they went through to end up with a custom mobile theme which powers dozens of their CBS Local sites.
When IGN outgrew its homegrown content management system, they needed a CMS that would support the entire scope of the site and all its content. More importantly the CMS had to make it easy for their users to contribute content and for their editors to publish it. They found that solution in WordPress, and their blog community has doubled because of it.
The Bangor Daily News announced this week that it completed its full transition to open source blogging software, WordPress. And get this: The workflow integrates seamlessly with InDesign, meaning the paper now has one content management system for both its web and print operations. And if you’re auspicious enough, you can do it too — he’s open-sourced all the code!
Rather than having to pay a licensing fee to a company that runs your content management system, what The BDN has set up is essentially free to run. Of course, there were upfront costs involved with paying freelancers to help write the plugins, and each month the website has to pay hosting fees, but the rest of the tools they use are free for everyone. WordPress is open source software that anyone can download and use. Google Docs is also a free product if your organization is small enough. [Media Bistro]
We’re proud of the fact that WordPress is versatile and can run on many operating systems, once the minimum requirements for the software are met.
We’re going to continue to highlight interesting case studies, and this time we’re pleased to find that Microsoft did a case study with Bella Web Design, a web design and development firm who uses Windows to host all of their clients’ WordPress sites.
“Usually it takes longer to agree on a logo than it does to make a new WordPress site.” – Kevin Cooke, KQED.org
KQED Public Media, one of the largest PBS and NPR stations in the US, is probably most recognized by its public in the San Francisco Bay area as 88.5FM and by channel 9, the TV station where they watch NOVA and Frontline.
But KQED is working very hard on expanding its ever-growing web presence. In 2007, it was using WordPress for several websites in individual instances. Three years later, KQED.org has more than 15 active WordPress sites, collaborates with other regional public media outlets on WordPress plugin development, and sees a future where WordPress helps them quickly deliver the news their audience wants.
“The WordPress sites have been growing in number mainly because our users like them so much, both our editors and our end-users,” affirms Kevin Cooke, Technologist at KQED, whose first project upon arrival was migrating the single WordPress sites in WordPress MultiUser.
… there are a ton of excellent needs and reasons to use BuddyPress to take your site and turn it into the community it is begging to become. That’s the killer point: there needs to be a community underlying all of this. Maybe your focused on gardeners in Texas or stamp collectors in Des Moines or people around the world dealing with Cystic Fibrosis – if you have a community in mind then BuddyPress is an amazing tool because you can shape the community according to you/its needs. Take that Facebook (or Ning)!
The slides and the full video from the presentation and more of his thoughts are available at mikepratt.tv
Their original site consisted of hard coded .html files as a simple static site. Our initial suggestion of a full-custom designed and coded, hosted WordPress installation was beyond their budget, so we suggested an alternative which has slashed their costs considerably yet allowed them to create their own WordPress powered site with a design which matches their branding and includes all of the functionality they requested, including a contact form, email subscriptions for news posts, no commenting functionality (they didn’t want a traditional blog) and the ability to add photo galleries and videos
Traditionally WordPress.com has only been suggested as a low-budget option for those who can’t afford to upgrade to “proper” hosted setup, however for the Red Devils, we were able to meet all of their requirements without losing anything that they required in their site. We were also able to integrate their teams branding into an existing theme very quickly through some simple CSS upgrades.
From Harvard Law’s Dan Collis-Puro, a how-to on optimizing your WordPress MU install, using Nginx as a front-end proxy cache for WordPress:
We put an nginx caching proxy server in front of our wordpress mu install and sped it up dramatically – in some cases a thousandfold. I’ve packaged up a plugin, along with installation instructions here – WordPress Nginx proxy cache integrator.
Dan Goldman and Jamie Trowbridge who headed up that project, were kind enough to present a case study of how it was all done, at the recent WordCamp NYC:
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