I always like reading Paul Ford’s writing, and this one about How PAPER Magazine’s web engineers scaled Kim Kardashian’s back-end (SFW) is funny and accessible. I learned that people still use Movable Type. Also if PAPER used VIP, the story would be short and boring: Wake up, press the publish button.
“They modelled data up to 1970, then developed a range of scenarios out to 2100, depending on whether humanity took serious action on environmental and resource issues. […] The book’s central point, much criticised since, is that “the earth is finite” and the quest for unlimited growth in population, material goods etc would eventually lead to a crash.
I think it’s good to show both sides of what a distributed organization is like, here are two essays by different Automatticians. Steph Yiu writes Still figuring it out: communicating remotely with lots of people and Chris Hardie writes on Distributed vs. In-person Teams.
There’s a simple, unattributed site called Decent Security which has very nice common-sense but effective advice on security. I believe it’s from the same person as behind the Infosec Taylor Swift …
Over on the BruteProtect blog they have a look at the Jetpack Bloat Myth, and find that counter-intuitively even though Jetpack has more comprehensive functionality it’s faster than using individual plugins to do the same things. There are economies of scale to Jetpack’s approach, and it doesn’t even include the impact of doing things more advanced and complex like Related Posts.
With the news that PGP is one of the things that is still tough for the NSA, now is a great time to donate to GnuPG, which I just did.
I love Paul Graham’s essays and his latest is no exception: Let the Other 95% of Great Programmers In. I agree that the US deserves dramatically better immigration policies, but in the meantime I’m confused with the head-in-the-sand approach most tech companies are taking simultaneously complaining that there are lots of great people they can’t bring into the US, but being stubborn on keeping a company culture that requires people to be physically co-located.
Performance As Design, by Brad Frost. Great thoughts and links. Performance is going to be a big focus for me in 2015.
As open source goes mainstream, institutions collaborate differently.
9 Reasons Why News Media Sites Should Embrace HTTPS in 2015.
I like to use the analogy of building bridges. If I have no principles, and I build thousands of bridges without any actual science, lots of them will fall down, and great disasters will occur.
I’m as likely to give Twitter a hard time as anyone, but today I want to tell you about something great they did: Twitter open sourced their emoji set for anyone to use. We’ve been working with them behind the scenes on this and launched the emoji for WP.com as well.
I spoke with Tony Conrad and Laurie Segall at Web Summit in Dublin today and was able to announce that Automattic has acquired Code For The People to join our VIP team. Techcrunch also covered the …
In addition to the State of the Word presentation we talked about last week, there was a half hour or so of questions and answers that followed. You can also check it out on WordPress.tv, which now plays everything HD by default.
“We have the largest and deepest audience profiles on the web.” – David Fleck, general manager of advertising at Disqus. Translation: We’re tracking everyone who visits a website with Disqus enabled and building a profile of them based on the content of the sites they visit and any comments they leave.
Yesterday I delivered the State of the Word address to the WordPress community, and the video is already up on WordPress.tv. Here are the slides if you’d like to view them on their own: If you just want the bullet points, here are the big things I discussed and announced: There will be 81 WordCamps in 2014.
With the relaunch, NewYorker.com runs on WordPress, a more robust, user-friendly CMS. “We’re looking at almost total upside there,” Thompson tells me. Because the tools are no longer getting in the way of producers doing their job, NewYorker.com is now able to publish a greater volume of stories every day.
Our goal is to create a sustainable membership with a large enough base that it will fund reporting and writing at rates that are competitive with the best print magazines in the world. You might not have heard of a Longreads Membership yet – you join for a monthly fee and 100% of that goes to independent publishers and writers.
Visit the post for more.
On Sunday at WordCamp Europe I got a question about how companies contribute back to WordPress, how they’re doing, and what companies should do more of. First on the state of things: there are more companies genuinely and altruistically contributing to growing WordPress than ever before.
Ben Gillbanks, the co-author of TimThumb, says I No Longer Use TimThumb — Here’s What I do Instead.
If you want to see some of the thought and care that went into the WordPress 4.0 release, check out Scott Taylor’s peek under the hood and Helen Hou-Sandi’s reveal of a 4.0 Easter egg.
David Sederis in the New Yorker on how his Fitbit took over his life.. Hat tip: Jeremy Duvall.
During the development of most any product, there are always times when things aren’t quite right. Times when you feel like you may be going backwards a bit. Times where it’s almost there, but you can’t yet figure out why it isn’t. Times when you hate the thing today that you loved yesterday.
The Invasion of Corporate News.
Although Automattic is a fully distributed company with most people working from home in 197 cities around the world, we think it’s really important to meet in person as well and we bring the entire company together once a year. This year we went to Park City, Utah, and were blessed with amazing weather all week.
Tim Cook’s letter on Apple privacy is pretty amazing and a shot across the bow of Google.
We’ve had some really good press the past week, the first I’d like to share with you comes from Aimee Groth writing for Quartz: The makers of WordPress.com learned years ago that the ultimate offic…
Brentin Mock from Grist looks for evidence that Hip Hop is not down with Monsanto.
Automattic Rejects Series Of Bogus Janet Jackson Takedown Attempts By Using Janet Jackson Song Titles.
Today we hear from two Automatticians: Nikolay talks about his first open source contribution ten years ago and the path his life has taken since, and Andrea says she “can’t wipe this grin off my f…
WordPress 4.0, code-named Benny, is now available. The response so far has been great, over 200k downloads in just a few hours. Today we celebrate, watch the counter, and tomorrow go back to work o…
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.
Understand what people need. Address the whole experience, from start to finish. Make it simple and intuitive. Build the service using agile and iterative practices. Structure budgets and contracts to support delivery. Assign one leader and hold that person accountable. Bring in experienced teams. Choose a modern technology stack.
wpgo.go is a command-line tool to interact with WordPress blogs, written in Google’s Go language. It’s cool to see this new generation of apps built on WP.com + Jetpack’s new APIs, like Postbot.
Sometimes you have an idea, and the universe delivers. Hotel WiFi Speed Test let’s you speed test and search hotels by their internet speed, something I was wishing existed just last week. Since I work primarily on the road, I would pick fast internet over pretty much any other amenity a hotel could possibly offer.
Propublica has a piece on canvas fingerprinting done by the ad service that uses the trojan horse of sharing buttons, AddThis: Meet the Online Tracking Device That is Virtually Impossible to Block.
The New York Times writes about how The New Yorker is overhauling its design and online presence, including experimenting with paywalls and this wonderful nugget: The new site, designed to be cleaner, with new typefaces, will be based on the WordPress publishing system.
Sara Rosso writes 10 Lessons from 4 Years Working Remotely at Automattic. (Lesson 11, left out: Always give list articles an odd number of items.)
Chris Lema writes on how WordPress gives you tools to change lives.
NY Times did a neat article on their CMS Scoop, one cool piece of which is their ICE editor we worked on them with a few years ago. Their cropping stuff is also cool, though it’s dizzying how many sizes they need to produce.
The big daddy of WordCamps is open about another week for speaker submissions, if you have something interesting you’d like to say to the WordPress world send in your application to speak at WordCamp SF here.
Later this week I’m heading on a speaking tour of a number of cities in Asia, Australia, and New Zealand talking about the past and future of WordPress and some of the things I’ve learned in the past few years of building WordPress and Automattic.
Naval Ravikant writes on Bitcoin (and more) as The Fifth Protocol. Fantastic read, and reminds me to read Snow Crash.