3.0 Beta Testers Needed – Inquire Within

Many of you have been asking how to be part of the 3.0 beta testing program. Well, today we’ve officially launched the first ClassiPress beta testing program and now is the time for you to become part of ClassiPress history.

Being a beta tester actually requires a lot of work on your part so before signing up, please make sure you are ready for the commitment. You will need to dedicate several hours of your time (over a two-week period) to help flush out any bugs before 3.0 is ready for a GA release.

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3.0 User Dashboard and Ad Editing Preview

For the last couple of days I’ve been working on the new user dashboard and ad editing pages. Now that I’ve just about wrapped those up, I wanted to give you a quick preview of what they look like. As you’ll see, the new user admin area is much more complete and includes a sidebar so your customers can easily navigate around. It also gives them more of a “membership” style feel since they essentially have an account on your site (site registration is now mandatory in 3.0).

You will also notice the addition of tag and image editing. It will show a thumbnail image for each of their ad images, a checkbox to delete an image, and additional image upload boxes. There is a new option in CP 3.0 where you set the number of images allowed per ad which controls how many upload boxes will show up.

3.0 is also setup to automatically block non-admin users from accessing your WordPress back-end (i.e. /wp-admin/ section). This means you no longer need to rely on plugins like “IWG Hide Dashboard” or “Role Manager”.

Anyhow, enough talking….I’ll let the video tell the rest of the story.


How to Create WordPress Custom Forms and Fields

One of the most talked about features of ClassiPress 3.0 is the ability to create your own custom fields and forms. This cool new feature will make it easy for you to have a different form for each category.

For example, say you have a WordPress category called “Cars” and you want to have fields called “Year”, “Make”, and “Model” that are all drop-down lists. No problem. Just create each custom field, add the drop-down values, and then add those fields to your “Cars” custom form layout. That form will only display when someone is posting a new ad under the “Cars” category.

In this video demo I show you how to create a custom form for a category called “Electronics”. Then you’ll see how it dynamically shows up on the ad form page. It’s that easy to create your own forms and fields all from within the WordPress admin.


Making a WordPress Theme Install More User-Friendly

Building WordPress themes (especially as complex as ClassiPress) requires a lot of attention to organization and details. It doesn’t take much to write a bunch of messy code with no comments just as long as it works, right? That’s usually fine if you’re building a theme just for your website but if you plan on selling or giving a theme away for free, it’s very important to write clean code with lots of comments. This is one of the reasons it’s taking me longer than expected to release v3.0.

So great, you write clean code with comments but how do you create a theme and what are the proper standards you should abide by? With WordPress being as popular as it is, you would think there would be hard and fast guidelines on how to develop and release a theme but surprisingly there isn’t much.  Yes, you can find lots of blog posts from people claiming their way is correct but for me, I’ve taken advice and ideas from all sorts of sites. Another great way is to reverse engineer an existing theme by some of the best themers out there today like WooThemes or StudioPress.

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Sneek Peek at ClassiPress 3.0

Yes, the rumors are true. ClassiPress version 3.0 is late, behind, belated, blown, delayed, held up, hung up, in a bind, in the lurch, jammed, lagging, missed the boat, overdue, postponed, put off, slow, tardy, and any other synonym I failed to list. Why do you ask?

Well, as you might have read from my forum response, there are several reasons but that won’t stop us from working hard on getting it completed and released as soon as we possibly can.

If you haven’t already purchased ClassiPress and are holding out until 3.0, I recommend you get in now while the prices are still low. They will increase once 3.0 comes out so even if you don’t want to install 2.9.3, you can lock in your price and just wait for the free 3.0 update. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. 😉

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Version 2.9.3 is Now Available

If you haven’t already noticed, yesterday ClassiPress v2.9.3 was released which is a general bug and security patch. There are no new features as we are saving those all for 3.0 which is due out towards the end of January (assuming everything goes as planned).

I felt it was important to fix several bugs in the 2.9 branch before taking ClassiPress to 3.0. When I first started working on 2.9.3 is was supposed to have only been a small release — mainly adding support for new PayPal currencies, fixing a mail function bug, and improving the discovery of the ad thumbnail image path. Well, I ended up spending many long days cleaning up and stabilizing the product which was much needed.

So should I upgrade or not?

That’s the question most of you existing customers will ask. To contradict myself from the previous blog post, “ClassiPress v2.9.3 Coming Soon“, I recommend all ClassiPress customers upgrade to v2.9.3 because of the fixes and small security issue. If you’ve done lots of customization and don’t want to redo them all after the upgrade, I recommend manually making the upgrade by looking at the changelog.txt included with the update.

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ClassiPress v2.9.3 Coming Soon

update-boxI know most of you are patiently waiting for v3.0 but there are a couple of important fixes that need to be addressed with the current 2.9 version. They primarily affect new customers who are having trouble seeing their image thumbnails or current customers who use international characters and/or some currencies.

If your primary language is English, USD as your currency, and your thumbnail images are working fine, then you don’t need to bother with the upgrade unless you really want to.

When I started working on 2.9.3 last week, I wanted to make some other updates but I decided it was best to hold off. Once you add new code, it changes the position of all the text that needs to be translated which results in .po language files getting all messed up. I didn’t want to create more work for those who use ClassiPress in another language besides English and with 3.0 due out in January, it just wasn’t worth the hassle.

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Sociable 3.5.2+ Plugin Image Alignment Issue

If you’ve recently upgraded your Sociable plugin to 3.5.2+, you’ll notice that the image icons on your single ad pages look out of whack like this:


To fix this, go into “Settings” => “Sociable” and check the “Disable sprite usage for images?” box. Save and everything should now be all fixed. If you are using WP Super Cache, you might need to clear the cache first. Also some browsers might need to clear their cache as well (ctrl+ reload page).


Improve Your Blog in 31 Days – Guaranteed

problogger-imageIf you haven’t heard the name Darren Rowse before then now is the time to listen. He’s a very popular blogger who makes 6-figures a year on his Problogger site and definitely knows his stuff. A while back he put together a month long series called “31 Days to Build a Better Blog” and it was such a hit, he decided to turn it into an e-book.

This downloadable e-book is designed to help you jump-start your blog by giving you 31 tasks that will turn your blog into the powerhouse you’ve always dreamed of. The great thing about Darren’s e-book is that you can do it at your own pace and in your own way. Set a goal of reading a chapter a day and take notes. I usually dog ear and highlight the important pieces and come back to them later.

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