WP Mainline Episode 18 – WP Scan Acquired, WordFest Live 2022, and Jeffro AI

In this episode, Malcolm Peralty and I discussed the news of week starting off with Automattic’s acquisition of WPScan. I also shared my experience of what it was like to spend eight straight hours of reading, participating, and writing about WordPress. It’s exhausting.

We then shared news of the WordPress community gift exchange and Malcolm put out a challenge for someone to create a Secret Santa WordPress site so folks could use it instead of Elfster. WordFest 2022 announced it will take place on March 4th, 2022. I’m a huge fan of a Big Orange Heart Foundation and am hopeful the organization can fulfill its sponsorships for 2022.

Near the end of the show, we discussed yet again the writing experience in WordPress. We also described how Bob Dunn is synonymous with WooCommerce. If there’s a Woo, there’s a Bob. Last but not least, we wonder who could write a WordPress post better, Jeffro or Jeffro AI. Would you be able to tell the difference?

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Speaker 1 00:00:19 Welcome everybody to episode 18 of the WP mainline podcast for Friday, November 5th, 2021. I am your host, Jeff Chandler, and joined by Malcolm. Perotti. How you doing, sir? Doing well. How about yourself? I am doing quite well. I, uh, it’s Friday, so we can all be happy about that going into the non-existent weekend, as I like to say. And, uh, it’s a pretty good week for me, actually. I, um, I got into a bit of a groove in a couple of days. There I was, I was rattling off some posts, things that were on my mind, things that were going on in the WordPress space that we’ll get into here in a little bit. In fact, uh, I wanted to a couple of days ago, knowing all these you’re, don’t take this as a bread cause I don’t, I don’t think it’s a break, but in all these years of, uh, writing and working in the WordPress space, I have not worked in eight straight hours a day where I just sit at the computer and monitor everything that’s going on in the space.
Speaker 1 00:01:17 I write, I Polish it, right. I Polish it, participate in all these other little communities for eight hours. I’ve never done that. So I try that this week. It is exhausting. I’m going, what the hell’s the matter with me? Why would I want to do that? It is exhausting. I was monitoring slack channels. I was chatting in various discord groups, discord servers, slack channels, Twitter threads, uh, DMS commenting on posts, reading posts. Uh, I wrote a pretty lengthy article, which netted me 150 bucks. So that was cool. So that was, that was worth it. But, uh, yeah, I, I don’t know. I don’t think I could do eight straight hours of monitoring and participating in the WordPress space and writing about it every day for 40 hours a week. I, I mean, yeah, that’s a job, right. You know, that’s what I’m supposedly, that’s what I’m getting paid to do, but holy smokes, it’s exhausting and people wonder if there’s value or, or any purpose or what have you in the WordPress new space.
Speaker 1 00:02:21 I mean, it’s, it’s tough to do if you don’t have, it’s tough to do independently and on your own, I’d say both independently and in terms of ownership and independently financially, you know, to try and make a living out of it. Very, very tough to do. I’ve never done that before. I always worked for other people. Right. So yeah. Mr. Blogging, pro yeah. Yeah. I brought that up. That’s OG that’s way back there. Most people don’t even know what you’re talking about. So, um, but even then, like, I was fortunate enough to be working on like
Speaker 2 00:02:59 Forever geek and CSS fault and like a few other like non WordPress focused topics at the same time. I don’t think that I have ever specifically spent in turn when I was doing like my WordPress blogging and stuff. I don’t think I ever spent a flight hour a day just on WordPress related stuff.
Speaker 1 00:03:15 I really don’t get burned out so fast. It’s incredible. Yeah. So speaking of the news this week, we’ve had a couple of things happen. The first is that automatic has acquired WP scan. Now WP scan is a WordPress vulnerability databases that has existed for 10 years. Um, it started out as a Ruby as a Ruby script way back in the day, back in 2011 and it eventually turned into, uh, their security scanner, which then led to them developing and releasing their vulnerability database that apparently many, many sites in the WordPress community. And even outside of the WordPress bubble, relying on to figure out vulnerabilities that are in both WordPress core themes and plugins, obviously plugins being the big deal there. So what they’ve said is that the automatic as acquired them and it’s actually being used to power or has been used to power Jetpack scans.
Speaker 1 00:04:12 So for anyone out there wondering if it’s going to be completely rolled into Jetpack yet, there’s still that possibility. But part of it is already in Jetpack scan. So they’re, they’re kind of already halfway there, I suppose. But one of the big things, one of the big concerns that was brought up that I saw in the community is whether or not a WP scan will continue to be available outside of Jetpack. And according to the announcements on both the WP scan website and on Jetpack, the overarching goal is to explore ways to make the API completely free for non-commercial sites and be able to maintain access to the vulnerability database for anyone who wants to have access to it.
Speaker 2 00:04:58 Yeah, but that wasn’t like it that’s kind of a waving the hands kind of thing. Isn’t it? It’s like, look over here, everyone. This is the answer that you’d like to a question you didn’t ask. Right? Like the question was, will it remain separate as a separate tool that we can use outside of jet pack? And they said, well, we’ll make the API available for noncommercial projects. You can like roll your own version of WP scan outside of Jetpack. It kind of sounds like they’re saying, no, it will be integrated into Jetpack and you’ll have to use Jetpack to use this functionality
Speaker 1 00:05:30 And Faye, in fact, they say that, uh, well, in addition to acquiring WP scan the services founders, Ryan do Hurst and Irwin, uh, LaRusso will be joining automatic as employees probably going to work on the team that manages a jet pack scan, right. And, uh, in the near future, it will remain or continue to operate independently. Uh, what the possibility of being fully integrated into Jetpack scan. That’s what they say that they’re going to explore the possibility of fully integrating into Jetpack scans. So, yeah, I mean, and by the way, there’s a, uh, I know WP scan was offering services like plug-in audits and things of that nature. All those things have been sunset now, and they’re just going to be focused on, um, the technology and Jetpack scan and the API that revolves around it. So yeah, they, they kind of hint to, to, it’s just going to turn into Jetpack scan and that’s it, but Hey, there’s always the API, right?
Speaker 1 00:06:29 I mean, that’s a lot of data too. I mean, I, and by the way, it’s, it’s not like if for those out there, if this kind of a burst her bubble, or you’re not a fan of this acquisition, or you’re wondering, well, what am I going to do about, what am I going to get a different database? There are Wordfence has one pet stack has one, almost all of these SickKids security, I think as one, all of these databases or all these security firms that, uh, are in the WordPress space, they each have their own little, um, we’re press vulnerability database. So there’s plenty of other ones out there to use if this acquisition is, if it’s kind of makes you question things or do you want to look at alternatives out there, but, uh, Hey, these folks have been around for 10 years. Uh, there’s a lot of data involved in that, uh, database.
Speaker 1 00:07:16 And, you know, maybe this acquisition is awesome. And by the way, automatic was, uh, had sponsored WP scan for a long time now. So they’re very, uh, very knowledgeable in terms of how the WP scan team operated and what was going on there. So I, and we’ve seen this in the past where automatic has sponsored a, what was it front to front of T? Yeah, that was another team were automatic sponsor for a number of years. And they just said, Hey, why don’t you just come on board? You know? And they ended up acquiring them.
Speaker 2 00:07:47 Yeah. And congratulations to the people. Right. Like getting to go work for the mothership is, uh, I mean, that’s kind of the best outcome you can hope for in a lot of ways. So I think it’s, it’s great for them. I hope it continues to be good for the WordPress community. Um, I’m not like personally, I think I’m on record maybe more than a few times saying I’m not a huge pan in huge fan of jet pack specifically. Um, I love all the individual pieces and I wish I could not necessarily get like the, the fire hose. Right. I want the scalpel. Um, so I think, uh, you know, congratulations to them, super exciting. I’m looking forward to seeing how it, how this changes or increases the development speed or the development complexity of this project. Um, but I still wish that I could just get it and not all of Jetpack.
Speaker 1 00:08:36 Well, I mean, the good news is that Jetpack is kind of moving in that direction. I mean, if we look at video press, it’s a standalone product. If we look at they’ve got jet pack, blue snail was CA which is a standalone thing. Um, jet pack scan, I imagine is probably going to be the same way it’s going to be its own independent, separate thing. And we’re starting to see now that additionally Jetpack was an end all be all solution, but now they’re ripping everything apart, taking things out of jet pack, turning them into their own standalone group of related modules, services and features. And it’s getting to the point now, and I think this is a good move. We’re Jetpack Alec cart. So, you know, you go to the, uh, the, the jet pack website, you pick which modules you want, and then you’d come up with the subscription plan and that’s what you’re paying for.
Speaker 1 00:09:24 I like it. And that’s pretty much what’s going on here. One additional tidbit about this acquisition. No, when I read about it on the Jetpack side of things, the article title says Jetpack acquires them and I’m thinking, well, what do you mean Jetpack jet pack is an entity. It’s a product. It’s a, it’s within automatic. I mean, it’s an automatic acquiring WP scan. So I started thinking because a few weeks ago we mentioned that a jet pack acquired social image generator, right? So I’m thinking, well, what what’s Jetpack doing? Do they have their own pocketbooks? I mean, are they, can I just start acquiring things? They add them in there. So I talked to Rob pew, director of product marketing and automatic. And I asked him if jet pack is its own business entity within automatic. And he responded that it’s not, he said that as automatic expands, they think it makes sense to let people know what part of the company, the acquisition would be most closely aligned to which, which makes sense to me, but it just kind of threw me for a loop there, uh, seeing that jetpacks acquiring things.
Speaker 1 00:10:29 Yeah. I’m glad to give you that clarity. So there you go. And, uh, here’s something cool that I came across this week. The not so secret Santa WordPress community gift exchange. Uh, this actually started was started by Mike Demopolis last year. Um, he had created a gift exchange on a website called Elfster first time I’ve ever seen that website. And, uh, he started it because in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic, you wanted to allow the WordPress community to connect. So what you do is you sign up at Elster to participate and you’ll be placed in a queue with a person you’re purchasing a gift for we’ll be selecting on November 17th and gifts have a $50 spending limit. So participants are encouraged to add an item that they had this whistles steam feature on the site and put on an item or two that’s below the $50 budget to your public wishlist.
Speaker 1 00:11:25 And then at some point you will be given this, uh, uh, secret Santa will be, will be, uh, have the option to pay for your gift. And then you’re going to be paying for somebody else’s gift. And then the, uh, the secret Santa is, will actually be revealed in January of 2022. So you actually find out who purchased a gift for you and the other person will find out, um, who you purchased a gift for. So I can’t wait to I’m I’m going to participate. Cause I think a BMSB in somebody’s secret. Santa is pretty cool being a Santa Claus feels good.
Speaker 2 00:12:02 Uh, I like this a lot. Um, and I was, I was looking at the Elster website. Um,
Speaker 1 00:12:09 You ever heard of Elster before
Speaker 2 00:12:10 This? I know I had it. Um, so amusingly enough when it comes to, um, my wife’s family and my family, we do secret Santa for the adults. And, uh, I actually like coded my own secret Santa tool for that
Speaker 1 00:12:24 Boys. Of course, of course you would.
Speaker 2 00:12:27 I didn’t know what would exist up there or if they would use it. So we use like the tool that I created plus wishlist, or to be able to do the secret Santa stuff and the wishlist and, uh, yeah, no, I was really, I thought this was really cool to see this. I mean, it’s a shame that, uh, it’s not, it’s not built on WordPress. I would love to see someone do a whole secret Santa thing with WordPress and I’m sure someone could do that. So, you know, Hey community, WordPress secret, Santa plugin, maybe question mark that way. It could be WordPress in the future. That powers it. That’d be kind of neat.
Speaker 1 00:12:57 And then on that website, you could have a symptom. Why poo come on, we’ve got to bring out the Santa Claus while there we
Speaker 2 00:13:01 Go. There we
Speaker 1 00:13:02 Go. The last day to RSVP on here is Tuesday, November 16th. So everybody’s got a little bit of time. Course. You’ll find a link to the gift exchange. If you want to sign up on the show notes page, you’ve got about 30 people who have signed up and who are participating. And, uh, you know, I, I can say this cause it’s on a public wishlist guests, just the item that I bought on my wishlist, that’s below the $50 budget. I just want to see, just take a guess.
Speaker 2 00:13:31 I have no idea what
Speaker 1 00:13:33 It’s food related.
Speaker 2 00:13:35 It’s food-related yes, probably sauce,
Speaker 1 00:13:39 Good guests, but no, um, uh, I I’m a fan of popcorn seasonings. And so what I did was I looked up on, uh, Amazon or through this wishlist feature, I found a pack of popcorn seasonings. That’s just below the $50 budget limit. And it comes with six or seven different seasonings, white cheddar, Sirracha some other sweats, caramel, corn or whatever. And I said, Hey, you know what the heck maybe somebody can combine me some popcorn seasoning. Um, I, I actually like, I’ve got, uh, Buffalo, wild wings, salt and vinegar seasoning, which I just love. Sometimes I’ll put that on my popcorn or, uh, because I’m in the Midwest, I have ranch dressing, uh, seasoning that comes into powder. And I put that on my, on my popcorn. Yeah. Whatever you can say, whatever you want. It’s good to me.
Speaker 2 00:14:33 If it makes you happy, that’s all that matters. I just couldn’t. What do you
Speaker 1 00:14:35 Put on your popcorn? Nothing just butter, whatever the butter. Okay.
Speaker 2 00:14:38 Yeah. I’m, I’m, I’m mostly a butter and salt purist, but I do like the, uh, you know, the cheese flavorings are always good or caramel. Popcorn is always good. I’m not a big fan of Chicago mix. I ended up like splitting it. There was two components, um, self, like a whole thing of cheese popcorn and a whole,
Speaker 1 00:14:56 No, no, no, it’s good. A really good cattle corn. That’ll be, that’ll get me going.
Speaker 2 00:15:03 Yeah. Um, and then every once in a while, and maybe I’ll do like a, you know, like a bill or like one of those kinds of seasonings, but pretty rare. I mean, I kinda stick to give me a butter and salt man. Like,
Speaker 1 00:15:15 Do you know my wife for some deal and everything, man. Hey, listeners to my wife always has pickle breath helped me. Okay. So anyway, she didn’t hear that. Any other we’ll see, we’ll see, uh, your second exchange. Uh, what else do we have going on here? Oh, big news. This came out, uh, yesterday word Fest live 2022. Now there is a date, the big orange heart foundation and word Fest live. Volunteers are ready to kick off another global tour of the WordPress community. Now put the sign in your calendar. It’s March 4th, 2022. You can, uh, register for the event right now. The call for speakers will be posted on Monday, November 8th. Uh, and the call for sponsors is also open. Um, and what’s important here about this event is that, uh, 2022 begins a new yearly sponsorship across all the big orange hearts activities, which includes, uh, the March 4th and September 9th, word fast, as well as physical in-person and virtual meetups. So a big horns, heart is starting a new sponsorship campaign to get them through the year. So your donations and sponsorships of the event, as well as throughout the other events throughout the year will be a big help to the big orange heart foundation. And if you’re not familiar with what that group is, it’s a nonprofit dedicated to mental health and supporting each other in this remote world, a remote working environment. And I’m a big fan, huge fan of the big orange hire. And Dan may be in what everybody’s doing over there.
Speaker 2 00:17:01 Yeah, it looks good. I’m looking forward to it. I, again, I mean, it kind of always goes back to the whole more in person. Events is more my jam, but, uh, this is, I think one of the exceptions to that rule,
Speaker 1 00:17:13 You’re not going to do an in-person event involving a global tool epi. I says you, well, I’m not paying for all those international airline tickets and flights no way. But, uh, yeah, I mean, I I’d say, I’d say WordPress is the exception. I mean, it’s, it’s pretty cool. It’s really cool though. How they go from all the various time zones and you can see all the different speakers and different languages. And it’s a, it’s a really cool event. One of, one of its kind very unique in the WordPress space. So voting is now open for the 2021 WP awards. Now this is something new. I see this or participate in it last year for obvious reasons. But this year, uh, the WP awards, which is hosted by the WP weekly, which is a pretty cool WordPress, a newsletter and outfit over there that talks about news.
Speaker 1 00:18:05 And what’s going on in the WordPress space, uh, participants can vote for their favorite WordPress themes, page builders, blogs, and there’s a bunch of other categories and you can vote for your favorite one until November 30th. Now winners will receive bragging rights and increase visibility on the site. WP mainline does make an appearance under the WordPress blogs category. If you want to vote for me, I appreciate it. But I would rather you vote for whatever is your favorite. Whatever’s in your heart. I’m not going to slip you a 20 and tell you to vote for, uh, the devote for me. Um, so that’s just, I appreciate it. Any votes you want to do? It’s cool. But basically, um, what the awards site also allows you to do is it’s a kind of acts as a way to discover some things. There’s some things in those various categories that maybe you’ve never heard of before that a lot of other people are using or at least nominated.
Speaker 1 00:18:59 So if you want to at least check out what products are in the various categories that debt in, in and of itself is pretty educational. If you wanted to check it out, uh, and results will be published during the first week of December now, I’m, I’m, I’m not one to win a popularity, popularity contest. I’m not, I’m just not for me, but for me, I’m not. If you’ve offered me congrats, if not, well, I don’t know what to tell you. Good job vote with, vote with your art. What was your art now? I mean, looking at these categories, if you go down to, uh, you know, WordPress blog. Oh, you want to say, you want to mention no, I was curious, like if you can’t vote for yourself. Okay. Which ones are you interested in under the 16, 17, 18 WordPress blogs, WordPress podcasts and WordPress community.
Speaker 1 00:19:53 Um, man you’re wow. What a way to put me on the spot always, uh, in terms of WordPress blogs, I have to go with WP Tavern. I’m sorry. I mean, I’ve got ties there, but I also really enjoy and appreciate the work and effort that both Sarah Gooding and Justin taillight do on that site in terms of the long form and the detailed reporting that they do on there, that you really, all those other websites, you’re not going to find. You’re not going to find that kind of level of detailed reporting in terms of WordPress podcast. Man, I heard because I haven’t listened to a podcast and we’re so bad. Um, I’m working on getting some AirPods to change that up so I can put some podcasts on the phone, but in terms of podcast, uh, out of the ones are on this list. Uh, the WP minute is up there.
Speaker 1 00:20:50 It’s nice and quick. I can actually listen to that on the computer. That’s by Matt Madeiros, he’s doing a great job over there. And then every now and then maybe a do the wool, my buddy, Bob WP, he does a great job, but do the loo. So, uh, definitely those two. And in terms of WordPress community, um, uh, well, it’s kind of a toss up between post status and hero press. Um, but I’d probably have to decide for now if I was voting today with post status, just because they’re established, they’ve got this incredible network, they’ve got a lot of people, a lot of movers and shakers in that community. Um, you know, it’s, it’s worth the money it’s worth,
Speaker 2 00:21:37 You know, it’s really funny. You just accidentally created a great transition to our next topic,
Speaker 1 00:21:43 Which, I mean, you
Speaker 2 00:21:45 Picked right. You pick do the woo and post that as back to that.
Speaker 1 00:21:50 It was not, I wasn’t, wasn’t even thinking about that. I swear. I swear on my life. I was not even thinking about this transition. Uh, but yeah. How about it? Tell us a little bit about the, the do the woo.
Speaker 2 00:22:01 Yeah, so they, uh, just announced a partnership. I mean they, but it’s, I do that to everyone, but anyways, so they announced the partnership between post status and do the Wu. And, uh, I think it totally makes a ton of sense to me to see that content kind of joining or interacting with, or, or I don’t know, crossing over with the post status community. Um, as you know, more and more business, people are starting to look at, you know, how they can make WordPress into their business solution and how that works the best. Um, I think that this, this amalgamation, this partnership, um, will benefit both parties immensely.
Speaker 1 00:22:45 No, somebody on Twitter told me that they can’t think of WordPress without thinking of me, which I thought was a really cool compliment. But I think it’s gotten to the point now where you can’t think of WooCommerce without thinking about Bob WPS has been doing this now for about 10 years. Yeah. And it’s a great partnership. I mean, listen, if you’re a fair company like post status and you want to get insight and connect your audience and your members and your community to what’s going on in the WooCommerce industry, or just have somebody who knows the ins and outs, it makes perfect sense to bring Bob in. And there you go. Now you’re connected and you’ve got all his insights and everything he’s doing over there for do the wheel, which by the way, he unpeeled a, that must be my favorite thing. Uh, my favorite three words on the show, by the way, um, I’ve noticed as I’ve said that like that’s a drinking game.
Speaker 1 00:23:38 I apologize. You’re probably loaded by now, but if not, uh, Bob unveiled a completely new branding and colors and it looks really good. He worked with WebDevStudios, uh, to do that. So definitely check it out. I’ll have a link to do the will in the show notes, but this just makes perfect sense. And I think Bob to me is, is, is woo woo commerce. Anytime I think about will commerce, I think about Bob WP and I just love saying, do the woo. I mean, just the louder you say, do the blue, the better it’s out.
Speaker 1 00:24:12 And, uh, and by the way, say I did it again, uh, take a drink. Uh, um, if you visit WP mainline.com, you can actually check out the, do the Woobox car. It looks really cool. We unveiled, uh, Bob WPS backs card design, and speaking of boxcars, I have a new one that has been designed and, uh, I’m hoping to reveal it either tonight or at some point this weekend. So yeah, the more bike, the more box cars we can have design the better. And in light of this partnership that Bob was doing with post status, he is, uh, Bob was working with Corey and the team on a special discount for do the woo friends who want to join post status. So if you’re a friend of do the woo, which is kind of, uh, the, uh, uh, subscription or community membership that Bob runs, you’ll be able to get a good discount on the post status network. And the post status network is worth the money because that’s where the movers and shakers are. It’s, it’s primarily like the business hub of WordPress is like what I like to call it. And me, I just liked to hang out there as a fly on the wall, just monitoring what’s going on there. Cause there’s some, there’s some juicy stuff that sometimes goes on there that I can turn into, uh, some good content.
Speaker 2 00:25:31 Yeah. Funnily enough. Um, one of the people that I work with, um, mark , who was a WordPress engineer for, uh, camera creative. He recently, he and I were talking and he was like, like, why aren’t you on post status? And I’m like, I am. And he’s like, no, you’re not, I’ve never seen you on there. And so I instant messaged him from post status slack, and he’s like, oh, you are how odd? Like, I’m like, I’m just there to watch. I’m not necessarily there to like think or interact too much. I’m just there to see what’s going on and keep my pulse on, on the finger of WordPress. So, uh, yeah, I it’s, it was just funny that he was like, you’re not part of that community. So I kind of am, but just not actively
Speaker 1 00:26:11 Speaking of community, uh, one company that has making inroads and just doing all sorts of things, whether it’s webinars or educational material podcasts, sponsoring events is GoDaddy. And if you’re looking to increase your productivity, one tool that helps thousands of what developers and designers do more everyday is GoDaddy pro uh, combining site client and project management. GoDaddy pro is an all in one solution made by and for web professionals, whether you’re new to web design or looking to grow your business, you’ll find tools, product guidance, and support to help you deliver results for clients you can manage and monitor all of your clients were precise from a single place, no matter where they’re hosted. And with a single click, you can perform bulk updates, backup security checks, and more to save time and free up your day. For more information, you can check out, go to eddie.com forward slash pro, or, you know, if you’re like me, you just stop the car, stop, whatever you’re doing immediately go on the mobile phone, click a link.
Speaker 1 00:27:10 Now I know you’re not going to do that, but links to GoDaddy pro and the information related to their services will be available on the show notes post and huge thank you to both Adam Warner and go to Eddie for renewing their sponsorship and advertising package. Uh, the WP mainline show very much appreciate it. That means Turkey dinner for Thanksgiving. It means I’ll be able to pay a car bill and a Ford could stop calling me, asking me where the money is at least for this month. And then, you know, I was able to pay a few other bills and thanks in part to add a mortar and go daddy’s commitment and ability to sponsor and support me and the work that we do here on WP mainland. I very much appreciate that. And for my listeners out there, please, if you could please give Adam Warner and go to Eddie pro some love on behalf of me, cause it’s super appreciative. I’m super appreciative of what they’ve, uh, what they’re doing.
Speaker 1 00:28:07 And with that, uh, you know, this is something that has come up in a topic of discussion throughout October and now in early November. And it looks like Justin has weighed in now where wow, it’s actually got 27 comments now. Yeah. He says that WordPress has never offered an idea writing experience. And he goes on and talks about his experience of writing in the WordPress editor, writing long posts, writing short posts. And basically it comes down to, he doesn’t use the WordPress editor, uh, for long form, whatever. He just uses it primarily to, uh, to mess around with blocks. He copies from his editor and posted into WordPress. It messes around the blocks. Like they lay up just right and, uh, and that’s about it, but he pretty much agrees that WordPress is, uh, is not really a good writing experience. Like he, he’s not gonna, he says, quote, I cannot imagine writing a novel in WordPress without first creating the plugin to edit the extra bits such as scene and character cars and cut away almost everything else.
Speaker 1 00:29:15 The editing cabinets might be acceptable with the right style adjustments. And he also says that note, if anyone, if anyone wants to build it, he would be happy to offer direct feedback. Uh, it’s just, again, with the WordPress writing experience, I I’m coming to GRA, I’ve mentioned this. I don’t know how many shows in a row, but I’m coming to grips now with the fact that when I’m in the post editor, I’m not writing I’m. And for me, that kind of sucks. I like writing. I don’t really, I don’t really like building and, uh, that’s pretty much what we’re going to end up doing now, whether it’s a poster page, you get to build it block by block. And, uh, and at least in terms of writing right now, like for example, earlier this week, I did a writing exercise actually is something very simple.
Speaker 1 00:30:04 Uh, I took, I use Google docs for the show notes for WP mainline, and we have a list of URLs in there. So what I do when I’m writing the show notes post in WordPress is I’ll create a block and a list block. I’ll go to the Google docs, I’ll copy the links. And then I’ll paste those links into the list block. And what happens, the less block gets transformed into a paragraph block in each row, design its own line as a paragraph block. That is not the way I think it should work. That’s not the way I expect it to work. I expect it to list all the URLs in the list, block in an unordered list. And then I can just move on. But now what happens is I have to, uh, I have to know about the fact that if I hold down the shift key, I have to select the various paragraph blocks and then transform those back into a list block.
Speaker 1 00:30:57 And that works. And it just, it’s one of those things. It’s about flow. And it’s about knowing the Gutenberg way of doing things. And I, I don’t necessarily agree or like the way or the Gutenberg way of doing things. Cause it’s just, it’s, it’s an unnatural flow. And it really comes down to like, my biggest issues is copying from one source and pasting it into WordPress and just having to spend so much time, uh, training and finagling, get it to work in the Gutenberg way. Now it’s like, it’s like, Hey WordPress, I know I want to list block and I’m copying a list. And so if I paste the list here, don’t change it to a paragraph. What are you doing? Stop it. And uh, if there’s, I also thought about doing a live stream where I just write a long post on WordPress and everybody could see how many times I say the F-bomb. I pull my hair out. I say, why I go on, you know, I say all these things, I think that’d be kind of entertaining, but, uh, I don’t know. It’s, it’s, it’s an idea worth exploring, but I’m, I’m noticing in the comments here. There are so many people using Unisys and third party apps.
Speaker 2 00:32:02 I have a favorite comment. I’m going to butcher the name Hannah’s Swatson, um, posts that none of our clients use. The block editor since blocks became mandatory. They had one classic block and go for, and start from there. I laughed so hard when I read that because I can feel it. Like I can feel it deep in my soul like that, that like, well, we have to use blocks now, classic block done. Like, oh, just, it made me laugh so hard. I love it.
Speaker 1 00:32:29 Yeah. And then somebody gave me the idea. They said, well, what if, um, what if you’re, uh, in the Google doc, you arrange, you, you create an unknown owner, an order list within the Google doc, and then you copy that into WordPress should maintain and keep the four main, right? Nope. Still, still doesn’t work. That transforms things into various blocks. So what I, you know, I have the same problem with quilt blocks. If I copy two paragraphs, more than one paragraph from an article that I want to put into a quote, if I copy that and paste it into a quote block, it’ll turn both of those paragraphs into a paragraph block. I have to select those two blocks. Retransform them back to a quilt block. It’s like, come on, man. What’s why isn’t this not working now? I haven’t tried this in Ms. Word, but supposedly from what I’ve heard, the formatting stays the same or WordPress, at least doesn’t transform blocks when you’re copying from Ms.
Speaker 1 00:33:22 Word and pasting it into WordPress. So I’m going to give that a try, but, but I refuse to write any third-party app or third party tool. I mean, a lot of people keep suggesting, well, why don’t you just use the classic editor? Why don’t you just do this and that? I mean, I could, but I think that’s the easy way out. And I just, I’m doing this. I’m going through all the friction because I want the experience and core of the black editor to be better than what it is. And, uh, I, I feel, but by, by going through the trenches and participating in the war or the battle that is me in the post editor, that, uh, we will get results one sooner or later. I hope please,
Speaker 1 00:34:05 Well, maybe I should do that. You know, I should, I should actually do that. Her suggested, just add a classic black and then see how it goes. I should actually do that and write about the experience. I, I, I’m very curious now, so the next big poster, right. I’m actually gonna do that. I’m just the first block I create is going to be classic. And then I’m going to write everything in there. And, um, ma’am, I gotta tell you if, if, if it’s just nice and everything works and, um, it has a nice flow I’m, I’m going to be disappointed, but I don’t know. Maybe that’s what I’m going to do from now on. And this might have a good point here. And the last article that we’re going to talk about in today’s show something you brought up. I have not read this yet, but I have heard about the topic and it’s been talked about, uh, recently is eight ways to automate, automate your WordPress blog with artificial intelligence. And this was published on Donna torque mag. Yup.
Speaker 2 00:34:55 Yeah. And I wanted to bring this to everyone’s attention because I think it’s a topic that is, you know, this is technology, these, these are things that are already being done behind the scenes, probably on a lot of your favorite websites. Um, a little bit tongue in cheek. I wanted to put it in front of you, Jeff, so that you could see like, Hey Jeff, look, you can double the amount of content you create. Just use some of these AI tools.
Speaker 1 00:35:18 Um, well I was saying, I’ve been thinking about this for a long time, right? Like sometimes in the way I was writing content, I said, what am I doing? I can just have an AI bot do this.
Speaker 2 00:35:28 It’s almost, it’s almost at that point, it’s actually kind of crazy at how good some of these writing tools have become. Um, I know a lot of people are huge fans of Jarvis and the tool that they have there to be able to kind of help like expand very kind of simple briefs or like create like summaries or, um, you know, just kind of do, do these like content manipulation things, um, to improve your writing or to, um, grow your writing. And like, there’s, you know, I know for a fact that there are giant news organizations that are using this on like AFP feeds or on like, um, uh, associated press feeds rather to kind of take content, um, rewrite it, uh, SEO the heck out of it and basically get it ready, um, on their site in a way that Google doesn’t see it as duplicate content. And, uh, you know, I wouldn’t be surprised if this stuff continues to kind of, you know, be more, you know,
Speaker 1 00:36:30 You think there are freelance writers out there and WordPress on some of these WordPress sites where they’re not actually writing the full thing you’re using these tools.
Speaker 2 00:36:38 I hope not. I mean, come on, like at the end of the day, it’s going to happen. I mean,
Speaker 1 00:36:45 I mean, for these people who freelance and their work, they’re writing from multiple different WordPress.
Speaker 2 00:36:50 Yeah. I mean like how hard would it be right to do a list post of like 20 best plugins for X, right? And then you resort that order, you get a tool like Jarvis to, um, rewrite the whole thing, make sure it passes Copyscape and boom, you have, you know, similar content or similar context in a different order ready for another site to use and Google will see it as unique content. Um, it’s going to happen. It probably already has happened. Um, I just think it’s, it’s something that we all need to kind of be more aware of that this is going to happen. And I remember actually probably about a decade ago, it started with sports scores, like ups for different sporting events were being done by AI because the, it wasn’t very difficult for an AI to take sports scores, team names, and be able to build things like build out a, a reasonable, reasonable, short post or summary of the game based on the information on data. Um, but these tools are getting smarter all the time. Like the stuff I’ve seen for GPT three just blows me away at how well it can. Right. It’s not the best at like fact checking. So sometimes it’ll make like really strange errors when it comes to like things that should have been factual and not necessarily changed. Um, but in terms of the other, the flow, otherwise it’s probably better than most English as a second language writers.
Speaker 1 00:38:13 Do you think at this point, you’d be able to tell whether an article was written by AI or a human being. Do you think you’d be able to tell, I mean, are there certain nuances you can look forward at certain hints?
Speaker 2 00:38:29 I, if, if, if the comparison, if you put two articles in front of me and one of them was written by AI and one of them was written by an English as a second language person, I might be able to tell the probably I would probably not be able to tell every time, um, if it was an English as a first language speaker writing an article versus one of these AIS, I don’t think the AI technology is quite there yet. I think you’d be able to tell the difference. Um, but I’m, I’m guessing within the next like four or so years, we’re going to get to the point where I wouldn’t be able to tell, um, between you writing an article and an AI writing an article on the same topic.
Speaker 1 00:39:06 No, I refuse. I refuse to allow the unique qualities and positive things of Jeffery to be baked into an AI bot.
Speaker 2 00:39:18 I think that’s going to be the next challenge. Someone’s going to like analyze all the writing you’ve ever done into an AI system. And it’s going to pump out, it’s going to be a pump out Jeffer articles faster than you can.
Speaker 1 00:39:29 Oh, stop starfish man stuff at dude. No, me, myself and I are all I have what left and in this space, man, I don’t need that taken away from me please.
Speaker 2 00:39:39 Oh, well, if they give it to you to be able to create content well,
Speaker 1 00:39:43 Yeah. Okay. Okay. Create a Jeff button. I get to control it. You know what not now around this something I could work with that I can, I can mold it into my, to, to, to the, to the Jeffer of the future. I can
Speaker 2 00:39:58 Be like, man, he’s publishing like 10 posts a day.
Speaker 1 00:40:01 Yeah. And I’m over here writing a book called the three hour work week. Uh, yeah. All right. Let’s see. Other than that, um,
Speaker 2 00:40:17 Other than that, um, I think more people need to come and do some podcasts advertising. I think some people need to come and check out the amazing subscription levels that you have on WP main line, um, for
Speaker 1 00:40:33 Less
Speaker 2 00:40:33 Than $50 for the entire year. That’s 12 months of craziness with us. Um, you can join as a rail fan on WP mainline.com. So please go ahead and check that out. Um, that goes a long way to continuing to support this show and the writing that we can get, uh, Jeff wrote today, uh, and maybe the bot someday. So $49 a year, please go check it out on WP mainline.com.
Speaker 1 00:40:56 And it’s a loop Lee, thank you very much, sir, for that. And with that, we’re going to close out the show so we can begin our non-existent weekend, or you can find the show notes for this episode and all other episodes on dumpy tat pole. Oh boy, that’s a, Hm, no, I am not going to edit it now. I’ll let that be amazing. That’s the first time you can find show notes for this episode and all other episodes on WP main line that calm, just click on the podcast and you’ll find everything you need right there. And you can follow me on Twitter at Jeff Rowe, J E F F R zero and Malcolm. You can find me on Twitter at find purpose, all one word. And if you need anything in the WordPress world, I work@canberracreativeandpresstitan.com. And here we are in November, man, it’s just going to, you already had your Thanksgiving. So I got to have mine, but now you’ve got a Christmas. I mean, this is, this is crunch time during the year. This is that time of the year where you go to bed and start you wake up. It’s dark. And it was frosty this morning. Like there, our grass was crunchy. So it’s getting cold here very quickly. Yes. In the, all right, everybody enjoy your weekend. And we’ll talk to you again next Friday afternoon. So long as a buddy,

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