All transcripts start from the point in the show where we head off into the meat and potatoes. They are the complete verbatim of John and Amber’s discussion of this weeks plugins that have been reviewed.
WordPress Plugins A to Z Podcast and Transcript for See complete show notes for Episode #506 here.
Instant Fun Just Add Rum It’s Episode 506 – We have plugins for Cooking without Gas, Multiple personalities, Your Own Words, Getting Paid, Sliding Along, Blocking Ads…., and ClassicPress Options. It’s all coming up on WordPress Plugins A-Z!
John: Alrighty. First off, ClassicPress options. Again, nothing ClassicPress. I haven’t done anything with ClassicPress for months. Nobody’s providing me with anything. I’m going to keep this segment open until stuff comes in or I hear ClassicPress demise. So we will keep our ear to the ground and keep chasing stuff. There’s lots of links in the show notes for places to go if you’re using ClassicPress, and hopefully, one day, we’ll get some listeners out there that want to hear all about ClassicPress and they’ll provide us with all the content we need. As for WordPress plugins, well, we do have some of those.
First off, one I’ve got here is one I am re-reviewing — this is the WP Recipe Maker. Now, why am I reviewing this? Well, I reviewed this plugin back in Episode 477, but back then, I had only used the free version of the plugin, so I couldn’t give it a maximum rating at that time because I hadn’t tried the premium version. Well, I finally hit the point in the development of my website that I use this plugin on that I needed the premium version to extend out what the recipe system can do. So I coughed up the 50 bucks, 49.99, may as well be 50 bucks, and went ahead and bought the plugin and installed, activated it, and started working with all the other settings in there, and I found that it’s excellent. Now, this plugin ranges in price from 49 to 149 bucks. By the time you get up to 149, that’s their ultra-premium version. It’s got a lot of stuff that I didn’t need, but it’s only a few items more than the version I bought. And I looked at those, and I judged, yeah, I won’t use those. It’s like maybe I might need that in two or three years as my website grows in popularity, but not at the moment, I don’t. So this one’s still good. So that allowed me to — by getting the premium version, this brings you all the main things you’re after.
One of the main things I was after on this was I wanted to be able to start linking out my individual items, my ingredient list to other components of my website, referring to items I sell off the website. And this is great for those of you that run something a recipe you can link off to, affiliate programs, or other things. And it had other additional features and functions in it that I needed to expand it out to be able to build internal linking on my website. So, as I hooked it up and started using it, I found that it worked excellently, and so I had to bring this plugin back. And it’s called the, you know, the WP Recipe Maker from Bootstrapped Ventures. And so I’m going to crank their rating on up to a five-dragon rating
Go check it out. And as I said, they got three versions; the premium bundle which I got, the Pro bundle, and the elite bundle. So go check it out.
Amber: And just before I go into my first plugin, I just want to say, hi, Hemdian, glad you made it.
John: Yeah, Hi Hemdian.
Amber: Just wondering if there are any stats on WP versus CP versus what et cetera installs.
John: There are stats on them. I had them for a little while, but you have to chase them down, but there are stats. Their stats are on all of the CMS systems, but the stats are kind of warped, and that they are taken from the Alexa – Top 1000 websites and those Alexa stats are easily manipulated. I mean, I at one point, I manipulated the Alexa Stats on my own websites to the point where I was like 400 in the world, you know — and I’m just a little small developer, so I know the Alexa stats are massively manipulated — you can manipulate them in multiple ways. So I’ve done that. So I know that those — I know I have zero trust in Alexa stats just from the fact that I’ve already gained that system. So I can go — go ahead, off to yours, your next plugin.
Amber: Yeah, I was just going to say my first plugin is called Personal Dictionary. I was really excited when I found this. It seems like a really good idea. The free version is pretty decent. You essentially put a shortcode into whatever page you want it, whether it’s a public free-for-all page or a personal page for a student, or yourself, or what have you, and you get to create your own dictionary. And you can create your own quizzes to help you remember these things. It’s actually really awesome. The problem is that with the free version, you only get one year of updates, one year of help, like, support — sorry, it’s six months of updates and six months of support. But you get to keep using it for a lifetime, which got me thinking like, if you get this on your site, and say a year later, you end up — like if it’s not working much anymore because it needs to be updated, or you’re just unable to get updates for it, it’s really weird.
John: I don’t understand the question because if it’s a free version, you’re constantly getting it updated.
Amber: But it says that you only get updates for six months.
John: I would imagine that’s for their premium version.
John: That’s like the free version, which is available in WordPress. Every time they upload a version into the WordPress repository, you get the update. If you go to their premium version, you can’t get that update unless you’ve paid the license fee, which is fair and appropriate. Some companies have moved to a six-month plan. I’ve noticed in the last couple of years — I think I commented on a show one time about the fact that I noticed it was a really big thing for a while that seemed almost every premium company had moved to a six-month licensing plan versus an annual licensing plan.
Amber: Yeah, it sounds weird to me that you only get updates for the first six months, you only get support for the first six months, so you have to — but you get to keep it for a lifetime. How would you even do that?
John: Well, that’s the way all of them do it. If you buy a premium plugin, most of them it’s a year. But if you buy their premium plugin, you get a year’s worth of support, a year’s worth of licensing off it. At the end of the year, your plugin does not cease to function; you can continue to use it at that point, fork it off yourself if you want. But if you want their updates, you got to renew your license to get their updates. It’s the same thing on that. They probably just didn’t word it very well for you to understand it.
Amber: Okay, so I was missing a bit of vital information there. I understand that. Thank you.
John: Yeah, not a problem.
Amber: Personal Dictionary plugin might be useful for fantasy sci-fi writers. I agree. I was actually really excited for this because I’m working on trying to learn coding and everything, and I figure if I start putting in my own things into this dictionary thing, I can go back and do quiz myself and keep learning. It’s a really great plugin, honestly, but I had it down to three dragons because I didn’t fully understand the updates and everything, but I’m actually going to raise it up to four because now I understand. It is really awesome, but there is a Pro version. So I do rate it at four dragons.
Amber: Last-minute change there.
John: Yeah. Not a problem man that can happen. All right. The next one I’ve got here for you. This is for those of you out there like me who are finally getting our ass in gear to deal with the world of Bitcoin and all Cryptocurrency. I did do these years ago, but I got so sidetracked, and I just didn’t — if I was stuck with it when I first started, well, I wouldn’t be here doing the show. I’d be off on a ranch somewhere with 1000 acres around me and a giant moats that nobody could visit — because I would have made millions if I had done the Bitcoin when I first opened my wallet. But now that I’m back at it again, I’m having to relearn everything, but I’m also hearing more and more talk of the lightning paywall. And the lightning paywall is something that’s being talked about in the podcast sphere. It’s being promoted a lot by the No Agenda Show because what it’s going to do is it’s going to allow creators to take micropayments in Bitcoin or other Cryptocurrency. And this is a plugin that has been released to set up so you can start taking Lightning Paywall payments with your own BTCPay server by Coincharge. And in other words, you won’t have to go through a service to accept your payments. You’ll accept all your payments directly. You won’t have to go through all the headaches and other stuff. This is one I’m going to be digging into further and further. Initially, with this plugin, I haven’t set it up yet, but I wanted to bring this to the forefront so that I start working towards using this. And it’s going to be important in the years to come because Cryptocurrency has finally made its breakthrough on many areas, and many more people are starting to use it, and it’s going to get easier and easier to use. And as it gets easier and easier to use, more people will adopt it. And then you will be able to start collecting those payments. But, of course, you don’t want those payments in somebody else’s hands where you could lose them, such as anyone who starts accepting their Bitcoin through PayPal, they don’t understand, they don’t actually own their Cryptocurrency there. PayPal owns their currency. PayPal controls their currency, and they can’t transfer it off to another wallet. It can only stand in the PayPal wallet. So there’s lots of things that are confusing about all this, but this is one you’ll want to look at if you’re in the Cryptocurrency, if you’re into having content that you might be able to get micro-payments on. Check out this plugin, go install it, activate it, go check out coincharge.io. I started looking into them a little bit this morning, but I didn’t have time to fall down that rabbit hole today. And it is going to be something that’s coming down the future and it’s something I’ve got to dig into deeply and play catch up so I can jump ahead of the curve on it. So go check it out at the moment since I don’t have a whole bunch to go either way on. And I’m going to give this a neutral rating at three dragons, and when I re-review it; we’ll bring it back at some other point in time. So go check out Lightning Paywall.
Amber: Interesting. My next one is Tiny carousel horizontal slider plus. I came across this when I was checking out various sliders for a site I’m working on. And this is a nice one; it’s small, rather unobtrusive, lightweight, and useful. It does have the option to add links and/or text into the pictures. Just add a link/alt text to the pages that you’re setting up. It is totally free, and the way that you use this is you grab the shortcode it creates for your new slider you created and put it into whichever page you’re wanting carousel. You can also add it directly into your theme. I’m not sure how it looks when you add it directly into your theme, but — why crickets?
John: I have no idea. Something here decided to make cricket noises. One of the electronic devices is making cricket noises. I couldn’t tell you which one, man.
Amber: Because this is a nice and lightweight carousel, like if space is a concern for you, then I definitely recommend this one. It’s easy to set up. You can change up the speed, the arrows, fairly personalizable. You can personalize it. I rate this at five dragons.
John: All right, we’ll go check that one out. It does look pretty useful if you just need a quick carousel on your site. All right. The final one I’ve got for you here today is another great useful plugin, and this came up when I’m working on a project that we’re building out a membership site, and this membership site is being built out has the problem of some of the members have spouses that are also members, and the husband and wife team share the same email address. So they don’t need that — we gotta be able to put both of them in there, as with their own separate accounts to log in, but they don’t have separate emails. And anyone who’s been around WordPress long enough and created users knows that WordPress demands that you have a unique email addresses. You cannot reuse the same email address in there. Well, this plugin helps you bypass that problem and allow multiple user accounts to be created, registered, and updated that have the same email address. So you can create two email accounts or add two user accounts with the same email address, and this plugin does work very well on another client site I work on that is a full-blown membership site, and they have the same problem of people in the same household having different accounts, but the same email address. And this is something that happens on a lot of membership sites. So this plugin here, even though it’s an old one, still works very, very well. And it does work good to allow you to bypass that problem of the single email per account. Go check this plugin out. It’s a very fantastic plugin, and I highly recommend it, and it’s called Allow Multiple Accounts. I’d like to see it get updated someday, but hey, who knows. At any rate, I give it a five-dragon rating.
Amber: I can see that being exceedingly useful.
John: It is if you’re building out a major membership site, which is what I’m helping with right now on a project — it’s a Pro Bono Project I work on –and it’s a major membership site with, you know, 1000s of members and –that’s the problem we’ve got and the other project, I work on a Paid Project, they have, you know, hundreds of members and they have the same problem. And this plugin solves that problem.
Amber: Neat. So the last one I’ve got is Anti-AdBlocker. This is an 11-year-old plugin that still works. It’s very ‘90s looking. It hasn’t even been updated in 11 years. It’s actually pretty interesting how old it is, and it still works great. And I find this very entertaining. What this plugin does is once you install it, it puts up — it brings this pop-up up when somebody visits your site for the 11th time asking them to please remove their Adblocker, which I don’t know if that would actually work. It also asks for donation at the same time, it’s asking for you to remove your Adblocker.
John: Well, you know, if you’ve got content that’s there and you’re dependent on the ads make a few bucks, you’re like people — I understand it’s free content, but the ads make me money, but you’re blocking the ads. I get it, they’re annoying, hey, maybe you might donate to support this content because obviously, you’re here that many times you like the content.
Amber: I find it entertaining because it’s kind of like having a pop-up anyway. It does only show up once to the person. So like, if a person shows up for the 11th time, it pops up, they show up for a 12th time, it doesn’t pop up. It only pops up just one time. So it’s actually pretty good. I found the whole idea really entertaining, honestly, and I would love for people to try this out and let me know if it got some good or bad results.
John: Yeah, I don’t know. I pulled all the ads off all my website, so I don’t need that anymore. I used to run ads way back in the day, but I don’t run ads anymore. I now depend on value for value. If I don’t get it, so be it.
Amber: And I really don’t see it as much use today. It just doesn’t seem like it’d be all that useful, so I knock that down a point. I rate it at four dragons.
John: There you go. But yeah, you’re right. It’s probably not as useful today because not everybody can qualify for Google Ads anymore. I mean, when I ran my ads, Google was handing out Ad Sense accounts like they were going out of style. Everybody could get one; you didn’t have to have tons of traffic to your site. Now you got to have lots of traffic or you don’t get that, and only the higher-level sites get it. Now there’re lots of ad sellers out there besides Google AdSense, and you can see them and some are, you know, more sketchy than others. It’s like when I do research for this show or the other show we have, sometimes I have websites with so many bloody ads. I go, yeah, I don’t have time for all this crap, and I back right out of their website. Because, you know, it’s like, okay, I can understand a few ads, but so many ads that you’re blocking the text for me to read, it’s like, yeah, if that doesn’t work. So yeah, this it could be useful, but it’s not as big a thing as it used to be. And not everybody throws ads up on their sites. All right. Well, this show is still sponsored by me.
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John: Absolutely nothing, but the highest quality web hosting you can get. All right. This is normally where we would… Absolutely, we normally have a contest here and we’ll keep this segment open for a little while. We’ve put the contest that we were having on hiatus for a little while to give them a breather a break. Also, you know, give Charlie a break who was doing such a fantastic job for us for about five months there and he got a little crazy in his life. So hey, we have to put it on hold. Also like to thank, Steve Goodtime and Brandt Matthews for that new jingle we have there. Thanks a lot, guys. There’s people who are providing talent force, you know, time and talent. So hey, because it takes time to make a jingle, especially one that was that good. I really liked that. That was actually nicely professionally mixed. And Charlie’s spending lots of time contacting developers and setting up interviews and other things and getting us the plugins to give away free all of that stuff, so hey, it will be coming back in the future.
We got a couple of quick things to close out here before we head into the Q&A segment because partway through that we play the outgoing credits. So this episode here, I covered up the following plugins; the WP Recipe Maker which I rated at a five dragon. I’m trying to take that recommendation from a listener into effect here. So WP Recipe Maker, which I rated at five dragons, the Lightning Paywall, which I rated at a three-dragon, and then, the Allow Multiple Accounts, which I rated at five dragons.
Amber: You’ve been pretty good following the recommendation from the listener. I’ve been trying to — hopefully, I’ve been doing alright.
John: It takes a little while to change habits.
Amber: So I covered Personal Dictionary, which I rated at four, Tiny carousel horizontal slider plus, which I rated at five, and Anti-AdBlocker, which I rated at four.
John: And a couple of quick reminders. We will be having some meetups in the near future, and if you’re not getting enough of Amber and me, hey, tune in Tuesday nights at 8 pm pacific time for The Rogues Tavern Live. Basically, we have a tete-a-tete and a chat in the tavern pub, and run down some rabbit holes, and see where they lead. All right. And if you ever want to be on an interview show, you’re a developer out there, someone recommends you to it, hey, reach out to us, there’s links in the show notes where you can go, book a time to be interviewed. I still have a slot set aside for doing interviews, and that space is always available for developers who want to be on an interview show. All right, with all of that being said, it is time for us to
It’s question and answer time.
John: With Amber. It’s got to have that it needs that little bit.
Amber: So if anyone out there has any questions they’d like to have me ask and have answered, send them into me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will get them into the segment for you, get some good answers for you. So my first question is why do some old plugins work and others don’t? What is the most likely difference between the two?
John: It’s all in the PHP coding. And whether or not the developer of the old plugin was using good, clean coding practices that it didn’t matter how far PHP advanced, his plugins still worked. What it all boil down to, you know, is that he didn’t use functions that became defunct, as PHP is advanced, and as WordPress has advanced and changed things. The old ones that still work, it means they were coded very well. That’s basically what it boils down to.
Amber: Okay, that makes sense.
John: There’s really not much else to go in there.
Amber: Okay, what about old programs? I know that some work even without updates, but some just don’t? Why is that?
John: What do you mean by old programs?
Amber: Well, old programs like — but it’s an example, I didn’t think to come up with an example. Say, an old game — sometimes an old game like the original Mario Brothers, I can still make that work on my computer. But for instance, Reader Rabbit, which you got me when I was a kid, that doesn’t work, why is that?
John: Again, it’s into the base coding. The code functions that were available at the time they wrote it, as the operating system being windows — in this case, if you’re talking about Windows — Windows has changed so much over the years. They’ve done away with functions in the back-end, or they’ve made the connections to those functions in a new different way. So the old programs can no longer hook in and run because they depended upon the operating system. Some of the stuff that you run was not dependent upon your operating system to run. You just needed your operating system as a interface to your screen. It didn’t need your operating system for functions of the program to run.
Amber: Which is why Mario Brothers works, but Reader Rabbit doesn’t?
John: That’s right. And that happens with a lot of games out there — like I can still — I can’t run them anymore — like my favorite game, which I wish would be rewritten was — I can’t remember the name of it now — Wolf Sub Hunter. It was a Sub Hunter game. And it works beautiful all the way up until Windows 7. And after Windows 7, it quit functioning. And that happened because they changed the drivers for the video cards — video drivers changed, and the game no longer functioned because it couldn’t connect properly to the system. So it’s all about as the computers advance and as programming advanced, they find out a function they had written, they have to drop that function for one of many reasons, one reason often is because that function is now a security risk, and there’s no way to clean that function up. Yeah, the only crap like that old programs never die, they only crash your freaking OS, while some of them. Yeah, some of them like I’m still running programs. I still have some programs running on my Windows 10 that date back to Windows 98. There’re a couple of programs that I run. That’s like — and but they’re not dependent upon the OS to run, but then, I hardly ever use them anymore.
Amber: Well, I’m starting to get a theme to my questions here, is probably going to be the same kind of answer for the next question I have.
John: Okay, you’ve got two more questions here, read those out. We’ll split it right here. And for those of you that want to hear the rest of this theme we’re on, you’re going to have to tune in to the YouTube version.
Amber: Okay, so first, all plugins and programs work. Does that mean that old viruses like the cookie virus and the free cupholder virus would work today? If not, why not? And how and why is PHP compromised?
John: All right, well, answers to those questions after the break.
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