Tom McFarlin

Software, Development, and WordPress

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TL;DR: I’m going to be working on a series that looks how to achieve a useful task with taxonomies, likely categories, then refector it into an object-oriented plugin that will serve as a utility plugin for taxonomies, in general.


A Brief History of OOP Posts

Some time ago, I did a lengthy series about the principles of object-oriented programming (and tried to share an amount as to how to achieve certain things within the context of WordPress).

I’ve also written a bunch of articles about the whole paradigm over the years for those who are interested in catching up on some of those articles.

And I’d be remised if I didn’t share that a good friend of mine has literally written a book on the topic, too.

And thus, as I’ve been thinking about various topics to write about (after taking an admittedly longer period time off than I planned), though that it might be worth talking about practical things we can do with normal APIs and hooks and then refactor that into a type of utility plugin.

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It’s Okay to Write a Kludge, Sometimes

TL;DR: Don’t avoid writing a kludge of code when the situation necessitates it. Sometimes, factors outside of our control dictate how quickly we can turn a solution around. At the minimum, leave a code comment that explains what the code does and optionally why it’s not included in a way that’s as consistent with the rest of the module in which you’re working.


When I first started in my career (as I imagine most people in our industry do), I was bent on writing the best solutions possible to the problems that I was given.

Nevermind that fact that I may not have had the experience of my peers, managers, or so on. I was bent on making sure that given the level of information I had, I was going to write the best code possible and aim to both prove myself but to show what I was capable of doing.

I was young. 🤷🏻‍♂️

Fast-forward over a decade, and things have changed.

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Learn JavaScript, Forget PHP?

The landscape of WordPress has changed.

time lapse photography of green field and clouds

A few years ago, we were all tasked with learning JavaScript deeply and rightly so. With the advent of Gutenberg and projects like Calypso, it’s obvious that JavaScript is becoming a dominant force in WordPress (not to mention the web as a whole), if you don’t consider it to be so already.

And for anyone who has read Coding Horror within the last decade or so, you’re likely familiar with Atwood’s Law:

any application that can be written in JavaScript, will eventually be written in JavaScript.

Jeff Atwood

But as this has happened, it seems as if its created a clearer divide between what constitutes a front-end developer and a back-end developer in the WordPress economy.

Personally, I welcome it as I find myself even more eager to learn, grow, and work on the back-end as PHP grows and changes. But that’s just me and there’s more to examine.

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