I’m not sure if this will become a regular bit of coverage for me or ChurchMag, but I saw two bits of WordPress news that I had to share. And, as always, if you’ve heard any great WordPress news, please share it in the comments below!
Now, before we begin, these two updates have to do with the WordPress plugin Jetpack, which links a WordPress.org site with a WordPress.com account, bringing with it tons of features and such.
And sometimes, bloat.
For a while, I eschewed this plugin for it’s bloated feature-heavy, benefit-low nature and for the ridiculously frequent updates it required. However, in the past year, I’ve come back to the Jetpack fold and now find it to be much more helpful than harmful. That may not be the case for you, but then again, maybe these two little news items will change your mind.
165 Free Themes
You read that right–165 free themes have been made available to your WordPress.org site through Jetpack. Here’s how to access them, according to Jetpack.com:
To browse, preview, and activate these themes, visit wordpress.com/design, select your Jetpack site from the sidebar (if you have more than one), and scroll down to the all-new “WordPress.com themes” section.
Sounds pretty darn simple to me! I haven’t test it myself because I like the themes I have on my sites, but if/when you do, I’d love to hear about your experiences!
WordPress for Google Docs
Now, this has me legitimately pumped, so much so that, I did try it! Here’s what Jetpack had to say about it:
“You can now write, edit, and collaborate in Google Docs, then save it as a draft blog post on any Jetpack-connected or WordPress.com site.
To get started, just go to the Google Web Store page and install the new add-on.”
Now, you probably don’t know this, but a friend of mine and I have been hosting a podcast for the past year. We’re currently retooling it, and I’m thinking that we may need to add a blog component. Using this plugin will allow us to tag-team blog posts by using Google Docs before sending them to WordPress. Beyond cooperative blogging, Google Docs autosave feature is more seamless than what WP offers, so I’d trust it more.
Here are some screenshots from my personal experiment:
So, given these new features, is Jetpack worth it? I don’t know. That depends on your blog needs, hosting, plugins, etc. That disclaimer given, I think you should look into it. I think there’s a lot of innovation going on here, and so I’d definitely keep my eye on what Jetpack has to offer.