Interview with Patrick Rauland, Project Manager for WooCommerce
Our upcoming guide to WordPress development will include interviews with twelve WordPress luminaries.
As we’ve mentioned in the past, we’re working on a comprehensive guide for WordPress developers, with the working title The Principles of WordPress Development.
It’ll include an e-book, screencasts from us, and plenty more—including interviews with twelve WordPress luminaries like Pippin Williamson and Tom McFarlin.
Each interview is designed to give you a close look into the world—and, most especially, into the code—of a thriving WordPress developer. Today we’re excited to present an interview with Patrick Rauland, Project Manager of the wildly successful WordPress e-commerce solution WooCommerce.
We talked with Patrick about his approach to WordPress coding, and we walked step-by-step through a plugin he developed, WooCommerce Terms and Conditions Popup.
This One’s On the House!
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Thoughts, Questions, or Feedback?
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0:00 – 1:30: Introductions
Patrick describes his experience with WordPress, WooThemes, and WooCommerce.
1:30 – 3:00: Defining Good WordPress Code
Patrick describes his criteria for good WordPress code:
- It needs to be WordPress code (written in a way that uses WordPress’s conventions and APIs), not just generic code written for WordPress as an afterthought.
- It “has to be written in a way so that it doesn’t break anything else,” especially on large projects like WooCommerce. This means checks like
if(function_exists()), checking whether variables are already defined, testing across different hosting environments, and more.
3:40 – 1:00:30: A Deep-Dive into Code: WooCommerce Terms and Conditions Popup
We dive into Patrick’s WooCommerce plugin, WooCommerce Terms and Conditions Popup.
3:40 – 8:15: Introduces the behavior of WooCommerce Terms and Conditions Popup. This very simple plugin does one thing, and does it really well: It improves conversions by opening the “Terms and Conditions” page in a popup rather than on a new page, keeping people on the checkout page while they view it.
8:15 – 1:00:30: A comprehensive look at the plugin’s code. Topics covered (among many others):
- Creating smart directory structures
- Careful programming with checks like
- Object-oriented programming (OOP) for WordPress
- Creating WordPress options and settings pages
- Integrating jQuery into a WordPress environment
1:00:30 – end: Advice for WordPress Developers
Patrick gives a ton of good advice for aspiring WordPress devs. Topics covered:
- Patrick’s favorite WordPress and WooCommerce functions
- Advice for WordPress devs: Go to WordCamps, listen to podcasts (Apply Filters, Side Hustle Nation, and more)
- Lots of business advice for freelancers and consultants
- Favorite development tools: Slack, Github, Atom code editor, MAMP, and more
That Was Awesome. Where Can I Get More of That?
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Thoughts, Suggestions, and Feedback
We’d love to hear your thoughts on the video above; we’re recording more interviews as we speak, so your suggestions really will be taken seriously and potentially incorporated. Speak up in the comments below!