So what’s happened? I’m back working again—finally. So that leaves me little time to work on personal projects, including Manga+Press. Which is probably a good thing because that leaves me a little time—even though I barely have any time haha—to plan. The version 4 and 5 road-map is postponed. I realized that there are some things I’m going to have to change about Manga+Press, primarily the way that the Latest Comic and Archive page is handled. I’m getting error reports about those two pages, and I think it’s all due to the use of
the_content filter to modify the output of the content of those two pages. Tl’dr—my approach needs to be re-architected. Heh, ironically, I think I realized that around 4 years but forgot after the upheavals in my personal life these last few years. Basically, the ideas I have are:
- Remove the pages, and just use custom end-points with their own templates (this was my original idea but never got around to implementing it). This one comes with its own headaches. The WordPress Rewrite API was a bear to deal with—at least that’s what I remember from dealing with it when I worked on Arctic Cat’s website.
Make the Latest/Archive page into their own post-type. It opens up a can of worms, though—there can be only two, for instance. However, it also opens up a realm of other feature possibilities, like refactoring the Series taxonomy. It brings us back to that can of worms, though. If I do that, I end up changing the entire architecture of the plugin in a way that it won’t be backwards compatible.
I do (actually, should have done) what WordPress is doing with its static front-page functionality. One page is set as a static front-page (Latest Comic)—except the difference is that it pulls in the most recent comic, and then the other page is a post listing page (in this case, Comic Archives). If I remember correctly, WordPress overrides the admin for these two pages, letting the user know that they can’t be edited.
So, we’ll see. Rest assured, I’m aware of the issue. It’s just going to take time for me to find a workable solution.
A quick update, and to keep a long story short, I needed a break from Manga+Press to work on other projects. I also needed a break to see what I wanted more clearly. To put it bluntly, I am not giving the project up for adoption, nor am I going to abandon it. I do need help with bug-hunting, providing support on the WordPress plugin forums, and I especially need help with documentation.
I also know that there have been a few WordPress updates to Manga+Press since the last update. I’ll need to check and make sure that those updates haven’t caused any breaking changes in Manga+Press.
And yes, the road-map for versions 4 and 5 is back on but I likely won’t get started until later in the spring.
I put the roadmap on hold. Long story short, I’ve been off learning new things and improving my artwork. I’m foreseeing that I’m probably going to be away for a little bit longer. How long, I don’t know. Which means that I’m not answering support questions on the WordPress forum while I’m on this break.
Which leads me to this: I’ve given thought to a few different plans regarding Manga+Press:
- Actively bring on help
- Give the project up for adoption
- Simply abandon the project
Honestly, I’d rather do Option 1 but I can’t seem to get anyone interested in taking on development, testing, or documentation writing. All of which I need help with. Which leads me to give some consideration to either Option 2 or Option 3.
That was finished — almost — quickly. I’m pleased to announce that Manga+Press 4.0 will be out next month.
New features coming in Manga+Press 4.0:
- Comic bookmarking
- Random comic link
- Social media integration
Manga+Press 5.0 will follow by the end of the year. I’ve made a command decision to focus heavily on redesigning the way the Series taxonomy works. As it currently is, the Series taxonomy causes some confusion in how navigation is supposed to work. What I’m looking at doing is splitting Series into three different taxonomies: Series, Issues, and Chapters, with possibly adding a Series or Issue cover option — where you can designate a comic post as a “cover” page. These changes could have some rather profound effects on the way the Archive and Latest Comic pages behave as well. I have an issue on Github detailing what’s going to happen with Series. You’ll note that the issue itself dates back to 2014, so this has been on my mind for a while now.
What happens to Manga+Press NEXT then? That project is officially dead. The other point of Manga+Press 5.0 is to integrate the changes from NEXT into Manga+Press core itself — namely the refactored navigation and unit testing. I unintentionally refactored quite a bit of Manga+Press core in 4.0, and that effectively killed NEXT. Chances are, the NEXT-to-5.0 integration will happen first, then the changes to the UI.
Till next time!
Bye bye Child-themes
Upgrade note: the bundled child-themes have been removed. If/when you do upgrade, make sure to move those themes to wp-content/themes IF you’re using them. If you’re not using them, then you shouldn’t have anything to worry about. The old themes are available for download on the Themes page. I won’t be updating these themes going forward, nor will I be adding new child-themes when WordPress releases a new one.
This update has been almost 2 years in the making. If I recall, the last update I had was version 2.9 at the end of 2014. In time for the update, I’ve done a lot of work updating the documentation and moving it over to Gitbook, and dividing it into two sections: Getting Started, and Developers.
For the Future
So what does this mean for Manga+Press NEXT, since my initial idea for that was to branch off. Well, Manga+Press NEXT is dead. I realized that I don’t want the headache of trying to maintain two different versions, and the development on that project has pretty much stalled. So, I’m planning Manga+Press 4.0 with some new features and ideas — suggestions from the community plus my own ideas. I may do like the WordPress Core devs and do these features as separate plugins to test them out before integrating into the main plugin.
Till next time!