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Alex

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Everything posted by Alex

  1. Note: If you are not yet an MD customer and you have a question, please register an account to post here. I'm opening the Presales forums for MD customers and curious first time buyer to ask any questions before making a purchase on the website. Whether you're buying something or not - any questions you want to know about MD (that aren't tech support related, do that here), I will be thrilled to answer them! Now, to show your honest feedback about your experience using Marketers Delight and the forum support services here, please take a moment to vote your rating in this thread. Only verified MD customers can vote, so please vote honestly with your full picture in mind - (your username will not be posted publicly).
  2. Alex

    Merging The Bookshelf into MD

    MD4.8.5 is out and The bookshelf is now part of the MD core! I've already released a maintenance release for it as well as I had a burst of motivation tonight to build a book template into The Stream! Check out the latest stream post here to see a book I shared: https://marketersdelight.net/stream/ As always you can read the changelog here: https://marketersdelight.net/changelog/
  3. Alex

    Merging The Bookshelf into MD

    Hey guys, as part of a new vision I am implementing for MD, I've decided to merge The Bookshelf dropin into the next release in version 4.8.5. The reason for this is to make enabling this feature as easy as clicking a button rather than installing it as a dropin. I know many people who use MD are readers so this will be of use to many of you. It can be a way to share the books you love, create galleries of your own writings, and up your affiliate sales by linking to affiliate links. The larger goal I have by including the Bookshelf into MD is to connect it to other kinds of content you create on your site, like the Stream, and give you a way to display rich book data across your site with ease. I'll explain more shortly, but the Bookshelf is almost ready to go. You can see the thread I posted here on the night I started working on it and see the progress so far: https://marketersdelight.net/stream/77818/ Have any suggestions in the meantime? Let me know here.
  4. Alex

    New MD Changelog

    Hey guys, tonight I took some time to consolidate the changelog that shows the details of each new MD releases. You can check this page out each time MD is updated to see what's new: https://marketersdelight.net/changelog/ Tip: click the latest version in the MD header to go to the changelog page at any time!
  5. Alex

    New MD Tutorials

    Today I did a writeup of what has been released in the MD4.8.2 maintenance fix and wrote a little about the thought processes that go into releasing a major new version like MD4.8: https://marketersdelight.net/marketers-delight-482/
  6. Alex

    New MD Tutorials

    I'll use this thread to post the latest MD tutorials that make it to the MD blog. As MD4.8 introduced a lot of new stuff, I'll be doing a series on the blog that shows you what you can accomplish with these great new controls! Starting off with a closer look at Google Fonts integration: https://marketersdelight.net/design-google-fonts/
  7. Alex

    New MD Tutorials

    Just posted another new tutorial for you guys today and it's all about using the new MD design controls to design a slick text logo. Check it out! https://marketersdelight.net/mobile-design-logo/
  8. Alex

    MD 4.8.2 Now Available

    Thanks to @maikman's reporting I've released another maintenance update for the MD4.8 series. MD4.8.2. is now available in your dashboard and contains the following important bug fixes: Fixes potentially site crashing search query Adds new <code>md-block</code> featured image size Adds background color to search menu so search bar doesn't clash with nav menu links Fixes potential error messages when saving MD options Recompiles MD styles on frontend if CSS file is missing Fixes Action lead warning messages Go ahead and update to stay on the cutting-edge, it only takes a click!
  9. It's been few days since I low-key released the massive new MD 4.8 design system. I decided to slowly roll this update out so I could work with the few brave souls of this forum who have been watching this update unfold. Thanks to you guys taking action, I've been able to monitor how existing site's interact with MD4.8 and feel confident to make the grand announcement to everybody else. Even better, you were gracious enough to share the bugs you found in the update and that's what this new version is all about—cleaning up some loose ends. A special thanks to @camerondare, @V3King, and @Richard Brown for reporting bugs and helping me make the first maintenance release of the MD4.8 series possible! MD4.8.1 is waiting for you in your dashboard and has the following changes: Adjusts content box drop shadow on Teasers layout, adds drop shadow to pagination and archives title if enabled Fixes spacing issues on mobile and desktop with the aligncenter class Fixes links color in Content Spotlight widget Fixes save error on Email Widget Adds bottom margin to the archives title Corrects display bug with Pro Share floating icons Based on how much has changed, I'm glad to report that these bugs are fairly minor and no serious issues have come up with the MD4.8 upgrade. Thanks for all of your support, and be sure to watch the redesigned MD blog for new tutorials and content!
  10. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    MD4.8 is now available. https://marketersdelight.net/marketers-delight-48/
  11. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    The next focus for Marketers Delight is to finally deliver some easy design/customization options, and thanks to the great MD4.7 I've been running at full speed building these new features out. You know - things like changing site colors, fonts, menu colors, etc. without needing to go into your child theme or write CSS. (of course MD will always be developer friendly) Take a sneak peak of one small possibility so far (video link): https://cl.ly/282Q3d2Q3u43 So far I'm pleased with the direction things are going and staying diligent to only add what's necessary for maximum results. Less is more; all that good stuff. As you can see from the video I'm targeting site elements like the header, main menu, content box, sidebar, footer, and the most important elements within these sections. After working through thousands of sites (many hundreds of MD, maybe more) I'm focusing on what is most commonly changed in site designs and honing in on getting the most out of each new settings control. Nailing the right design tools will end up saving us time when first setting up new and take away tending to some of the more tedious elements of good design - ESPECIALLY styling menus (always a headache). I'm also trying to think and build for the future as well as the present, and have found it interesting to design these tools in such a way that they can be launched from individual posts/pages (like nearly every other MD feature) instead of global. I'll keep moving along, and will keep you updated on my progress and when to expect these to be finished. I'm calling this MD4.8, and there will be tons of other improvements design/optimization improvements alongside these new design controls. Let me know some of most common design changes you make to your own sites and see if they would be useful to add to MD.
  12. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Thanks, Callum! And that sounds like a great idea. I'm almost done the announcement post and it really does a great job outlining the new features and the intention behind them which I think you will definitely appreciate.
  13. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Hey, great question. I'm working on the announcement post now and testing the last details and bug fixes I can find. That being said, I'm shooting for a soft launch this weekend (around Friday) to release to everybody who wants to update, then make a formal announcement to the email list on Monday. Very pleased to hear you will be using MD for a new site, this update will absolutely be a big boost to your efforts.
  14. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

  15. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    I am starting the process of updating some sites I manage to MD4.8. This is how I get the bulk of testing done on new releases - nothing better than real world experience right?
  16. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Amongst many other mini features to be released in MD4.8, we're also getting a new Search page template (in an attempt to add a search box to your websites SERPs): And the perfect touch for an update like this, MD will automatically clean out the unneeded scripts, meta tags, and other junk from loading in the HEAD of your page's document. I also found out that WordPress sets a cookie in the browser of every visitor who fills out their name, email, and website to leave a comment on your site, so MD will also now disable that too. If you need these scripts and cookie feature, you can restore it with a new option in the MD Site Tools:
  17. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Spent a few hours today cleaning, refining, and further optimizing MD4.8. Rather than looking at these design controls as simple features, they are being integrated into MD as an integral part of the design system that determines the layout of your site. Because I'm looking at this as a system, I have to develop this with the intention of being expanded upon and modified by child themes. For example, while MD will come with a set of stock design options to load on your site when you activate MD. However, if using a custom designed child theme, add a way for a child theme to load its default options when it's activated instead. This will be a powerful feature for releasing child theme designs as they will make custom design decisions for you automatically. MD4.8 is getting close and the design controls themselves work nearly 100% by now. The final things I need to do are all behind-the-scenes utilities that make the whole system work. I cannot wait for you guys to get your hands on this update!
  18. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Further refining typography controls, hooked up a dedicated "Logo" design panel tonight.
  19. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Screen Recording 2018-05-28 at 05.09 PM.mov An often overlooked part of picking custom web fonts from services like Google and Typekit is the additional resources it takes to load the fonts to your site. When it comes to page speed, overloading your site with custom web fonts can be a huge burden. On top of that, most themes that offer these kinds of font integration load the many hundreds of fonts for you to select from a single dropdown menu in your options panel. This can definitely be convenient, but the processes required to do that right can be taxing on performance in the backend of your admin panel - and we already know that can be slow enough. With these two performance burdens of web fonts in mind, the solution I've built for MD4.8 will ensure one of the lightest and fastest custom web fonts integrations you've ever used. Here's how simple it is to integrate a font from Google of Typekit will be: 1) Find a font you like from the Google Fonts list - https://fonts.google.com/ 2) Type the name of the font to the element you want to apply it to (body text, h1-h6) 3) Click the "G" icon to tell MD you are using a Google font ...and you're done! With a live preview feature right next to your controls, you can instantly see what your new font looks like and adjust any related settings as needed. There's one last optimization MD makes when loading your custom web fonts, and it's an important one that keeps the weight of your fonts as minimal as possible. As you select different Google fonts, you will also be able to select which font weight to load for that element. One of the hidden performance burdens of web fonts are loading different weights, as each weight (bold, italic, semi-bold, black, etc.) load additional font files to perfectly deliver the font. MD pays attention as you make your selections and makes sure to only load the font files and weights you choose yourself - and nothing more. I could continue going into more detail about a few other performance measurements I made, but those are far more technical! It's my hope that these controls not only make it the easiest it's ever been to add Google Fonts AND Typekit fonts to your site, but that they are also delivered to your site as fast as possible. MD4.8 COMING SOON!
  20. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Glad I'm on the right track! Rather than doing a complex integration of these services-like I see in basically every other theme-the only thing I want us to think about here is: 1) What is the font name I want to use? 2) Which service is this font available with? ...and a single click to make that decision, then let MD compile the rest.
  21. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    How about an easy way to activate Typekit & Google fonts...
  22. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Been swamped in the MD Labs with other projects all week but I always make time for MD development over the weekend. I'm fortunate that the clients I work with all use MD, so even when I'm not directly developing the theme itself, I am learning a ton and putting MD through real-life scenarios. The past few weeks of client work has been especially useful from the design perspective of MD4.8. One of the last things I have left in MD4.8 is to create font controls and that's been my focus for today and the upcoming weekend. Here's what I have so far in its basic form, with Google Fonts integration now in the works: A little further down are the headline (h1-h6) font controls: To change fonts, you will simply be able to type in the font names you want for the body and each headline, and even change the font weight. Rather than import the vast library of Google Fonts and carry that huge weight of options in MD, I have another idea in mind for choosing Google fonts even though it may take a bit of browsing through the Google Fonts library itself to get it right. Maybe in a future version I will come up with an easy way to simply select Google Fonts from a dropdown menu here, but I'd much rather get this first version of MD4.8 out sooner rather than spending time refining this detail now. Once I narrow this down I'll post another update here, would love any feedback if you have followed this far!
  23. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    This is not an exaggeration.
  24. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    There's a lot of power in these panels... made unbelievable progress today, MD4.8 is really close to coming all together.
  25. Alex

    MD4.8 Sneak Peaks

    Spent the night refining the font sizes and spacing to scale down according to MD's new smart measurements, and I'm loving the flexibility and simplicity of styling your words with precision and automation. Plus with most of the design controls hooked up, I've been able to come up with cool design touches. A good amount of frontend code is being cleaned up and written to be more flexible. One of MD's signature touches will always be clean as hell spacing no matter what device and what content is available to you. Excited to get closer to completion.
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