Delving into more than just WordPress

[00:00:00] **Brian Coords:** You are listening to viewSource, conversations around WordPress and adjacent tech with hosts, Aurooba Ahmed and me, Brian Coords.

[00:00:08] Hey Aurooba, happy season two.

[00:00:11] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Happy Season 2 to you too, Brian. How's it going?

[00:00:16] **Brian Coords:** I'm just very excited to get back into talking about all things web development. How about you?

[00:00:24] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Me too. It's been a good break, but I'm looking forward to not being on a break and getting back into our cadence and, you know, having the discussions that we always do. They're always great.

[00:00:38] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, did you take a real summer vacation at all?

[00:00:41] **Aurooba Ahmed:** No, I definitely did not get to do that this year. It was a very busy work season bookended by WordCamp US, which was also very busy and intense. But I'm hoping to have a really good holiday in December. So that's, that's like my light at the end of the tunnel, I suppose. What about you?

[00:01:02] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, I'm, I keep telling myself I'm going to have a summer vacation, and in California we have summer for like, like it'll be hot for the next two months still, so I'm like One of these days we'll have a summer vacation. One of these days.

[00:01:19] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Well, I hope that you get your summer vacation then.

[00:01:23] **Brian Coords:** Yeah. I honestly like, I like pushing it back because now all the kids, not my kids, but all the other kids are back in school and it like, everything else slows down. So like now when we go to the beach, it's a little quieter, that sort of stuff. Mm

[00:01:36] **Aurooba Ahmed:** That's true. That's the nice thing about, you know, being able to dictate your own schedule in a lot of different ways. You can go when it's like the quote unquote off season, right? So everything's a little better, a little quieter, a little cheaper, even.

## [00:01:49] Next.js 13 and Browser APIs

[00:01:49] **Brian Coords:** Since we haven't talked in so long, give me like a cool thing you've learned over the summer that we would have talked about, maybe we would have done an episode about. Something in the world of development. What's something cool?

[00:02:01] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Okay, if it's something that we would have talked about, that would be, I really dug into Next. js 13, and they have this new app router that is like a new paradigm of how you do pages and sort of data loading and everything, and I got really into it and got really excited, and I think we are hopefully going to actually talk about that this season.

[00:02:25] I'm really excited to do that. But something else that was kind of cool during my exploration of that was I had never ever before explored the, the geolocation data that is available in a browser. And how to like manipulate it and work with it. And I... Started a little bit of a project that I never finished because I didn't have time, but in that I was playing with location a lot and I learned a lot about it and it was really cool.

[00:02:50] And I was surprised at how much information is sitting there in your browser that a person can access with JavaScript.

[00:02:57] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, sometimes I see people do those cool things where it's like... I made a thing where with the browser, you like move your head and the content reacts, cause there's an API for that. And like, it only works in like Chrome, Canary, whatever, but like, there's so much cool stuff there. So much cool stuff there.

[00:03:14] **Aurooba Ahmed:** What about you? What did you learn? Something cool?

## [00:03:18] Laravel is like WordPress for Applications

[00:03:18] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, well, most of my time has been in the world of Laravel, so that's where I've been uncovering a lot of things, and I think what I've learned about Laravel is that if you do it all the time, You can build applications so fast because literally there's a tool for everything. Literally everything. I was using something that was kind of hard.

[00:03:44] And a friend of ours was like, Oh, well try lara- Laravel socialite. It's their app for handling social login. And I was like, what? They have a thing for that too. Like they have a thing for literally everything. And it's super great. The downside is if you don't know what you're doing or you're new to it, you spend a lot of time looking things up.

[00:04:02] Cause you're like, now that I know that there's probably a easy way to do this. Now I have to spend all my time finding the easy way to do this. But that's been my fun thing to learn Laravel. It's been I don't know that I'd want to live in it, but it's it's super cool.

[00:04:17] **Aurooba Ahmed:** That's kind of, that sounds really fun and something I was thinking about as you were talking about it is it feels like WordPress for Applications because that was my experience with WordPress. It can, it had a function for everything You just had to go into the docs and find it and that was for like mid building websites and CMS's and it feels like Laravel Is that but for applications

[00:04:36] **Brian Coords:** Yeah. And I. I've definitely hit that point where I remember being like that with WordPress, constantly Googling things and constantly searching for the name of the right function with Larvel because it's so object oriented, like everything is like a function on a class. It's a little harder to like weed through, but it's super powerful.

[00:04:56] But yeah, it's, it's kind of for building like apps or like backends or, you know like inter interwebs, like that kind of stuff. For what WordPress is for building marketing sites and, and, and nice content- rich experiences. So super cool. We should dig into that this season too, right? We should, we might do a little something.

[00:05:16] **Aurooba Ahmed:** I think that would be fun, for sure.

[00:05:19] **Brian Coords:** Yeah.

[00:05:19] **Aurooba Ahmed:** We bandied about some ideas.

[00:05:22] **Brian Coords:** Yeah.

## [00:05:23] Learning JavaScript (more) Deeply

[00:05:23] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Okay, so that's something you learned that was kind of cool. What's something cool you want to learn in this upcoming season?

[00:05:35] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, I think that the thing that I need to really learn and it started last season, but it kind of continues this season is I really want to hit the, the deeply part of the learn JavaScript deeply where like, I feel very confident in JavaScript. I feel very confident in frameworks and stuff, but there's almost like a underlying level of you know, especially like tons of client side code and, and performance and the best ways to do things that I don't think I have.

[00:06:09] And so I want to go even deeper into the weeds of JavaScript. More than what a framework gives you, but like what's underneath the framework, what are the fundamentals, you know. I think that's where I would want to go because I feel like it'll improve my ability to do things in the block editor and in anything, and you know. JavaScript just is, is the central piece of web development, you know, front end web development.

[00:06:33] What about

## [00:06:33] GraphQL vs REST API

[00:06:33] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Yeah, that's that's true. Something cool that I really want to dig into that I have very little experience with is GraphQL. So, again, this was when I was playing with Next. js 13 earlier this year and I was like pulling information from like a WordPress REST API and trying to like build like these in- this information essentially sort of a catalog and it was very frustrating because in the REST API is great But you know in order to like I would have like a post and I now I need to get the information about the author. And now that's like a different pull. And then that might if I want to get a taxonomy first have to get a taxonomy and then I have to get the route for that. And it's like so many different requests to like build one piece of information and I was like, not about that life.

[00:07:26] And that's what GraphQL is supposed to solve, you know, and let you do more complex, more interrelated queries, but build them in one go and then get that information. And I feel like I finally am at a place where I need that. Like I want that and the kind of stuff that I like building on my own. And so now it's time, you know, it's time that I understood it.

[00:07:53] And of course there's WP GraphQL as well for WordPress. So like, in order to understand that and be able to utilize that as well as we can, we first have to understand GraphQL, which is like the underlying, like, you know infrastructure. So that's something that I'm really interested in learning this season.

[00:08:10] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, it's, that's a, such a good one. It's so hard because new things emerge all the time and you never know which ones are gonna stick around and which ones are gonna just be like a cool proof of concept that opened a door, but like the technology itself kind of disappeared, especially in the web development world.

[00:08:29] And so GraphQL, like was one of those where you're like, I don't know, is this, but then like now you start seeing the use cases and you start seeing how people want to use it in WordPress, especially, and the kind of, like you said, the, the exhaustion of the REST API a little bit.

[00:08:46] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Yeah,

[00:08:47] **Brian Coords:** So I'm hope I'm hopeful that you'll have something come across your desk, like a project that, where you can actually say like, yes, this is the tool for that.

[00:08:53] And I get to like, dig into it in a real like environment or in a cool side project.

[00:08:59] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Yeah, either way, I think it will be really cool. And it's definitely something. I think headless is like becoming a thing, you know, so GraphQL then naturally is also like a part of that sphere of things. So it should be interesting. Hopefully we'll get to talk about it. Maybe even a little bit. We'll see.

## [00:09:18] What can we learn about WordPress from other frameworks?

[00:09:18] **Brian Coords:** Yeah. In terms of like things we're going to talk about, I feel like last season, we really answered a question or a lot around like React and WordPress. I feel like it was a central theme. Like we were really answering the, asking what is, what are these two things and how do they work together? For this coming season, do you have any like big open questions you want to answer or explore or like thoughts you want to trail up?

[00:09:41] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Yeah. Yes, but I want to hear your answer to that question first.

[00:09:46] **Brian Coords:** You want to hear my answer first?

[00:09:48] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Yeah, yeah, I'm really curious about what you think is a question that we should explore or, you know, figure out this season.

[00:09:56] **Brian Coords:** The question that I have and. It's a little bit based on some of the things we were just talking about, but it's really about, I would like to see, like, what can I learn from other frameworks? What can we learn from things that are not WordPress and then apply that to WordPress? Because, you know, WordPress at its core is JavaScript and PHP.

[00:10:17] And we were both just taught, like you were talking about a JavaScript framework. I was talking about a PHP framework. I want to open the question of like, okay, but. What can I learn from that? That'll inform how I work with WordPress, how I, you know, build sites in the future. What do these other completely other worlds, these other ecosystems that like don't even care, or even like WordPress, what you know, what wisdom do they have that we could bring back to how we built just websites?

[00:10:45] What about you?

## [00:10:45] What is the future of bespoke WordPress?

[00:10:45] **Aurooba Ahmed:** I like that. I think that's pretty related to, like, the question that I want to explore. And the question I want to explore is... What does the future of bespoke WordPress development look like? You know, what does that future look like? Because, you know, we are in this transition, transitory phase? That's the word, I think.

[00:11:04] Like, and we're transitioning, right? As like an industry. And the block editor in Gutenberg and all of that is such a big part of it. The big admin redesign that's happening. The, you know, the next phase of Gutenberg is happening. All of that is still transitioning. We still don't really know what the future looks like outside of like certain enterprise things that we've seen come up out of this and so I want to explore what that is like on a more practical more pragmatic scale and level. Yeah

[00:11:37] **Brian Coords:** I think that's a good question because that feels like whether it was at WordCamp or online recently, it's been a constant conversation of people who are ready to move to a modern WordPress, or they're realizing are the types of projects I'm doing really relevant to modern WordPress? And, you know, WordPress

[00:11:59] covers like a lot of the web, but also, you know, does it really? Because I mean, how many people spend their time on a website versus in social media versus on a mobile device? Like I was trying to edit my own website on my phone and it was, it was impossible. Like it was not even an option. Like it wasn't even, I physically could not edit the content of a very simple blog post and stuff.

[00:12:23] And so when you're saying like, Oh, people are making content, but like their mobile devices are completely not compatible with editing in the block editor. I mean, I think these are definitely big questions because people love creating content in different ways. And so I'm optimistic that WordPress will be a part of that, but it'll be curious to see how everybody makes this transition and what it can offer to everybody else.

[00:12:50] **Aurooba Ahmed:** I feel like I could talk about this discussion for a while, and it could be an episode of its own, because there's so much to unpack with where people spend their time, how much of WordPress actually makes up the web, and is it, does it matter more how much it makes up, or does it matter more where people are actually spending their time, even if it makes up the web?

[00:13:12] A lot, you know, those are two different things and there's a two, there's a two different ways of quantifying impact. Right? So, yeah, that I could talk about it a lot more.

[00:13:24] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, because there's also, you know, at WordCamp, there was the whole NASA aspect and seeing that, and that's something that wouldn't have been possible without like Gutenberg and modern WordPress and just seeing the insane types of content they're creating there. So, I mean, there's a lot, like you said, but we should definitely not get into that.

## [00:13:44] Preview of season two

[00:13:44] **Brian Coords:** We should just talk about what's the season going to look like give us kind of a nice breakdown.

[00:13:49] **Aurooba Ahmed:** I mean, I think that these three things that we just talked about really do set a pretty good tone for what the season is going to be like, you know, it's definitely going to be an exploration. It's going to be new topics that are still WordPress adjacent, but not just WordPress. You know, we're looking a little...

[00:14:07] the sense is, the feeling I'm getting for our season is it's a little bit bigger. It's a little bit more holistic than just WordPress or just React or something. But one of the things I know that we want to change up this season is the cadence of our release, right?

[00:14:23] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, we're going to do a release every other week instead of every week I think mostly for mental health and sanity reasons because it, I think it gives us a little space to go deeper into a topic without feeling like we have to hit a, like a really fast stride. So I'm actually more, I'm really excited about that because I think it gives us a little extra room to

[00:14:45] to go deeper into what we want to talk about in each episode and really think about how we're gonna accomplish things going forward.

[00:14:54] **Aurooba Ahmed:** I also think that one of the, some of the feedback that I heard from some people that I've been having conversations with is, you know, they had, they had a tough time keeping up, you know, we were releasing every single week. Obviously, we're not the only piece of media or, you know, something that people are consuming.

[00:15:12] And so it was just a lot. So this way, I think maybe we'll be matching the cadence of how much people can even listen. And so it'll be good for us, and hopefully it'll be good for everyone who's listening and watching.

[00:15:24] **Brian Coords:** Yeah, I think most people in my life, if they could have, like, half of the amount of interactions with me as they currently have, would probably be happy with that number. They'd be like, yeah, that sounds about right. So I'm pretty excited about that. Any last words of wisdom for for our podcast audience.

[00:15:42] When do you, when do you think we're going to launch our first episode?

[00:15:46] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Oh yeah, we have a date, right? The date we have is October 16 is going to be when the first episode drops. So I'm really excited. I'm really looking forward to recording again and, you know, having those conversations with you and with the rest of the community that we inevitably have after our episodes.

[00:16:06] **Brian Coords:** Yeah. I'm really excited that you said an actual date. I was going to say like Q4 2023, but now we have a real date, so we'll stick to it. And so uh, come back on that date for our first episode of season two.

[00:16:21] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Yeah, looking forward to it. Talk to you then.

[00:16:24] **Brian Coords:** See you then.

[00:16:24] **Aurooba Ahmed:** Visit for the show notes and if you're enjoying the show, we would love a review on iTunes or a comment on YouTube.

Creators and Guests

Aurooba Ahmed
Aurooba Ahmed
(she/her) Developer building bespoke #WordPress solutions, tools, and blocks. My name is pronounced "oo-ROO-ba" — Default to kindness, folks.
Brian Coords
Brian Coords
WordPress developer and writer blah blah
Delving into more than just WordPress
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