Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member
Although WordPress is very powerful right out of the box, there is a rich landscape of plug-ins that extends its capabilities tremendously. A WordPress plug-in is very similar to a Dreamweaver extension except you don't use the Extension Manager as you do in Dreamweaver, we use the Dashboard. So let's switch over to WordPress and go to the category on the left called Plugins. Let's open that up so we can see all the Plugins that are currently installed. WordPress comes with two extensions or Plugins preinstalled: Hello Dolly, which is just kind of a fun thing that you can implement on your own WordPress site if you like, and Akismet.
Now Akismet is a very powerful plug-in that performs a totally necessary service. A lot of times with blogs, you'll get comments that include a ton of spam. Akismet can greatly reduce that spam for you. So let's activate Akismet. I'll click Activate here, and I want to point out that once you activate any plug-in the options change below its name, now it says Deactivate & Edit Settings instead of Activate. You'll notice up here we have two messages, one saying Plugin is activated, but we have to enter here Akismet API key for it to work.
So let's click that link, and that will take you to a new screen, that's just installed with the Akismet activation, and that allows us to enter an API key. The Akismet API key is available for anywhere from free to relatively low-cost. Visit akismet.com/wordpress to get yours. Now I already have an API key, so I'm going to paste it in here, and I'm going to go ahead and click my options here to Auto-delete spam that is submitted on post more than a month old, that's good.
Showing the number of comments, I'm not so keen on having that there, so I'm not going to choose that option, and then I'll click the Update options button. I get a message indicating that the key has been verified, and I want to point out as we go, scroll down a little bit, that there's some more information here about the Akismet servers. There are four available, and they're constantly updating these. So let me point out also under the Plugins section, there is now an Akismet Configuration, which will take you to this page here. Other plug-ins will put their own panels under Settings or list them separately.
Now that's a nice free plug-in that I can recommend you implement very, very quickly on your own site or on your own client-site, but there are also other plug-ins that you can add, and the way that you get to them is by going to the Add New option under Plugins. As with the themes there are numerous ways that you can search for it. We're going to look for an Event Calendar. So I'm just going to go ahead and enter a Search for those two terms, event calendar. Now I click Search Plugins. As you can see, there's a good number of event calendars available.
Let's scroll down a little bit, and I'll show you the one that I have used successfully before. It's this one that just lists as Events Calendar and the author is Luke Howell. So let's go ahead and click Install Now. I'll get a request for a confirmation, I'll click OK. WordPress quickly unpacks it and installs it, and all you need to do is to activate it. Now that the events calendar has been activated, you see a listing for right here, as well as some coding information, including how to put it on your page very simply. So if you want to put a large calendar on the page, you put in this bit of code, that's in square brackets, right here.
This is called a short code in WordPress Jargon. So now that I have that selected, I'm going to go ahead and copy it, and let's go over, and we'll create a new page, and we'll call this Events Calendar, and here in the body I'm just going to paste in that bit of short code I copied. So in square brackets, it's events-calendar-large. Let's use the Events Template and then click Publish. Once it's published, let's take a look at the page, and here you can see the large calendar that's been added.
The calendar is showing the current month when I'm recording this lesson, and the current day has this light blue background here. Now you can see it's very functional. If I click on the month, it switches to the next month, then I can go back and forth to future and previous months. And if there were any events, you would see them listed right on the calendar. So how do you add an event? Well, in this case, let's go back to the Dashboard, and I'll scroll down, and as you see, as I mentioned before, some plug-ins add their own listing and here's one for Events Calendar.
So we'll click on Events Calendar, and then below the calendar itself is the Add Event screen. Let's go ahead and put in an event, I'm going to call this one Art Conference, and the Location will be Roux Academy. We'll leave the Link out blank for now, and let's put in a short Description, call this An excellent conference for emerging and thriving artists. Now let's set the Start Date, notice the year format that you'd have to follow. I'll put in a Date in upcoming October, and we'll do a Start Time, let's start it at 9 in the morning, and we'll put in an End Date the four days later.
And an End Time, now I want to enter in 6:30, but because this is using the 24-hour clock, we'll need to put in 18:30 instead, and everything else we can leave as it is. As you can see, we could, if we wanted to create a separate Post for the Event, but we don't have to do that. And let's click Add Event. And now you can see on the calendar within the Dashboard, my conference is already listed. Let's go ahead and take a look at that on the page. So I'll go to All Pages, and here's my Events Calendar. Let's take a look at it.
So I'll scroll down, and let's go to October, and there is the Art Conference. If I hover over it, I get more of my description, all the fields that I have entered, including the Starting Date, Starting Time, End Date, and End Time. Obviously, you could put a lot more information in here, and your clients can use this to update their events very, very easily. It's really a very powerful thing. Without a doubt, the popularity and usefulness of WordPress is greatly broadened by its extensibility via plug-ins.
Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.Become a member
Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.
Search within course videos and transcripts, and jump right to the results.
Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.
Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.
Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.
Your file was successfully uploaded.