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A Collection of ‘Role Model’ Plugins

Lately as I delve deeper into plugin development, I've been keeping a WordPress installation where I have a few of the most exemplary plugins installed and activated. That way, when I have some doubt about user interface, or how to perform a particular piece of functionality, I can always refer to one of these plugins.

Lately as I delve deeper into plugin development, I’ve been keeping a WordPress installation where I have a few of the most exemplary plugins installed and activated. That way, when I have some doubt about user interface, or how to perform a particular piece of functionality, I can always refer to one of these plugins.

There comes a time when you have to stop reading books and articles about WordPress, and actually dive head first into code.

I’ll be sharing some of these plugins in this list, and updating it as we go along. Feel free to suggest any other exemplary plugins, that can serve as ‘role models’ for us when building our own plugins.

User Interface

I dig the user interface of these plugins:

Object Oriented Programming

I’m still starting out with developing OOP plugins for WordPress, but I’ve been looking at the following as examples:

Core + Addons Model

This is my favourite model for developing WordPress plugins. It consists of developing a core free plugin that will solve 80% of potential users needs, but for the 20% of the users who want advanced functionality, you create premium (paid) add-ons. By developing extensible plugins you are also allowing third parties to easily add functionality to your core plugin.

Commenting

Contextual Help

Terms and Conditions

Here are some terms and conditions for major plugins, mostly for reference:

  • http://soliloquywp.com/terms-and-conditions/
  • https://easydigitaldownloads.com/docs/extensions-terms-conditions/
  • https://searchwp.com/terms/
  • http://www.gravityforms.com/terms-and-conditions/

Asking for Donations

Sound like a strange heading? Well, not all plugins are premium, in fact many of them are free, and it’s always nice to give a token of appreciation to the developer who spends so many hours doing something and giving it away for free. I love how Tobias does that in TablePress, very friendly and non-intrusive.

Here’s a screenshot:

tablepress

Useful Classes

These are not plugins per se, but useful classes you can use within your plugins:

Boilerplates

Other

I also love referring to wpgear.org for goodies such as plugin or widget boilerplates and many other fantastic tools.

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Jean Galea
Jean Galea
Jean Galea is an investor, entrepreneur, and blogger. He is the founder of WP Mayor, the plugins WP RSS Aggregator and Spotlight, as well as the Mastermind.fm podcast. His personal blog can be found at jeangalea.com.

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3 Responses

  1. For me, one of the best is Contact Form 7 (http://wordpress.org/plugins/contact-form-7/9 primarily because of its powerful and easy multilingual capabilities, bur that’s only one of the many fantastic features this plugin offers…

    I also strongly believe that every plugin should have export/import settings function so we don’t have to re-type/click all the options over and over for various web sites, if e.g. 70% or 80% of options are repeating on all sites that somebody is re-creating… Do you agree?

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