[wp-edu] Open source release of BU-developed WP plugins

Yeany, Ron ryeany at bu.edu
Mon Mar 18 16:06:58 UTC 2013

Dear Colleagues,

I'm happy to announce the open source availability of three WordPress plugins developed at Boston University. The features offered by these plugins have allowed Boston University to effectively use WordPress as a CMS on a very large scale, with robust tools for managing hierarchical page content, granular control over who can edit what content, and workflow to stage edits and revisions to existing content.

The plugins are free and available now on wordpress.org<http://wordpress.org/>, and are also available on Github if you want to customize them or further develop them in order to submit new features and/or enhancements.

BU Navigation Plugin<http://developer.bu.edu/bu-navigation/>: We always found the native WordPress tools for managing hierarchical page content to be lacking. Re-ordering pages was a chore, and managing your navigation menus separately was not efficient. With BU Navigation, you can tame even the most unruly site structures. With two lines of code any theme can benefit from this feature-rich custom menu alternative.

BU Section Editing Plugin<http://developer.bu.edu/bu-section-editing/>: We needed a way to allow individual site administrators to manage their staff's editing permissions without exposing the complexities of WordPress roles and capabilities. With BU Section Editing, you have crowd control for WordPress. Create section editing groups, assign editors to a group, and granularly define what content members of that group can edit.

BU Versions Plugin<http://developer.bu.edu/bu-versions/>: We needed a mechanism so editors could save edits to published content without it immediately replacing the live page, so the edits could be reviewed and approved. With BU Versions, you can clone, edit, and replace. Seamlessly. Now you can implement a workflow that's easy to use and "behind the scenes" without disruptive or unreviewed changes to your live content.

Boston University first started using WordPress in Fall 2008 to replace a home-grown CMS used by our medical campus to host 137 sites. In March 2013, we will launch our 800th WordPress-based website. We've developed our own WordPress theme framework that supports a curated collection of standard University designs for hundreds of sites as well as dozens of custom themes for our highest-profile and most-trafficked sites. With WordPress, and through a close collaboration between development and design teams at BU, we offer web publishing services to hundreds of University departments that are low-cost, easy to use, and deliver a consistent user experience to visitors on the BU Web.

We invite you to download our plugins, and perhaps your college or university (or even you personally!) can benefit from these new features we have developed for WordPress. And finally, stay tuned -- we plan to share more of our WordPress work in the future.

Best Regards,

Ron Yeany
Web Applications Manager
Boston University
Information Services & Technology
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