Rise of the WordPress “canonical” plugins

| December 9, 2009 | Leave a Comment

Over at the WordPress Development blog, a poll is being held to see which term the community prefers to call “canonical” plugins, which are developed closely with the WordPress core.

Canonical plugins would be plugins that are community developed (multiple developers, not just one person) and address the most popular functionality requests with superlative execution. These plugins would be GPL and live in the WordPress.org repo, and would be developed in close connection with WordPress core. There would be a very strong relationship between core and these plugins that ensured that a) the plugin code would be secure and the best possible example of coding standards, and b) that new versions of WordPress would be tested against these plugins prior to release to ensure compatibility. There would be a screen within the Plugins section of the WordPress admin to feature these canonical plugins as a kind of Editor’s Choice or Verified guarantee. These plugins would be a true extension of core WordPress in terms of compatibility, security and support.

The issue is that the term “canonical” may be confusing for a lot of people, so the development team would like to know if there’s a better suited name for this class of plugins. Voting ends on December 10 at 11:59pm UTC time.

I’m more excited, though, about the actual existence of these plugins because they’re setting high standards for the WordPress project. More importantly, they address the issue of how many features should go into the WordPress core before it succumbs to bloat, if it hasn’t already.

I’d love to see examples of such plugins in the coming days. They could be things we’ve already installed on our WordPress sites, or cool new ideas we’d find useful all the same.

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