Trending December 2023 # Altair: Revolutionizing Product Development With Simulation # Suggested January 2024 # Top 17 Popular

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The transformation of products into intelligent, connected devices which are increasingly embedded in broader systems is radically reshaping companies and competition today. These products offer new functionalities and capabilities that transcend traditional product horizons. Smart, connected products require a fundamental rethinking of design and production processes. A company that is pioneering the development and application of simulation technology to synthesize and optimize designs, processes, and decisions is Altair.

Altair is a leading provider of enterprise-class engineering software, enabling innovation across the entire product lifecycle from concept design to in-service operation. The company’s simulation-driven approach to innovation is powered by its broad portfolio of high-fidelity and high-performance physics solvers. Altair’s integrated suite of software optimizes design performance across multiple disciplines encompassing structures, motion, fluids, thermal management, electromagnetics, system modeling, and embedded systems, while also providing data analytics and true-to-life visualization and rendering.

Altair’s vision is to transform design and decision-making by applying simulation, machine learning, and optimization throughout product life cycles. With more than 2,000 employees, Altair is headquartered in Troy, Michigan, USA and operates 69 offices throughout 24 countries. Altair serves more than 5,000 customers across broad industry segments globally.

Altair believes a critical component of its success has been the company culture, based on its core values of innovation, envisioning the future, communicating honestly and broadly, seeking technology and business firsts, and embracing diversity. The company truly believes this culture is important because it helps attract and retain top people, encourages innovation and teamwork, and enhances its focus on achieving Altair’s corporate objectives.

Accelerating Innovation with Simulation and Analytics

The engineering software industry is challenged by increasingly sophisticated design requirements and enabled by the ever-expanding availability of cost-effective computing power. The Internet of Things (IoT) is also changing engineering by broadening the scope of Product Lifecycle Management, or PLM, affording the opportunity to leverage simulation and analytics towards the development of “digital twins” to optimize product performance and manufacturing throughput, predict failure, and schedule maintenance operations for in-service equipment.

Altair works at the convergence of IoT, analytics, and model-based designing to offer groundbreaking solutions to designing, manufacturing and servicing products across industries. Moreover, the company pioneered a patented units-based subscription licensing model for software and other digital content. This units-based subscription licensing model allows flexible and shared access to all of its offerings, along with over 150 other partner products.

Meet the Innovative Leaders

James R. Scapa has 40 years of engineering experience that he brings to Altair as both Chairman and CEO of the company. He has held the position as CEO since the company first began. What started off as a small consulting company in the “new” field of computer-aided-engineering has turned into a successful engineering software firm with over 5,000 clients. Through Scapa’s leadership, the company is now a leading global provider of simulation technology and engineering services that empower client innovation and decision-making.

Prior to establishing Altair, Scapa served as an engineering consultant to the automotive industry, beginning his career with Ford Motor Company in 1978. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University and a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Michigan.

Leading the Cloud and HPC technology arc of Altair is Srikanth (Sam) Mahalingam. He is the Chief Technical Officer for Altair’s cloud computing and high-performance computing strategy, with the primary responsibility of applying the newer cloud and mobile technologies to the digital simulation, high performance computing world and identifying and mentoring talented individuals within the organization.

With more than 20 years of experience in software development, software architecture, technical management, and project management, Mahalingam’s role focuses on shaping the current products and identifying newer products and solutions to ease the cloud adoption and mobile strategies for Altair customers both in the Simulation Lifecycle Management and High-Performance Computing Lifecycle Management arenas.

Mahalingam joined Altair in 1994 and worked on various products and projects both in the custom services and product teams. He then joined a technology start-up as a joint promoter for launching a disruptive virtual try-on product into the market that was later acquired by a large software services firm in India. He rejoined Altair in 2005 to spearhead newer product initiatives that includes the cloud platform and eventually became the thought leader within Altair for the Enterprise Software Strategy.

Mahalingam holds a bachelor of engineering degree in Computer Science and Engineering and executive masters of business administration from the Indian School of Business.

Data Analytics and Business Intelligence Work Together

Data analytics is an essential part of the business intelligence (BI) industry. Altair helps organizations maximize the value of their data in order to articulate their business goals and make analytics an integral part of the business model. Altair offers Carriots Analytics to assist in this process. Architected for an optimized self-service user experience, Carriots Analytics speeds up data visualization, exploration, and discovery.

As the BI industry continues to grow quickly, data analytics is becoming essential to an organization’s daily strategy. Altair expects the new challenge for companies is to bring together data and make it accessible to the entire organization. Continued growth will soon make BI a standard part of any organization’s business plan.

Technology Trends That Will Drive Business Forward

We’re seeing an acceleration of IoT (Internet of Things) adoption across almost every industry.

The expansion of virtual prototypes or development models, as they have been used for many years – with digital sensor data from operation and the derivation of prediction models – do not only offer the opportunity for the next step towards true to reality simulation models helping to create better products. When implementing strategies for a digital transformation, two factors to consider are integration and transparency of information. In addition, technical assistance systems help to assess, visualize and communicate the gained information, to base an educated decision on them and to be able to solve occurring problems faster.

Predictive analytics and machine learning are frequently used in Industrial IoT (IIoT) applications such as predictive maintenance, performance optimization, or digital twins of assets. This complex area of work requires combining artificial intelligence (AI) technologies with analytics and IoT. For example, manufacturing companies are interested in transforming raw data from sensors into valuable data for BI tools and if possible, into decision-making software or even autonomous systems.

IoT dedicated networks, IIoT and implementation of predictive analytics and machine learning algorithms are the fastest growing segments in the industry. “IoT is a key component of the 4th industrial revolution and is constantly growing and changing. Between dedicated IoT networks, the growth of IIoT, and implementing predictive analytics and machine learning, there are a lot of trends to watch out for this year” says Mahalingam.

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Revolutionizing Financial Mobility With Akt.io

Finance has always been an exciting sector for both novice and professional traders/investors. Banks are considered the centerpiece of traditional finance. Getting loans and creating accounts in bricks-and-mortar banking institutions are considered go-to’s in the traditional financial world. 

Though traditional finance is a part of everyone’s life, certain limitations continue to affect the space. Some vital concerns of such financial institutions are centralization, hefty paperwork, and time-consuming procedures. 

To address the following concern, chúng tôi a modern financial platform, came into existence. chúng tôi is a platform that transforms the world of finance by taking power out of the hands of traditional institutions and putting it in the hands of the users.

What is Akt.io?

Akt.io is a finance mobile application that combines the best tools, including neo banking, crypto, and traditional investments. It enables users to boost returns and maximize their interest in their EUR savings without compromising on the latest blockchain technology. chúng tôi is a platform with powerful investment tools, that is accessible to everyone. 

The platform works with the mission to allow users to gain financial independence through investing and taking complete control of their future. Launched by Gael Itier in 2023, the platform was earlier known as Automata Network Ltd. Later, in 2023, it rebranded itself to chúng tôi The core objective of the platform is to build an innovative way for users to create and manage assets with the sole focus on user experience. 

Unlike other financial projects, users can effortlessly grow their money using chúng tôi Users can access three types of accounts on chúng tôi current accounts, savings accounts, and investment accounts. The structure of chúng tôi is similar to traditional banking which provides reassurance to new users and boosts the platform’s conformity.

Key features 

Akt.io has various features that deliver users a unique experience exploring the financial world: 

100+ cryptocurrencies:

Akt.io supports all the top crypto assets of the present market, from Bitcoin to the most popular altcoins. Users can monitor the market performance of different coins, go through the articles of chúng tôi on each asset and seamlessly make better investment decisions. Buying and trading digital assets are now accessible to users with just a few taps. 

Expert market insights:

chúng tôi provides users with detailed market analytics and news curated by the in-house experts of the platform. This, in turn, enables users to have better insights into the present and future market conditions. 

Learning opportunities:

chúng tôi also provides an opportunity for users to learn the basics about the crypto space, Decentralized Finance (DeFi), and financial technology (FinTech). The educational resources offered by the platform pushes users to become better investor and gear up on topics like blockchain, NFTs, stablecoins, etc. 

Staking:

AKTIO is the native coin of the platform that enables users to lock AKTIO for 12 months. The former also helps traders to earn 15-20% interest on their respective currencies. 

Innovative products

Amidst various DeFi platforms, it becomes crucial for agencies to stand out from the rest. Thus, the innovative products offered by chúng tôi provides the best user experience, making it different from the rest. 

Euro vaults:

FinTech provides this product to democratize the crypto savings accounts to the public. It’s a genuine investment tool that enables users to earn daily interest on their Euros, with up to 10% APY annually. In addition, these vaults are shared among several people to maximize people’s returns and plan projects. The best thing about the Euro vaults is that it enables users to withdraw from the vaults without any charging fees. 

Wealth card:

The Wealth Card will be available right after school starts, this card enables users to spend money while generating interest. All this is done by linking all user assets (savings account, cryptocurrencies, stocks, crypto bot) directly to a payment card. chúng tôi and its crypto payment cards transform cryptocurrency into the daily medium of exchange, making the current account obsolete. With this innovation, chúng tôi helps users to access and spend their money with the platform taking care of their assets.

The AKTIO coin

AKTIO is the native token of the platform, allowing its holders to enjoy discounts on conversion and exchange fees within the app while taking part in the platform’s development for an increasingly rewarding experience. In addition, users can also become real contributors by holding AKTIO coins and benefiting from the growth of the ecosystem.

AKTIO offers numerous benefits to its users: 

Frictionless payment:

Users can automate fee payments without trading off the capital and also trade other assets.

Minimal exchange fees:

AKTIO allows users to balance its return by providing a 25% discount on exchange services. 

Low-cost, multi-chain transfers:

The coin enables alternative networks that bridge to eliminate high gas fees for certain DeFi, NFT, and metaverse applications.

Faster transactions:

AKTIO, an ETH 2.0 based token, enhances the user performance and transaction speed while reducing gas fees. 

Transparent record keeping:

Users can see all AKTIO transactions in the public ledger and company disbursements providing transparency to the users. 

Combats fraud & money laundering:

To avoid financial scams all parties are held accountable for their financial transactions. 

Closing thoughts

Akt.io is planning a giveaway of 1 million euros in AKTIO once the app reaches 100,000 users to reward all early adopters. Additionally, the former also envisions reaching 300,000 users by January 2023. The team of chúng tôi willing to bridge the gap between the investment solutions, went forward and came up with an easy liquidation of invested capital.

This gave rise to an asset exchange feature known as the WealthHub. Being the core feature of the chúng tôi app, WealthHub provides users with the best exchange rate, enhanced liquidity, and autonomous investment and wealth management. 

Besides that, the product also provides a time and cost-efficient way for users to undergo exchanges without compromising transparency. With such amazing, comprehensive features, products, and services, chúng tôi reflects its motto to “make your money work for you”. 

To know more about chúng tôi please visit the official website or follow them on Twitter.

Software Development Vs Web Development

Difference Between Software Development vs Web Development

Software development is used to create software or applications in computer-coded and specific programming languages. It is a process of developing software by writing maintainable code. Software development means creating, planning, reusing, research and development, making things simple, broader usage, etc. Web development is the term used to create web applications or websites that need to get hosted. Web development means developing a complex web-based application as well as the development of simple and single-page applications.

Start Your Free Software Development Course

Web development, programming languages, Software testing & others

Software development gives the product with features that have been planned and required for the computer software. While developing software, developers should have specific knowledge of client requirements, programming language, and end-user’s-user usage.

Software development is based on the software development life cycle (SDLC).SDLC has many phases or stages: 1. Requirement Analysis and Planning. 2. Requirement defining. 3. Designing Requirements. 4. Building Application or Coding 5. Testing of Application 5. Implementation. 6. Deployment and Maintenance.

Software Development follows different methodologies for building the software or a development process: the waterfall model, the Iterative model, the Spiral Model, the Agile methodology, the prototype model, rapid application development, DevOps, etc.

Web Development

Web development includes other work also, like content management, web designing, security, etc. The engineers who develop web applications are web developers, full-stack web developers, front-end developers, UI developers, and back-end developers.

Web development is based on the web development life cycle, similar to SDLC. In this, the phases are 1. Requirement gathering (Purpose, Goal, and audience) 2. Planning (Workflow creation) 3. Designing (Site page designing) 4. Content Management or Writing 5. Coding (building website) 6. Testing 7. Deployment, hosting, and maintainability.

Web development follows different methodologies to build or develop applications like Agile methodology. Breaking big tasks into minors and checking the continuous progress from beginning to end to design the web application is web development.

Head to Head Comparisons Between Software Development and Web Development (Infographics)

Key Differences between Software Development and Web Development

Software-developed applications mainly perform better in gaming and file handling. Web-developed applications perform better in data centralization or multi-user.

The critical difference between both Software Development and Web Development is a change of Interface.

In software development applications, customization has limitations. Web-developed applications have a more comprehensive range of customization.

In software development, screens are developed with static content. In web development, static pages, as well as dynamic web content, can be managed.

Software-developed applications can be used in a specific machine in which it has been installed.

The software-developed application does not need more security. We developed an application that requires more protection from viruses, malware, and data hackers.

Software-developed applications are not stateless. Web-developed applications are mainly stateless.

In software development, there are certain limitations to using technologies.

Software Development and Web Development Comparison Table

Following is the list of points that show the comparison between Software Development and Web Development.

Basis of Comparison Software Development Web Development

Architecture Software-developed applications are client based only. Web-developed applications are client-server-based.

Designing Software design is generally simple and straight. Web design is mostly the graphic design of web content.

Programming In Software development, coding can be done without script language. In web development, scripting is mainly used for developing apps.

Hosting Developed software does not require hosting. Web Application needs to get hosted via the internet or intranet.

Robust Software applications are the most robust. Web-developed applications are not much robust.

Applications Software-developed application mainly refers to desktop application. Web-developed application refers to web applications or websites.

Platform In Software development, Applications are developed for a specific platform. In web development, web applications are developed for cross-platform.

Software applications are mainly static. Web applications are mainly developed with dynamic pages.

 Conclusion

Software development means growing Windows-based applications and Web development means developing web-based applications. Software development and Web development have used a standard set of software and web designing rules to create more secure, reliable applications with better performance.

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What Is Product Liability Insurance?

FYI

If you sold a defective product, you could be held liable even if you did not know the product was defective.

What does product liability insurance cover?

Product liability insurance provides coverage if your product or completed service does one or more of the following:

Damages another person’s property

Causes bodily injury

Makes another person ill

Causes a person’s wrongful death (i.e., through the use or misuse of the product, lack of safety warnings or improper instructions)

Product liability insurance does not cover services, but it does cover the results of services provided (e.g., a contractor’s work on a claimant’s property).

Here is an overview of what product liability insurance does and does not cover:

Defective products

Product liability insurance can provide coverage against lawsuits for damages caused by defective products. A defective product refers to an item that is not fit for its intended purpose. A defect may also make the product unsafe for use. There are different types of defects:

Design defects: A design defect makes the product risky to use even if it is used properly. The person suing for liability must identify the product’s defect, show how the defect led to harm and demonstrate that they were following instructions when using the product.

Manufacturing defects: A manufacturing defect occurs when the manufacturer does not follow a product’s design plans. This may include using incorrect parts, making mistakes during the assembly process or allowing the product to be contaminated by hazardous materials.

Marketing defects: A marketing defect occurs when the company includes insufficient instructions and warnings or improper labels for the product that led to harm. The person suing must identify the marketing defect and demonstrate how the information led to harm.

Damages from wrongful death

With respect to a lawsuit for wrongful death, someone could sue for three types of damage:

Economic damages: A family member of the deceased could sue for the loss of financial security (e.g., a spouse or child can sue for the loss of the spouse’s or parent’s income).

Noneconomic damages: A surviving spouse or child could sue for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and missed future enjoyments due to the wrongful death of the spouse or parent.

Punitive damages: A court can impose punitive damages (i.e., additional payment) if they believe the manufacturer or other party being sued was reckless in its actions or failure to act.

Exclusions

Product liability insurance typically includes reasons why insurance providers would deny your claim or choose not to renew your policy. These reasons are known as exclusions. Product liability insurance might include these common types of exclusions:

Product recalls: Most product liability insurance policies do not cover costs related to inspecting, withdrawing, repairing, replacing or losing the use of the product if it is recalled.

Quality control exclusion: Insurance companies typically require manufacturers and distributors to maintain quality control standards for their products to ensure they are safe for people who buy or use those products.

Reporting exclusion: If you fail to report a new manufacturing method, product, material or ingredient, your product liability insurance will not cover your product.

Efficacy exclusion: If your product does not perform its main function, your product liability insurance will not cover the claim.

Material exclusions: Many policies do not cover certain ingredients or materials. If you manufacture or sell a product that contains one of these ingredients or materials, the product liability insurance policy will not cover the claim.

Did You Know?

Product liability insurance does not cover services, but it does cover the results of services.

Product liability insurance vs. general liability insurance

Product liability insurance and general liability insurance are typically purchased together, but these policies are not the same.

Product liability insurance provides coverage against damages that are related to the products you make, distribute or sell, as well as completed services.

General liability policies, by contrast, provide coverage against a wide range of claims that can arise when a third party is injured or property is accidentally damaged on your premises (e.g., a customer trips on the carpet in your store and drops their smartphone or breaks their ankle). It covers damages that an employee causes on the premises of the third party. General liability insurance also provides coverage against lawsuits for claims that you copied a competitor’s logo or damaged their reputation.

FYI

Product liability insurance covers damages related to products, whereas general liability insurance covers a wide range of claims related to incidents on your premises and other damages.

How much does product liability insurance cost?

Product liability insurance is typically part of your general liability insurance premiums, so the cost will often be included. The price of the insurance depends on factors related to the risks associated with your profession and your policy limits. Manufacturers typically pay higher rates for product liability insurance because there are higher risks involved.

Generally speaking, product liability insurance costs about 25 cents per $100 in sales revenue. For example, if your business sells $5 million worth of goods per year, your product liability insurance costs would be calculated like this: 0.25 x $5 million ÷ $100 = $12,500. [Read this article on how to save money on business insurance.]

Factors that affect cost

These factors may affect the cost of your product liability insurance:

Coverage limits: Higher coverage limits expose the insurance company to potentially higher-cost lawsuits, so the costs of the insurance premiums also increase.

Industries: Some industries (e.g., pharmaceuticals, heavy machinery) face higher standards and incur more lawsuits than other industries, which means that businesses in those industries pay higher product liability insurance premiums.

Location: Insurance providers price product liability insurance according to state insurance regulations and typical loss exposures in those states.

Revenue: A business’s revenue typically determines the overall liability lawsuit exposure that it can face, which will affect how much the courts award in lawsuits.

Claim history: Businesses or products that have a claim history have a higher risk of potential lawsuits for the insurance provider, which will increase the costs of the insurance.

Tip

To get a rough estimate of what your product liability insurance might cost, use this formula: 0.25 x (annual sales revenue) ÷ $100.

How to choose product liability insurance

When choosing insurance coverage, select the limits for property damage and bodily injury separately.

For property damage, choose the options that represent the maximum your insurance company will pay per accident to repair damages.

For bodily injury, choose the maximum that your insurance company will pay per person, as well as the maximum your insurance company will pay in total per accident.

Your premiums are typically determined by the types of products you manufacture or sell, your expected sales volume and the role of your business. It is important to accurately assess your products (as well as your total expected sales) to make sure you pay for and receive the correct level of insurance coverage. Review your existing business insurance policies to avoid overlapping or unnecessary coverage.

5 Ways Ai Is Revolutionizing The Hr Industry

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a set of technologies developed to make people’s lives easier. Through machine learning and data analysis, it can facilitate processes, make predictions and drive better decisions. 

Companies are increasingly turning to AI to improve and refine their operations, with over half using AI for customer service support, and a quarter using it for recruiting and talent acquisition. When integrating AI into the human resources (HR) department, the relationship between recruiters and candidates is transformed. Also, it facilitates the management of employees and practices in general within an organization. 

AI simplifies and automates talent search, from the selection process to the onboarding of new employees. It also helps to accurately calculate payroll, track clocking in and out, and improve collaboration between the HR department and the rest of the organization. 

Although adopting AI helps save costs, many business owners and CEOs still shy away from fully integrating it into their organizations, thinking it will harm their operations. Technology will never completely replace human talent, that’s a fact, but it can help you do your job better. Therefore, here are five ways AI is revolutionizing the HR industry.

5 ways AI is revolutionizing the HR industry

  Speeds up the hiring process

When integrating an AI tool for talent recruitment, tasks such as vacancy design and sharing, profile selection, and applicant communication management can be automated. Outsourcing these tedious and repetitive tasks means more focus on the things that humans do best and less time wasted on things machines do more efficiently.

To choose the profiles that meet the vacancy’s requirements, these AI tools allow you to apply filters that help you find the best candidates based on their knowledge, soft and hard skills, and experience. 

At the end of the recruitment process, recruiters will decide who joins their teams based on the data provided by these software solutions. However, by using AI solutions, they will have saved both time and resources to focus on other essential aspects of this area.

  Optimizes candidate and recruiter experience

In addition to streamlining the hiring process, artificial intelligence optimizes the candidate and recruiter experience, as both can use the same platform to share files, see at which step of the recruitment process candidates are, if they are missing any documents or procedures, and even arrange a meeting to evaluate the aspirants to fill a vacancy. 

A shared space prevents losing emails with valuable information or not reviewing them on time. Thus, the hiring process becomes more orderly and improves communication with applicants, which in turn gives an image of trust from the company to the candidate (remember that when an employee trusts your company, they generate a sense of belonging to it, so it will be more difficult that, after being hired, they decide to leave the organization).

Also, with the appropriate filters, candidate and employee software solutions help eliminate any biases hindering talent acquisition, such as gender, age, origin, sexual orientation and gender identity of applicants. In this way, technological solutions even help to build more diverse work environments.

  Streamlines employee onboarding

When you have artificial intelligence tools in your HR department, onboarding new employees is also less complicated, as these software solutions automate the sending and receiving job offers, contracts, and even the prospective employee’s work tools, like shipping a computer or a welcome kit to the new hires. 

Additionally, with the increase of global talent recruitment through international PEO / EOR service providers, third parties who are responsible for finding, hiring and managing employees in accordance with local regulations, HR departments need technology solutions that make it easier to onboard and coordinate employees regardless of location or time zone. 

  Better employee management

After finding the most competent candidates to fill a position within the organization, the HR department must take care of employee management, such as handling payroll, schedules, vacations, insurance, work permits, and any requirements indicated by local labor and tax regulations. 

Administrative activities, especially repetitive ones, can be time-consuming and tedious, taking away focus from more essential tasks, such as creating continuous improvement projects, training, coordination between different areas, and more. Let humans do what they do best and let the machines do what they do best.

Thus, when the HR department uses any IA tool for personnel administration, it allows its members to focus on the core business, improve its processes of linking the different areas that make up the company, and better link the organization with the outside world.

  Improves decision making

AI has also revolutionized the human resources department in decision-making, hiring and onboarding processes, personnel management, and training.

These patterns, therefore, help the HR department evaluate the effectiveness of recruitment strategies and processes, recognize risks, and make better decisions to ensure better results.

How to choose the best AI tools for your HR department

When choosing the best AI solutions for the HR department, don’t forget to look for those that:

Easily integrate with the tools you already have in the HR department and elsewhere

Have a margin of error

Are user-friendly and intuitive. 

Have support or training services and can be customized to your needs.

WordPress Considers Historic Development Change

Matt Mullenweg, developer of WordPress and CEO of Autommatic, proposed no longer adding new features to the WordPress, pivoting instead to a plugin-first policy.

This new approach to the future of WordPress has already resulted in a new feature intended for the next version of WordPress to be dropped entirely.

Canonical plugins are said to offer a way to keep improving WordPress on a faster schedule.

But some WordPress core contributors expressed the opinion that publisher user experience may suffer.

Canonical Plugins

First discussed in 2009, canonical plugins is a way to develop new features in the form of plugins.

The goal of this approach is to keep the WordPress core fast and lean while also encouraging development of experimental features in the form of plugins.

The original 2009 proposal described it like this:

“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.

…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.”

This approach to features and options is also referred to as Plugin First, to emphasize how features will first appear in the form of plugins.

These plugins are called canonical because they are developed by the WordPress core development team as opposed to non-canonical plugins that are created by third parties that might limit features in order to encourage purchase of a pro-version.

Integration of canonical plugins into the WordPress core itself would be considered once the plugin technology has proven itself to be popular and essential to the majority of users.

The benefit of this new approach to WordPress would be to avoid adding new features that might not be needed by the majority of users.

Plugin-first could be seen to be in keeping with the WordPress philosophy called Decisions, Not Options, which seeks to avoid burdening users with layers of technical options.

By offloading different features and functionalities to plugins, a user won’t have to wade through enabling or disabling functionalities they need, don’t need or don’t understand.

The WordPress design philosophy states:

“It’s our duty as developers to make smart design decisions and avoid putting the weight of technical choices on our end users.”

Canonical Plugins the Future?

Matt Mullenweg published a post titled, Canonical Plugins Revisited, in which he made the case that this is the way that WordPress should be developed moving forward.

He wrote:

“We are reaching a point where core needs to be more editorial and say “no” to features coming in as ad hoc as they sometimes do, and my hope is that more Make teams use this as an opportunity to influence the future of WordPress through a plugin-first approach that gives them the luxury of faster development and release cycles (instead of three times per year), less review overhead, and and path to come into core if the plugin becomes a runaway success.”

The first casualty of this new approach is the cancellation of integrating WebP image conversion into the next version of WordPress, WordPress 6.1, currently scheduled for November 2023.

Plugin-First is Controversial

Some developers, such as core contributor Jon Brown, expressed reservations about the proposal to switch to developing with canonical plugins.

“The problem remains that there are too many complicated plugins standing in for what would be a simple optional feature.

Plugins are _not_ a user-friendly option to core settings. First users have to discover there is a plugin, then they have negotiated yet another settings screen and updates and maintenance of that plugin.”

They noted that having one canonical plugin to solve a problem is preferable to the current state where desirable options can only be found on bloated third party plugins.

But they also said that having a settings option within core, without the need for a plugin, could present a better user experience.

They continued:

“Now, I do think Canonical plugins are a better situation than 6+ bloated plugins like exist here, but so would a single checkbox added to the settings page in core to do this. Which would further improve the UX and discovery issues inherent in plugins.”

“Canonical plugins” seems like a weaponized tool to derail discussions the same way “decisions not options” has become for years.”

That last statement is a reference to frustrations felt by some core contributors with the inability to add options for features because of the “decisions, not options” philosophy.

Others also disagreed with the plugin-first approach:

“Canonical plugin sounds grand but it will further increase maintenance burden on maintainers.

In my opinion, it’s no go.

It will be much more better to include some basic features in core itself instead of further saying – It’s a good place for plugin.”

Someone else pointed out a flaw in plugin-first in that collecting user feedback might not be easy. If that’s the case then there might not be a good way to improve plugins in a way that meets user needs if those needs are unknown.

They wrote:

“How can we better capture feedback from users?

Unless site owners are knowledgeable enough to report issues on GitHub or Trac (let’s be honest, no one reports plugin issues on Trac), there’s really no way to gather feedback from users to improve these recommended/official plugins. “

Canonical Plugins

An early indicator will be in what happens with the cancelled WebP feature that was previously intended to be integrated into the core and will now become a plugin.

Featured image by Shutterstock/Studio Romantic

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