WordPress plug-in: Post Ideas+

For a while now I’ve been using a great little plug-in for WordPress called ‘Post Ideas’ by Aaron Robbins. It was released in early 2008 but unfortunately hasn’t been updated since. Aaron’s website now seems to be a bog standard install of WordPress that hasn’t been updated so there was no way of getting in contact with him.

So I decided to update the plug-in myself. I’ve updated the admin area and added 2 dashboard widgets; A widget to view your latest ‘X’ number of post ideas and a widget to quickly add a post idea to the database. Both can be disabled from the “Screen options” menu above the dashboard.

The plug-in stores a title, description, tags, links and priority associated with the post. Easy to update, write and delete from the admin menu or dashboard widget.

Post Ideas+ admin menu

The admin menu under 'Tools'.

Post Ideas+ dashboard widgets

Post Idea+ widgets on the dashboard

Installation is the same as with any other WordPress plugin:

  1. Download the zip file and extract. Upload all files to the ‘/wp-content/plugins/’. Make sure you upload in the correct folder structure e.g. /wp-content/plugins/post-ideas-plus/.
  2. Activate the Post Ideas+ plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress.
  3. Under ‘Tools’ you should see an new option ‘Post Ideas+’. You can add / edit / delete ideas from this page.
  4. You should also see 2 new dashboard widgets ‘Add post idea’ & ‘Latest post idea’. These can be disabled via the screen options.
  5. If the script fails to install the required mysql table please use the included wp_piplus.sql file and import it to your wordpress database using phpMyAdmin (if your table prefix is not wp_ you will need to change it in the sql file)

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions please leave a comment or get in contact and I’ll see what I can do.

Download from the WordPress plug-in repository or from my server (version 2.1.0.5 – updated 16th Apr 2010).

mario on February 2 10 / 32 Permalink

awesome plugin… but how do I allow my contributors and authors to use the system? There is no settings page?

Matt on February 2 10 / 32 Permalink

Hi Mario,
Thanks for the input, I never thought of adding it for contributors / authors since I’m a single user on my blog.

I’ll be sure to add this to the next version for you.

Mario on February 2 10 / 32 Permalink

Hey,
Thanks, I’d appreciate that – Is there some way I can help? Basically, the way I’d like to use it is that I as the admin would list topics and my authors pick which ones they want to write.

I tried messing around with the code by taking out the permissions check but it didn’t work.

Matt on February 3 10 / 33 Permalink

I’ve just added a new version which allows multiple users to have their own ideas (I thought that’s what you were asking for). I see from your latest comment you wanted something different so I’ve added that to the TODO list. Sounds like a great idea, may need quite a few changes so I’ll look at it in the next couple of days.

mario on February 4 10 / 34 Permalink

thanks again.
let me know if there is anything i can do

Davin Taddeo on February 4 10 / 34 Permalink

Just wanted to say thank you for doing this. I’d been using post ideas myself for a while, and hadn’t had the time to get it into the dashboard where it really should go. I’m glad you took the initiative to do so. Good job and Thanks!

~Davin

Matt on February 4 10 / 34 Permalink

Hi Davin,
Thanks! Yeah that was my immediate thought when i started using PI, ‘it would be nice if it was available on the dashboard’.

Chris on February 4 10 / 34 Permalink

Hi Matt,

I try to install it, but under tools I get this error:

Warning: include(C:/wamp/www//wp-content/plugins/post-ideas-plus/includes/admin_page.inc.php) [function.include]: failed to open stream: No such file or directory in C:\wamp\www\wordpress\wp-content\plugins\post-ideas-plus\postideas.php on line 312

I checked the ‘missing’ files but they are all there. You got an idea?

Thnx man!

Chris on February 4 10 / 34 Permalink

Hi Matt,

I forgot one error string:

Warning: include() [function.include]: Failed opening ‘C:/wamp/www//wp-content/plugins/post-ideas-plus/includes/admin_page.inc.php’ for inclusion (include_path=’.;C:\php5\pear’) in C:\wamp\www\wordpress\wp-content\plugins\post-ideas-plus\postideas.php on line 312

Thnx man!

Matt on February 5 10 / 35 Permalink

Hi Chris,
I’ve just updated the plug-in with a fix, so you should receive an update soon. Thanks for pointing it out! Let me know if you have any issues.

Chris on February 5 10 / 35 Permalink

Thanks Matt, now it works like a charm!!

Mark Krynsky on February 7 10 / 37 Permalink

Hi Matt, this sounds like a great plugin and almost what I was looking for. I’m actually wanting something just like what Mario was asking for where as an Admin I can enter Post ideas for contributing authors to write. I think it would also be good if the authors entered their own ideas that could be shared with everyone as well and perhaps contribute to an “open pool” which anyone could then assign to themselves. I’m looking forward to the next release.

Matt on February 7 10 / 37 Permalink

Hi Mark,
I’m just considering how this will work with the Post Ideas+ plug-in; I’m actually thinking it may be better to create a separate plug-in that does the job rather than ‘fudge’something together in PI+. I’ll start putting something together and let you know.

Mark Krynsky on February 7 10 / 37 Permalink

Matt, I didn’t mean to complicate things if you can implement Mario’s idea in the current plugin and keep things simple then I’m all for that. No need to change the dev path based on even more flexibility as I think a single (admin) point for post sharing works fine.

Matt on February 7 10 / 37 Permalink

Yeah that sounds like a good idea, I’ll try the single point first, then if more functionality is needed I’ll dedicate a plug-in to it.

mario on February 11 10 / 41 Permalink

Thanks a lot Matt for the quick fixes! The plugin is great !
One last thing would make it perfect : when I as an admin start to write an article – its deleted from the que – if the contributors start writing it – it stays in the que. Is there a way to delete is when the contributor writes?

Thanks a lot again!

mario on February 11 10 / 41 Permalink

Oh maybe if it’s not deleted – it could just be blocked from someone else taking the same title.

Matt on February 11 10 / 41 Permalink

Hi Mario,
No problem, glad you like it. It’s my first stab at how it should work, in the next version I want to add the ability for the admin to set what status the post idea is at, say: ‘Open’, ‘Written’, ‘Review’ then ‘Published’, or something along those lines.

I like the idea of blocking it to save more that one person writing the same post. Maybe when a user clicks to write a post idea it then ‘locks’ the post idea so others can’t write it. Then a setting for the admin to unlock the post if needed.

I’ll add them to the TODO list.

Benjamin M. Strozykowski on March 2 10 / 60 Permalink

Love the plugin, but I have a feature request: The ability to email post ideas to my blog.

I get my best ideas when I’m out and about, and sometimes bringing up my blog’s admin page on my Android phone can be a pain, whereas I always have quick email access

Keep up the great work!

Matt on March 2 10 / 60 Permalink

Hi Benjamin,
Glad you like the plug-in.

That’s a great idea! I’ll take a look to see if it’s possible and add it to the list for future versions.

Chris Burbridge on May 9 10 / 128 Permalink

Thank you SO MUCH for making this! This is awesome.

Just like I was envisioning, based on my own need, and yet here it is already! That is the magic of WordPress.

Jim on May 12 10 / 131 Permalink

Awesome plug-in . . . I hope.

Just installed and activated post-ideas-plus, but no joy! The new link appears in the Tools menu, and I see new widgets in the Dashboard. But no UI appears. Can’t see anything. What might I be doing wrong? WordPress is 2.9.2 and I am using a Woo theme – “Optimize”

Thanks.

Matt on May 12 10 / 131 Permalink

Hi Jim,

Thanks for the feedback. The plug-in is for the admin area only, so you won’t see anything on your actual WordPress blog. So the tools menu and the widgets on the dashboard are correct. It was just intended as a type of blog admin’s ‘notebook’. Hopefully that answers your question! :)

If there’s a feature you’d like adding please let me know and I’ll see what I can do.

Jim on May 12 10 / 131 Permalink

Thanks for getting back to me . . . . I do understand how its supposed to work. The issue is that I’m not seeing the UI in the Admin area. . . I see the additional 2 widget title bars in the Dashboard, but no content in the containers when I open them. The container does expand a tiny bit in the open state – but nothing there. And when I select the Post Ideas+ link in the Tools section, same thing! No content appears in the main editing area.

I checked to see if the new table was added to MySQL, and it is there.

Does that make make my question clearer? Thanks!

Jim

Matt on May 12 10 / 131 Permalink

Ahh oh now i see what you mean, sorry didn’t quite understand the question.

I include all the HTML via PHP includes, so it looks like the plug-in isn’t able to find those on your particular server setup. Very strange it’s the first time it’s been reported. I will have look into that and see if there’s a better way to include the files. I think i already know what the issue is so hopefully shouldn’t be to hard to fix.

Thanks again for the feedback!

Jim on May 12 10 / 131 Permalink

Thanks Matt. I’m running WP as one of several webapps on my server at:

var/www/html/blog

The url is http://blog.designet.com/blog/

The plug-in folder is var/www/html/blog/wp-content/plugins/post-ideas-plus

If that’s any help…..thanks!

Jim

Matt on May 13 10 / 132 Permalink

All fixed now in the next release. Thanks for letting me know Jim. :)

Robyn on July 7 10 / 187 Permalink

Is there anyway to recover a post idea? I had one and clicked on write. I assumed the description would automatically populate in the blog post. However I was wrong and it just filled in the title. Now all of my thoughts are gone. I’m hoping you can help – thanks!!

Matt on July 7 10 / 187 Permalink

Hi Robyn,
Hmm no I’m afraid there isn’t! But that is a very good point that I missed out. I will try and add the description to the main body / excerpt of the blog so that they don’t get lost in the next version. Apologies for the over site and thanks for pointing it out!

Robyn on July 8 10 / 188 Permalink

Thanks for your response and consideration for the next version Matt. Have an amazing day!

Jon on August 10 10 / 221 Permalink

installed post ideas+ on wordpress 3.0.1. Everything works great, except that i can not delete posts. Any reason why clicking on delete wouldn’t work?

Jon on August 10 10 / 221 Permalink

nevermind last post. figured it out :) great plugin!!

Bryant on August 20 10 / 231 Permalink

The plugin page is stating that there are options to choose whether users can see admin posts..etc. The plugin is working fine, but those configurable options aren’t showing up. Any ideas?

Running WordPress 3.0.1

Bryant on August 20 10 / 231 Permalink

Also, is there a way to post the “post-ideas” box on my site for the logged in users so they don’t have to keep going back to the admin area?

Thanks for your help

Matt on August 20 10 / 231 Permalink

Hi Bryant,
There should be a couple of options on the post ideas+ page for this under ‘tools’. 2 check boxes, 1 saying “All users can view admin post ideas”, the other saying “Users can only view admin post ideas”. Let me know if they aren’t appearing on yours and i’ll look into it for you. I have 3.0.1 here and they appear on my setup.

Great idea about the sidebox for logged in users, i’ll add that to the list and update the plug-in next week.

Evan W. on October 4 10 / 276 Permalink

Thank you for your fantastic development on this plugin, it has greatly simplified getting article ideas to my contributors.

I had one request: it appears that the URL saved with an article idea disappears (along with tags) when you create an article. Would it be possible to maintain tags, and perhaps insert the article idea link(s) into the body of the post? At least it would still be accessible.

Thank you, and once again thank you for your development on this plugin.

Matt on October 4 10 / 276 Permalink

Hi Evan,

Thanks for the feedback, glad you like it. Apologies I’ve had this request before, but haven’t managed to get round to adding it yet! I will add it to my list and try and roll out a new version this week.

RubensVieira on October 6 10 / 278 Permalink

HI Folks.

I’ve wondering if its possible that the admin see all the author’s ideas (listed by author).

Therefore, he can evaluate the ideas, and then inform the authors the approved for the next publication. (next week, for instance).

The plugin is an awesome idea.

Jamie on February 13 11 / 43 Permalink

Hey, this plugin is fantastic. The only thing I’m missing is email notification and it would work great. It would be spectacular if the email notification could be configurable like, immediate, daily digest, weekly digest, etc.

Jamie on February 13 11 / 43 Permalink

Forgot to add, that having categories for ideas would be fantastic!

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