I'm excited about the performance gains and many other advantages of cleaving to pure modern WordPress!
In 2020, I became the webmaster for the Program Executive Office, Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives (PEO ACWA), after joining the Pueblo Chemical Stockpile Outreach Office as a content creator and public outreach specialist.
In 2021, I began a project to modernize the WordPress website for the PEO ACWA project, which is nearing its end after years of safe chemical weapons destruction in accordance with congressional mandate and global treaty.
This entailed mostly moving away from an older theme that ignored WordPress’ newer block-based nature and an unwieldy page builder, WP Bakery aka Visual Composer. In fact, the goal defined by our Department of Defense host was to use a simple theme suggested by their team and only as close to “vanilla” WordPress as possible — meaning Gutenberg, aka the WordPress “blocks,” would be our new page builder. This suited me just fine, but was a challenging and slow project. With no team under me to throw at it, and myriad other duties, the upgrade — which required basically every static page and article post to be rebuilt one by one — stretched into early 2023.
While the site on the front end doesn’t look too different from its pre-upgrade design, I’m happy to say it has relaunched successfully, and I’m excited about the performance gains and many other advantages of cleaving to pure modern WordPress!
Even so, various plugins such as Smart Slider give me the added flexibility to transform the main attraction to keep up with momentous events in chemical demilitarization: