Taking over as maintainer of the BrowserID-WordPress (Persona) plugin

Marcel Bokhorst released the original BrowserID-Wordpress plugin less than 24 hours after we opened BrowserID up to the public. He stuck with us through the name change to Persona, has steadily improved the plugin, but would now like to hand over maintainer duties to somebody that can put more time into the project.

I have asked Marcel if I could take over as maintainer. The plugin is a great piece of software; I use it here on shanetomlinson.com, and want to see it develop further.

My immediate plans are:

  • Continue to use the SVN repo for releases but use my GitHub repo for day to day development.
  • Work with Stephen Donner and the Security team to have the plugin security reviewed. Stephen would like to use the plugin on a Mozilla property, but wants to make sure it is safe to do so. This process has already started, progress can be tracked on Bugzilla.
  • Convert the plugin to use the .watch/.request API instead of the .get API. I have been successfully using this for login on my own site for several months, though I have a few bugs to work out.
  • Add a preference to make Persona the only visible authentication mechanism for a site.
  • Add a preference to automatically create new users if an email address is not recognized.

Long term plans:

  • Get Mozilla’s awesome translation team involved to create more translations.
  • Allow WordPress sites to use the plugin to become their own Identity Provider.

I would like to build community involvement and see the plugin gain larger adoption. If you have not given the BrowserID-Wordpress plugin a try on your site, I encourage you to do so, give feedback, provide translations, or contribute code.

You can even give it a quick spin, right here, by leaving a comment.

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  1. rock on shane! This is a really important plugin – already we see tons of blogs using it.

  2. This is Raymond Camden testing.

  3. This is Ray testing w/ a new account.

  4. oh good, I’ve been using the plugin on one of my websites but one of the big drawbacks so far was the inability to create new accounts on the website. I went in and modified the code myself, and so far has been working nicely for me. I just haven’t been updating the plugin, because it would be a step down for me… I’m waiting until it will have that ability.

    • Thanks for the feedback John. Have you used version 0.43 yet? If “Disable non-Persona authentication” is selected in the Persona options, a new user can sign up using Persona from the normal “wp-login.php?action=register” page. When selected, new users no longer choose a site specific password, and no longer need to verify their email address with your site – Persona takes care of that work.

  5. What has been the progress on this lately? I would be nice to have another post indicating this, thank you for your work!

    • Hi Fabian! I have actually just released v0.44 of the plugin and am in the midst of writing a new blog post about its new features. If you have any feedback or suggestions, let me know!

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What is Persona?