How difficult is it to create a WordPress plugin?

I'm a relatively novice PHP developer, although more advanced in other languages. How easy would it be to develop a PHP plugin that

1) added some specific meta tags to individual pages based on what posts were displayed there
2) added a DIV class around post body texts
3) added a <Script> link to the WP template, pointing to a .js in the content-plugins folder
4) maintained a simple flat-file db of a few hundred entries
5) exposed a simple config screen in the admin backend to set the plugins settings

Is that possible for a plugin to do? Would you say it is hard, medium, easy? Huge job, little job?
metalaureateAsked:
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BMilneSLOCommented:
Good question. I would say it would be a "medium" job on your scale and with your credentials.

One thing that I think goes overlooked when first attempting to develop a WP plugin is the community.

 I know it takes a lot of time and effort to put out a good plugin and it can be a thankless job from the developer's perspective. For one reason or another, some bloggers in the WP community tend to take plugin/theme development for granted ... and I'll even admit I don't thank the developers enough for their stuff (click donate once in a while if you like the product).

Sometimes you'll create a plugin that does exactly what YOU want, but doesn't do exactly what someone from the community wants. That can lead to a lot of complaints on your plugin page, poor ratings in the compatibility voting, loads of FAQs to field and numerous help requests that need to be addressed.

That's the other side of things.

I don't want to discourage you from doing a plugin, particularly one that kicks butt and adds value to the WP community, just know what all building a plugin can entail when you submit it to the community.

Either way, sounds like a good plugin, and I'd like to check it out.
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metalaureateAuthor Commented:
Thanks, very helpful!
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gwkgCommented:
2 & 3 are the easiest... a couple lines.

1 is still fairly easy.

5 is a little more in depth, but not hard if you find the right tutorial.

4 would probably be the hardest, depending on your php skills and how you want the database to interact with wordpress.

A good book for learning to write plugins (correctly) is http://www.amazon.com/WordPress-Bible-Aaron-Brazell/dp/0470568135/
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metalaureateAuthor Commented:
Thank you. I wish I could award more points.
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metalaureateAuthor Commented:
If you or anyone you know performs WP plugin dev on a freelance basis, I'd be interested in hearing from you for future work. You can contact me at www.infoqual.net.
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