What Would Core Do?

WWCD? Or, What Would Core Do? Yesterday, at WordCamp Miami, I finally debuted a talk that I had been thinking about for some time. I see WWCD as the third and capstone talk in my “extending WordPress administration” series, and it’s my favorite of the set.

The series began in 2010 at Chicago with “Hijacking WordPress Admin” – one of the first talks to focus on hooks and techniques to generally tailor the administrative panel to individual clients. You can only fit so much into a talk, so rather than focus on good user interface, I focused on sometimes over the top examples to illustrate the idea that the admin panel is actually remarkably flexible. After a few repeats at different WordCamps, I used WordCamp Chicago 2011 to debut the second in the series: “Editing the Visual Editor.” This time, the focus was solely on methods to customize the visual editor and refine the writing experience – the place where publishers spend most of their time.

The capstone talk is the lightest on code (two quick slides at the end). Rather, it gets back to the philosophy of extending WordPress administration, and challenges plug-in and theme authors to “do better.” It’s a fun look at some terrible plug-in practices, with a serious underlying point: when you build on WordPress, do you think about how the core development team would approach the problem?

We’ll hopefully have the video from soon, as well.

Building Communities Around Your Content

How do you build an audience and inspire them to actively engage with your content? That was the subject of my talk at WordCamp Miami 2012.

Start learning our secrets by checking out the slides. Hopefully the video will be published on within a month or two; we’ll be sure to post that when it’s up.

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I had a blast guest co-hosting episode 3 of the WP Late Night podcast with WPCandy’s Ryan Imel and WebDevStudios’ Brad Williams. Hear my thoughts on default WordPress themes, BuddyPress growing up, whether the “widgets” concept is broken, how we build themes at 10up, and more. Or just enjoy the banter as Brad and I joke about friendly competition in the WordPress community.

Going to WordCamp Miami? Catch Jake and Jess! Jake will be debuting “What Would Core Do?” – a guide to building theme and plug-in administration that feels native – in the developer’s track. Meanwhile, Jess – a former Miami native and an organizer of WordCamp Miami 2010 – will offer insight into building communities around your online content. Hope we see you there!

Editing WordPress’s Visual Editor

These are the slides from a talk I gave at the 2011 WordCamps (WordPress conferences) in Chicago, Philly, and Orlando. I consider this a “sequel” to a broader talk on editing the WordPress administrative experience that I like to think I pioneered in 2010 at a few WordCamps, including Chicago and Mid-Alantic, which several new speakers now seem to be running with.

WordPress’s visual content editor (TinyMCE) is, in many ways, at the heart of WordPress’s content management experience. It’s where editors spend most of their time, and where content is crafted to appear on the front end of your site. Like most of WordPress, the editor can be customized to be both more powerful and more specific to the needs of an individual site or client. This presentation covers topics including custom editor stylesheets based on post type, modifying and removing buttons from the editor, and even creating your own custom buttons for the TinyMCE toolbar. It even covers brand new WordPress 3.3 techniques introduced with the new wp_editor function.

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The Perks of Contributing

Behold this glorious little section of the WordPress 3.3 credits page.

I’m never in anything for the recognition or glory, but I have to admit: this is pretty exciting. As of this writing, WordPress powers 15.7% of the top million websites and at least 22% of all new active websites in the US. That is a mind-blowing number of times that the faces and names on the credits page might be seen, even given that it’s buried a little in the admin.

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Jake, Helen take WordCamp Philly 2011

Had a great time with Helen at WordCamp Philly. In case you missed it, Helen was one of four panelists speaking to WordPress in higher education during lunch, where she discussed her experience rolling out the Eastman School of Music’s website in WordPress. Helen was the only panelist from a consulting shop. I shared my Editing the Visual Editor talk in the developer track. The presentation was updated to incorporate a new tip and feature some of the relevant new tools WordPress 3.3 – and the new wp_editor function – put at our finger tips. Both of us also participated in the core development session on Sunday, and submitted core patches.

Introducing WordPress as a CMS

A week and a half later, here are the slides from my WordCamp Boston 2011 talk, “Introducing WordPress as a CMS”. Unfortunately, the slides don’t include my live demo of some CMS-centric implementations, which I think was eye opening to a few participants.

None-the-less, if you’re looking for an overview of content management concepts applied to WordPress, you can find them here. I’ve uploaded the slideshow as a video to YouTube (to preserve its feel); the video moves quickly, so you might have to be quick on the pause button!