WordCamp New York City 2009

November 14–15, 2009
...was awesome!

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Late Registration in Effect

Like it said in previous announcements, regular registration ended on November 4th, due to deadlines from our vendors. Never fear, though, you can still buy tickets to WordCamp NYC! Late registration is only $5 more, and will get you the same full pass as regular registration. The only difference is in the swag. Or more accurately, when you’ll get it.

The WordCamp NYC shirtWe’re having awesome long-sleeved conference t-shirts printed with our snazzy logo, plus some bags to put things in, but it takes time to get them printed and shipped. We hope to have everyone’s shirts on site on November 14, but if you register late, yours may not arrive in time. When you arrive at WordCamp as a late registrant, one of two things will happen. 1. When you get to the registration table and tell us your name, we will hand you a cute little WordCamp NYC bag that contains your shirt, name badge, program, etc.; or 2. You will get a name badge and program, and a priority mail envelope. This will mean your shirt didn’t arrive due to your late sign-up, but if you write your name and address on the priority mail packaging and return it to one of the registration table volunteers, we will mail you your shirt and bag a couple of days after the conference ends and the final shipment arrives.

How awesome is that!

Now, look: San Francisco is traditionally the largest WordCamp in the U.S., looked at as the flagship of all WordCamps. We can be the east coast flagship. Our city has ten times more people than San Francisco; we should at least be able to equal the SF WordCamp in attendance numbers! So tell your friends, your colleagues, even the neighbor who always stops to tell you about the latest celebrity gossip when all you want to do is get your mail  — tell them that they should really come to WordCamp NYC. Work at an agency? Everyone you work with should come. Are you a freelancer? Your clients should come. Have a girlfriend who’s thinking of getting off Blogger or TypePad? She NEEDS to come. Seriously, with 8 tracks of content, there will be plenty of content to suit just about every point of view.

If we can get 800 people registered by November 12, I will personally bake cookies for everyone. Yes, everyone. In my little east village oven in my fifth-floor walkup.* That’s how much I want us to have the biggest most badass WordCamp ever. You can ask anyone, even Matt will tell you I’m a good cook. So please, spread the word.

*Unless someone wants to offer me the use of their industrial kitchen, which would be awesome.

Upcoming Session Posts

Starting today, each day we’ll be having our official speakers post about their upcoming sessions. This will allow you to get a better idea of what they’re planning to cover, ask questions in the comments so they’ll know what specific things people are most interested in learning, and get a sense of the speakers’ personalities. Since we have over 50 speakers and only 10 days until WordCamp NYC, the posts will be coming regularly. Make sure you don’t miss any by signing up to get the posts delivered right to your inbox once per day. Please note: we’ll be making a lot of announcements on Twitter that don’t get a post here, so if you are attending, or thinking of attending, WordCamp NYC, you need to follow us on Twitter. Let the games begin!

Thank You, Media Temple!

Media Temple logo

I’m very pleased to announce that Media Temple has come on both as a Silver-level sponsor for the event and as the hosting sponsor for our Newbie track. What does this mean? Well, the cash means we can cover more expenses like food and printing costs, so that’s very appreciated. The hosting sponsorship is also seriously great, though: everyone who signs up for the Newbie track to learn how to use WordPress and get their first WordPress blog set up at WordCamp NYC will get one free year of hosting with Media Temple! Their 1-click WordPress install makes Media Temple the perfect hosting sponsor for us, and we are thrilled to have them on board.

The room we have reserved for the Newbie track can hold 78 people, and so far 30 of those slots are filled. That means that those 30 people and the next 48 newbies to sign up will get a major bonus! Not only will they be walked through how to use WordPress by some serious experts and walk out of the workshop with a fully functioning blog, they won’t even have to pay for their first year of hosting. Once we’ve had 78 people sign up for the Newbie track we’ll remove the option from the signup form, and create a waitlist in case anyone drops out.

Note: Newbie track attendees must bring their own laptops (wifi-enabled) to the event in order to participate and take advantage of this offer. If someone shows up without a laptop, their slot will be given to the first person on the waiting list (assuming they have a laptop with them, of course).

Media Temple will also be contributing several one-year hosting packages for our door prize raffle, because they love all WordPress users, not just the n00bs. : )

Thank you, Media Temple, for your support of WordCamp NYC!

My Favorite Conference Shirt

Today in the mail I got the printed proofs of the WordCamp NYC shirts. They are, in a word, awesome.

The WordCamp NYC shirt design.

WordCamp NYC shirt (women's M)

Sorry for the slightly-blurry image; iPhone self-portraits are *really* awkward with that button placement. Anyway, the shirts! They are black, long-sleeved cotton shirts printed with the logo in white, yellow, orange, blue and black. There is nothing on the back. There’s nothing worse than getting a cool conference t-shirt and then realizing the back is plastered with sponsor logos, right? This is a shirt you can wear happily until you wear it out. Men will be getting American Apparel, while women will be getting Bella brand shirts (not USA-made, but sweatshop-free according to their web site).

The men’s shirts are actually unisex, and are USA-made and sweatshop-free. Sizes available are S, M, L, XL, and XXL. A word on sizing: these do not seem to run small. I had my brother try on the men’s Large. He 6′, 210 lbs., and usually wears an XL in t-shirts, with a 16.5″ neck and a 32″ sleeve in regular shirts (and more than a little extra around the middle, truth be told). I just wanted to see where the printing would fall height-wise on the chest, but I was pretty shocked to see that the Large fit him really well.  You can see in the image below that it’s not tight around the shoulder at all. So, if you tend to get XL or XXL just to be safe, you might want to think twice or you could be swimming in cotton.

WordCamp NYC shirt, Men's L

WordCamp NYC shirt, Men's L

The women’s shirts have a little more cling to them and are of a slightly smaller-knit jersey. I’m wearing the sample right now and it’s great (pictured at top of post). Nice and soft, with a loose neck and sleeves that come down just a bit past the wrists: the perfect long-sleeved t-shirt. The women’s shirts are available in S, M, L and XL, and the women’s shirt also surprised me. I was thinking it was roomy for a Large, which I usually wear, but this shirt is a Medium! So unusual… American Apparel women’s L shirts are always a little small on me, so this was an awesome change of pace. The women’s shirts are not available in XXL: if you are a woman and normally require an XXL, you should order either a women’s XL or one of the American Apparel unisex sizes, but probably NOT a men’s XXL. The men’s Large  or XLarge would likely do it.

So! Awesome shirts! A lot of effort when into these, so I want to thank the people whose efforts led to this outcome. Jason Alvich, Krista Gonzalez, Andrew dela Serna, and Dan Simmonds submitted subway-themed entries to our logo contest a while back. Volunteer designer Christine Labate took on the job of synthesizing the elements of the four logo entries into one cohesive graphic that we could use to brand the event. Volunteer designer Matt Thomas did additional graphic cleanup and pre-press preparation. And last but not least, our fantastic printer, Lo-fi Mike, helped us with decisions around shirt stock, logo size and other shwag-related things, and whipped up the samples in record time to make sure we were happy with them before beginning the first print run. This is my second time working with Mike on shirts, and he’s been amazing both times.

The kicker: our last shirt order is being placed on November fourth to ensure we receive it by the event. If you do not register before November 4th, we CANNOT guarantee having a shirt for you. So, please, go register right now! This will also help us with ordering the right amount of food. Late registrations will not receive shirts unless we have extras, so let’s consider November 3rd to be the registration deadline if you want to be an awesome attendee and get this awesome shirt. Thanks!

Speakers Announced!

The moment you’ve all been waiting for: the speakers list is up! There are a few people we’re still talking to, so there will be a few additions over the next couple of days, but the bulk of our WordCamp NYC speakers are listed. Behold the magnificence that it possibly the biggest speaker list of any WordCamp ever! Close to 50 knowledgeable WordPress users, designers and developers from near and far have signed up to share their experience with you.

Now if that doesn’t get you off your butt to go register, I don’t know what will. Go buy a ticket!

And seriously, with a fantastic lineup like this, don’t you want to become a sponsor?

Registration is now open

Yes, it’s true… registration is finally open for WordCampNYC!

New York City’s WordCamp is going to be two full days of WordPress-related sessions, announcements and fun.  Here’s a very quick overview of what we have in store for you.  More details will be announced daily, so sign up for email updates or follow us on Twitter.

We’re selling two types of tickets to the event to cover all the bases.

NOV 14, SATURDAY: A full day of presentations, workshops and demos related to WordPress.  There will be up to eight (8) tracks running at once (including unconference sessions), so you can choose which you want to attend. Whether you are a beginner or an advanced user, a blogger or a developer, we’ll have something for you.  This is only for FULL PASS holders.

NOV 15, SUNDAY: In the morning, FULL PASS holders will continue the tracks from Saturday, then break for lunch around noon. After lunch, both FULL PASS and MINI PASS holders will go to Mason Hall Auditorium for an afternoon of mini-presentations, major announcements, demos and a Q&A with Matt Mullenweg.

As mentioned above there are two flavors of tickets:

  1. Full Pass: This Ticket entitles the holder to entry for all sessions on Saturday and Sunday, including Mason Hall.  You’ll also get a T-shirt, and lunch on Saturday.
  2. Mini Pass: So you love WordPress but you can’t commit to a full weekend.  Why not buy a Mini Pass?  This Ticket entitles you ONLY to entry for Sunday sessions in Mason Hall beginning at 1:30pm.   These sessions will include major announcements and a Q&A with Matt Mullenweg.  We’ll give you a T-shirt as well, but you should eat before you come.

Still not convinced? Here are the tracks we’ll be running:

  • Newbie – Bring your laptop and we’ll get you a WordPress blog set up before lunch on Saturday.
  • Blogger – Learn about cool WP features you might be missing, plugins, themes, creating content, etc.
  • CMS User – Get to know the plugins and themes and strategies that make it easy to run a large-scale non-blog web site using WordPress. Case studies galore.
  • Beginning Developer – Know HTML/CSS/JavaScript and ready to take the plunge into WP development? Learn how to write your first plugin, customize themes, contribute to core, etc.
  • Advanced Developer – Sessions will be dedicated to more in-depth topics like plugin unit testing, security issues, etc.
  • Education – Academic users will discuss issues unique to using WP in academic environments (like CUNY!)
  • BuddyPress/MU – Looking for a new challenge? BuddyPress is the new black.
  • Hacker Room – Just want to code? A special room will be set up just for people to work on core patches for bugs to version 2.9. Trusted core developers will be on hand to provide guidance as needed.

And, on Sunday…..

  • Project WordCamp – Theme and plugin competition judging by a panel of WordPress luminaries.
  • Ignite Sessions – Get a “Best of WordCamp NYC” experience with some of the more popular presenters from Saturday doing abbreviated versions (5 minutes, 20 slides) of their earlier talks.
  • Q & A with Matt Mullenweg – Co-founder and project lead of WordPress will talk about the vision for WordPress moving forward and take questions from the audience.

So what are you waiting for?!?  Go buy your ticket! (Except you, speakers! Wait until we send you special registration code next week! Repeat! Speakers: DO NOT REGISTER HERE.)

Oh, wait! We almost forgot. Bringing all this together is crazy expensive. If WordPress helps you do your job, forms part of your business, or just plain makes you super happy every day, please consider becoming an individual ($250) or consultant ($500) sponsor. These tickets will get you full pass access and goodies, plus a little publicity and public thanks.

If you have a small business, agency, or larger company and would be able to sponsor on a higher level, please visit our Sponsors page for more info before you register, as sponsors at these levels will be registered separately.

Read Fast and Start Coding: Theme and Plugin Competition

As the promised land of canonical plugins draws near, when WordPress plugins maintained by development teams rather than single developers working solo will hopefully become the norm*, we thought it would be fun to encourage people to think about working in development teams with a friendly competition. There will be two: one for themes, one for plugins. Time is short, so if you’re interested, read fast and start coding!

The Rules:
Each submission must have 2 or more contributors. At least one of these contributors needs to be a New York Metro resident, and present at WordCamp NYC on Sunday, November 15.

Submissions must be repo-ready. That is, they should be able to be submitted to the WordPress.org theme or plugin repositories and be accepted: no spam, no security holes, no duping an existing theme or plugin.

Submissions must be new creations, not yet released to the public. You can use something you’ve been working on as a starting point, but remember that you *must* have collaborators to enter the competition.

Plugins can do pretty much anything, but must be GPL and must be free (as in beer), and not be simply a giveaway to upsell add-ons that are not free and/or GPL.

Ditto themes. You can do a basic theme, you can do a framework, you can do something specific and functional like P2, whatever, but it needs to be original to get into the top 3. Just changing a few colors or shifting the layout of an existing theme will not suffice for the sake of this competition. You may submit WordPress *or* BuddyPress themes.

The Deadline:
Submissions must be completed by 11:59pm (NYC time) on November 7, 2009. Leave a comment on this post and point to where the judges can download the code for evaluation. In your comment, feel free to provide the “elevator pitch” for your submission, describing what makes it special, etc. Identify in the comment who is on your team (link to names), who is in NYC, and who will be attending WordCamp NYC. This will give the judges enough time to evaluate entries. Late entries will not be accepted.

The Judging:
Matt Mullenweg and other trusted WordPress-universe personalities will be evaluating submissions for code competency, user experience, and style. The top 3 plugin submissions and the top 3 theme submissions will be invited to face off at WordCamp NYC’s Sunday session, which will be held in a 1000-person auditorium. That’s a lot of potential users, employers, clients, and collaborators.

Each team will have a few minutes to introduce their submissions, and then the judges will let you know what they liked and disliked about your entry, after which teams will have a chance to respond (think Project Runway for open source software). After all teams have been evaluated, the judges will announce a winning theme and a winning plugin. These winners will be congratulated (and their winning submissions promoted) on the official WordPress Development blog at http://wordpress.org/development, which reaches millions of people, once the submissions have been uploaded to the WordPress.org repositories.

Start your engines and get coding!

*If you don’t know why canonical plugins = promised land, you should probably attend WordCamp NYC to find out!

Big Apple’s WordCamp Just Got Bigger

This year’s WordCamp in New York City is positioned to be one of the largest WordCamp’s ever. With the local, national and international WordPress communities planning to attend WordCampNYC, we realized we needed a larger venue.

Today, we are very pleased to announce that Baruch College of the City University of New York will be the new venue for WordCampNYC, and will be donating a significant amount of classrooms, as well as their Mason Hall Auditorium, to our event. This generous venue sponsorship from Baruch enables us to cater to a wider range of WordPress users by allowing us to simultaneously hold multiple tracks and cover all topics WordPress.

Blogs@Baruch, a program overseen by the College’s Bernard L. Schwartz Communication Institute, is the largest WordPress project at CUNY. It is built on WordPress MU and enables members of the Baruch academic community to create individual, group or course blogs in just a few clicks. Baruch College is an advocate of WordPress and other open-source technology, making it a perfect fit for WordCampNYC.

Now that our venue is solidified, we can start selling some tickets! Look for registration to open this week.

Thank you for your patience… it will be worth it.

Quick Update

Apologies for the radio silence.

Now a quick update…

We’re still figuring out the schedule, and working out the venue spaces… which makes it a bit difficult to come up with maximum attendees (and ticket quantities).  This should be worked out shortly.

Tickets should be on sale in a week or two, and will be announced on this website, and Twitter.  Make sure you sign up for email updates.

Thank you for your patience.  It will be worth it!

Logo Contest Winners

The results are in! After a week of voting, the WordCampNYC logo contest has closed its polls, and the winners are…


#13 - Jason


#14 - Andrew dela Serna


#15 - Dan Simmonds


#18 - Krista Gonzalez

Though logo #2 received 129 votes, submissions using the NYC subway motif (logos #13,14,15,18) had a combined total of 163 votes.  The fact that multiple contestants chose to use that motif combined with the high number of votes for these entries (not to mention that they’re just plain cool) has convinced us that the subway signs are the way to go. The legibility of text, good use of professional-looking graphics, and ability to be print well at both small and large sizes all were taken into account when making this decision. Because they so clearly represent day-to-day New York City, all four subway entries will be used to brand the event, providing our WordCamp with a great look and more designers with exposure. We’ll be putting up a page soon with blog badges using these graphics for you to publicize WordCampNYC.

We’d like to thank the WordCampNYC community for participating in the voting, and we especially congratulate all those designers who captured NYC’s spirit in their submissions.  We’ll put up a page soon with badges using these graphics for you to publicize WordCampNYC on your blog.

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