WordCamp New York City 2009

November 14–15, 2009
...was awesome!

Session Topics Category archive

WordPress Community in Japan

Photo of Naoko McCracken

Naoko McCracken

WordPress 2.8 has been downloaded more than 8.5 million times. Did you know over 45% of those downloads are non-English versions of WordPress? Popularity of WordPress is worldwide, and Japan is no exception.

The growth of WordPress in Japan has been phenomenal. About a year ago, the daily download rate of WordPress Japanese version was only one fourth of that of today. Just as in the U.S. and many other countries, the Japanese WordPress community is seen as one of the most successful and active open source communities.

WordCamp Kyoto 2009 Logo

WordCamp Kyoto (photo by

In my session, I want to talk about how WordPress is doing in Japan, and reasons why Japanese people love WordPress. I’m planning to cover topics like:

  • Blogging and social networking trend in Japan
  • WordPress vs. other blog/CMS apps
  • Importance of mobile device accessibility
  • Barriers and differences
  • What are WordPress users in Japan like?
  • WordCamps and meetups

If you want to learn interesting facts about WordPress users in Japan or you’re just curious how to say “WordPress” in Japanese, come to my session on Saturday morning!

Feeding your family with WordPress development

Photo of Mark Jaquith

Mark Jaquith

I’m not just one of the Lead Developers of WordPress (a volunteer position) — I’m also a freelance WordPress developer and consultant. WordPress consulting quite literally puts food on my table. With a wife, a mortgage, and a kid on the way, I can’t afford to treat WordPress as a hobby. If you are an aspiring WordPress consultant, someone who is doing WordPress work “on the side” and is considering going full time, or if you are earning your living working with WordPress but want to improve your standing in the marketplace, you can’t miss my Saturday morning session on “Feeding your family with WordPress development.”

I’ll be sharing my story — from high school and college dropout to WordPress Ninja — my tips, a few tricks, and some pitfalls to avoid.

Some of the topics I’ll address:

  • How to get started
  • Setting your rates
  • Hourly, or by-the-project?
  • Picking your clients
  • Keeping your skills sharp
  • Improving your standing in the community and the marketplace
  • How to keep your sanity

Come with questions. I’ll see you there at 10:15am, and I look forwarding to competing with you in the WordPress marketplace!

The Case for WP in Non Profits

Photo of Amanda Blum

Amanda Blum

Having been a backseat driver on the 501c3 bus for 25 years, I speak Bleeding Heart fluently. I’ve seen that most non-profits suffer from the same issues:
— PR/Marketing departments not integrated with tech departments, a failure because of the way marketing works in 2010.
— Design has been prioritized over function in website considerations.
— Without solid tech counsel, organizations are slaves to paid software and/or webmasters.

Your Website is Not the Bastard Kid of Your Org
I know all the issues: staff stretched thin, high turnover, volunteer training timesuck, lack of resources/ funding, and nepotistic hiring practices (“My nephew Mervin can put us on the interwebs for free!”).  Can WordPress solve these problems? Of course not…but it can turn your website from a time and resource drain into a highly functioning marketing and service delivery tool, and help reduce many of these problems at the same time. Stop thinking of WordPress as a blogging tool: it is a highly powerful Content Management System (magic website manager).

Bleeding Heart meets Bleeding Edge
I am like a kid with cake when it comes to convincing non profits about WordPress as a way to reduce costs, maximize efficiency and most importantly- sell your cause.

  • WordPress is budget friendly (and by “budget friendly”, I mean “free”)
  • WordPress isn’t going anywhere.
  • WordPress development and design help is easier/ cheaper because it is the most popular CMS on the planet.
  • A breathtaking number of WordPress training guides and support exist for users.
  • WordPress is scalable to grow with your organization.
  • WordPress is flexible in appearance and can change as needed.
  • WordPress plugins offer utility and functionality that allow non profits to streamline interior and exterior processes to better serve constituent groups.
  • WordPress user levels allow you to distribute workload amongst many staff/volunteers without liability or security concerns
  • WordPress’s ubiquity on the planet makes it likely volunteers already have experience with the system (easier to find volunteers/less time training them)
  • WordPress’s widgets and plugins allow easy (read: cheap) ways to grow into and integrate social media, email marketing, donations, forms and calendars into your website.
  • WordPress, being web based, is accessible from any internet connection. You can work remotely, you can access it from the field, and you never have to worry about crashing software/hardware.

I am Funny. WordPress is Not.
WordPress is a serious Mofo. I’ve yet to encounter a non profit that couldn’t be better served by the wonder that is WP, but let’s test the theory. We’ll cover all the reasons that WordPress can rock your world, how to convince the board, and where to start on your WP project with a little time left over for “Stump the Redhead.”   See you Saturday, after lunch, in the CMS track.

Complex Content Management with the Pods Plugin

Photo of Scott Kingsley Clark

Scott Kingsley Clark

WordPress is an amazing platform, and it’s used to power millions of blogs and sites. As it becomes used in more complex ways though, it can be difficult to manage the multitude of types of content required for your site, project, or application. In just under 30 minutes, I will perform a song I wrote about using WordPress as a CMS to power your site, I will show real world examples of complex content types in action, give a run through of the backend management of Pods, as well as show features from the Pods UI plugin I’ve developed to make it all even easier.

What’s Pods got to do with your content though? Need some more information about Pods and how to use it? Freshen up over at the Pods website. Warning: Pods is still primarily best utilized by developers and I recommend you put your developer hat on! Don’t worry, I won’t be able to completely lose you in my 30 minute presentation!

I’m really looking forward to speaking about the subject of Pods, and how it can completely transform the way you develop complex sites with WordPress.

BUT WAIT! Don’t let the 30 minute presentation slot fool you, I’ll be hanging around – Tweet me or e-mail me to have a one-on-one walkthrough or ask your questions! In addition to this, I will also be hosting an unConference Session on Pods and will Tweet / Post the room and time on my site on Saturday!

You can always feel free contact me via Twitter @scottkclark or on my website.

Beyond Sharing: “Open Source Design”

Photo of Mushon Zer-Aviv

Mushon Zer-Aviv

Towards the discussion I will be leading on this subject at Wordcamp, this Saturday 11:30am I wanted to share with you this diagram I’m proposing for discussing the open source process and how might design be a part of it.Teaser image for my talk at Wordcamp


  • What is the motivation model that have been perfected in open source coding? (especially in the WordPress community)
  • Can it be applied to design too?
  • How might it need to change to fit the design process?
  • What examples can we draw from within the WordPress community and from outside it?

I would lead a discussion addressing these questions, and to provide my insights from 4 semesters of teaching the Open Source Design class at Parsons’ AAS Graphic Design program, from my experience as a design professional in Shual studio and from the development process on my own open source project, ShiftSpace.

I am very excited towards WordCamp this weekend and I hope to see you in my session and beyond.

How To Be a Media Slut (In a Good Way!)

Photo of Michelle Leder

Michelle Leder

Even if you have the best content on the planet — maybe even the universe — it doesn’t mean much if nobody else notices it. And by nobody, we mean your friends and relatives, even co-workers as nice and supportive as they may be. They may enjoy a post, Tweet it or even post a comment, but unless they have their own hugely successful site or a huge following on Twitter, chances are that your hard work will disappear into the vast ether.

It doesn’t have to happen this way. In my session on Saturday at 5:15 pm (just before happy hour!), I’ll talk about ways to get influential people to pay attention to your site. Think of it as a crash-course in public relations without having to shell out a $10,000 a month (or more since $10K a month in NYC doesn’t buy much) for some tech-savvy Public Relations firm.

Why take advice from me? Because by working my contacts and providing solid original content, I’ve managed to get lots of media attention from major outlets — CNN, BusinessWeek, the Financial Times and the Wall Street Journal to name a few — without spending a single dime on a Public Relations firm or consultant.

Now there’s a fine line between making yourself available and being a slut (the bad kind). Everyone likes the former, but few people like the latter, other than other overly self-promotional hacks.

Building Course Websites with WP / Lightning Talks

Photo of Dave Lester

Dave Lester

I’m excited to return to NYC and CUNY to present ScholarPress Courseware, a WordPress plugin that enables you to manage a class with a WordPress blog, including a schedule, bibliography, assignments, and other course information. I’m shaking up the format of this talk a bit from what I normally give, so please attend even if you’ve heard me speak about it previously. No, I won’t have any lolcats, but perhaps some keyboard cats.. we’ll be cramming a lot of things into a short session.

I’ll briefly run through the basics of the plugin, including new features like Zotero integration, and WordPress MU support thanks to the hard work of Jeremy Boggs (who is also presenting at WCNYC). After covering the plugin’s essential features, I’ll give the reins to an audience volunteer who will be led through the process of setting up a course website using Courseware. This will give you an opportunity to see how the plugin works, and gain some ideas for your own course website.

The remaining session time will be used for lightning demos to present the audience’s own course website. My hope is that these demonstrations will give participants a broad understanding of how course blogs and websites are being organized by using WordPress; ScholarPress is just one of many options.

Lightning talks will be an opportunity to briefly demonstrate your course site to the group. Each presenter must be brief, so I’ll need everyone to respect whatever time limit we decide. If someone exceeds the time limit, I’ll “play them off” with the keyboard cat. Don’t be that guy.

To sign up for a lightning talk of your course website immediately following the presentation of the Courseware plugin, leave a comment on this blog post. I can’t guarantee that we’ll get to everyone’s demo, but we’ll try to fit in as many as possible.

See you on Saturday!

Getting hardcore with Jeremy Clarke.

Photo of Jeremy Clarke

Jeremy Clarke

Hey WordCampers, hope you’re having fun gearing up for what will undoubtedly be a pretty insane Saturday of website goodness. I’ll be doing two separate talks in the ‘advanced dev’ track so I’ll post both descriptions below. Remember they are not at the same time, you can come to one but not the other if you want.

Code Faster and Smarter PHP with IDEs and Other Free Tools

netbeans ide in action

This talk is aimed at people who are already writing PHP to some degree for their WordPress work. If you’re just writing HTML and CSS an IDE might be the right tool for you, but most of its features won’t apply. If on the other hand you are doing any of the following, and haven’t tried (or haven’t REALLY tried) an IDE you are missing out on industry-standard awesomeness:

  • Writing PHP functions
  • Creating PHP objects
  • Using the WordPress API seriously, reading the source to see how things work.
  • Creating custom plugins/complex themes
  • Getting frustrated with how dumb most tools are compared to smart tools you use for other things like word processing or spreadsheets.

Simple efficient tools are fast and easy to use, but they don’t understand the code you’re writing. I’ll talk about and show you how Integrated Development Environments (IDEs) like NetBeans or Eclipse (both are Free Software and cross-platform), can take care of a lot of the tedious annoying work to let you focus on getting things done with your code.

The switch to using Netbeans has changed the way I work and I don’t think I could ever go back. If you haven’t tried working with an IDE, or even if you have and got scared, this talk will walk you through the why and the how of saving time and headaches by committing to one. I’ll also cover using PHPXref, a simple alternative to IDEs that offers a lot of the same utility without changing any of your code workflow. If you’re planning to attend consider installing NetBeans beforehand so you can follow along.

Tuning WordPress and the LAMP for Speed and Stability


Upgrading your hosting plan, your server hardware or your sysadmin budget are all acceptable ways of improving the stability and performance of your site, but with a little effort there is a lot you can do to squeeze more performance out of your existing setup without paying more.

This talk is targeted at site administrators who have control of their LAMP (Linux Apache MySQL PHP) server or are planning on upgrading to dedicated hosting soon but don’t really understand what they can do to make it go faster.

We’ll cover Apache and MySQL tuning and how to make sure your server isn’t misconfigured, a common problem with expensive repercussions:

  • What are the components of a LAMP stack
  • Tools for investigating server performance problems
  • Editing Apache/MySQL config files
  • Common Apache/MySQL config settings that need tuning
  • Brief overview of front-end/WordPress-level caching that will save your life.

Thanks for reading guys, hope to see you there, I know I won’t even be able to see all the talks I’m excited about.

Growing Community with BuddyPress – an Introduction and Overview

Photo of Lisa Sabin-Wilson

Lisa Sabin-Wilson

This weekend we’ll all be at CUNY in NYC for a weekend of learning, sharing, networking, eating, drinking and soaking in all the amazing WP goodness that comes out of every WordCamp across the world.  I’m excited, aren’t you??  The tireless organizers of WCNYC have worked hard to put together a really fantastic line up of sessions….simply something for everyone.  I know how challenging it is to organize and event such as this – hats off to them for what is sure to be a pretty phenomenal weekend in NYC!

bpSpeaking of sharing and socializing – – my session at WordCamp NYC is aimed towards introducing bloggers to the BuddyPress – a  suite of plugins available for the WordPress MU platform that is rich with features that allow you to take your WordPress MU site to the next level by engaging a community on your own web site  through dynamic features such as:

  • Extended Profiles
  • Friends
  • Private Messaging
  • Activity Wires
  • Blog Tracking
  • Status Updates
  • …and more!

bp-commMy session introduces you to the features available, aimed toward helping you make the decision if BuddyPress is right for your site, and has features that you would like to add to enhance and grow a social community on your own domain.  Many people, wrongly, state that BuddyPress is “Facebook in a box…” – – I think even I have wrongly made that statement in the past.  It’s not Facebook, at all.  Running a Buddypress community on your own site makes it a good deal more targeted to your specific niche community, allowing you to build a full and interactive social network around the specific niche topic and interests that you have full control over on your own site.  Where Facebook covers everything from Farmville to Mafia Wars – – your (BuddyPress powered) community can hone in, and concentrate, on specific topics and interests that you determine and guide.

My session explores the types of communities that are using BuddyPress, and how they are taking advantage of the available features to build, grow and sustain their own social community on their sites.  I will gives you some suggestions on useful plugins that will help you extend the available features on your BuddyPress powered site for your community members to take advantage of as they socialize, network, engage and interact within your community.  Finally, I will provide an explanation on the BuddyPress theme framework and a few tips I’ve come across in my work with BuddyPress that will help you dig in and customize your BuddyPress templates to give your own community a unique look that is specific to you and your community.

I have been working with BuddyPress since its early, infant days in the summer of 2008 when I discovered how truly amazing and powerful it is for building communities.  The development of BuddyPress has grown in leaps and bounds over the last year and continues to keep getting better every single day, thanks in no small part to Andy Peatling and the group of devs over at BuddyPress.Org.  I have been so eyebrows deep in BuddyPress over the past several months that I sometimes forget that there is a great big community out there that doesn’t yet know its power and potential! I hope to bring some of that BuddyPress joy to WordCamp NYC this weekend and share with you the wonders that I’ve discovered.

I’m really looking forward to meeting everyone!  I love the opportunity to meet WordPress (and BuddyPress!) users whenever I get the chance – – ping me on Twitter @LisaSabinWilson so I can add you and we can stay in touch in NYC and beyond!

What can you do with WordPress MU?

Photo of Andrea Rennick

Andrea Rennick

Hi! I’m andrea_r everywhere online and on Saturday morning I’ll be speaking in two sessions.

In the first session, we’ll be showcasing some sites built with WPMU that are not simply blog farms. When many people first discover MU, they think of developing a site where members sign up for blogs. It does a great job at that, but it can do a lot more. I’ll be highlighting some popular sites as well as some hidden gems that are using this software in different ways. This should help get your creative juices flowing as you discover the possibilities you may not have known about.

In the second session, I’ll cover two techniques from two installations showcased in the first session. One runs multiple domains, as well as a second WPMU “site”. I’ll explain the differences between Sites and domains in MU, and cover the best plugins to use to accomplish this. I’ll also quickly go over the best server setup.

In the second half, I’ll highlight how we used WPMU to build a member directory. From the viewer’s side, the site shows a user profile and their recent blog posts. From the member side, I’ll show you what they have access to. I’ll also go over the plugin we used, how we put them together, and general tips on how you could build a similar site. This should be a great session for a how-to, if you ever wondered how we did it.

For both sessions, I’m also allowing time for questions.

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