[Talk] Event Accessibility: Inclusive Events for All Humans
As organizers, we want our events to best reflect the local WordPress community. However (just like websites), sometimes real-life events are not accessible for everyone. In this talk, I’ll cover a number of ways you can make your events more welcoming for people with disabilities and by extension, everyone else.
[Talk] How the WordPress Security Team Works
WordPress loves openness. Our code is open, our processes are open, even our mascot is open source. But what about our security processes? Find out how it all works and just how much time and effort and put into making sure WordPress is secure for everyone!
[Talk] Why Your Community Needs a Glossary
Your community is growing in the polyglots team but you have problem on quality of the translation.
What can you do to improve it? Your community glossary is the key so discover the Italian experience, tips and the GlotDict features for your PTE and polyglots workflow.
[Talk] WordPress Plugin and Theme Directories Don’t Love Developers
One of the reasons that explains WordPress success is its ecosystem – there’s plenty of plugin and theme developers that contribute to the project. Surprisingly, though, WordPress isn’t much fond of those developers. The Plugin and Theme Directories are great tools for users, because they can find what they need, review and comment on it, seek support… but it completely fails to help developers get some insights about what’s going on. How many people has seen my plugin? Do they look at it in the directory or within their WordPress installation? Which are the most-searched terms? Am I missing some important keyword to help users find my plugin? How well does my plugin position given a certain keyword? We can’t fail to give this information to developers, especially if they’re interested in making a living out of WordPress.
[Workshop] Contributing to WordPress Core: Moving Beyond Your First Patch
A contributor day is commonly known to be the best way to start contributing to the WordPress project. After spending a contributor day in the Core team, you should have a basic idea on how the development environment is setup and the processes involved, such as opening tickets and writing patches. This workshop is aiming to address what comes after that: How do you spend your contributing time efficiently? How do you find access to developer groups? How do you make your ideas heard? Following up on your first contributor day efforts is not always as straightforward as one may expect, and the goal of this workshop is to prepare you for a beneficial long-term relationship as a core contributor.
[Workshop] Glossary & Style Guide for Consistency
Consistency is the key to translating WordPress, plugins and themes for a locale. In this workshop we will take a tour around the documents and tools that are available and can be used to work as a team on translation to obtain and maintain consistency accross the WordPress projects.
[Workshop] GlotPress features for WordPress translators
GlotPress is the translation management system for WordPress. In this workshop we’ll run through some of the basic GlotPress features and about all the new things that were built since GlotPress became a WordPress plugin. And at the end we’ll also try to take a look into the future and discuss what other features may support translators during their work.
[Workshop] Internationalisation for WordPress Developers
In this informal workshop, John will cover best practices for internationalising themes and plugins, and go in-depth into to various considerations regarding internationalisation that you may not have thought about.
As long as you understand basic PHP, you’ll find value in this workshop whether you’re a beginner or a more advanced WordPress developer.
[Workshop] Intro to Developing WordPress Plugins
The part of your plugin that is hardest is the part that isn’t the code. Developing your first plugin for the WordPress directory means thinking beyond yourself and your own goals. In this workshop we’ll build a plugin together, a simple one, and work through the common pitfalls like function names, user permissions, and how much to sanitize.
the core features? How can you debug them when you have trouble?
[Workshop] Keyboard Navigation
How to use a website with keyboard only?
Bring your laptop and try it yourself.
How to improve your code so people using only a keyboard can use your site.
You will get code examples and resources on how to make this happen for your theme or plugin.
[Workshop] Learn How to Contribute Code to the Meta Team
The Meta team is responsible for all of WordPress’ official websites (WordPress.org, WordCamp.org, api.wordpress.org, developer.wordpress.org, etc). A lot of the code that powers those sites is open-source, and anyone can contribute. Learning how to contribute on your own can sometimes be a difficult task, so this workshop aims to make it easy. We’ll walk through the tools and steps involved, and you’ll get hands-on experience and help along the way. You’ll need to bring a laptop, and you’ll have a head start if you install the WordPress Meta Environment before you arrive — github.com/WordPress/meta-environment
[Workshop] Polyglot for beginners
This introductory talk covers everything you need to get started translating WordPress core, themes, or plugins to your language:
- How to register on WordPress.org if you haven’t yet.
- How to join the Polyglots channel on the WordPress Slack, and how to communicate with other Polyglots. (I.e. make new friends!)
- How to follow the Polylots “make” blog, and what to pay attention to there.
- How to translate on Translate.WordPress.org.
- Which roles and capabilities can do what in terms of translation and validation (and what that is).
- A few technical things you need to know about translation—but really just a few, no worries.
- What “Rosetta” is and how you can use its secret powers.
After having attended this talk you should be able to contribute to WordPress in your language effectively and confidently, know where to find answers if you have questions, and feel ready to get some strings translated during your further contributor day right away.
[Workshop] Set Up Your Development Environment for Contributing to WordPress (afternoon session)
Whether contributing to Core, Meta, Plugins or Themes then this environment is right for you. All you need is your laptop.
[Workshop] Set Up Your Development Environment for Contributing to WordPress (morning session)
Whether contributing to Core, Meta, Plugins or Themes then this environment is right for you. All you need is your laptop.
[Workshop] Visual Data Using the WordPress API
WordPress 4.7’s integrated REST API just gave us easy access to the public data of millions of sites. We, as designers, can now structure that data in visual ways to build creative solutions, and encourage thought. Let’s learn about APIs, how we can use them, and what we can do with the data that’s available to us from a design perspective.
3 Gifts My Users Gave Me
I thought a user-centered approach was going to benefit the users of my product. And then I realized how much users have given me back in the process. This presentation focuses on three ways in which users have made my life better, by giving me (at least) three gifts:
- The gift of building solid roadmaps
- The gift of teaching efficiently
- The gift of working in a happy team
The gift of building solid roadmaps
A product is a living organism that can choose to develop in different ways. At times, it may seem difficult to make the right decisions and stir the product in the right direction. However, with users’ help, we can gather enough reasons to say “yes” or “no” to different possibilities and we can build the most valuable roadmaps for our products. This section deals with techniques for generating, validating and prioritizing new features, in which our users play the most important part.
The gift of teaching efficiently
No two users are the same. Each user has a different scenario, a different goal, a different set of technical skills, a different level of experience with a product. When we take the time to really understand users, we not only become better at building interfaces, writing documentation or answering support requests, but also learn to ask the right questions and to find the shortest and clearest way from point A to point B.
The gift of working in a happy team
A happy and healthy team is a team that finds meaning in its work and is enthusiastic about it. Simply giving tasks without a context harms motivation and, consequently, performance. When, at my company, we started investing time into just talking about our users’ businesses and goals, the entire team – irrespective of their role – got more passionate about our work. Everybody wanted to help the user succeed and, because of that, the team became more united, productive and proactive.
5 Ways You May Be Sabotaging Your business + 2 Proven Ways to Succeed
Learning the hard lessons the hard way is never fun. This talk will be in the form of 5 short stories on how I self-sabotaged my own career, and my business endeavors and briefly touch on how I recovered, or didn’t in some cases. Will close with 2 revelations that anyone can and should apply in their own business.
- Burning the candle at both ends (2 jobs or a side job/product)
- Taking on debt to make payroll as an agency
- Firing slow (bad culture fits kill morale)
- Swimming against the current in the community (necessary at times, but mind your tone)
- All hustle, no personal time. (nothing is worth family + relationships)
- Iterate, Iterate, Iterate (perseverance)
- Invest in your team at every opportunity (the golden ticket)
A Deep Dive into the User Roles and Capabilities API
The user roles and capabilities API is one of the most powerful APIs in WordPress. With it you can allow, deny, and customise access to features in WordPress to a fine grained level. In this presentation, I’ll talk through the basics and go on to explain some of the more interesting and advanced use cases of working with roles and capabilities.
Accessibility in the Age of the Headless CMS
Big Design Troubles in Open Source
What the heck can we do to improve the design process on open source projects? Designing for open source projects is difficult and comes with a unique set of challenges. The challenges include communication difficulties, tech limitations, slow implementation times, community pushback, complex developer tools, unique design considerations, and lack of design process. I’m going to address these challenges and propose ways to improve or implement an efficient design process as a community.
Big Little Shame — a Tale of Empowered User Experience Through Localisation
Generic masculine terms in the microcopy of a user interface can be difficult to get rid of. In English, many male-centric terms can simply be replaced by more inclusive synonyms, for other languages the exclusion of women is embedded in their very grammar. Since WordPress has committed to “design for the majority”, translation editors face a problem way bigger than just translating as many plugins and themes in as short of a time as possible. This is the story of how just the language we use can exclude people, and how translators play an important role in empowering users through localisation.
Closing Remarks – Paolo & Jenny
CSS Grid Changes Everything (About Web Layouts)
The CSS Grid Layout Module introduces a native CSS grid system, provided at the viewport level, that achieves what CSS frameworks and popular grid systems could only dream about: Responsive, flexible, pure CSS grid layouts, independent of document source order, that allow us to treat the browser as a true design and layout surface.
In this talk you’ll get an intro to CSS Grid and learn how it changes pretty much everything when it comes to layouts on the web. Through examples, code snippets, and practical demos you’ll learn how to use CSS Grid in a theme for modern responsive layouts, and you’ll also learn how to handle older browsers without Grid support in a clean and straight-forward way.
CSS Grid is here, and you can start using it today. This talk shows you how to do it right.
Data Visualization with the REST API
Demystifying the WordPress Bootstrap Process
The WordPress bootstrap process is only scarcely documented, with only a very select group of developers that truly know the ins and outs and historical reasons behind the individual bootstrapping steps.
This session presents a detailed overview of the exact execution flow that launches your WordPress site on each page request, giving you detailed insights into:
- the order in which files are loaded
- how & why the different global constants are set up
- what functionality is “pluggable” and can be replaced by custom implementations
- how the database is connected
- how caching is set up
- how localization is set up and loaded
- how a multisite (network) is identified and loaded
- how the Plugin API is initialized
The session will end with a presentation of a feature project that aims to re-design and improve the existing bootstrap process.
Git in 10 Minutes
If you know you should be using version control for your WordPress projects but haven’t started yet, this talk is for you. I’ll show you that Git is not scary and that you can actually get started in under 10 minutes.
How I Started Working on Customer Support for a Popular WordPress Plugin as a Total Newbie
Did you ever think that working with WordPress is something that only developers and tech-savvy people can do?
Are you convinced that your being a newbie on WordPress won’t allow you to help people?
In this talk I’ll be sharing my experience on how I started working for a WordPress start-up; how I was struggling with my own impostor syndrome all the time, but still succeeded helping people and answering their technical questions.
In a few months, I will be celebrating my second year with WP Media. I don’t recognise anymore that Alice who was so scared of answering tickets on HelpScout.
This is the beginning of my journey from not understanding customers’ questions to getting my first “Great” ratings on HelpScout.
Are you curious to hear the rest?
How to Grow from Freelancer to Agency Owner
Taking that first step from working as a freelancer to making your first hire and becoming an agency is an exciting but daunting step. In this talk I will explain how I accidentally started an agency and strategically grew my WordPress specialist agency from myself to over 40 people over the course of 5 years with minimum staff turnover.
I will cover:
- How and when to make hires
- Where to find new employees (from developers to operations)
- How to create a company culture
- How you can ensure your employees are on board for the long run
How to Repurpose Your Content to Boost Your Traffic
Are you struggling to come up with new content? Repurposing content is a little-known secret that all smart marketers use to keep driving traffic to their site. This talk highlights the actionable strategies you can use to make your most popular blog posts work even harder for you.
How to Write to Achieve Your Goals – Writing Tips for Everyone
Writing is an integral part of our daily web/WordPress work, even if we don’t realize it. We write emails, messages, blog posts, product announcements, and reply support tickets. But we often forget about how good writing can make all the difference between getting a job, creating a good connection with clients, and writing about our work and products in a good, or more, better way.
This is why I want to share 5 quick writing tips for everyone in the WordPress community. They are not pompous and overblown, but rather, usable, everyday, and simple to implement.
Then I will share 5 hints, which are:
- Follow the process – We start with the description of the problem and setting up the goals our writing should achieve.
- Put your ego aside – Why it is so important not to get involved personally with writing and be open to criticism and feedback.
- Measure your results and keep improving – Successful writing doesn’t end when the text is published but when the goals are achieved.
- Write for fast reading – The importance of writing for fast reading. How to properly use headings, images, no “happy talk”, and even the use of white space, to make the texts easier to follow.
- Keep developing your skills. – Shortly, what you can do to further develop your writing skills.
How Translation Sprints Help Bring in New Contributors!
For WordPress 4.6 release video subtitle captioning and translation to few Indian languages we organized a translation sprint.
As India has many languages, we made small teams based on languages. We paired expert contributors with new ones.
We mainly did three things:
- Created teams, so there was a sense of team/togetherness among contributors
- Each team had a leader, so learning was smooth
- Each team has a goal, so every team has something to accomplish
The result was that new contributors learned overall contribution process much faster and became motivated.
Many of those first-time contributors went ahead and still contributing.
As an example – the Gujarati language, one of language we set up a team for, was at 60% completion when the meetup started. During the meetup, we finished an additional 10%, but many new translators worked on weekends and overnight to get Gujarati translation to 100% in less than a week.
We believe other community meetups and events can use this sprints to gain more/returning contributors.
How We Developed Our Local WordPress Meetup
Organising a WordPress meetup in your local area is a great way to meet other people in your community, to bounce ideas off each other, and stay updated with how others are using WordPress. But it can be tricky figuring out how to spread the word and encourage people to attend.
In this talk, you’ll find out how the organisers of Brighton’s local WordPress meetup, WordUp, created a successful regular monthly event where everyone is welcome.
This talk covers:
- Choosing, setting up and optimising online marketing channels (e.g. Meetup.com, Twitter, Slack, a website)
- Reaching more people and being more inclusive
- Why, when and how to encourage sponsors to get involved
- What a successful meetup looks like
Whether you run an established WordPress meetup or are just thinking about starting one up, this talk will have practical ideas you can apply to your own local area.
How WordPress Communities Are Built
The WordPress community is built and maintained by volunteers, using the same methods — and many of the same tools — that are used to make WordPress itself. In this session, you’ll get a look at the WordPress community’s “source code” and learn how to contribute to the growth of your local community — or create a community if you don’t already have one.
Improving WordPress Performance with XDebug and PHP Profiling
XDebug is a tool for developers to gain insight into how PHP is executed. Using it for profiling is a very effective, fast and precise method to find bottlenecks in your WordPress site. In this talk I explain how to use it with Webgrind, how to find potential optimization targets, show examples of real cases when XDebug helped fix a performance problem and also explain what XDebug is not suitable for and what can be used instead. If you are not a developer, you’ll learn what XDebug is capable of and when to ask a developer to use it.
Interview and Q&A with Matt Mullenweg
A 50 minute session with Matt Mullenweg, co-founder of WordPress: it includes a 30 minutes interview by Om Malik, founder of Gigaom, and 20 minutes of Q&A from the audience.
The interview will be live-streamed to Track 2, Eiffel.
Is Your Code Ready for PHP7?
Recently the recommended version of PHP for WordPress increased to PHP7, while still supporting PHP 5.2.4. That’s over 9 years of PHP! PHP7 is the first major release since PHP5 and includes backward incompatible changes that may change the way your code works or throw errors on your customer’s site where you’ve never seen them before. Let’s talk about important changes in variable handing, error handling, changed functions, removed functions and their alternatives, and more. We’ll also talk about resources for more details on PHP7 changes to get your themes and plugins ready to run in the newest WordPress environments.
Lessons Learnt Marketing WooCommerce Since July 2014
When I joined the WooCommerce marketing team in July 2014 we were three. Today we’re a team of thirteen and the landscape of how we work, what we produce, and how we engage users, has changed a lot. Also, WooCommerce has changed a lot! Including being acquired by Automattic. I’d love to share a talk summarising some of the key things I’ve learnt as part of the WooCommerce marketing team, including some / all / any of the below:
- The days of ‘great products marketing themselves’ are over…
- From store owners to store builders: the evolution of Woo’s target audience
- Content strategy: what works, what tanks, and the importance of measuring impact
- How we have experimented with social media (and what works best per channel for WooCommerce)
- Loving trolls on social media
- How to identify and encourage rituals in your customer journey
- Learnings from running Woo’s major holiday sales
- How we launch new products / extensions / features
- The importance of speaking to users & how to tell their stories
- Why your market positioning needs to be dynamic
- Pitfalls of being in a competitive market (falling asleep at the wheel while we stared at Shopify)
- The importance of ‘the little things’ when it comes to building brand loyalty
- and finally, tips for handling company change and growing pains (like being acquired!).
I look forward to the 15 minutes question time, answering any questions people might have about marketing WordPress products and WooCommerce.
Lightning Talks – Content
Content is king. How many times did you hear that?
Come and hear some useful advice to leverage the power of words from our speakers.
- How to Repurpose Your Content to Boost Your Traffic by Syed Balkhi
- How to write to achieve your goals – writing tips for everyone by Dario Jazbec Hrvatin
- Local SEO – Creating website content that matters regionally by Jen Miller
- The Importance of Information Architecture: Organise Content to Improve User Experience by Monique Dubbleman
Lightning Talks – Contributing to WordPress
Whether you’re a budding developer, a pixel-perfect designer, or just like helping out, we’re always looking for people to help make WordPress even better.
Here are some talks from people making WordPress around the world!
Lightning Talks – Development
Join us for some short and sweet sessions about code: whether you are a front-end or back-end developer, we’ve got you covered!
Lightning Talks – Inspire
WordPress is changing the world, one website at a time.
Here are some inspiring stories from our community.
Local SEO – Creating Website Content That Matters Regionally
It’s 2017 and many clients would rather pay for short-term paid advertising to attract leads than invest in the long game of search engine optimized content marketing. However, if you’ve been paying attention, you know that Siri, Alexa, Cortana and others have changed the way clients reach for products, creating increased demand for local search. Evolution in semantic search has broadened related keyword terms, giving more value to alternate phrases in search and resulting in more emphasis being place on area keywords. Website developers must adjust their workflow to assist clients in creating local, relevant content to deliver findability results to their clients.
As businesses use advertising and organic search in audience targeting, more closely-matched real audiences and, more importantly, real revenue increases. Customers who are local tend to refer more often and become repeat buyers. While locality is not all that matters when curating content, it places a large role in whether the content will be seen by a large regional audience.
In this talk I will share how website creators can change client results by recognizing the impact consistency, social promotion, relevancy, area-sensitive keywords and quality writing play in converting generalized text into content that matters. Further, I will explain how local blog posts and page content rise to fit that need and can extend as podcasts, videos and more to appeal to alternate search tools, such as YouTube, iTunes and Yelp.
Make Your Own WP-CLI Command in 10min
Have you heard WP-CLI, an about open source WordPress management tool that can make your development flow a lot easier? If you’ve heard about it or already use, you probably wondered how it it be extended to support custom commands. This talk will give you a short overview how to accomplish this and make your own magic with WP-CLI.
Making the Most out of WordCamps
WordCamps are a fantastic opportunity to get to know the WordPress community better, make new connections, start new business opportunities and elevate your personal or company brand. Yet, as they get bigger and bigger, navigating WordCamps, especially for first-time attendees, might be challenging. In this talk, I’ll be covering 4 key steps that will help both individuals and business owners on how to prepare for a WordCamp, what strategies to implement for the best results and how to take the most from the event after it’s over.
Making Your Voice Heard: How to Win Friends and Influence Policy
This talk proposal was inspired by a question from Morton Rand-Hendriksen to Matt Mullenweg during the 2016 State of the Word address.
WordPress powers 27% of the web. We at WordCamp Europe are the 1% of the 27%. Those of us together in Paris, whether we realise it or not, have an enormous position of influence over the web – a position of influence that we choose not to exercise. At a time of sudden and shifting political currents, many of which threaten the stability of our industry, the WordPress community takes no part in the processes that shape our craft. That lack of involvement will not protect us.
It is not our place to claim to speak for “what WordPress wants”, nor is it our place to say that WordPress should determine how the web works per se. It is our place, however, to say that the most talented, experienced, and committed members of our community can and should take a more active role in the bodies and policies that govern the web.
So how can the WordPress community put their experience to work to help develop the standards and regulations which shape our craft?
In my talk, I will provide a positive and inspirational introduction to how the WordPress community can be a force for good in the governance of the web. I will explain why attendees should get involved, what they can expect, and what, in turn, will be expected of them.
Internet governance is ready and waiting for those of us at WordCamp Europe to contribute our voices. First, though, the community needs a toolkit. This talk will provide it.
New to Theme Design? Here’s What You Should Know
I learned to design and develop themes the hard way. I made all rookie mistakes I could possibly make that resulted in poorly-designed themes that I never wanted to show to anybody. Only after countless trials and errors, I worked out a strategy to theme design that helped me launch my own website and build several themes that became successful in their niches.
From this talk you’ll learn how to approach theme design, what to take into account before opening Sketch or Photoshop, and what tools to use to ship your theme fast without sacrificing the quality.
Night of the Living Style Guides
The line between design and development is getting blurrier, and our approach to web design is becoming more modular. How do we keep track of it all?
Style guides to the rescue!
Using style guides that update as our projects progress, we can visually document our work and ensure that everything stays consistent. They may seem daunting and time-consuming at first, but they don’t have to be.
How do I get started with living style guides? What’s a living style guide anyway, and how do I know if mine is dead? Isn’t that going to slow me down? Why should I bother?
Let’s find out.
Opening Remarks – Paolo & Jenny
People Over Code
You can make a bigger impact with people skills and thoughtful human-centered design than simply with code. After running WordPress releases and then spending two years working in government, WordPress lead developer Andrew Nacin wants to talk about how your interactions with others matter and how it’s important to think with people, not for them.
Right to Left Language Support – the Right Way!
Adding Right to left (RTL) languages support to your themes and plugins doesn’t have to be a chore. This short talk will introduce the basics of RTL support and demonstrate how to use automated tools to simplify the process.
Security is a Process
People often ask “how do I make my site secure?”, as if security is some magic dust you sprinkle on top and poof, now you’re secure! In this talk, you will learn that security is a process and a mindset, not merely a plugin that you install. You’ll then learn how to best protect your sites and yourself from the multitude of threats they face on the Wild Wild Web.
We can all pretend that we’re helping others by making web sites and software accessible, but we are really making them better for our future selves. Learn some fundamentals of accessibility and how it can benefit you (whether future you from aging or you after something else limits your abilities). We’ll review simple testing techniques, basic features and enhancements, coming trends, and where to get help. This isn’t intended to be a deep dive, but more of an overall primer for those who aren’t sure where to start nor how it helps them.
- Broader context for how all users are or will be disabled, whether temporarily or permanently.
- Basic tests and best practices that can be integrated into development team workflows to make interfaces accessible.
- Introduction to standards and tools already available.
The Community That the Incubator Program Built
In 2016, the WordPress Community Team selected Harare, Zimbabwe as one of the three locations for the WordCamp Incubator program. I will talk about how the Incubator program created excitement about WordPress and kicked off the WordPress community in Harare.
The Importance of Information Architecture: Organise Content to Improve User Experience
This talk is for anyone who thinks that when building websites, the first and most important goal should be serving the visitor’s needs. Whether you’re a blogger, designer, copywriter, marketeer or developer, understanding the importance of structure in relation to context, content an users is crucial.
Ask yourself this question: when you’re building a website, do you actually know what you’re building? Has your website project got the right structure fit for the purpose?
The most important factor for people in web design is, that it makes it easy for them to find what they want. Yet, so many websites are so poorly structured, that it’s impossible to do so.
Information architecture is something serious, however, the majority of businesses have structured their sites in a bad way, using the ITTIR-method – “I think this is right”. Although people think Information Architecture only comes in sight on large scale websites, it is useful to think about good structure ahead with smaller website projects as well. If you already have tens of pages on your site, you should do proper information architecture analysis. Guiding people through the vast amount of (usually growing) information on offer is something that requires thought and research. Intuitive navigation doesn’t happen by chance. So don’t jump the visual part of your web design too quick, but take plenty of time to think about the architecture of the information you offer on your site.
This helps you answer user’s four most important questions when they arrive at a website:
- Am I in the right place?
- Do they have what I am looking for?
- Do they have anything better (if this isn’t what I want)?
- What do I do now?
After this talk, you’re aware of the importance of information architecture and you’ll never want to design a website without doing some form of IA again!
The Pernicious Myth of the Code Poet
“Code is Poetry” is a cute motto. It’s also quite false.
The spirit of the slogan is harmless enough. It foregrounds the easy-to-overlook fact that software is written by real people. And it provides some solace to the software developer who is looking for soulful validation of what often feels like a rote, boring, soulless job.
But code is not poetry, and coders who considers themselves “poets” risk doing a disservice to themselves, and to the software they’re engaged in building. Art is beautiful, and we want our software to be beautiful as well. But, in the service of beauty, art is often inert, inscrutable, ambiguous – hardly qualities of good code. Perhaps more importantly, software developers invested in an image of themselves as artists are more likely to shun collaboration, iteration, and criticism, an attitude that’s especially harmful in free software communities.
By breaking down the myth of the code poet, I hope to find some new metaphors that we software developers can embrace for justifying to ourselves the work that we do.
The Three Kinds of Design
There are three kinds of design in play when it comes to digital technologies. One kind of design, that I call “classical design,” is the most dominant — it has to do with making things beautiful and shiny. It’s an old way of design, that much of the technology world is stuck in today because it’s what is practiced the most. The way it works is simple: 1. A feature is conceived and engineered so that it works, and then 2. a designer is brought in to make the feature “pretty.” This is commonly called “lipstick on a pig” — which means that it’s when you bring in design to cosmetically enhance that which is, underneath it all, a less palatable option. This is the least impactful kind of design and use of design talent, and happens quite naturally when it comes to how most developers work with designers. But it isn’t the developers fault — it’s mainly the designers’ fault. I’ll explain why in my WCEU talk, and hope to spark discussions about how design can be leveraged best in the WordPress community.
Translating WordPress into a Language Nobody Speaks
Switzerland has four official languages: German, Italian, French, and Romansh. Growing up in the canton of Grisons, I got in touch with the latter early on. Unfortunately, it is a dying language. To do something against this, I decided to translate WordPress into Romansh. And I didn’t even speak the language!
What began with one person, one idea, one passion, got attention from more people outside of the WordPress community and encouraged them to help to translate WordPress. In this process, I not only began to learn the language and appreciate its beauty, I also learned some interesting things by introducing people to WordPress, the polyglots team, and the translation management tool.
Using WordPress for Good
If you’re tired of making websites just because it pays the bills then this talk is for you. Deciding to use my WordPress knowledge for good by working with non-profits and cause-based organizations wasn’t an easy step but one I will never regret. Now I want to share what I’ve learned about working with this niche of clients. I also want to encourage others to help those organizations work towards real change and tackle important issues, to help make their jobs a little easier. I’ll discuss a few strategies for getting started with this niche of clients, what their unique needs are and how you can best address them. We’ll also go over a few common misconceptions about working with non-profits (no it’s not charity work).
We Are All Making This Up: Improv Lessons for Developers
There are a lot of parallels between the open source development world and Improv communities. The goal of this talk is to expose the similarities and directly apply the core principles from the stagecraft of improv to get better code, smoother projects and ultimately happier customers. At the end the audience will be able to take practical examples and very simple exercises back to their organizations to better communicate with customers and internal stakeholders alike as well as techniques to get ‘unstuck’ when hitting major blockages in creativity needed for elegant code.
Topics will include:
- Parallels between the Dev Community and Improv.
- Core principles of Improv and how we can embrace them for better code.
- These include ideas of ‘Active Listening’ and ‘Yes, And…’.
- Embracing failure as part of the process.
The sessions will conclude with some simple group exercises for any size team to improve communications.
We Didn’t Care About Diversity… What Happened Next Is Insane!
What happens when you create an event and don’t care about diversity? What happens when you don’t listen to what everyone tells you but think in entirely different terms? This lightning talk will tell you what happened when I stopped caring about diversity and started thinking about event organisation in a different way. What we learned will blow your mind.
Web Fonts Performance
In the era of mobile devices the issue of speed and lightness of web applications has become more relevant than ever. There are many factors affecting this parameter, but web fonts are the biggest problem. In my presentation I will describe the general problems of loading and rendering fonts in different browsers, and also about tools that help solve these problems.
WordPress Beyond Borders: Cross Cultural Communication and the Fundamentals of Caring
Legends say languages were created to divide people who once spoke as one and aimed to reach high up to the gods. So the gods scattered them across the Earth and made them forget their common language, making sure too many of them couldn’t communicate effectively.
Eager to understand each other again, people struggled to remedy that by learning the languages others spoke. In the meantime religion, traditions, their own languages, and their personal beliefs evolved and took deep roots. Then the internet happened and, as it gave a platform for the world to communicate in from a distance, it added a new level of complexity.
Today WordPress is available globally, in many many languages, and is created globally – by people from all over the world. In theory, it has gone beyond borders. But does that mean that there are no walls?
Let’s talk about that.
WordPress Security for All: You Won’t Believe How Simple It Can Be
Reports show that WordPress is the most hacked platform on the web. But that doesn’t mean your site has to be hacked too. In fact, keeping WordPress safe is pretty easy. After a decade of hosting and maintaining WordPress sites at illuminea, many of which are highly targeted by hackers and have even been shared on the dark web, we’ve had to learn how to keep them secure without going crazy. We’ve found that there are a few simple measures that site owners can take that cover 90% of the security issues. We’ll also look at tools and tweaks that can harden and protect your sites even more. Most of these steps can be implemented by beginner users, while some need more experience.
Zero Carbon WordPress
The internet appears clean on the surface but in fact contributes 300m tonnes of CO2 a year, or 1% of global emissions.
WordPress is one of the world’s largest communities of “web creators”, shaping the code, design and content of roughly a quarter of websites worldwide.
Inspired by the landmark agreement made in Paris in November 2015, we should now unite here in Paris in 2017 as a global community to use the power of WordPress to help tackle climate change. We can harness our collective power to publish content that inspires and educates, to design and develop sites that use less energy, to power our hosting on clean renewable energy sources, to run sustainable web businesses and organise green events as a community.
WordPress can lead the way and set an example globally in how to move towards a zero web, and a zero world.