Category Archives: WordPress Interview

WordPress is not only a platform for a techie guy, it also helps a person to select their career path.

Afsana

Afsana

Today we are going to conduct the interview of Afsana Multani. She is a WordPress learner and DotStore Customer Support Executive at Multidots. She was a lead Organiser at various WordCamps in the year 2018 and 2019. She loves to travel, read, ride, and always ready to face new challenges.

Introduction

I am an Artist by Hobby and a WordPress enthusiast by profession. I am a Customer Support Executive at thedotstore, which is a venture of Multidots inc. Also, I recently started an initiative called “iamwplearner.” I started this as a knowledge-sharing activity with a dream of helping the local as well as WordPress community through different channels and languages.

I enjoy contributing to WPCommunity in different ways. I am a Lead Organiser at WCAhmedabad 2018, Speaker at WCKolkata 2019, Volunteer at many WordCamps including #WCEU2018/2019. Organizer and Speaker at Local Meetup group in my city.

My hobby is traveling and explore, reading stories, riding a motorcycle, ready for new challenges and a Life-Long Learner.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. It was my first WordCamp Ahmedabad 2017, I have volunteered. Got an opportunity to meet WordPress lovers, Automattician – Happiness Engineer, Nomad. I was like- what are you saying! For me, it was a dream. At the same time, I decided to be a Happiness Engineer one day. WordPress is not only a platform for a techie guy; it also helps a person like me to select their career path. https://heropress.com/essays/its-never-too-late-to-start-the-right-career-path/

In November 2017, WordPress was at version 4.9.1, and I was getting in. I spend days tweaking and learning about customer support, forums, and how to get involved. I wanted to be a part of the WordPress team. So that’s how I started learning Customer Support and the journey begins.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. The most interesting thing about Customer Support is to help customers, and I enjoy chatting and providing online responses.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Yes, I have attended many WordCamps, also a Meetup and WordCamp Organiser, volunteer, and speaker. It improves teamwork, networking, and many other soft skills. It removes stage fear being a speaker also learned excellent mentoring or managerial skills being an organizer. 🙂
Afsana Workstation

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. Sure, I would love to share pictures of my workspace. But it changes periodically to get fresh air—:) Positive side of remote working.
Afsana Workstation

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I have used ZenDesk, Crisp Online Chat and a HelpScout for Email communication with the customers.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I found WordPress as a pretty comfortable place to use and work.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I liked Advanced Gutenberg Blocks, its interesting.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I have used shared hosting and managed hosting as well.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Amazing! I do enjoy working with WordPress as a Customer Support Executive ! 🙂

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. Yes, I like to be a Happiness Engineer with an Automattic team one day. 🙂

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. It inspires newbie, how to get started, and many different ways to explore.

I Have Loved Every Minute Spend With WordPress

Mustaasam-Saleem

Mustaasam Saleem

Mustaasam Saleem
Today we are going to list the interview of Mustaasam Saleem from Karachi, Pakistan. He is a Team Lead WordPress Community at Cloudways. He loves to hangout and listen music. He helped many people by sharing knowledge with the WordPress Community.

Introduction

Hello everyone!

I’m Mustaasam Saleem and I work for Cloudways as the WordPress community manager. I have been associated with the WordPress community for the last four years and I have loved every second of it!

I live in Karachi, Pakistan. It’s mostly hot and humid here but I love tropical weather. It’s a great experience for me to be here in Pakistan and still be connected to all the wonderful people of WordPress. I love what I do and I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I graduated back in 2015 as a Software Engineer and in early 2016, Cloudways thought I might be a good fit for their WordPress community team. I tried not to let them down.

As a student, I was never a nerdy kid so I spent a lot of time creating and maintaining Facebook groups for my school, college, and alumni.

From there, I developed a strong affection towards building and nurturing communities. I wanted to create an environment where members of my community help each other out in solving their problems.

I think this is what got me in Cloudways.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. I remember March 31st, 2016 when we were a bit behind our quarterly targets. It was only two months since I joined Cloudways. Everyone was trying hard to achieve but all of a sudden, I had an idea and executed. Within a few hours, we got 300% more than the usual and in the end, we were up with a single digit. That was a great success for me.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. As I mentioned, I live in Karachi. Though there is not a lot happening here in terms of WordPress events but I try to make most of whatever takes place in my country.

I had the honor of attending the first-ever WordCamp held in my country, WordCamp Karachi. The event was surprisingly amazing, considering this was the first of its kind in this region.

Then in 2019, Cloudways gave me the opportunity to attend WordCamp Europe and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. I think it’s fair to say that those 3 days were the best days of my career. I met with our customers and received priceless feedback.

Yes, there were many star-struck moments, especially when I met Matt Mullenweg.

The most valuable takeaway from these events is that nothing can replace physical interaction. No matter how much you stay connected online, you would never really know a person unless you meet them in person.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. My workstation is simple, just a laptop and headphones to avoid distractions.
Mustaasam-Saleem

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. So my job requires me to use a lot of tools otherwise I wouldn’t be able to get anything done. Here some of my favorites:

  • Google docs, spreadsheets, etc.
  • Sublime as a code editor as well as an alternative to old-school Notepad.
  • Photoshop.
  • Slack & Skype for communication.
  • Ahref & KWfinder.
  • PowerBI, MixPanel, and the list go on.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Well, this one’s tricky. So WordPress is great but it isn’t perfect and neither are most things. There are some things that I always wanted WordPress to have and I have been vocal about them as well.

After installing WordPress, most of the WordPress users install a caching and a security plugin. Considering this, I always wonder why WordPress does not provide them natively? There are obvious reasons for this, some say keep WordPress as basic as it can be and let the users choose their own. Anyhow, fingers crossed.

Additionally, I would love to see a system that notifies if a vulnerable plugin is found in my existing WordPress website.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Usually, my WordPress setup comprises of:

  • Astra, GeneratePress, or OceanWP
  • Elementor – All in one solution to my needs
  • LiteSpeed Cache, Autoptimize, or WP Rocket
  • Rank Math SEO
  • iThemes Security, All In One WP Security, or Malcare

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. Well, since I work for Cloudways, I don’t have much of a choice, do I? But even if I did, I wouldn’t use any other hosting provider. Why? Because unlike any other hosting solution, Cloudways has partnered up with 5 different infrastructure provides:

1. Amazon Web Services
2. Google Cloud
3. DigitalOcean
4. Linode
5. Vultr

Cloudways ensures that by partnering with these infrastructures, it provides hosting that is not only high in performance, but is also scalable and secure.

Cloudways acts as a mediator between YOU and the cloud server to manage hosting hassles so that you can focus on growing your business while enjoying the benefits of cloud hosting.

For anyone choosing a WordPress hosting provider, I always ask them to consider web hosting as their business partner. It should be reliable and scalable so that you can easily scale it as your business grows. Here are a few suggestions to consider while getting a WordPress hosting:

  • Is it scalable, flexible, and highly available?
  • Offers data-center in your targeted audience country with maximum uptime.
  • Budget-friendly.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. It’s been more than four years since I’ve been working at Cloudways as a WordPress community expert and, as I mentioned above, I have loved every minute of it. Much of my love for my work has stemmed from the work culture at Cloudways. Our roles are not restricted to our job titles so we are always asked to innovate and come up with ideas to not only grow Cloudways but to grow ourselves as well.

Just to mention, I maintain a Facebook group “WordPress Nerds” having 7.5k+ WordPressers. So take a few minutes of your time and join the fun. 🙂

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. Currently, I enjoy being a part of the WordPress community. I love the fact that people know me for the work I do and associate me with Cloudways more often than not. I plan to keep contributing to the community but maybe in a different way in the future. Let’s see 🙂

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Well, there are a number of people who I can nominate but since I am allowed to nominate just one, I would like to mention Mohammed Moeez, owner of WPblog, one of the most emerging WordPress blogs actively contributing towards the WordPress community.

I Love Helping People Succeed in Business Website and Providing Leads

Tevya Washburn

Tevya Washburn

tevya-profile
Today we are going to list the interview of Tevya Washburn from Boise, Idaho Area. He has a Bachelor’s degree in History. He has shared how his life has changed after knowing WordPress. He loves to help businesses, freelancers, and go-getters succeed.

Introduction

I’m an Idaho farm boy who got into computers, the web, and eventually WordPress.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I’ve been interested in computers since I was a kid, and the web since it became available at our local library. I built websites in HTML in the days of Geocities.

I got a Bachelor’s degree in History, thinking I was going to become a lawyer. Several career directions later I was working for a bank in a job I hated. I realized that people kept asking me to build websites for them, why not make it a business? Shortly before that time I’d built my first WordPress website, and just like that, my business was born.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. That’s tough. I think every challenging project is interesting. The latest challenge I’ve been enjoying is setting up the GiveWP donations plugin for non-profits, and building a plugin to supplement it to allow donors to be given access to exclusive content. We’re not there yet, but should soon be able to release the plugin and give more non-profits additional flexibility when working with GiveWP.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Yes, I started the Boise, Idaho area WordPress meetups. Within 2 years of starting that, Idaho had it’s first WordCamp, as a direct result of those meetups I started. I wasn’t able to be there for it, but I have attended WordCamp Salt Lake City twice. Once in 2011 as an attendee and again in 2017 as a presenter. I learned lots of useful stuff. But most importantly learned (or relearned) just how awesome the WordPress community is.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. Right now it’s just my 2015 MacBook Pro on my lap, wherever I sit. I’m traveling with my family for a year. As I write this we’re on the shores of Lake Atitlan, Guatemala for a few weeks after six months in Playa del Carmen Mexico. Here’s my latest”view from the office” photo:
tevya

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Divi is our favorite tool. We often design sites right in the Divi builder. Why mock it up in Photoshop first, when you can just design on WP so that your finished design can be immediately deployed. We also really like the Affinity Designer and Affinity Photo. Most of the tools of Photoshop and Illustrator for way cheaper. Plus Affinity Designer is easier and more intuitive to use than Illustrator.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I think we’re going to see this, as smart people are working on it: i’d really like a notifications system and to have all notices, notifications, etc in there, instead of jamming up the WP admin area.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Wow, that’s a hard question! There is such variety in plugins and their purposes. We use Gravity Forms on almost every site, and love it for a lot of reasons. But there are a number of other plugins I love for various other situations and use-cases. I guess Gravity Forms gets the nod here, since it’s so flexible.

We use it for our signup and payment forms on our website, email newsletter lead capture on many of our client’s sites, and a myriad of other applications and uses elsewhere. It’s just so darn flexible and so widely supported, it comes in handy almost any time you need some kind of user input.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. Flywheel is the easiest, Kinsta is the fastest, CloudWays is cheapest while still being a solid platform (there’s cheaper, but it’s all terrible).

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. SYes, I love it! I love helping people succeed in business and other endeavors by ensuring their website is running great, providing leads, etc.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I have some ideas that I think will really be big, but I’m not ready to reveal them yet. One thing I’d really like to do when my company has the budget is give back to the WP community by sponsoring Jeff Chandler in his resurrection of the WordPress Weekly podcast (whatever he calls this new incarnation), as well as paying some developers to create and maintain some plugins that I’d like to use, but also feel should just be available free to the community.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. How about Topher Derosia? He’s the guy who started HeroPress, he’s got a great story.

NOTE: I don’t know what the “Events Images” requested below are. If you need them, please message me with more details so I know what to provide.

I Discovered The Joys of WordPress in About 2007

barbara

Barbara Saul

barbara saul
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Barbara Saul from Kent, United Kingdom. She was a Speaker at WordCamp Brighton 2016, WordCamp Manchester 2017, MC at WC Brighton 2019, volunteer at WC London 2016, Volunteer Organiser at WC London 2017, Deputy Lead Organiser – WordCamp London 2018 and Co-Lead in 2019 and 2020!

Introduction

Starting with tables and Dreamweaver in the 1990s I then discovered the joys of WordPress in about 2007. I did not like it to begin with but soon came to love the ability for my clients to update their own content, and more. I’ve used most themes out there but settled with Genesis and came to the WordPress community through that Slack group.

I live in Kent in the UK though was born in the west-country, have one cat, one teenager at home, one at uni, and a husband 😉

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. When I had to stop commuting for health reasons I bought myself a Sony Vaio laptop, Dreamweaver and Fireworks, and some huge books to teach myself how to make websites. We used tables in those days, but I stuck with it through.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. Hmm – two things. WordCamp London – from volunteer in 2016 to co-lead organiser in 2019. I absolutely love working on this and cannot imagine not being involved for as many years as I can get away with! But also, working with WP&UP is the highlight; I’m content manager there but also get stuck in with whatever Dan allows! With both projects I work with him, Dan Maby, and he is truly one of the best people on this earth.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Always! I’ve spoken, been an MC, volunteer and organiser for a few UK WordCamps. I went to my first WordCamp Europe in 2019 with WP&UP and I loved it. The community is just wonderful, totally accepting and friendly.

It was really daunting to go to my first WordCamp as I’m neither developer nor designer, so I volunteered – what better way to feel you belong. And not looked back since. I felt so welcome that now I feel that not only do I belong, but that I am accepted to organise these things! Utterly awesome!

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. I mostly work from the sofa or from bed these days, so my workstation is very basic – a simple laptop on a tray, with wireless mouse. I miss having a desk and proper office set-up but actually, everything is on the laptop that I need.
Barbara Saul

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I mostly work from the sofa or from bed these days, so my workstation is very basic – a simple laptop on a tray, with wireless mouse. I miss having a desk and proper office set-up but actually, everything is on the laptop that I need.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. More Gutenberg stuff – I’m a bit late to the party, having avoided it but am slowly getting to grips and turning off that Classic Editor site by site.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I have adored working with StudioPress Genesis themes for many years now and cannot see that changing – always reliable and continuing development. And the Genesis Slack group is mind-blowingly awesome and welcoming. As for plugins – I have my usual favourites – Wordfence, UpdraftPlus, and others, but review these for each project. I’m about to play with the Google Site Kit following a suggestion from Tim Nash.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I use a few hosts, some for historical reasons (EZPZ Hosting), and others more recently discovered – 34SP and Guru – very happy with both so far. I especially like working with 34SP as they support the WordPress community here in the UK so thoroughly.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. At present I work in many aspects of WordPress – a simple site build or two each month, maintaining and supporting clients’ sites, the occasional rescue or MOT, and now writing content for clients as well as copy-editing/proofreading. Combining this with working with WP&UP and then with WordCamp London – well, what more could I ask for?

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I would love to work more with WP&UP as I believe in what we’re doing there so very much. Now and then I wonder about a job with an agency or such but the right role has not quite come up yet…

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Dan Maby – the founder of WP&UP – because this is an important initiative for everyone within the WordPress community. Or perhaps Tim Nash. Actually there are so many…

I Love To Explore Latest Trends In WordPress

Alexandru Covtun

Alexander Covtun

Alexandru Covtun

Today we are going to list the interview of Alexander Covtun from Chisinau, Moldova. He is a Founder of WPDandy(https://wpdandy.com) which provides services such as WordPress maintenance, management, and support services. He loves to read the latest trends in web development and SEO in his free time.

Introduction

Founder of WPDandy, a WordPress maintenance, management and support services providing company. He has been working with WordPress since 2010. In his free time, he enjoys reading about the latest trends in web development, penetration testing, and SEO.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I originally discovered WordPress while looking for a content management system for one of my projects. Intrigued by how it worked, I started like many others do — learning how WordPress works through developing WordPress websites

I started using what I knew to provide development services on freelance platforms. For the next decade, I mostly concentrated on the lesser-known, yet still critically important parts of WordPress – security and speed optimization.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. Well, in my opinion, each and every project is interesting. Anyway, there was one project that challenged me the most – a multifunctional WordPress website for a tractor manufacturing company. We had to do a lot of optimization in order to achieve decent results in its performance.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I’ve attended a couple of WordCamps and meetups during the past few years. My biggest takeaway from all of them is how important a loving community can be for any project.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

Work Station - Alexandru Covtun
A. Pretty simple, just essential stuff.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Git, Local by Flywheel, Sublime Text, Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I think a built in media libraries folders would be a very helpful feature.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I often work with WordPress websites speed optimization and must say that Autoptimize plugin is very useful in this kind of situation.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. Getflywheel is one of my favorite.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yep!

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I look forward to continuing to provide outstanding WordPress development, maintenance and management services for all of the many iterations of WordPress that exist and will be created in the future.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Sabrina Zeidan – a WordCamp organizer/speaker, WordPress plugin developer, and just a great person.

I Fell In Love With WordPress Ecosystem And The Community Around It

Vito Peleg

Vito Peleg

Vito Peleg - Vito Peleg
Today we are going to list the interview of Vito Peleg from London, United Kingdom. He is the Founder of WP FeedBack. He has contributed his efforts and time to create a new home for WordPress community. His passion for WordPress field grew with each project.

Introduction

I’m the founder of WP FeedBack – A free platform designed to be the new home for the WordPress community. With unique tools that I always wish existed with the goal of helping all of us build better websites and grow our businesses.

WP FeedBack PRO is a platform that allows WordPress freelancers and agencies deliver project smoothly to their clients, visually.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I’ve built my first website on “Geocities” almost 20 years ago – Featuring my friends’ skateboarding crew when I was 14 yo. Since then I’ve built more than 250 websites. Some for me but most for small-medium businesses, fashion brands and startups.

As a former touring (and broke) musician, I looked for ways to allow me to work while I was touring the world playing my RNR to thousands of people and the web was, once again, there for me.

I started to build websites for clients from the back of the van (and sometimes the odd broom closet) and my passion for the field grew with each project.

When the band finally broke up I moved from the van to a tiny room at home, then to a larger room with one employee sitting right next to me all the way to having my own agency with 12 guys on my team.

Even though I’ve had my share of experimentation between different platforms and building methods (I even gave Wix a shot for half a website), I fell in love with the WordPress ecosystem and the community around it.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

Vito Peleg
A. I have! as an attendee, speaker and sponsor.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. It was our biggest client project – We built a marketplace for interior designers, where users can collaborate with their designer of choice on customising their own home.

We incorporated Unity for 3D objects to give users a full design experiece without meeting each other.

We also incorporated 10,000 product through Woo that were integrated into the 3D feature so that once the design is over, users can buy the entire room (with items from 100+ different suppliers) with 1 click.

We worked on the project for 3 years being the digital partner for the client – It tool a lot of innovative thinking and WordPress allowed to test out ideas rapidly instead of building something for a year that no one end up caring about (which luckily wasnt the case here).

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A.
Vito Peleg

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. We’re still using WordPress daily – Especially through our new free platform that takes what you know about BuddyPress to a whole new level.

Though now we also choose other tools and languages, frameworks and tools based on our expanding needs.

For example, our centralised PRO dashboard (allowing users to manage their entire network of websites from 1 place), is built with Laravel and React but we created integration through the REST API to connect it to our WordPress plugin.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Hmm, Better resource mangament at scaled up websites – Introducing new concpet like headless CMS is definitely the future as users are looking for fasters solutions.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I’m a big fan of Gravity Forms and Toolset – During my agency days, these 2 tools alone saved me at least a few months of my life 🙂

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. That’s dependant on the needs of the client and the website – But if you can afford it, use Kinsta – That’s my personal choice.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. I definitely do! Through my journey from a freelancer to agency to product, there were times that I wasn’t satisfied with how my business and career was going.

But since launching WP FeedBack last year, it’s been a true pleasure to come to work every morning.

A lot of it is thanks to the amazing power of the WordPress community – How they embraced us and how our clients support us through the growth stages, that can be a little sticky sometimes.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I came from the music industry so I got all of my needs of being a “rebel” through that 🙂

I am very happy where I am at the moment and WP FeedBack is my project for the next 10 years, so I remain focused and working toward our monthly, quartarly, yearly, 5 years and 10 year goals.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Have a look here – I’m sure you’ll see some familiar faces and I’m happy to do an intro to any of these guys: https://wpfeedback.co/#coreadmins

I Learned The In’s and Out’s of WP Core to Build Countless Projects

jan koch

Jan Koch

jan koch

Today we are going to list the interview of Jan Koch from Emden Area, Germany. He is a Lead Web Developer at punktbar & WordPress agency owner at WP Mastery. He creates a custom WordPress plugin to enhance the functionality of the WordPress website.

Introduction

I’m a WordPress developer from Germany, serve as CTO for WP FeedBack, run virtual conferences, and run an agency.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I first got in touch with WP during my integrated degree in Business Informatics in 2012. Since then, I learned the In’s and Out’s of WP core and used it to build countless projects. Hard to believe that it’s over 8 years now.

Soon after finishing my exam, I started my own web design business using WordPress to build websites. First, I built sites for friends and local business owners. Over time, that expanded to working with exciting entrepreneurs all across the globe.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. I have two projects that stand out to me. First, it was building the infrastructure and hosting my own virtual summit – the WP Agency Summit – in 2019. That was a virtual conference attracting over 2000 registrations and being sponsored by companies like Automattic or Cloudways.

Second, I have to mention WP FeedBack here. It’s an amazing plugin and platform helping WordPress professionals get feedback from their customers and I have the privilege to be working with their team and serve as their CTO.

It is exciting to be working on our new WP FeedBack network and to help expand the functionality of the free and Pro plugin.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Yes, I have been at WordCamp Europe in 2019 and met a TON of inspiring people there. Amongst them was Vito Peleg, who ended up hiring me for WP FeedBack, Akshat Choudhary from Blogvault, Oliver Sild from WebARX, and Aaqib Gadit, the CEO of Cloudways.

The talks themselves where pretty good but I found the networking experience to be so much more valuable. In fact, I would have never gotten my position at WP FeedBack nor would have run the WP Agency Summit if I didn’t attend WordCamp Europe.

So highly recommend going to WordCamps and will make it a habit for myself as well.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

jan workstation
A. I have rebuild my office space in a new place. It’s still work in progress as you can tell from the picture (please ignore cable management lol) but it’s coming along nicely and makes me more productive than before 🙂

Highlights are the sit-stand desk from Jarvis with two 28” 4K monitors, the Klipsch sound system, and the self-made acoustic panels on the walls for better audio when recording or during calls.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. My staples are a custom Docker image for local WordPress development, VS Code, Jenkins for automated deployments, and Github for code versioning.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. It will be interesting to see how Gutenberg develops over time and whether headless WordPress will become more used broadly.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. As for themes, I rely on Astra Pro because of it’s flexibility and performance. Page Builder Framework is a nice tool as well!

For plugins, I have to say that Page Builder Cloud has been a game changer for me. It allows me to build layouts locally and then transfer them to the staging or live website easily.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I use and highly recommend Cloudways. I’ve got two servers with 10-12 websites with Cloudways and use them since 2015.

I love how stable, performant, yet affordable their platform is. They’ve upped the support quality quite a bit as well.

With their Cloudways Mavericks program, which I am a part of, they now also heavily invest in giving back to the community and helping in educating their customers about best practices, web dev trends, and more.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Absolutely.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. For the next years, I am focusing on WP FeedBack and helping the company grow as good as I can. That means, providing the best customer experience possible and delivering outstanding value to our users 🙂

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. I would recommend you reach out to Vito Peleg if you haven’t already.

WordPress Permits You to Find Application For Your Creative Desires

Denis Yanchevskiy

Denis Yanchevskiy

Denis Yanchevskiy
Today we are going to list the interview of Denis Yanchevskiy from Krasnogorsk, Russia. He is a WordPress Developer. he has created several WordPress plugins that have 8000+ active installations. His motto is to help maximum Russian speaking WordPress community by answering users’ questions in support forums.

Introduction

About the past 5 years I have been helping to evolve the Russian-speaking WordPress community by answering user questions in support forums, helping with translations of WordPress, plugins and themes, and participating in the organization of meetups and WordCamps in Moscow.

I live in a small town near Moscow. I like the local nature, it allows you to make excellent family walks and one or two day trips.

I don’t participate very much in social networks, but you can always find me on Instagram ( @yanchevskiy ). There I publish photos from WordPress events and everyday life.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I was fascinated by computers from childhood and I was completely sure that I wanted to be a programmer.

At university, I graduated from computer science. By the way, it was in those days that I started my first personal blog and got acquainted with WordPress :).

My first work was related to Joomla and Drupal, but after a couple of years I got into a company working on development on WordPress, and that is where my work as a WordPress developer began.

After that there were periods of remote work and full-time freelance, but they were somehow related with WordPress.

If we talk about the community, then my acquaintance began with support forums, it turned out that I know the answers to many user questions :).

Then I wanted my favorite plugins to be translated into my native language. And then I got ideas for my own plugins. And now you are in the cycle of events, you are recording a training video for WordPress.TV or you are writing a patch for the kernel or organizing a WordCamp or doing something else.

All this is very addictive and at some point you understand that this is not just a hobby, but a way of life.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. The website of a network publisher comes to mind. This is a large news site with many types of content: news, long-reads, tests, surveys, contests, special projects, photo galleries and advertising places and integrations.

This publisher was quite active (about 1,500 news items were published per month) and one of the leading ones in the region (approximately 500,000 people visited it per month).

This project allowed me to better understand the internal structure of WordPress and its optimization for relatively large loads.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

Denis Yanchevskiy events
A. I try to attend the maximum number of WordPress events held in Russia, but I usually do not consider usefulness the main criterion. Most of them I attend because of the people and the atmosphere. When you often attend such events, they are more like meeting old friends than some formal event :).

But of course, WordCamps and meetups are useful. They allow you to get to know new people and get new customers.

For example, in Russia we have only two WordCamps per year and people come from all over the country. It is hard to imagine in what other situation everyone could get together.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. I have a usual workplace, like an office, except that it is located in an apartment 🙂

I don’t have a big monitor or some cool armchair or super powerful computer. I consider a computer as an ordinary working tool, which should fulfill its function and nothing more.

Of the interesting, probably only a yellow duck. If you’ve ever heard of “rubber duck debugging”, I think you know her 🙂

Sometimes it seems to me that this is the wisest duck that knows the answers to all (well, or almost all) questions 😀

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Windows, NetBeans IDE for writing code, Figma for working with site layouts and FastStone Capture (this is a small program that can do just a little like a Swiss knife: measure size, determine color, take screenshots with captions, record videos, etc.

For communication and teamwork, I use Telegram, Slack and Google Docs.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I think WordPress should pay more attention to the SEO features, expand the functions of Gutenberg’s idea as the editor of the whole site and improve the features of custom fields and customizer.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. On almost every site I use the Advanced Custom Fields plugin. It perfectly extends the features of custom fields and has many additions.

For contact forms, I use Contact Form 7. It is flexible and convenient for customization.

And I also use the small DCO Insert Analytics Code plugin. This is my own plugin, which I use to easily insert a variety of analytics codes on the site.

I do not use ready-made themes, since my work is related to the development of an individual theme for each project.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I use and recommend Beget hosting to my clients, but hosting is a rather intimate thing, which is worth choosing for yourself.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Definitely. WordPress is the most popular CMS in the world and this allows you to always find application for your creative desires.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. Perhaps I will someday start professionally leading a YouTube channel, a podcast, or educating people. This is all very interesting too.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. – Artem Abramovich ( https://profiles.wordpress.org/artabr/ ) — He leads the most popular YouTube channel about WordPress in Russia.
– Alexsander Parfilov ( https://profiles.wordpress.org/donatory/ ) — He leads the largest YouTube channel about Elementor in Russia.

You can also try contacting with https://profiles.wordpress.org/sergeybiryukov/ and https://profiles.wordpress.org/fierevere/ but as far as I know, they don’t like giving interviews.

WordCamps and Meetups are Useful to Know New Developers Community

WordCamp Montreal

Michelle Frechette

Michelle Frechette
Today we are going to list the interview of Michelle Frechette from Hilton, New York. She is a Photographer at Click Happy Designs, Organizer at WordCamp US, and the Head of Customer Success at Impress.org. She has several years of experience in freelancing using WordPress.

Introduction

I completed my MBA in Marketing, E-Commerce and Information Systems at the University of Rochester’s Simon School of Business. I have over twenty years of experience in higher education; ten years owning a web design and marketing company; and I currently serve as the Head of Customer Success for Impress.org (developers of GiveWP.com and WPBusinessReviews.com).

I love public speaking and sharing knowledge. I’ve spoken at conferences all over North America, including many WordCamps. You can find many of my talks recorded on WordPress.tv including “Little Things That Make a Big Difference,” “Hidden Features of WordPress Revealed,” and “How to Client-proof Your Site,” as well as panel discussions on ethics, marketing, page builders, and women in technology.

I’m the podcast barista at WPCoffeeTalk.com where I get to interview people all over the World about WordPress.

I am the author “A Good Firm Handshake (and other essential business tips)” available on Amazon.com.

I’m passionate about kindness. I love sharing anything WordPress. I’m an avid community-builder.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I had been freelancing using WordPress for several years when I met the team at GiveWP in Ottawa, Canada, at a WordCamp in 2017.

I talked to them about how much I enjoyed using GiveWP on my nonprofit client websites and mentioned that if they ever had an opening, I’d love to work for them. I became the Head of Customer Success in January 2018. WordCamps are a great place to meet people and maybe even find your next career connection!
michels

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. Being an organizer for any WordCamp has been amazing, but being an organizer for WordCamp US 2019 and now 2020 has been beyond my expectations. Second to that, I’d have to say keynote speaking and, of course, working with the amazing customers at GiveWP!

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I am the lead organizer for the Rochester, NY meetup, and I speak and attend WordCamps all over North America. I learn something new and amazing at every meetup and WordCamp I attend.

My biggest takeaway from all of them is how resourceful, helpful, and generous the WordPress community is. I wish that every WordPress user knew how much they could learn if they joined their local meetup or attended a WordCamp.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

wordspace Michelle
A. You can see in the photo that I have my podcasting equipment affixed to my desk. Also, my bulletin board is covered in Wapuu pins!.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I’ve been getting better and better at using the WordPress block editor (from the Gutenberg project). I’ve been a huge Divi fan for years, too. Outside of those, I love using Slack for communication, Trello for collaboration, and Twitter for staying connected to the larger community.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Two things I would add to WordPress functionality: 1) I would make it so that you couldn’t add an image to the gallery without adding alt-text. That would be a huge step toward accessibility. 2) I would make the permalink structure default setting be the post name just to make it easier for new users.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I use Divi the most as a theme for its flexibility, although I’ve been teaching myself other page builders for more diversity in my work. I love GiveWP for all my client/personal fundraising projects, Yoast for SEO, and WordFence for security.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I’ve fallen in love with managed WordPress hosting. I used to manage all the updates and backups myself, but with working full-time and doing personal client work and podcasting on the side, managed is worth the investment and peace of mind.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. I absolutely love my role both at Impress.org and in the WordPress community.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I’d love to help WPandUP.org meet their fundraising goals to help the WordPress community with mental health, physical health, business health, and skills health. The work they do is so needed in our space, and their commitment to our community is really amazing.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Dan Maby (wpandup.org) Michele Jones (cantspeakgeek.com)

I Enjoy Teaching People How to Make Web Pages with WordPress

Topher DeRosia

Topher DeRosia

Topher DeRosia
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Topher DeRosia from Grand Rapids, Michigan. He is the curator of HeroPress and Developer Advocate at BigCommerce. He has experience in WordPress, PHP, MySQL, HTML, and CSS. The series of jobs and freelancing began when he quit college and has lasted 25 years.

Introduction

Topher DeRosia is Senior Developer Advocate at BigCommerce, where he works to enhance the communication between BigCommerce and developers. He brings more than 25 years of experience as a web developer, over a decade of which has been spent building out WordPress sites.

In addition, Topher has extensive knowledge of WooCommerce development, helped make Easy Digital Downloads and curates HeroPress.com. Fun fact: Topher is responsible for making the official International Space Station Windows95 desktop theme.

He currently lives in Grand Rapids, MI with his wife Cate and two daughters, Ema and Sophia. You can find Topher on Twitter (@topher1kenobe) talking about eCommerce, web development, general technology, and culture. He’s also a regular on the Make WordPress and Post Status Slack channels.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I was in college studying Something Else when I fell in love with the web. This was in 1994, and we got email first, then telnet, then Gopher, and finally access to Lynx, the web browser that worked on our VAX/VMS mainframe.

I began making web pages for fun, then for money, and I also enjoyed teaching people how to make web pages.

Once I quit college I simply started taking contracts to build web sites. I worked briefly for the Kellogg’s corporation (the cereal people) and then began a series of jobs and freelancing that has lasted 25 years.

Q. Whatís the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A.I was a team lead for a project that was building a multi-site network for a newspaper corporation. We built the main site for the main newspaper in the nation’s capitol (It wasn’t the US) and they took the network and built sites for papers all over the country.

I was in the US, my project manager was in Canada, by front-end dev was in Poland, and my backend dev was in Indonesia. It was fun coordinating all the work,

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

Topher DeRosia
A. I’ve been to over 60 WordCamps, including WCEU in Vienna, WordCamp Pune in India, and every WCUS so far.

I always learn something, but at this stage WordCamps are much more about networking and meeting people. I enjoy meeting people from all over the world.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

tophers desktop
A. It’s a small desk in the corner of a large room. I have a fairly normal 4k monitor, a macbook pro, and some audio equipment because I do screencasts.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I’m an old developer, so I use VIM as my IDE. I like Local by Flywheel and DesktopServer for local development. I typically only code in PHP. I use GIMP for graphics when I need it. My day job doesn’t include much development, so I tend to use Google Apps a lot.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I can’t think of anything right away.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Well, I work for BigCommerce, so I need to say the BigCommerce for WordPress plugin is GREAT. 🙂 I also like WP Rocket for caching. WP Draw Attention is wonderfully interesting.

bigcommerce
draw-attention
wp-rocket.me

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I use quite a variety as I’m interested in how they work. I’ve been a Dreamhost user for 20 years now. I also use Siteground regularly. I’ve worked with Flywheel, WP Engine, Convesio, and Pagely. I admire Kinsta though I haven’t worked with them.

I don’t think I can recommend any single host for everyone. They each have places where they excel, and you should find which one fits your project best.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. I do! My day job has only a small slice for WordPress now, but I also run HeroPress.com, which brings me great joy and enriches my life tremendously.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I’ve always wanted to be a cabinet maker and a blacksmith.

I love Solving Problems and Helping People

joe casabona banner

Joe Casabona

joe casabona
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Joe Casabona from Downingtown, Pennsylvania. He is a Developer, Podcast Consultant, Educator, and Author. He has great experience in teaching at a collegiate level, developing WordPress websites and running podcasts.

Introduction

I’ve been a web developer since 2001, ever since my church came to me and offered to pay me to make a website. I’m an online educator now because I’ve always enjoyed teaching, and did so at the college-level while I was pursing my Master’s Degree in Software Engineering.

After that, I stayed on as an adjunct faculty at The University of Scranton, until I moved away in 2016. I decided then I wanted to keep teaching, and that doing it online was my best bet.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I’ve been a web developer since 2001, ever since my church came to me and offered to pay me to make a website. I’m an online educator now because I’ve always enjoyed teaching, and did so at the college-level while I was pursing my Master’s Degree in Software Engineering.

After that, I stayed on as an adjunct faculty at The University of Scranton, until I moved away in 2016. I decided then I wanted to keep teaching, and that doing it online was my best bet.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. 2 come to mind. One was for a voter’s guide (where political candidates fill out a survey and the results are displayed/searchable). I had to talk to both an API and a MS Database, so getting data in and formatting it was interesting.

I also worked on a couple of great Disney websites that had interesting and complex challenges – like showing specific data based on user role, translations, and more.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I frequently speak at both meetups and WordCamps. As far as learning goes, I learn a great deal in the hallway track and in one-on-one conversations, both for my business and target customers, and how to work better!

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. I actually have a full breakdown of the desk(s) here: https://casabona.org/desk/
Joe Casabona workstation

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I’m usually in ScreenFlow, Final Cut Pro, and Garageband a lot of my days. When coding I work in VS Code, and for writing I use Ulysses and MS Word.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Better onboarding. A common cry in the WP community is, “it’s easy.” But it’s not. Especially not compared to Wix or Squarespace. And it’s not just about building the website in the editor. It’s about all the moving parts.

We shouldn’t need to rely on hosting companies to make a good onboarding process for WordPress.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Astra Pro and Beaver Builder is a winning combination. They are both so open and flexible, I can build basically any kind of page I want without having to worry too much about the code. That lets me put my coding hat on only for interesting problems.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I use LiquidWeb, which you should absolutely use if you have a WooCommerce site. If you’re a freelancers or just need to host your own, I generally recommend SiteGround or Flywheel.

I do recommend this to my clients if they want to switch to a better hosting service. I particularly like their Grow Big package which allows more than one website with a month’s backup.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes! I work for myself and I get to (more or less) make my own rules. I love solving problems and helping people.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. In the current field, I’d love to help more people launch podcasts and online courses (on top of WordPress of-course). In a different field, I’d love to open a cigar shop.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. N/A

I haven’t stopped learning ever

WCEU Yvette Sonneveld

Yvette Sonneveld

Yvette Sonneveld profile
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Yvette Sonneveld from Utrecht Province, Netherlands. She is an Inbound Marketer, Speaker, Workshop Leader, and Freelancer too. She loves to train, mentor and assist the business owners and professionals to optimize inbound marketing. She shared her experience on WordCamps and other events around Europe.

Introduction

Yvette Sonneveld is an inbound marketing specialist who has been using WordPress since 2005 and has been active in the #MakeWordPress global marketing team since 2017. She is an international speaker and has shared her expertise on WordCamps and other events around Europe.

She loves crafting online strategies, content and campaigns for small and medium sized service-based businesses. After office hours, she enjoys being out in nature, stretching like a pretzel during a yoga class and traveling the world.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. Way back in 1999, I worked as a product manager for a service-based business. We hired a temp to create a website for us, but he left before the site was completed. I visited the library, borrowed some books and finished the project. One thing led to another and before I knew I was creating websites for clients.

Most of those clients did not have a marketing strategy and got stuck when they needed to send me the copy for the website. Step by step I grew into an all-round digital marketer. Before I started doing this, I switched jobs every 18 months because there was not much new to learn. I haven’t stopped learning ever since I borrowed these first books on HTML, and that’s been more than 20 years ago.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. The most rewarding project I have been working on over the past few years is my involvement in the WordPress marketing team. It’s an incredibly friendly and nurturing group of people. I have learned tons, and it is partly because of members of this group that I found the courage to start speaking.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Yes. In 2015 I lived in a small island in the Caribbean: Curaçao. I was going through a bit of a hard time. I had been working as a freelance web designer and online marketeer for a number of years. My client base was growing, mostly by referrals, but for some reason I had trouble presenting myself as an experienced professional.

Yvette Sonneveld

Looking back, this had to do with the fact that I had taught myself basic design and coding skills. In a way I expected to be uncovered as a fraud any moment. To get out of that pattern, I traveled to the US all by myself to volunteer at WordCamp Miami. I had lots of fun but most of all I learned that my skillset measured up with people who had official educations.

And that I was not the only one who was self taught. I now know a lot of developers in their fourties are. That first WordCamp lead to attenting and volunteering at many other WordCamps and other conferences. When we moved back to The Netherlands in 2016, I was able to build a network and make lots of new friends by becoming active in the Dutch WordPress community.

I have been an organizer for WordCamp Utrecht twice, started speaking, landed freelance contracts and even a job because of it.

Long story short: If you’re working with WordPress, your self confidence could use a boost and you’d like to meet likeminded people, go volunteer at a WordCamp!

Q. What does your workstation look like?

Yvette Sonneveld workstation
A. I mainly work from home. I love collecting stickers at WordCamps.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Graphics
– Adobe Photoshop

Social Media (depending on project)
– Hootsuite
– Buffer
Project management (depending on project)
– Trello
– Asana

SEO research, tracking and reporting
– SERanking
– SEO Powersuite
– Google Analytics
– Google Search Console

Content readability
– Grammarly
– Hemingway App
– Yoast SEO plugin

CRM
-Hubspot

E-mail marketing
– MailChimp
– Sendinblue

WP Themes
– Thrive Themes
– Astra Theme

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I’d like to see a column with page loading speed for desktop and mobile on the pages and posts overview pages.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Themes
– Astra Theme: I have just started playing with this theme. I wanted to do more with Gutenberg and Thrive Themes did not really support that. So far I am impressed.
– Thrive Themes: I loved how versatile and conversion oriented it is, but I wanted to start using Gutenberg.

Plugins
– Google Sitekit, because it brings all Google features into the back-end of sites
– Ithemes Sync, so that I can keep sites updated from one central place
– Ithemes Security to keep sites secured
– Yoast SEO to optimize for top search engine results
– Hubspot to connect sites with the CRM
– MailChimp to generate leads
– SendinBlue to generate leads

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. My sites are hosted through https://wpsecuritylock.com/
For clients, I also have great experience with https://www.momwebs.com/ and https://vevida.com/en/

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes, totally!

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I’m not a 100% sure yet. I love being at the crossroads of marketing and technology but sometimes miss coding a bit. I may dive into coding again some day.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Have a chat with Alison Rothwell over at WP Fiddly Bits. She is running a WP Support Business and is lots of fun to chat with. She helps me showcase WordPress community members from all over the world on the WordPress blog. Also, reach out to Monique Dubbelman, a content strategist and web developer with a deep love for digital accessibility at BoeMedia.

WordPress Provides Me the Freedom to Spend Time With My loved Ones

igor benic

Igor Benić

Igor Benic
Today we are going to list the interview of Igor Benic from Croatia. He is helping other people to learn about WordPress development. He is a creator of Simple Giveways. He loves to create WordPress themes and Plugins.

Introduction

My name is Igor and I live in Croatia. I was always intrigued by computers and wanted to learn how they work. Started learning how websites are built while I was high school and after 4-5 years, I started working professionally in this field.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I started playing around with Photoshop to try and create some image manipulations. While learning that I saw others were doing web design with it. So I wanted to see how that was done as well.

I found a PS tool “Slice for Web” and I saw HTML being built with images. After that, I wanted to really know how this works so I learned HTML and CSS just enough to get me started. After that, I wanted to learn how a blog and other dynamic content is created.

Found PHP and MySQL tutorials so I started building custom solutions to manage content. Later on, through tutorials, I found out about WordPress. I installed it to see how it works and read the code to learn more. That’s how my journey in WordPress started somewhere around 11 years ago.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. There are several of projects, but on of the interesting ones that were done by me and where I have learned so much was the Bookcoverpedia project where people could buy book covers for their new books.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I have attended WordPress Zagreb meetup, WordCamp Croatia and WordCamp EU 2018. I always find useful talking to other people in the same industry and also meet with new people. We all have our own views on WordPress and all around it so it’s always fun to discuss some topics involving WordPress.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

station - Igor Benic

A. My workstation is pretty simple, I have a Macbook Pro mid-2015 retina and that’s all I have.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. My tools are PHPStorm, VS Code, Local by Fylwheel for some WordPress sites and I also use Trello for my personal projects.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I think the Field API is still something that we miss even though there are several frameworks and help with that. But when I work with my plugins, I don’t want to include more frameworks and create tech debt.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I like the most my own plugins of course since I believe in them providing a much easier to manage a part of the Business that a user is doing. Such are “Simple Cart”, “Simple Giveaways” and “Simple Sponsorships”.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I use my own Digital Ocean setup. I have worked with clients on several hosting providers such as WP Engine and Fylwheel and I liked them both. I would like to try Kinsta as well.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes, it provides me with the freedom to spend time with my loved ones when I want to.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I would like to have a plugin business and a SaaS one (authorsites.org) that provides enough income so I could employ a few more people and delegate some of the work I do.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Mario Peshev: a person who knows what he is doing, built an agency that works really well and knows how to scale WordPress to millions of hits.

Zac Gordon: with his own teaching style, that I love, he helps a lot of people start with JavaScript and he also promotes WordPress through his courses.

WordPress was my first choice

Aditya Vikram

Aditya Vikram

Aditya Vikram
Today we are going to list the interview of Aditya Vikram Singh from India. He is a Co-Founder of MMIO – Make My India Online. He is passionate about blogging and budding digital marketers from India. He loves to do SEO. He has shared the experience while helping people to optimize their websites.

Introduction

I’m Aditya, a young passionate blogger & budding digital marketer from India. Living a digital life since 2011 and helping people optimize their websites. I’m more into Search Engine Optimization

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. My journey started in 2013 when I was searching for how to make a website on Google, I discovered various platforms and ways to build websites but WordPress was my first choice.

I did a research on WordPress and then I started my first WordPress blog in 2014, You learn a lot when you start using a new tool.

I learned about WordPress customization, Then I came to know about SEO. I was quite curious about how search engine works.

Afterwards I started learning more about SEO and ways to monetize websites and till now I”m optimizing web pages for search engines

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. I’ve worked with multiple blogs and websites to help them get more search traffic. Out of them, I would like to mention this one affiliate website that I scaled to four figures ( US Dollars) per month in passive income in just 6 months.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I started attending WordCamps and meetups in 2017, WordCamp Kanpur 2017 was my first ever WordPress event. I’ve attended 7 WordCamps till now and I’ll be attending WordCamp Asia 2020 next month as well.
Aditya Vikram events
WordCamps helped me a lot to bring a positive change in my nature, I was kind of introvert few years back. Community events like WordCamps not only help in learning new things but also give us opportunity to network with like minded people and learn from them.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

Aditya Vikram workstation

A. I don’t have a fixed place to work. I love being a digital nomad. I’m completing my graduation So most of the time I work from my college classes or from my hostel room.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I use a lot of tools for my work. Some of them are:

SEO Plugin: RankMath

SEO Tools: Ahrefs & SemRush

Email Marketing: Mailchimp

Designing: Canva

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I think I’ve got everything I need in WordPress as of now.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I’m more into SEO, so I’ll mention RankMath by MyThemeShop as my favourite SEO Plugin.

aditya vikram events

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I recommend SiteGround to everyone who’s looking for a reliable WordPress hosting.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. I believe in ” Do What You Love” and Yes, I love what I do in WordPress

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. Change is the law of nature, New things will come up in the future and I would love to adapt the new changes. As of now, I’m focusing on my present work.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Hardeep Asrani because he’s the one who helped me in starting my WordPress journey.

I Enjoy Tinkering on Things and Pushing WP Ecosystem Forward

Andrey Savchenko

Andrey Savchenko profile
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Andrey Savchenko from Kiev, Ukraine. He is a WordPress Contractor. He shared his experience that how he started his self-hosted blog named as Rarst.net and how he started taking part in various WordCamp from 2013.

Introduction

Andrey “Rarst” Savchenko is a WordPress contractor from Kiev, Ukraine.

He believes in a Web of content sites that are a delight to discover, read, and navigate. For that he helps other developers on complex tasks and long–term value goals. His services include: make it fast, automate menial, stare down a legacy codebase, fix the world (one bug at a time).

In free time he likes to drink tea, read science fiction and every tweet in his timeline.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I had always been a techie. Though I think more in terms of solving problems than coding, the code is the most usual tool for me.

In my twenties I bounced through some large companies, from aircraft manufacturing to city utilities, doing things from CAD to support infrastructure.

Despite that I ended up in WordPress space simply through starting my self-hosted blog, Rarst.net. 🙂

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. After a decade in WordPress I have been involved in quite a few interesting things! The one fresh on my mind is wrapping up wp_date project this year. That was the initiative I started to improve Date/Time component of WordPress core. The final parts had shipped in WordPress 5.3 https://make.wordpress.org/core/2019/09/23/date-time-improvements-wp-5-3/

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I had been to plenty, since I started travelling to WordCamps in 2013. I still run an unbroken streak of having been to every WordCamp Europe so far.

For me WordCamps are more of a social events and opportunities to meet community on global and local levels. Due to a broad range of WordCamp audiences, it is rare that I see advanced level development talks on schedule.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

I am not a notebook person and work on a self–built desktop PC with two 27″ displays.

My room is semi–demolished to get some renovations done, so I’ll pass on a photo of the mayhem. 🙂

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Most of my productive time is spent in PhpStorm IDE, Vivaldi browser, and Total Commander file manager.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. I would say modern templating. WordPress theme templating had seen no innovation in core for a very long time and complex projects really suffer, unless they swap it for modern alternatives like Twig.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Can I say Laps https://github.com/Rarst/laps performance profiler, even if it is my own? 🙂

I am very minimal with third party plugins and use almost none for my own needs.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I have been hosting my personal sites with SiteGround for the last several years, though those are not necessarily as technically intricate as it can get.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. I enjoy tinkering on things and pushing WP ecosystem forward in ways I think are important.

But WordPress project’s priorities do get frustrating at times. On some days I just want to do things normal way, not WordPress way. 🙂

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. So far… PHP is home. It’s the language I am most happy and productive with, so at the moment I see myself going on with it for a long time.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. So many fantastic people I got to know and befriend in WordPress! I would struggle to single anyone out, my followees https://twitter.com/Rarst/following and WordPress list https://twitter.com/Rarst/lists/wordpress/members on Twitter would be a good place to look.

I Feel Always Great to Meet Friends From the WordPress Community

wceu - Shady Sharaf

SHADY SHARAF

Shady Sharaf
Today we are going to list the interview of Shady Sharaf from Egypt. He recently joined XWP, a Featured Partner of WordPress.com VIP, and he is contributing to multiple open source projects, working with Enterprise media agencies.

Introduction

Shady is a proud father to a beautiful son, based in Cairo, Egypt. He writes code that mostly works, and comes up with ideas he rarely chases!

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. With a growing economy, in a third-world country, the absence of proper education, and lack of local resources to learn about technology, persistence and self-motivation are the key factors to get a successful career, or create a successful, and strong, startup business.

Seeing how we’ve got both a weak Education system that decreases the competency level of working force, and a weak market that can hardly compete with foreign competitors locally, let alone competing globally, I knew I had to learn on my own. When you do that, you have the freedom to learn what you love most, not what the education system thinks is best for you, which is often wrong.

Starting the Computer Science journey
I started reading about Computer Science, and Computer Networks in particular, took a course in Microsoft Network Engineering, and started working as a contractor in some mid-sized companies right after. I loved having the ability to tame computer systems, control them to do exactly what they’re needed to do… so I decided to learn more.

While searching for more material to study, I’ve met with a few alike explorers, and later founded a Yahoo group ( was the biggest at the time ) to exchange self-study materials, both books and videos. My library got bigger, and I met a lot of nice friends, who were also searching for self-improvement. This gave me a better chance at increasing my knowledge, and a bigger hope that there is still people who want to succeed, and know how to do just that, without blaming the education system and the economy for their failure.
Shady Sharaf events
All that happened while I was in secondary school, before I even joined college. #1

Eventually, we decided we needed to make our own money, so we can make our dream come true. So we started a small company that provided Web Design services, and Business-focused technical solutions. Our clients were amazed by the potential of technology, and how it can streamline their businesses, and keep track of their operations, in pursue for better profits and happier customers.

During the time, about 2008, we evaluated a few different Web platforms, like Joomla and WordPress. That’s when I fell in love with WordPress,

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. WP Plugin: Stream, Contribution: WordPress Coding Standards

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Sure, been to WCEU/WCUS/WCLDN a few times, always great to meet friends from the community, and get a grasp of what to come, and what’s in the works, both in Core and within the community.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

Shady Sharaf workstation
A. I mainly work from a home office, sometimes from cafes, social clubs, a car or a flight seat 🙂

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. VSCode, Chassis, Chrome, and most importantly, an AeroPress!

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Notifications ? Logging ? A mouth and an ear ?

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I generally don’t use commercial themes, plugins are quite plenty, all things development are quite liked, eg: Query monitor, User Switching, Stream, etc.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. Well, we have our own _Altis_ DXP platform now, so that’s what we recommend. Otherwise, maybe Pantheon for smaller-scale projects.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. YES!

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. A talking dog!

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Unsure of the medium and what you’re looking for really.

I Got Comfortable with WordPress Very Quickly

Agnes Talalaev

Agnes Talalaev

Agnes Talalaev
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Agnes Talalaev from Estonia. She is a Co-founder of co-working space. She is the head of marketing in WebARX. She loves to sing, loves to play an instrument and loves animals. She shared her experience that how she met with WordPress.

Introduction

I am Agnes. I am a music and animal lover, who is deeply interested in learning psychology and digital marketing. I have a project management and business management background. I like to learn by practice. I work as a head of marketing in WebARX (we secure and protect websites from plugin/component vulnerabilities – and especially WordPress sites.) I am also a co-founder of a co-working space and my hobbies include singing and playing several instruments.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I “met” WordPress when I started working as a leader of a volunteer center. In addition to writing projects, meeting partners and doing a lot of other things I also had to manage the volunteer centers’ website.

It was that time when I started to learn what WordPress is and how to manage and work with it. I remember I got comfortable it very quickly, but also I only needed to write posts and updated pages at that time.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. I think the one I am currently doing is by far the most important and interesting project to date. We at WebARX are building much more than a platform and plugin for websites (and WordPress) security. We have big plans, and this is something that pushes me out of bed every morning with excitement about what is this day going to bring me.

We are planning to eliminate the WordPress plugin vulnerability problem in two ways, but it’s something I can not speak about yet. It will take a lot of time and work, but I am confident that we can make a change.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Yes, I have organized several WordPress meetups. I also organized one during the WCEU last year in Berlin. Since my work is focused on making websites more secure and that also includes WordPress, we were shocked to find out there were no topics about security at that WordCamp. That is why I booked a place, invited panel members and made a WordPress meetup solely on the topic of WordPress security.

We had a great time, and a big part of the security providers of the WP ecosystem was present. So I was very happy to give something to make the WordCamp more diverse in terms of topics.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

Agnes Talalaev workstation
A. My everyday work is from Forwardspace. It’s a local co-working space I co-founded together with 5 people. We created the co-working space because there were none in our city and the ecosystem for startups, freelancers and small businesses was non-existent. Today we have more than 100 people on our community, we have different pieces of training, speakers and events.

I can see that the last two years have changed our small city so much in terms of having a strong community to find help, to get inspired and to help each other in the journey of becoming better entrepreneurs.

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I mostly use tools for analytics, design, and planning. For marketing I use all the various options Google has to offer (Optimize, Trends, Analytics, Ads, Drive, etc.) and also Semrush and Ubersuggest. For the design, I mostly use Adobe programs (Ps, Lr, Ai), but also Sketch. In communication, I use tools like Slack. Of course the important tools last – password management. For that, I use tools like LastPass or Keepass. These are my essentials.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. There are so many plugins for almost every feature I could think of, but the problem with plugins is that the more you have the more possible vulnerabilities your site has. That is the main issue I am facing every day, so this is something I believe needs some more work.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Well, I am not a big plugin and theme user. I only have some bare essentials and most of the stuff is custom on the sites I manage. But if I had to choose I’d have it simple anyways – it’s WebARX. The mission, the vision, and the people. I am part of it and I am truly grateful for the opportunity.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I am not using any hosting platform. I have my own private server.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes, absolutely. Security is a painkiller not a vitamin.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I would like to focus more on music and I would like to volunteer as a planner in some field on WordCamp.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Yes, Ryan Dewhurst. He is doing such an important job in the WordPress ecosystem.

I Got Immersed with WordPress Projects and Then I Never Looked Back

Carl Alberto banner

Carl Alberto

Carl Alberto profile
Today we are going to conduct the interview of Carl Alberto from Philippines. He is co-organizing the Local WordPress User Group Philippines. He is currently working in Pantheon. He shared the small story that how he came into the current field i.e. WordPress. He met lots of people in wordcamp and meetups that are passionate with WP.

Introduction

Helped revive the series of WordCamps in the PH and now co-organizing the local WordPress User Group Philippines in its meetups. Occasionally speaks about Web Development and anything about WordPress on various speaking engagements. Currently working in Pantheon where he assists in site launches, performance optimizations, integration, security and troubleshooting complex WordPress builds for customers.

Being a tech fanatic, based the name of his three daughters from Operating Systems. – Unix, RosaLinux and Kali; Ironically, his wife’s name is Mac. When not developing websites and contributing to WordPress, he can be found road-trippin with his family and doing Aerial Photography.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I tried a couple of CMS when I started my web development career but fell in love with WordPress, the awesome community that surrounds it and never looked back.

When I started with web development, I started with Joomla and used only WP for simple blogging site projects and install it side by side with another CMS as a subfolder for the blog part. I was late to discover that there are already huge sites that are running solely on WP so why do we still have to run it side-by-side with another CMS?

It’s scalable, easy to manage, extendable via plugins and communicates with other systems using its REST API. After mastering WP from work, we got ourselves busy by getting migration projects from other CMS to WordPress. When I got immersed with WP projects, then never looked back and never again tried another CMS.
evevnt - Carl Alberto
My employer Toby Cryns from The Mighty Mo introduced me to the WordPress ecosystem as we’re encouraged to allot 5% of our work time to contribute back to the WP Community. He is very active in their local community and meetups. WordPress became our primary choice for all projects, if the client does not trust WP as their CMS, we don’t do it.

At this time, I am now a believer that WordPress can scale on large projects, we’re able to utilize multi-sites, we were able to work in teams, use version control properly, we even used a custom WP site as our internal project management system. We created custom themes and plugins for each client’s specific needs.

Now, I am working with another exciting company Pantheon Systems, Inc as a Sr, Customer Success Engineer where I help out troubleshoot WP and Drupal sites regarding scaling, downtimes, performance optimizations, complex CI/CD build and site launches.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. Nzrelo.com.au, because it has a lot of integration with external resources and optimization to it.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. Yes, met a lot of contacts and like-minded people that are passionate with WP. I met a lot of current colleagues through these kinds of events. It also inspires future contributors

Q. What does your workstation look like?

Carl Alberto
A. Sure! I have a MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2017) 16gb ram 512gb ssd, Samsung 32 inch curved monitor, Dell 24 inch vertical monitor, Fantech Pantheon MK881 blue cherry keys mechanical keyboard, Fantech MPR350 mousepad, Apple magic trackpad 2, JBL E45BT headset, Rakk Casap gaming chair. I have a trusted Macbook Air 2015 13inches 256mb and an AMD a8-4ghz, HyperZ 8gb ram, 256mb SSD, Antec VP500 power supply housed in an Antec A600 casing running with ElementaryOS that serves as a backup

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Vscode editor, + WPPHPCS for code linting, Composer dependency management, Roots Bedrock boilerplate, MySQL workbench, Virtualbox for sandboxing in different OSes, GitHub for the CI runners, Pantheon for WebOps, GIMP for editing, LocalDev for local development

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Full implementation of the Tide project https://www.wptide.org/ increasing the quality of the plugins released in the wo.org repo.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Not that much but I do like the Bedrock boilerplate for custom theming, and for plugin customizations, Cmb2 and WordPress plugin template by hlashbrooke.

These age good standard plugins that I cannot live without any of my site: Itheme security, ninja forms, ACF, All-in-one SEO and my own plugin for customizing the site admin further https://wordpress.org/plugins/simple-custom-admin/ (Very outdated sorry, I might update it soon)
Carl Alberto

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. Pantheon because of the developer-centric tools like localdev, wp cli, custom upstreams and Terminus.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes, because of the tight-knit WP community across the globe and the active developer community.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I would like to see myself as a WP Core or CLI contributor in the future or maybe contributing more with tools related to CI like WPPHPCS,, VIP go tools, WP composer, etc.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. https://web.facebook.com/jcpalmes JC Palmes, one of the few women that are passionate in WP community from the Philippines

WordPress used to be like the word

Alice Elliott banner

Alice Elliott

Alice Elliott
Today we are going to list the interview of Alice Elliott from Reading, Berkshire, UK. She is an Award-winning WordPress ‘Influencer’. She is contributing her efforts to advocate the resurgence of good commenting. She told the story behind creating a Fairy Blog Mother blog and how she comes into the current field.

Alice Elliott

An award winning WordPress ‘influencer’ who advocates the resurgence of good commenting.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. Someone suggested I created a blog to publicise a wedding stationery website I had created. This led me to investigate into WordPress, which I found was far more interesting than wedding stationery!

When I spoke to my friends about this, I was met with blank stares, which made me realise there was a gap in the market about explaining blogging and WordPress. Research revealed blogging instruction was produced by geeks who didn’t understand how beginners thought. Videos at breakneck speeds with very little explanation combined with instructions with huge assumptions how to fill in the gaps were not helping non-technical potential bloggers fulfil their expectations.

Eventually the Fairy Blog Mother blog was created to provide simple instructions, using ordinary, everyday words, on how to create a WordPress website, starting from Level 0 to provide a firm foundation towards building a successful blog.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. The Commenting Club (https://www.thecommentingclub.co.uk) in which I advocate the recovery of commenting by educating people it’s much more than just responding to a post. OK, it’s only a blog and a membership site, but I am working on a series of e-courses to boost the learning resources which aim to turn around the general thinking about commenting.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. No, I have not had the pleasure.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. Usually extremely messy. My husband despairs at it on a regular basis.
Workstation Alice Elliott

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. I am a great fan of Thrive. I find it is the most exciting WordPress system available to develop the digital marketing side of WordPress. It appears to be streets ahead of anything else I’ve come across at the moment.

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Not what is missing, but what has gone. WordPress used to be like Word, which mean many people could understand and use it easily. Now it has moved over to Gutenberg, and also to a mobile interface, it has changed beyond recognition.

Now plenty of young people welcome WordPress developing into the future, but the old users do not. Some could barely cope with the previous version. WordPress may think these people are not worth bothering with, and they have to jolly well learn to catch up. Fairy Blog Mother thinks otherwise, they need all the help they can get!

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. Thrive Architect, because it is so versatile and diverse in what it offers WordPress users. In fact all the Thrive plugins that accompany it only add to this.

The new Thrive Architect they are working on is a sophisticated version of the block system, which resembles Gutenberg, which will contribute towards my future plans in WordPress tuition.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. SiteGround, because it does all the technical stuff for you! If you have a problem, a quick chat with their engineers usually has it quickly solved so you can get on with your WordPress stuff.

I do recommend this to my clients if they want to switch to a better hosting service. I particularly like their Grow Big package which allows more than one website with a month’s backup.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes. I’ve worked with other blogging systems and they just don’t cut it. It’s like working with a Mac over a PC. However, since I hark back to the old ways, I have not embraced the new Gutenberg system yet. The new Thrive Architect plugin works with blocks, so I know I will have no problem coping, but I am thinking about my clients.

I have told them to use the Classic Editor plugins for the time being while I work out the simplest method to explain Gutenberg. It is a huge departure from what was before, which ‘mid-life’ bloggers are finding difficult to cope with.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. Developing The Commenting Club. I may be beating my head against a brick wall, but if I am able to get through the concept of positive, kind, worthy, helpful, valuable commenting, rather then the usual drivel that is churned out, not to mention the huge quantities of hate and trolling, which seem to be superseding spam, I will have achieved something.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Why not contact Shane Melaugh from Thrive? That would be one hell of an interview!

WordPress Gave Me a Chance in My Life to Prove Myself

Nidhi Jain

Nidhi Jain

Nidhi Jain

Today we are going to conduct the interview of Nidhi Jain. she is a WordPress developer, Contributor, Translator, and a WordCamp Organiser and also a GTE for WordPress Hindi translations. She is a part of WordPress Udaipur community and meetup organizer. We have organised three WordCamps in Udaipur.

About Me

I am a WordPress Developer and since 2014, I have been involved in the WordPress community. I am a Developer, Contributor, Translator & WordCamp Organiser and also a GTE for WordPress Hindi Translations. I am a part of WordPress Udaipur community and also a Meetup Organiser. Also I have contributed on HeroPress.

We have organised two WordCamps in Udaipur and In WordCamp Udaipur 2017 I was the speaker & organiser and I have Lead WordCamp Udaipur 2018. I was selected for Kim Parsell Memorial Scholarship in 2018. I am a part of WordCamp Asia 2020 Organising team.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. When I was in college I loved to do coding. That time I used to work in C, .net and PHP. When I got to know about WordPress, I was very curious to know more about it and working in it. I started my career in WordPress as a Theme Developer in 2014. By keep working in WordPress I got so much involvement in that. After that I started contribution in WordPress Translation in Hindi.

I have organized three WordPress translation day. My first core contribution was in WordPress 4.9. Also I started taking part in WordCamps. I love to meet people and get to know more about them. In 2018, I was selected for the Kim Parsell Memorial Scholarship. That was the biggest moment of my life. Because of this, I got a chance to attend WordCamp Europe. In 2019, I was selected for WordCamp Asia 2020 Organizing team. I love this community and I will do good always in this community like I am doing right now.

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. Many interesting projects I have done in WordPress because I enjoy every work what I do.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I’ve attended many WordCamps and meetups since 2014. I’ve attended WordCamps like Pune, Udaipur, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Nagpur, Europe. I am a part of WordPress Udaipur meetup and WordCamp Udaipur Organizing team. I’ve learnt a lot of things, new technologies from WordCamps and get a chance to networking with WordPress geeks.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. My workstation is look like very simple just my desk and MacBook.
workstation Nidhi Jain

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. WordPress, Photoshop, Local by Flywheel, Visual Studio Code

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. Before 5.0 release, I missed the blocks feature and after that release work is so much easy. And day by day it is improving a lot.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why?

A. I like Yoast SEO Plugin and Page Builder Framework theme which is an awesome base theme for setup our websites.

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I would like to recommend Siteground, Cloudways, Bluehost & Hostgator WordPress hostings.
Nidhi Jain

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes, I love what I currently do in WordPress.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. I love the WordPress Community and I want to give more and more involvement in this community.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. I would like to recommend Abdullah Ramzan from Lahore Pakistan because he is doing amazing work in WordPress community. He is a part of WordCamp Lahore community and he has been a part of other WordCamps like WordCamp Europe and upcoming WordCamp Asia 2020.

I Love To Share Everything About WordPress

AHMAD AWAIS Speaker

Ahmad Awais

AHMAD AWAIS

Today we are conducting the interview of Ahmad Awais from Lahore, Pakistan. He is an Award-winning open-source engineer and developer advocate. He has shared the story about how he felt in love with wordpress even after selecting the career path of electrical engineering. Along with this, he has shared some best tools and software he uses for his creations, and the love for teaching, developing, talking etc.

About Me

Hello, there.
I am Ahmad Awais. I am an Award-winning open-source engineer and developer advocate. Author of various open-source dev-tools and software libraries that are used by millions of developers all around the world. Leading developers and publishing technical content for over a decade. Cracking silly jokes in the JavaScript (Node.js/React.js) and the web dev (Cloud/DevOps) dev communities.

I like computers, problems and using the former to solve the latter. I believe in elegance over adequacy, thoughtfulness over impulse, and in the wonder of the world as we can see it. I have had been designing web pages since the early days of tables & spacers. And no – I’ve never used the scrolling marquee with Comic Sans fonts.

I have built 150+ professional open-source projects that are used by 1,781,061+ developers (including Google/Facebook Engineers) and downloaded 3,500,000+ times. Example – Award-winning open-source software.

Q. How did you come into your current field? Share a bit of the background?

A. I got my first computer in late 90’s. It ran on Windows 95 and Google was not around at that time. I have a few vague memories of playing Prince Of Persia Game considering I was seven years old and all.

What happened was that we bought a movie, and no one knew how to play it with a computer. We had to wait until my cousin (the engineer) visited us and played it on a media player. I asked her “How did you know to do that”? And she said that it was pretty easy.

As a matter of fact, she had a book about Java programming with her, and she told me a bit about it. That was the day I got hooked up; I knew that software was my thing.

Long story short, for more than four years — as a freelancer — I tested my skill set both as a designer (Adobe Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere, Illustrator) and as a web developer (LAMP/LEMP/Node — Full Stack WP Frontend Fanatic). After all that, I decided that WordPress was my thing.

One of the people I am most inspired by is Matt Mullenweg (co-founder of WordPress)

Shifting from Electrical Engineering to Software Engineering without a mentor was a hard thing to do, though, WordPress made it a lot easier for me

I am committed to WordPress. It has provided me with a way actually to change my career path forever

Q. What’s the most interesting project you have done to date in WordPress?

A. Being a theme developer, I find it kind of interesting to read how other theme devs code a bare bones theme. While I maintain one called Neat, I found Lean theme to be an interesting fork of Some-Like-it-neat. Contributed a capital_P_dangit()correction if you know what I mean ⓦ.

Q. Have you ever been to any WordPress meetups or WordCamps? If yes did you learn anything useful?

A. I have never been to any WordCamps in person. So can’t help there.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. yes, of course check out the picture
AHMAD AWAIS workstation

Q. What kind of tools/software do you currently use for your creations?

A. Nowadays, it’s almost customary and expected of you to have this page. I use a lot of software and hardware products. The list of items are listed

Q. What interesting feature do you think you would like to see in WordPress and is currently missing?

A. All good now…But, still trying to do some enhancement in WordPress as I told you that I am committed to WordPress.

Q. Out of the current plugins and themes which one do you like the most and why? *

A. I am currently using Pro Sublime Text and Operator Mono. My primary terminal app is iTerm2, I also use Zsh shell.
Before I used Inconsolata and Source Code, Visual Studio Code, IBM Plex & Fira Code

Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. I admire the screenshot, GIF, and small video hosting by My CloudApp — I use it daily. If you’re just getting started, use Dynadot to buy domains (you get $5 with my link)‚ they always have the best pricing.

Q. Do you like/love what you currently do in WordPress?

A. Yes, I love to write, talk, build and share everything about WordPress.

Q. What would you like to do in the future in the current field or somewhere else?

A. Yes, I like to do future in the current field. I am committed to the WordPress only.

Q. Can you give us some reference for whom we should conduct an interview next and why?

A. Topher has done a brilliant job of managing HeroPress. You can take a reference from here.