Category Archives: WordPress Interview

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. she has shared her experience while organizing two different WordCamp 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. Before 2014, I didn’t know much about WordPress. Before knowing about WordPress my identity was just a beginner. By keep working on WordPress I got so much involvement in that. WordPress gave me a chance in my life to prove that I could do something different and I felt like I have the skills and potential and I could do something in life.

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 am part of WordPress Udaipur Meetup group and also a part of WordCamp Udaipur organizing team. I have been attended many WordCamps and Meetups and learnt a lot new things, new technologies, get a chance to networking with WP 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.

A Thousand Percent YES I Love What I Do Currently in WordPress

mary job

Mary Job

Today we are going to list the interview of Mary Job from Nigeria. She is a caretaker of HowDoYou. She is responsible for providing solutions and answeres to the questions in technical area for Africans. She has taken part in various wordcamps and shared her valuable thoughts. She loves pets, photography and backpacking. She have shared some tools and software that she use for her creations.

About Me

I am a Curator at HowDoYou.Tech where we provide answers to problems & challenges in tech for Africans. I moderate our digital community forum, a safe and welcoming space where every African can ask a tech question regardless of their skill-set or background. I am a WordPress Enthusiast and have spoken at different WordCamps. I believe everyone should run a Personal Blog to tell their stories and I run mine at maryjob.WordPress.com. I teach Digital Skills at Uwani Hub, a CSR project of ours taking Tech Hubs to towns and villages. I love cats, photography, rabbits & backpacking.

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

A. I got in front of a desktop computer at a local cybercafe in 2002 right about the time I was finishing high school and I have been hooked since then. I bounced around on the internet a lot, filling surveys, ghost writing, signing up on virtual assistant sites only to realise I was scammed. I vividly remember preferring to use my pocket money to buy internet time than food.

I would be famished but rather keep browsing. What was I looking for you might ask. I will tell you because those memories won’t go away. I was simply looking for a legitimate way to make money on the internet. I got into the University in 2002 first for a diploma programme, then a Philosophy degree in 2004, graduated 2008, did the mandatory National Youth Service programme for a year between 2009 – 2010.

By then, I had conveniently been able to work online as a very small freelance writer. I discovered WordPress first in 2011, of course I panicked because I assumed it was complicated. I just wanted to have a personal blog so I went with blogger which I still have not deleted for sentimental reasons.

I rediscovered WordPress in 2015, this time, watching tutorial videos made by Morten Rand-Hendriksen before diving in and the rest they say is history. I am naturally curious so of course I wanted to know more about WordPress. Discovering the WordPress Community on the other hand was not an accident because I deliberately sought it out. I always say, WordPress saved me from roaming the internet and gave me a digital home to fit into, a digital home that has now become family to me.

Mary's Workstation

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

A. Haa, most interesting. This would be two things, can’t be one. Building my company platform on WordPress after what seems to be a thousand iterations, I still have not nailed it yet. And the other would be, getting to work support on trial with the team at Paid Memberships Pro. If you ask me, I would say don’t mess with the Universe because I never saw this coming.

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

A. Oh yes, my first WordPress meetup was organised by me in Lagos, three people showed up. My first WordCamp was Cape Town 2017. I was to attend the eGovernance summer school in Estonia but was denied visa by the Belgium Embassy, the school refunded my money, I was unhappy. Then I told myself, why not go to WordCamp Cape Town, I applied for visa, got approved (I so was not expecting that), and that’s how I found myself at my first WordCamp.

I came back home and we have had two WordCamps in Lagos now, 2018 and 2019. Back to the question, did I learn anything useful? Of course yes, I have learnt something from everyone I interacted with in the WordPress Community. The sessions are really always diverse and I am so happy I will get to enjoy the sessions at WordCamp Lagos 2020. As lead organiser, I did not get to seat in any one session till the end.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. This is an interesting question because my workstation is anywhere there is a table and a chair or a sofa, or tree branch, or as my fellow colleague puts it, ‘where the WiFi connects automatically’. I will share a picture or two though, but one thing I have noticed is my workstation keeps evolving! Picture pens, notepads or sticky notes, printed calendar and I am good to go.

Mary Workstation

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

A. Slack, Github, Terminal, Visual Studio, Namecheap, Chrome, Brave, Safari, Google My Business, Google Maps, Gmail, WordPress of course!

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

A. This is an interesting question. There will come a time for a good answer to this, that time is not now, haha!

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

A. Yoast SEO – so much work and thought is constantly being put into their product.

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

A. Namecheap.com all the way!

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

A. A thousand percent YES.

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

A. Build products that provide value in the WordPress ecosystem! Guide more humans on my continent into using WordPress as a tool for self empowerment.

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

A. Tunbosun Ayinla – he is my Mentor in the Nigerian WP Community. Adedayo Adeniyi – She has been super supportive in growing the Nigerian WP community.

The most valuable service is one rendered to our fellow human

Ugyen Dorji banner

Ugyen Dorji

Today we are conducting an interview with Ugyen Dorji. He is a co-organizer of WordPress meetup and WordCamp. He is a responsible person for the QA process of All in One WP Migration plugin. He shared experience working with his fellows and what circumstances make him better in the field in WordPress

About Ugyen Dorji

Ugyen Dorji (WordPress Meetup and WordCamp co-organiser) from Bhutan and responsible for the robust Quality Assurance process for our All in One WP Migration plugin. The best Accomplishment moment of my life comes to me with believing in the Buddhist teaching that “the most valuable service is one rendered to our fellow human.” I work for a company called ServMask Inc, who has been participating in the WordPress community for many years. This has given me the opportunity to attend some engaging and creative events which have been an amazing experience for me.

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

A. Back in 2016, I had been looking for a new working place after my former cloud company got shattered with some financial crisis, I have looked for a new job. For which I tried my best and one fine day I made it to an interview – where I have been triggered with WordPress questionnaires. On that moment he has no proper answer for interviewers saying big number to interviewers, though I have basic knowledge about WordPress. After that day, just sat in his room with silence and made up my mind to learn and get skilled myself with WordPress wisdom, watching cities from his window receiving cool air, and said myself.
“I will make my career with WordPress and it will be my bread and butter”.
After a few months, I received a call from ServMask Inc, who developed a great plugin called “All-in-One WP Migration” which made my dream come true like an angle ServMask Inc blessed my dream to make my living with WordPress.

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

A. 1. Co-Organizing Thimphu‘s WordPress Meetup
2. As one of the WordPress Translation Day 4 organizers, I have able to introduce more translation contributors for my locale Dzongkha and have successful first WordPress meetup Thimphu which coincide with WordPress translation day 4.
3. Becoming part of the most anticipated WordCamp – WordCamp Asia 2020 which would be happening soon is the most challenging and interesting project that I am working on as co-organiser.

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

A. Yes, these events give people the opportunity to get together and share their experiences and expertise, as well as to learn more about what can be done with WordPress. WordPress Meetups are the seed that leads to the growth of WordPress communities and is a platform for plugin and theme developers to meet WordPress users and website developers. It’s a great environment where many incredible discussions about WordPress take place. The “tribe” meetings are a fantastic opportunity for aspiring computer engineers, content writers and developers to showcase their talent and meet each other.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. It’s merely merge with alter as I believe in lord Bhuddha.

Ugyen Dorji

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

A. cypress.io, selenium and G-Suite and WordPress

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

A. Bulk Option to upload more than one plugins would be great feature which is currently missing at this place.

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

A. I like all sorts of plugins and themes that stratifies the user experience on making user much easier to create their WordPress site with ease, amongst the all All-in-One WP Migration the most because I daily use this plugin as it saves our time on migrating sites from one host to another.

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

A. Actually I do use all the hosting providers but I would recommend for students to use open source WordPress host like wordpress.com, MAMP and XAMPP to host WordPress locally to try WordPress if you’re beginners to WordPress.

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

A. I would like to create more workshops on Open Source Software on WordPress for young kids and preservation of our national language “Dzongkha” for WordPress with my beloved kings Bhutanese Gross National Happiness four pillars and aiming youths as they are the next generation who could help next new generations on keeping the use of WordPress.

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

A. I would like to Organise WordCamp Thimphu in the near future.

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

A. I would recommend to follow HeroPress as there are many WordPress folks who contributes for WordPress

I am loving what I am doing with WordPress

workstation

Tristup Ghosh

Today we are conducting interview of Tristup Ghosh. He is a wordpress expert plus he is one of the active member contributing in Kolkata WordPress Community and active participants in Meetup that are organized by the community.

In this interview he shared his experienced working with wp-cli and other commands.

About Tristup Ghosh

I started developing the website using WordPress from 2010 onwards. Later in 2014 I started developing a WordPress theme for the Themeforest Market place. I also started developing the plugins which help my development process to run smoothly.

My life started changing from 2010 when I started developing with WordPress. The instability of my life was changed into a stable life, which was beyond my expectations. I was living a good life with my family. What else I can expect from WordPress.

Apart from developing the Websites and other applications, I started my research on how the development process can be more smoother and flexible. I started working on WP CLI to developing the automated process for WordPress. I developed a script that helps developers to install the WordPress flawlessly using WP CLI. My Linux knowledge also helped me to write shell scripts. The script can be found in my account at Github. I am also trying to get into the easy deployment process with CI/CD for the developers using Bitbucket Pipeline and AWS.

I slowly become an expert on the theme approval guidelines of Themeforest Market place. Apart from that, I started writing blogs on various topics related to WordPress. Achieved almost 3K reputation in StackOverflow. Developed Plugins in wordpress.org.

Even though I was developed many plugins and theme I never thought of uploading that in wordpress.org. I start realizing that to help many more people in WordPress, wordpress.org will be a better place than StackOverflow.

I joined Kolkata WordPress Community who was planning the WordCamp Kolkata, and thankfully they have selected me as a volunteer. Mr. Subrata Sarkar( WordPress Core Contributor ) and the team who recognized me and give huge responsibilities in WordCamp Kolkata 2019. It was again a tremendous experience with WordPress. Since that was my first WordCamp I tried to fulfill my responsibilities. Become a Volunteer I learned to be more polite and more decent to the people, make many more friends from different regions and countries.

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

A. From starting I have little interest in Web Development. I started learning all the required things to build a website. During that, I learned HTML, CSS, javascript, PHP, Jquery, PERL and many other things. In 2010 I started working with WordPress and till now I am with WordPress only. Currently, I am working with automation for WordPress with the wp-cli along with the Bitbucket, AWS and CI/CD. I also engaged with the Theme review and Training team of WordPress. Also working as WordPress translation editor language “Bengali”

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

A. I worked with the WordPress Training team and developed a few content for them. Also, I have started working on the wp-cli, and now working on the few new commands to related with wp-cli and svn/git. Also, I am reviewing themes in wordpress.org. I am an active member of Kolkata WordPress Community who are organizing WordCamp 2020 in our city Kolkata. Apart from this, I have taken part in many training organized by WordPress.org. Especially the speaker diversified training, kids camp, WordCamp organizer training.

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

A. I am an active member of the Kolkata WordPress Community. Also, regular participants of meetup organized by the community. I have been looking into spreading the meetups in various local cities nearby. Addressed attendees in our meetups on various subjects, like community build up, community-based technical programs. Kolkata WordCamp 2019 was the first WordCamp of my life, and I have been selected as a volunteer. Later on, I have been included into the organizing team of the upcoming 2020 Kolkata WordCamp.

Q. What does your workstation look like?

A. Nothing special, it looks like another workstation of a crazy developer.

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

A. Sublime and VS Code to code, Bitbucket to store the repo.

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

A. More focus on wp-cli.

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

A. Yoast SEO, Resolution Slider is the plugins I mostly use. And Avada and the Divi are the themes that I liked.

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

A. I found AWS perfect but Godaddy Managed and Bluehost is a good option for me.

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

A. I am loving what I am doing with WordPress.

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

A. Core Contribution towards WordPress.

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

A. Currently not remembering, but I can refer Rahul D Sarker the next WordCamp Lead Organizer.

WordPress is So Fascinating That I Tried

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Thabo Tswana

We are today interviewing Thabo Tswana who is a WordPress expert and has immensely contributed to the WordPress community for past several years. We are going to take you through his experience and how did he come to WordPress.

He will also explain why he likes the platform and what he expects to do in future. Read through his interesting interview below. He likes to call himself: WordPress fanboy, community supporter, and never gets tired of watching good movies over and over.

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

A. Shortly after learning how to build a static HTML website about 7 years ago, I was employed by an online marketing firm in Harare, Zimbabwe. My job involved managing websites for existing clients and building websites for new clients. Websites were built using CMS and the management’s preference was Joomla!

One day I was assigned to build a site for a local artist, and in searching for a template, I stumbled upon a WordPress theme. That was my first experience with WordPress (WordPress 3.8). Before using WordPress, I had the impression that it was only used for blogging. I had no idea you could use it to make all kinds of websites.

I quickly fell in love with it, and after leaving the company I worked for in 2015, I became a freelancer focused on WordPress site building and site management. WordPress was so fascinating that I tried to read as much as I could about it, following blogs like https://wptavern.com/. This is how I found about an experimental WordCamp Incubator Program that aimed to bring a WordCamp to three new cities where there was no active WordPress community.

I applied to be an organizer and Harare ended up being selected as one of the locations in 2016. Two of the speakers at Harare’s first WordCamp were Automatticians, Job Thomas and Herman Kok. I had heard of Automattic but never thought I had what it took to work for this company. Meeting Job and Herman and talking to them motivated me to apply for a position as a Happiness Engineer. After several failed attempts, I finally got hired by Automattic to be a WordPress.com Happiness Engineer in 2018.

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

A. Being the lead organizer for WordCamp Harare 2016 & 2017 has to be the contribution that I am most proud of. I had read about WordPress events all over the world but never thought that this would be feasible in Zimbabwe. I also had no idea that the WordPress project had such a large community and that anyone could be a part of it.

WordCamp Harare allowed me to get to know amazing people from all over the world that I would have never come in contact with. It also built a community that gets together to share their knowledge, and to meet other WordPress users in the area. I like to believe that the small part I played in helping to bring WordCamp to Harare has had a lasting impact on the WordPress community in Harare.

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

A. I have been to WordCamps in Harare and South Africa, but the most memorable was being a speaker at WordCamp Europe 2017. This experience taught me that all WordPress users have an experience that someone needs to hear.

I also found that the WordPress Community celebrates all successes, no matter how big or small. I also got a chance to see the way more experienced organizers run WordCamps. This knowledge was so helpful when we organized WordCamp Harare 2017.
wordcamp_at_harare_city_library

Q. What does your workstation look like?

wordpress interview

A. My work environment is pretty basic at the moment. It consists of a MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2017) sitting on a laptop stand. I also have a wireless Bluetooth keyboard and an ergonomic wireless mouse. My desk is not that big, but once I buy a bigger desk, I hope to get a monitor so I can be more productive with multiple screens.

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

A. You can do so much already using WordPress, so I can’t think of anything else 🙂

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

A. If I have to pick only one, I’ll say WooCommerce. It is amazing how this one plugin can turn a website into a fully fledged online store right out the box. I enjoy showing people how easy it is to set up.
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Q. Which WordPress hosting do you use and would you recommend for your clients and others?

A. As an employee of Automattic, I have test sites on WordPress.com. I would recommend WordPress.com to anyone who is not a developer and needs managed WordPress hosting.

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

A. Absolutely! I do what I do because I love what I do 🙂 I am passionate about spreading awareness of this awesome CMS and helping others learn more about it. Since I now work in customer support, I get to help people every day. Also I work for a company that encourages learning and I love advancing my WordPress skills.
meetup_at_CSZ-mi

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

A. I am currently trying to learn more about WordPress development, like building themes from scratch and plugin development. Hopefully one day I’ll be able to contribute more to the development of WordPress software.

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

A. Mary Job would be a great person to interview. She organized the first WordCamp in Lagos, Nigeria, making her one of the first female WordCamp organizers in Africa. She is very active in the African WordPress community, and also does a lot of work promoting African women in tech. https://profiles.wordpress.org/mariaojob/