Dinner with Jetpack

Jetpack logo on a green background

The head of the Jetpack team lives in Albuquerque. I live in Albuquerque. When the Jetpack group got together for a meetup of their own in Albuquerque, they decided to invite the entire WordPress community to a Dinner with Jetpack meetup.

The meetup was in a Thai restaurant near the UNM campus. Jetpack people from all over were there. Australia, Argentina, and several other far-flung locations. I talked with the guy from Australia about ways Jetpack could get Pinterest to work with WordPress without adding blocks of code to new posts. He gave me some ideas I will try.

I talked to a woman from Wyoming who works in HR and hired all these Jetpackers. She came down to ABQ to meet them in person.

It’s refreshing to go to a WordPress meetup, but this one was particularly nice because so many people came. I talked to bloggers, WordPress developers, and WordCamp organizers. I saw some former students. I saw people I’d met at WordCamps. I even saw a woman who was in the same hotel in Chicago as a BlogHer convention I attended and happened to be on the same plane home that I was on. Everyone wanted to talk about blogging and social media and topics I love.

Thanks to the Albuquerque WordPress community for a great evening.

A Post-Election Statement

crying

I’m a white woman. I did not vote for Donald Trump. I’ve supported Hillary Clinton since the 1990′s. Since the election, I’ve searched for ideas as to what I can do going forward to support ideas and causes I believe in during the next 4 years.

One of the things I’ve done, and will continue to do, is support women. I support women in tech on my Web Teacher blog. I support women in entertainment on my Old Ain’t Dead blog. I use my Twitter accounts @vdebolt and @OldAintDead to do the same thing. That has been my point of activism for several years.

I’m not physically able to go out to march in protests. I don’t drive at night so that eliminates joining environmental action groups that meet locally. Beyond pointing out examples of worthy women on my blogs, what else have I got? Well, money. Not much money, but it’s what I’ve got.

I considered environmental organizations. I considered LGBTQ organizations. I considered social justice organizations. I considered women’s organizations. I support all those activists in what they do. They are all worthy choices. They all face danger under the President elect. What could I pick to support that I don’t already support?

In the end, I chose Black Girls Code and Being Black at School as places where I want to put my money. They both fit my values as an educator, as a tech nerd, and as a human who believes in equal rights.

I live in a blue state. These two organizations have the potential to make a difference in the red states. Red states are the places that need the most effort. Being Black at School is a fledgling, it needs support to do the good work it is capable of doing.

There are lists circulating now suggesting places where you can volunteer or donate to make a difference. Take a look at Black Girls Code and Being Black at School when you evaluate those lists. Maybe they are right for you, too.

Image credit: Ivan Friande

A Talk About Nothing

Lena Reinhard

Lena Reinhard

You may have watched this elsewhere, but I found it impressive enough to add here as well. Its a very fine talk about the tech industry by Lena Reinhard at the first ever .concat() web development conference on March 7th 2015.

Here’s the abstract of the talk.

And, yes, literally nothing. Together we’ll take a look behind the curtains of reality and explore some of the underlying rules that shape our existence. We will dig into ancient philosophy, the history and today’s status physics and maths, look into the origins of computing, programming and analyse the way we develop software today. We’ll see how nothing influences us, how it shapes our behaviour every day and how nothing can help us grow – in our professions and, even more, as humans.

“Nothing really matters,”, Freddie Mercury wrote in a song that was released 40 years ago. I want to show you how right he is.

The talk is nominated for the “Conference Talk of the Year” in the .net awards 2015. Listen to it carefully as she builds her message and listen all the way to the end.

Online seminar: Introduction to ARIA

On March 27 I’ll be leading an online seminar for ADA Online Learning. The topic is Introduction to ARIA.

If you’d like to join the seminar, information about the schedule, registration and more is located at the ADA Online site. It’s free and registration is easy.

The seminar will focus mainly on ARIA landmark roles and will help the people attending see how to use landmark roles in their work. It will include an explanation of how to add landmark roles to WordPress themes that don’t have them built in.

The event is sponsored by the Great Lakes ADA Center.

A Few Notes from WordCamp Albuquerque 2013

Traffic building for beginning bloggers

with Elizabeth Urello, Automattic
@eurello

 

1. Find your people. Readers who share your interests or need the information you have.  Readers who share your voice, your perspective, your sense of humor.
How do you find them? Browse, read explore, search for keywords you think people would use to search for you. The wordpress.com reader topics pages helps you find a network of people.
The daily post at wordpress.com is a place to build community and a network.

2. Introduce Yourself. Comment, interact, reblog and respond. Intrigue people where they are already reading. Traffic building is a little like dating.

3. Prepare for company. Give people more of what they like. Blog about others are talking about. Reply to comments with substantial comments. Capitalize on a traffic spike.

4. Spread the love. Know how your social networks differ. Don’t exhaust your followers with irrelevant information. Write original material for each service. Publicize sharing buttons.

There’s a filter for that

by Drew Haynes, 10up

A filter takes a function, applies it and spits it out on the other side. It’s like the telephone game. 1300 or so filters in WordPress core now.

More Than one filter can be applied to a filter hook, based on a priority system.  Filters can also be removed.

Content filters. Can write filters to polish titles, post info or other messages you normally see. Filters can repurpose featured image meta box.

Workflow can be customized with filters. Can filter the appearance of the post content editor.

Most well-known filter in WordPress is the_content. It’s often abused. Ask yourself if something really is content before you use it. Can create filters for post_class, excerpt_length, show_admin_bar. There’s a filter that disables captions (why?).

Development filters let you filter plugin or theme installer pages.

Making the leap from designer to developer

by Ray Gulick, Evo @evoweb

Ray calls himself a designer/ developer or developer-like.

Design is not just how it looks. Design is how it works. -Steve Jobs
Coding is part of the design.

Know a good developer when you begin the journey from designer to developer so you can get help.

Basics skills before you can move on are HTML and CSS. For WP you need to know are PHP and WP tags, custom fields and putting them on templates, custom post types, WP_Query to manage listings.

Using the Advanced Custom Fields plugin allows you to create more user friendly meta info and titles so that it makes more sense to the users who are trying to add content to the fields. It also gives you control over what pages, templates or users even see the field types.

Custom post types. Standard are pages and posts. You can define custom post types with particular custom fields. You can create custom templates, too. Display on a single template. The php for it is in a wp_query.

evowebdev.com will have slide deck.

Other Interesting Stuff