WordCamp Ann Arbor 2014 Slides

Check back often as we’ll continue to post speaker slides from today.

WordCamp Ann Arbor 2014 Attendee Information

The first WordCamp Ann Arbor is kicking off at 8:45am this Saturday. I’ve included some information that should help you prepare below.
 

Driving & Parking

WordCamp Ann Arbor is being held at the Michigan League (911 N University Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48109). The League is downtown, so give yourself some time to find parking. We recommend the Liberty Square parking lot which is a short 5 minute walk and only $3 dollars for the day. You can get directions including a walking map here.
 

Location

The event will be held on the second and third floor of the League. Registration will be on the second floor and will be hard to miss.
 

Registration

Registration starts at 8:00am, opening remarks at 8:45am. Make sure to arrive early so you can get checked in and into your first session on time.
 

Event Schedule

You can viewing our online schedule to identify which talks you’d like to attend. This schedule will be available to you in printed format the day of the event as well. Note: You don’t have to RSVP for individual sessions, just walk to the room of the session you’re interested in before it starts.
 

Food – Breakfast / Lunch

We are providing coffee, juice, water, sodas, bagels and muffins for breakfast. We hope you enjoy!

Lunch is on your own, but there are tons of restaurants just a block or two away from the League. We have a handy interactive map with many of the restaurants on the event website.
 

Equipment / Bags

There will be plenty of free wifi and we’ll have some outlets to charge your devices. Feel free to bring your laptops and tablets so you can take notes or follow along. You’ll receive (at least) two gifts for attending WordCamp Ann Arbor so you may want to bring a computer bag that has space to carry them.

Code of Conduct

Please review the WordCamp code of conduct before attending. We fully expect everyone to follow these rules and treat all attendees and participants with respect.

After Party

We’re hosting an after party starting for all attendees, speakers and sponsors at 7:00pm. It will be located at the Old German in downtown Ann Arbor. There will be food and drink tickets for your enjoyment. You MUST wear your badge to attend. The Old German is located at the corner of South Ashley and Washington, which is a 15 – 20 minute walk from the League. Alternatively there is plenty of parking around including right across the street if you wish to drive.
 

Weather

There is a chance of rain, so make sure to bring an umbrella and suitable coat just in case. We’ll cross our fingers for some beautiful fall Ann Arbor sun.
 

Sponsors

Please take a moment to check out and thank our sponsors. We could not hold this event without them.

Bluehost
Media Temple
Code Poet
34sp.com
WPML
Dreamhost
Flywheel
A2Hosting
3.7 DESIGNS
LearnDash
Web Savvy Marketing
Nexcess
CorePHP
Sticker Giant

If you have ANY QUESTIONS you can contact us online, or ask the registration table during the event.

Thank you so much for being a part of WordCamp Ann Arbor. I look forward to meeting you on Saturday.

Doug Van Slembrouck Speaker Interview

Bio

doug-van-slembrouck

Merging exceptional Creative Design with awesome Technical Frameworks to deliver web based solutions for small to medium sized companies.

Doug will be presenting “Elegant Deployment – How to move from test to prod” at 11am in Room D.

Why do you use WordPress?

I use WordPress to create concept-to-completion websites. We develop custom themes and plugins to solve business needs for a wide range of clients.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

Around 2005. Originally starting using as a blogging platform, and quickly understood the benefit of using WordPress as a complete CMS, even in those early days.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

Being able to talk to people within the WordPress community in person is very valuable. As somewhat independent developers, we sometimes can be isolated in our own world. Being able to interact with a larger group of people on our “same team” is always beneficial.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

Listening to Andrew Nican at WordCamp Chicago 2014. He eliminated all my concerns about the upgrade process and had a lot of great data to back it up.

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

Working with the UI / UX team at Maven Wave Partners in Chicago, I was able to great a very custom, pixel perfect website for Coast Southwest that was fully integrated with a CakePHP Product database.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

All the fun stickers
(and meeting other community members).

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

DO IT

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

Raised awareness and tons of money for Michigan charities with The SPF (the-spf.org) also a WP site :-)

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

Jesse Friedman
Josh Broton
Joe Casabona
Andrew Nacin

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

I used WordPress, some hubcaps, and aluminum foil to build a time machine, allowing me to travel back in time and boogie with some dinosaurs.

How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?

They are a catalyst for inspiration and cause me to up my game, raise my standards, and work smarter.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

Work on launching WordPress websites.

Who should attend this session?

Anyone responsible for developing and launching new WordPress sites. Topics covered include best practices for developing WordPress websites on development, test, and production servers and maintaining the migrating of code and databases from each environment. Ensuring proper backups and deployment of code and databases is critical in providing secure WordPress instances for clients. This session will teach you how to consistently “flip the switch” for website launches.

What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?

How to run WordPress locally.
How to login to cPanel to manage a website / MySQL database.

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

BackupBuddy

Where can we find you online?

dougvanslembrouck.wordpress.com

Justin Ferriman Speaker Interview

Bio

Justin Ferriman

Justin Ferriman is the co-founder of Ann Arbor based LearnDash, a WordPress based LMS and Learning Strategy provider. His background involves implementing large-scale training programs for Fortune 500 companies.

Justin will be presenting “Results Guarantee: Simple Formula for Generating More Leads Than You Can Handle For Your Product or Service” at 10:00am in Room D and will also be participating in the “Building a WordPress Business” panel at 1:30pm in the Vandenberg Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

There are many reasons why I use WordPress, but if I were to sum up the main reason with one word, it would be “limitless”. If you can imagine it, chances are you can make it happen with WordPress. If I am in need of functionality, there is probably a plugin for it. If not, then the community provides the tools.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

I started using WordPress when I was in undergrad. I heard everyone talking about “blogs” so I decided to check them out. It wasn’t long until I found WordPress.com and opened an account. I was hooked.

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

Roughly 18 months after our initial release of LearnDash, we released version 2.0, which was essentially a complete overhaul of how the entire software was configured from the back-end. From start to finish it took four to five months to release. It was stressful, frustrating, and extremely rewarding all at once. Looking back, there were a lot of lessons learned from the experience. We did some things good, and we messed up others. There wasn’t much sleep for us during that time, but when the dust settled, we were proud of what we had accomplished.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

Hearing the stories of how other people use WordPress. No other software spans such a large number of industries and has the variety of use-cases.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

Whatever your idea, make sure you do proper market research. Not only is it free, but you will either save yourself a lot more time & money down the road, or you will maximize the position of your product/service if you do decide to move forward.

You don’t need to create a full business-plan, but you should at the very least generate profiles on possible competitors, segment your customer-base, and clearly define your unique selling proposition based on the data you obtain.

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

I really admire what Seth Shoultes and Garth Koyle are doing with their plugin Event Espresso – from marketing to its design.

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

Starting and growing LearnDash.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

If you are in the pre-launch phase of your WordPress business or service, then you should talk to me at WordCamp. I think one of the reasons why we have seen success in our business is because we prepared for nearly a year prior to the launch.

What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?

There isn’t anything to know before-hand. I think if you have a passion to start or grow your business, you will find find one or two things of value :)

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

The plugin directory. I’m always amazed at what I find on there!

Where can we find you online?

I blog quite often on all things elearning on the LearnDash blog.

You can also connect with me on LinkedIn or @ justinferriman.com.

Don Campbell Speaker Interview

Bio

Don Campbell

Don Campbell is President of Expand2Web, which provides tools and training to help businesses succeed online.

Prior to founding Expand2Web in January 2008, Don was a Technology Evangelist for Microsoft, where he helped partners adopt new Microsoft technologies and presented to C-Level executives at Fortune 500 companies.

Don was also a Group Program Manager at Interwoven, where he built a $5M product line and was a key early employee. Interwoven grew to 1,000 employees and went IPO in 2000.

Don lives in the heart of Silicon Valley – San Jose California with his lovely wife and two daughters.

Don will be participating in the “Building a WordPress business” at 1:30pm in the Vandenberg Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

I use WordPress for blogging, and also created and support a popular WordPress theme for small location-based businesses. So WordPress is a tool that I use for my business, and also it is a big part of my business itself.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

In 2007 I was looking for a content management system for a product I was working on, and evaluated many different options including WordPress, Drupal, Joomla and TextPattern.

I was a product manager at an enterprise content management company called Interwoven, which had developed a complex solution for enterprises back in 1998.

I was looking for a simple and modern solution to this content management problem. WordPress stood out for me as a solution that had nailed the 80/20 rule with an elegant solution – 80% of the value with 20% of the features and complexity.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

The vibe at WordCamp is always positive, helpful and energetic. Very cool people at these events. Look at the price for a ticket! It’s obvious that the organizers aren’t trying to make money, they are trying to organize a community of like-minded people.

You will learn a lot, and meet tons of awesome people.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

I got to meet Matt Mullenweg!
I had great, in-depth conversations with my hosting provider.
I met friends there, and we came up with new ideas.
It’s just a super creative, positive place to be.

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

We developed a new WordPress Theme for our members called the Business Advantage theme. In this theme we rebuilt everything from the ground-up based on WordPress best practices and we learned a lot.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

The atmosphere. The WordCamp SF is always in a very cool space, with tons of great speakers who you can actually meet up with after their presentation.

Oh, and usually the food is really good too :)

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

You need more than just a theme or plugin. You need to build a community for your customers, where they understand you will support them, and continually update your products.

I shouldn’t be a one-time price for your offering either. You need to invest in support and ongoing product development, so you need to charge some sort of recurring amount for your product whether it is a monthly or yearly fee, or some type of support and update agreement.

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

In 1998 my wife and I moved from the Ann Arbor/Detroit area to Silicon Valley (San Jose, CA)

I am learning to surf with my two daughters. We are having a blast.

I’m a 3rd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do

I have a cool dog we rescued from the animal shelter :)

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

I know a lot of people will pick Matt, but he inspires me because he had a lot of guts to create something and make it free for everyone to use, and have the faith that the business model for that would emerge.

It was a generous gift, and I admire what he did and am glad that it worked so well.

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

Creating Expand2Web based on WordPress was really hard but was my most rewarding accomplishment.

How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?

One of our biggest partnership deals was done at WordCamp San Francisco a few years ago. This deal literally put our business on the map. I’ve also met a lot of really great people at WordCamps and knowing them has helped me a lot too.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

Are doing consulting or starting a business around WordPress.

What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?

For someone to get the most out of my talk, I hope they have a basic understanding of what a WordPress theme is, and some of the ways people are building businesses around them – for example, theme marketplaces, consulting, etc. Some basic understanding of what GPL is would also help, but I will cover all of these in the talk as well.

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

I really like Chris Coyier and Jeff Starrs Digging Into WordPress.

I also like Shawn Hesketh’s WordPress 101.

Of course Yoast is great too.

Where can we find you online?

I would love to connect and share tips and stories.
I’m on Twitter – @doncampbell
Instagram – @doncampbell
I blog on:
Expand2Web Blog
http://blog.getfivestars.com

Peter Shackelford Speaker Interview

Bio

Peter Shackelford

Peter has been building things with WP since 2009 and is currently the Web Architect at Spring Arbor University.

Peter will be participating in the “Lessons Learned From WordPress Developers” at 4:30pm in the Vandenberg Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

The WordPress community is great. I am where I am today because people have freely shared what they have learned. It is approachable for both users and developers and is very flexible.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

I first started using WordPress when I was making a little website for the non-profit my wife and I were starting. In 2009 I did my first project as a contractor and have been building platforms, microsites, multisites etc… on WordPress ever since.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

Come, see what this is all about. You may even get a cool shirt out of it.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

Meeting, in person, people who have either helped me on a forum, written a blog post showing how to sort out a problem I was trying to solve or who wrote a plugin I use. That is quite awesome. It is a chance to say thank you! Being able to help out at the happiness bar is also pretty great.

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

Building the Spring Arbor University website is my responsibility. I worked with Topher (X-team) to fix things that were amiss and make improvements. Getting rid of the slider/carosel on the home page and replacing it with something useful was cool.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

Learning things and meeting people.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

Think a lot. Try things out. Keep doing things better. Connect with the community.

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

I have three heads of cattle. I enjoyed milking my own cow for 13 months through rain, sleet or shine.

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

“I can’t believe how many questions this form has! It just keeps going!

Curtis Grymala, Mika Epstein (Ipstenu), Andrea Rennick (andrea_r) ”

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

WP Tavern

Where can we find you online?

@pixelplow on Twitter.

Jim Luke Speaker Interview

Bio

jim-luke

I’m a WordPress addict and I’m fanatical about technology in higher education. I’ve been teaching economics at Lansing Community College for the last 13 years, including a lot of online teaching. My enthusiasm for innovation in college teaching and WordPress led me to found a non-profit organization, Malartu Inc, to help all college faculty create their own WordPress sites and gain their online voice.

Before getting into teaching, I spent 25 years in corporate strategic planning and my own consulting firm with a specialty in emerging technologies.

Jim will be presenting “Building a Community of Academics Using Multi-Sites, Multi-Networks, and BuddyPress” at 2:30pm in the Henderson Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

WP gives me a voice in global conversations and it saves time. It’s my force multiplier. It enables me to reach and teach students (so far on 5 continents – I’m looking at you Australia & Antarctica!). I use it to comment on economics and trends in higher education with my blog. I use WP to manage my teaching resources and portfolio. I use WP to teach my online and regular classes (which helps cut textbook costs). And now I’m using it to provide other faculty with a voice and tools too.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

In Dec 2008 I started econproph.com on WordPress.com and I started an experimental self-hosted faculty site at jimluke.com on shared hosting from A2 Hosting. The experiment took off.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

It’s very affordable. It’s real people. The speakers, even the national ones, are all highly approachable. It’s a real community.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

I got speak one-on-one and run ideas past Andy Nacin (WP lead developer) and Matt Mullenweg (the founder!)

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

The project I’m going to talk about: malartu.org, a multi-network install for higher ed faculty. We’re just getting started now, but the vision is for a WordPress-centric econ-system of tools, plugins, themes, and services for higher ed faculty teaching needs.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

Networking and happiness bars.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

Read “The WordPress Philosophy”. Take it to heart. (see the Codex)

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

I’m a former national champion Collegiate debater and I used to race cars for a year a long time ago.

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

Jim Groom at Univ Mary Washington

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

Helping improve the success rate in my online classes by 20% and reducing textbook costs so 1,500 students could succeed at college Principles of Economics during the past 3 years.

How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?

I’ve learned what’s possible at WordCamps and that’s inspired me to move on and solve bigger and bigger problems.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

Work in higher education or you want to contribute to helping higher ed become more effective, accessible, and cheaper.

What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?

They should have at least a passing familiarity with how a basic WordPress site works – the concepts of posts vs. pages and media uploads. Beyond that, just an interest in either higher ed or some community applications of WP.

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

WordPress.org of course!

Where can we find you online?

jimluke.com (bio, resources, presentations, news, syllabi)
econproph.com (econ & higher ed commentary)
econproph.net (my online courses)
malartu.org (the non-profit I run)

Twitter: @econproph
LinkedIn: James Luke
jol2@plansolutions.com
econproph@gmail.com

Seth Alling Speaker Interview

Bio

Seth Alling

Seth Alling is a Detroit-based developer turned designer turned developer, who has been working with WordPress since 2009. Doomed since he first started using a computer at 18 months old, he has learned to embrace his inner nerd and currently works as the Lead Developer for Ranch House Designs. When he’s not developing (or designing), you can find him playing soccer or spending time with his wife and son.

Seth will be participating in the “Lessons Learned From WordPress Developers” panel at 4:30pm in Vandenberg Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

Three reasons: It’s easy for people to use, just about anything is possible to develop with it, and the community is awesome.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

I started using WordPress in early 2009 as a portfolio blog to display my design work. I started developing in October 2009 when I was asked if I could build a WordPress theme. Even though I had never even touched PHP before, I said yes.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

It’s cheap, you’ll learn a lot, and the people who go are awesome. Seriously, if you want to be awesome, you should go.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

I was looking for ways to convince the company I worked for that we needed to switch hosts. While talking with some attendees at an after party, I found someone who had not only the exact same problem as me, but was also dealing with the same host. He helped me come up with a list of pros and cons and I was able to present my case to switch hosting providers.

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

I am oh so close to releasing a base theme for WordPress that is focused on use with CodeKit (sorry PC users) and libsass. Cory Miller is probably cringing that I still haven’t “shipped it”. ;)

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

Networking and meeting new people.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

The only reason I’ve gotten to the place where I am today is because I said yes to a project I initially may not have been ready to work on. As long as you are always willing to learn, and are not afraid to put yourself out there, then you are ready.

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

My second son is due a few weeks after WordCamp Ann Arbor.

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

Cory Miller. He convinced me that I just need to ship things instead of making them 100% perfect. Yes, I’m still working on actually being true to his advice.

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

I’m the author of a fairly decent plugin called No Page Comment.

How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?

There’s almost always someone who has either experienced or is experiencing the same problem(s) as you. Just by meeting new people and talking with them, you can oftentimes find solutions to those problems.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

Often find yourself hovering between design and development.

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

Either the Codex or the community.

Where can we find you online?

My website
Twitter

Kellen Mace Speaker Interview

Bio

Kellen Mace

I was born in Toronto, then raised in the Metro Detroit area. College at Grand Valley State took me to West Michigan, where I got to know several of my good friends. A few years after marrying my adoring wife and high school sweetheart, we moved to Colorado for a short time, only to trace our roots back home and settle in beautiful Rochester Hills, Michigan. When not slinging code, I love to make music on guitars, drum kit, keyboards and in digital audio workstations like Reason, Pro Tools and Logic. I also like to read quite a lot about technology, nutrition and science, with some fiction thrown into the mix to spice things up. Lastly, I’m a huge fan of the marvelous WordPress community of developers and designers that I am privileged to be a part of.

Kellen will be participating in the “Lessons Learned From WordPress Developers” at 4:30pm in the Vandenberg Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

The excellent community of developers and designers, the amount of client work that’s readily available, the ability to work remotely, and the ease of use and robust feature set that WordPress offers.

When and how did you start using WordPress?

In 2012, I decided that I wanted to switch careers and do something related to software development. One of my close friends is a WordPress developer, and taught me a bit about the platform, then I was hooked! I began building sites for friends and family members for little or no money, then later started a freelance company and began doing freelance client work.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

You will get to meet with, learn from, and bounce ideas off of some of the most influential and inspiring developers, designers and entrepreneurs you’ll ever meet, and leave motivated to build and do very cool things with WordPress.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

Meeting inspiring developers who run successful businesses that I can learn from.

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

I am currently building my first WordPress theme from scratch. It’s based on the excellent Underscores framework, and will be geared toward small businesses. I also built glowintheparkrun.com, which was the first time I had used custom post types extensively.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

Talking with and learning from influential and inspiring developers.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

Reach out to the very welcoming community for help, and return the favor. Determine what kind of product or service you want to sell, and learn everything you can that will help you achieve that goal.

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

My wife and I just had our first child! We named him Desmond James Mace, and he is an incredibly cool dude.

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

Brian Richards from WPSessions.

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

Educating myself on HTML, CSS, PHP and JavaScript, and how to use those languages to successfully build and deploy websites.

How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?

I’ve learned about aspects of WordPress, and considerations to make when building sites/plugins/themes and I either didn’t know existed, didn’t have any experience with, or hadn’t thought to consider before.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

Run your own business building sites or commercial plugins.

What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?

No prerequisites for this one; it’s a relatively straight forward panel discussion on the pluses and minuses of being a WordPress developer. Anyone considering WordPress as a career choice should attend.

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

Brian Krogsgard’s excellent Post Status.

Where can we find you online?

kellenmace.com or @kellenmace on Twitter.

Jordan Quintal Speaker Interview

Bio

Jordan Quintal

Jordan Quintal is a successful Online Multipreneur, a seasoned Web Developer, as well as a WordPress Contributor and Community Member.

Jordan is the current President at The Genius Web Media Inc. that was founded in 2007, and he has over 15 years of web development experience. His skill, intelligence, and ambition have allowed him and his company to flourish in a very competitive Media market.

Jordan is also an active advocate and educator towards Web and WordPress accessibility.

Jordan will be presenting “WordPress Accessibility – the fundamentals of Web Accessibility” at 4:30pm in Henderson Room.

Why do you use WordPress?

My company and I use WordPress because of its flexibility.

We love the challenge of taking a project that wouldn’t normally be built in WordPress and building it in WordPress anyways.

Some people say “but why WordPress?”…we say “Why not?”

When and how did you start using WordPress?

I started using WordPress in 2006. I was attending college at the time, and one of our Professors went outside of the school curriculum and taught us WordPress instead of just standard PHP. He told the class that one day, we may be able to grow successful businesses using WordPress, so I have been evolving my skills since then.

What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?

I think that is is extremely important for any freelancer or growing business to attend local, communal events. Gaining exposure and increasing business related networks can be the key catalyst to growth and success. You really never know who you may run into, and how they can impact what you do.

Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.

At WordCamp Chicago 2013, I had the honor of meeting, shaking hands with, and briefly speaking to WordPress Founder Matt Mullenweg!

Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.

We are in the midst of building a full blown WordPress plugin that is centered around the Canadian Real Estate Board’s Data Distribution feed (CREA DDF). We are hoping to drastically improve Real Estate and WordPress compatibility.

What is your favorite part of WordCamps?

I truly love the people. Travelling around North America and attending various WordCamps has allowed me to meet some of the best people out there.

What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?

Starting a company can be challenging.
Take the time to properly organize yourself; and don’t be afraid to make mistakes, because believe me, you will.

Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.

I’m a huge FOODIE! I LOVE going to new restaurants, bars, cafes, etc.
You can always catch me trying something new somewhere in town.

Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.

To be honest, I am truly inspired by WordPress Founder, Matt Mullenweg. He turned a simple but great idea into an empire. From an entrepreneurial perspective, I aspire to reach his level of success in the online media industry.

What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?

In 2012 I was offered my first WordCamp presentation in Toronto; which was the only one I did that year, and at the time was a huge accomplishment. By the end of 2014, I will have attended/presented at at least 8 WordCamps across Canada and the U.S.

How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?

WordCamps have allowed me to network with the right individuals and learn very valuable information that has positively impacted the growth of my business.

Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.

If you — share the same passion for making the web an accessible place for everyone — then you should come talk to me at WordCamp.

What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?

To attend my talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor, all I ask is that everyone come with an open mind.
Accessibility is important to me and MILLIONS of other people. If I can get at least one more person on board with the movement, I will have done my job.

What is your favorite WordPress related resource?

Right now I am a huge fan of the various plugins built by iThemes.
I regularly use BackUpBuddy and recently started using there Security plugin.

Where can we find you online?

Go to Google, do a search on “Jordan TheGenius Quintal” and you will find all that is published about me.

October 4, 2014