This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending my very first WordCamp. WordCamps are tech/blogging conferences focused around the WordPress publishing platform. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to attend but I couldn’t resist an invitation from my friend Cotton so I was off to let my geek flag fly at Wordcamp Fayetteville.
To be honest I wasn’t sure what to expect. The only tech conventions I’ve attended are Hacker cons but I felt the familiar trepidation of being around a lot of people that knew 200x more about a subject than I.
Thankfully, wordpress geeks are just like hackers. (and pretty much every other geek)
They are one of the most welcoming and open communities you’ll ever find.
I think all geeks are bound by the common thread of curiosity and therefore love the experience of teaching others. I’ve set with world renowned hackers and wordpress gurus and the eagerness that these individuals have to share knowledge never ceases to excite me.
Smart folks ready to share. What more could you ask for from a geek gathering?
Events like WordCamp are worth attending just for the opportunity to meet people, make friends, and network.
Everything about Wordcamp was a class act. From the venue to the speakers it was a 5-star event. Christopher Spencer, WordCamp Fayetteville organizer, did an amazing job.
The Talks & Speakers
There were many good talks and since WordCamp offered 2 tracks I wasn’t able to attend them all but 2 of them definitely deserve to be highlighted.
How to Use WordPress for Dang Near Anything: Unlocking the CMS
by Mitch Canter (@StudioNashVegas / StudioNashVegas.com )
If you ever get the chance to hear Mitch present you are in for a treat. He is a seasoned speaker with an energetic and polished style and the content of his talk was exceptional.
Mitch covered everything from podcasting to flutter and then he shared some of his favorite wordpress plugins (starting at slide 39). He shared great demos and has links to all of them in the slide deck.
WordPress + Pods = CMS. Sort Of
by Michael Van Winkle ( @mpvanwinkle / MikeVanWinkle.com )
I’d heard of PodsCMS before but Michael to it to a whole new level. A level that existed about 20mi above my head once we reached the end. This slidedeck is one of the best introductions and demos of pods I’ve seen. He really showed the potential of PodsCMS & WordPress.
The talks were recorded so watch for them to be posted at WordCampFayetteville.com/live-video/. We also live blogged the conference via Google Wave, view our live blog and just click replay to see the live blog progress.
A bit thanks to @cottonr, @sugarcube, & @almostdaniel for their contributions to the live blog. We couldn’t have done it without you.
I met so many wonderful folks at WordCamp that I’ll no doubt omit someone but here are just a few of the people that we got to know.
Mitch Canter, @studionashvegas, WordPress designer and guru of StudioNashVegas.com [Speaker]
Syed Balkhi, @syedbalkhi, Founder of WPbeginner.com, and although he’s a Florida Gator a really great guy [Speaker]
Christopher Spencer, @cspencer75, Publisher of OzarksUnbound.com, all around nice guy and of course #wcfay [Organizer]
Stephanie McCratic, @evolvedmommy, Blogger at EvolvedMommy.com, a hilarious gal who I’ve followed for sometime on Twitter and ended up sitting next to.
Jessica Hickok, @sugarcube, Realtor and blogger at JessicaHickok.com, who was great fun and was an invaluable help to the live blog.
Jen, @jenny86753oh9, She may have the best twitter name ever and blogs at 86753oh9.com
Last but certainly not least… my partner in crime and good friend Cotton Rohrscheib, @cottonr, blogger at CottonRohrscheib.com, founding partner at Interactive Agency Pleth.com who was also a WordCamp Sponsor. You can see his take on WordCamp here.