Seth Alling is a Detroit-based developer turned designer turned developer, who has been working with WordPress since 2009. Currently he works remotely as the Lead Developer for Ranch House Designs, a small agency located in Wharton, Texas, where he is primarily responsible for developing custom WordPress websites and plugins. When he’s not developing (or designing), you can find him running, playing soccer or spending time with his wife and two sons.
Why do you use WordPress?
Because it’s awesome! Seriously, I use it because it’s easy to use and learn. Also, it has a great community of people to continually help make it better.
When and how did you start using WordPress?
Before graduating from BYU in 2009, I needed to quickly put up a portfolio for one of my classes. I had heard of WordPress and gave it a shot, and found out how easy it was to pick a theme and add some content. I started developing with it a few months later when I was asked if I could develop a WordPress theme while working as a web designer. Even though I had never done it before, I said sure, found a couple posts on how to build a WordPress theme, and everything just kinda took off from there.
What would you tell someone to convince them to attend a WordCamp?
You will meet some of the smartest and coolest people. And, the amount you will learn is well worth the price.
Tell us about something awesome you’ve experienced at a WordCamp in the past.
I recently attended WordCamp DFW where I had met none of the people there before attending the conference. By the end, I have many people who I now consider friends.
Give an example of a cool WordPress project you have worked on recently.
I used WordPress to develop a BuzzFeed-like personality quiz that matches car buyers with similar interests into “tribes”. This then would list a bunch of video car reviews to help them with their car-buying purchase.
What is your favorite part of WordCamps?
Meeting new people and hearing their story about how they’ve made their impact on the world.
What advice do you have for anyone looking to start or grow a WordPress based business?
Work hard and learn hard. Everything else will follow.
Tell us something awesome about yourself that is not WordPress related.
I love playing soccer. In fact, I was one of the few people who was excited to turn 30 this year because it meant that I could play on the over-30 leagues and be the fast guy on the field again.
Name someone in the WordPress community who inspires you.
Honestly, It’s not possible to choose just one, as a someone new inspires me just about every day. Whether it’s Topher DeRosia with his work on HeroPress, Joel Worsham with his crazy-fast learning abilities, or anyone who just put themselves out there and released their first WordPress plugin, I am constantly being inspired.
What has been your biggest WordPress related accomplishment to date?
I developed a plugin called No Page Comment that provided a solution to individually set the default comment setting on new page. This solved a problem that didn’t have a native solution until WordPress 4.3.
How have WordCamps impacted you and your business in the past?
It’s an opportunity to meet up with people who “have been there”. Each time I attend, I am able to find some knowledge and inspiration to help me improve.
Fill in the blank for other attendees: “If you __________ then you should come talk to me at WordCamp”.
need help with something on your WordPress site
What should someone learn before attending your talk at WordCamp Ann Arbor?
The command line is NOT a scary place.
What is your favorite WordPress related resource?
WordPress.tv or just the source code of WordPress.