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Using Agile in a WordPress Design and Development Process

WordPress design and development is a tough gig. Sustained productivity takes focus, organization, and willpower strong enough to pooh-pooh even the cutest of online cat videos. If you’ve ever felt overwhelmed or lost track of your work, this session on using Agile to battle the blah is for you.

It covers how you can incorporate Agile principles to prioritize and set accurate expectations on a reasonable workload, and whether Scrum or Kanban is a match for you.

SEO 101

Basic things any user can do to improve the SEO of their website. From what plugins help, to what you can do while writing to better optimize your website.

Launching a WordPress Service & Lessons Learned

I’d like to share the lessons that I’ve learned in launching The good, bad, and ugly.

Getting Started with VVV and WP-CLI

How to use WP-CLI to make changes to WordPress sites much more quickly than using the admin UI. We’ll cover some of the basic commands that WP-CLI offers, then run a few of them during a live demonstration.

WordPress Site Security: Common and Uncommon Steps

We’ll discuss common attack points and how to lock them down as well as some steps you won’t find in a list of 25 Security Tips on the web.

Creating a Successful Premium Plugin Business

Pain to Profit: 15 simple tips for getting more projects, getting better projects and being more profitable

For those offering client services, especially as a freelance consultant just getting started, this lightning talk will impart on you 15 key, actionable tips which will help you get more projects, better projects and improve your profitability from those projects.

Speed up your WordPress Workflow with an IDE

Everyone has their preferred choice of Development tools, but it is important to see what options are available. While there are a number of benefits, this talk is designed to cover some of the top reason to give an IDE a test drive.
1. Using xdebug to troubleshoot your code.
2. Stepping through the code.
3. Jumping to where a function is defined.
4. Code suggestions due to the fact that the IDE knows about WP Core functions.
5. PHP Codesniffer

Putting The User First: Organizing Your Website’s Content To Reflect User Needs Rather Than Your Organization’s Structure

Between SBR and business units, your organization’s structure is ingrained in your everyday language and culture at work. However, while we think of our businesses relation to hierarchy and budget, our users have no knowledge of that structure…or any desire to learn it! When you force users to learn your structure and buzzwords in order to use your services or tools, you risk losing them and their business.

In this talk, you will learn to create websites that are organized in a way that makes sense to your users so that they have an easy and enjoyable experience on your site.

Top 8 Web Design Trends for 2015 WordPress Websites

For this speech I want to point out 8 of the top web design trends for 2015, and explain why they have become current trends.The trends I will focus on are:

  • Flat / Material Design
  • Responsive Design
  • Scrolling
  • Modular Design
  • Focus on Backgrounds
  • Microinteractions
  • Ghost Buttons
  • Typography

WordPress in RAM

Multiple ways to speed up a WordPress site using RAM as well as a complete WordPress site run from your servers’ memory.

Introduction to the WordPress Backend

Definitely for beginners, let’s take a brief tour of the dashboard to begin setting up your site. It’s a simple tour of the main interfaces to help you become familiar with the dashboard. The tour will include adding a new post, uploading media, finding plugins using, widgets, settings and permalinks.

Using Your Website to Create an Exceptional Customer Journey

Website design isn’t just about headers, footers or sidebars. Good design is about asking the right questions and making sure those questions apply to your website visitors.

It’s about finding solutions to your visitors’ problems and presenting these solutions within a cohesive design. It’s about mapping a journey for your visitors and creating clear paths for them to follow.

Successful website design isn’t about me or you. When done right it will be focused on your visitor and how your website can help them locate the right information and encourage them to take action.

This session will review the key questions you should ask yourself before launching a new website or refreshing your current website. It will help you put the focus back on the visitor and help you lead them down a path of conversions.

WP Battles: Themes vs. Plugins

The classic contest. Themes against plugins. Which are better? Which can solve your problems, fix your site and grow your business? In this epic showdown we’ll explore the purposes and use cases, pros and cons, strengths and weaknesses of these two critical components of any WordPress website.

Deploying a WordPress Site with Minimal Work

Cowboy code, FTP to a development server, work locally and FTP, work locally and push changes with version control. There are so many different environments available for developing and deploying WordPress sites that it can seem a little daunting, and figuring out how to make it all work is even more so. Explore the different ways to deploy a website from a local environment, and learn how you can exponentially reduce your deployment time with a few scripts.

Choosing the Right Plugins

With more than 35,000 Word Press plugins, how do you choose the best ones for your site? During this session will go over important criteria for selecting the best plugins, review useful and effective plugins that bolster security, improve speed, and make maintenance and development easy.

Learning through Stealing: How to become better at your craft

We’re going to explore a few methods of learning – focusing on the practice of copying. Code, design, & user experience can all be improved when we take a deeper look into successful implementations. We’ll analyze methods and steal a few things along the way, learning how to truly make them our own.

Becoming an Influencer in the World of WordPress

None of us work in a vacuum. And we all recognize that the most successful people in our industry are those that become thought leaders and who build and maintain a very high level of influence and professional credibility.

Kevin Skarrit, Chief Peep of Flock Marketing will guide you through:
* Strategies for building your networks and your business (or personal) brand.
* How to build and boost your online credibility and influence
* Using your social platforms to showcase your mad-skills
* lots of practical advice for building your influence.

WordPress 102

Quick Review of 101
Contact information
Theme selection
Plugin selection
WordPress repository
More about Hiring a Designer/Developer

Becoming a Better Developer

It’s easy to look at where you are and where you want to be and think, “I’ll never get there” and plateau with your current skill set.

Maybe you’re a developer who is looking to level up their career. Maybe you’re someone who wants to break into a development career for the first time.

Wherever you’re at, I want to teach you the same methods I use every single day to keep my skills sharp and to keep myself connected to interesting and rewarding projects and relationships.

Keynote: The Future of WordPress (and Your Role in it)

What does the future hold for WordPress, as a platform and as a community?

Will we see continued growth, from ~24% of the web to 50%? Will the REST API enable a whole new generation of powerful interfaces to content stored and managed by WordPress? Will Skynet become self-aware as a side effect of the introduction of Emoji? Will the customizer lead to a totalitarian state? Will we all join hands and sing “I’d like to teach the world to sing, in perfect harmony”?

Through the lens of various 19th, 20th, and 21st century utopias and dystopias, we’ll look at what the future has in store for WordPress, and what you can do to make it happen (or stop it).

Introduction to Backbone.JS with WordPress

Heard of Backbone.js but have yet to use it in your WordPress plugin or theme? Get an introduction to Backbone.js (and Underscore.js), discover why you should be using it, and learn how to add it to your next project.

Making the Sale

Keeping your WordPress site updated

This lightning session will cover keeping the WordPress core, plugins, and themes updated, why this is incredibly important to do, why people don’t do it (or don’t do it often enough), and how to make updates as little work and as little risk as possible.

Curious about Twig?

– Slapdash introduction to twig
– Syntax overview
– Template inheritance
– Routing

October 24th 2015 at the Michigan Union