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WordCamp San Francisco 2009 Rocks the WordPress Community

WordCamp San Francisco 2009 Rocks the WordPress Community

WordCamp San Francisco 2009 was this past weekend and brought together over 700 WordPress enthusiasts to the Mission Bay Conference Center at UCSF. There were many speakers covering a wide variety of topics including Timothy Ferriss of the The 4-Hour Workweek, Cali Lewis of GeekBrief.TV on building an audience with video shows, Scott Porad of Pet Holdings, the parent company of I Can Has Cheezburger? and on crowd sourcing, Dave Moyer of the and on podcasting production, Steve Souders formerly of Google and the author of High Performance Web Sites on site optimization, Ann Oyama, aka SuperAnn, a freelance WordPress developer and host of on WordPress Theme code, functions, and customization, just to name a few of the awesome speakers.

People came from all around the world including England, Japan, China, Spain, France, Canada, Mexico, and from all over the United States including , the first recipient of a permanent WordPress logo tattoo, surprised to be highlighted in State of the Word presentation.

I helped Patrick Havens of the live blog the sessions. He took the upstairs “main” conference hall and I took the downstairs, ducking out when I could to help with the WordPress Genius Bar.

The collection of live blog posts on The WordCamp Report from WordCamp San Francisco 2009 include:

Many were twittering and live blogging the WordPress event of the year, as well as having their say on the information coming out of WordCamp San Francisco. Some include:

Expect a lot more news and coverage of WordCamp San Francisco 2009 to come out over the next few days, along with a ton of pictures of the event and participants.

The WordPress Genius Bar: Helping WordPress Users Use WordPress

The WordPress Genius Bar is on its second year, run by the amazing Lloyd Budd. This year, a ton of WordPress experts, developers, and customer support folks volunteered their time to help people with their WordPress issues. A common question was about transferring their WordPress blog to another WordPress blog, such as moving from to a self-hosted version of WordPress, moving domains, and moving between web hosts. Other popular questions involved SEO issues, permalinks, Plugin issues, images and file uploading and management, redirects, and comment spam.

There were also some really basic questions on how to blog that we loved, especially as many of the volunteers got a chance to learn more about the attendees and what their blogging ideas and goals were. One person told me how much they loved their “interrogation” as they were leaving the Genius Bar. “They were asking me more questions than I was – but I learned so much about how I’m going to start my blog because I answered my own questions!”

One person came in with a double sided, single spaced, typed list of questions for the WordPress Genius volunteers, but found when his first two questions were answered, all of his questions were answered, disappointing a couple of us ready to dig into his WordPress issues. We all laughed and sent him on his way thrilled that this was so easy.

I really recommend that WordCamps include similar helper areas. It’s a great way to learn more about WordPress and give back, but also a great place to get to know people and learn of all the myriad ways people use WordPress. Lloyd Budd does such a great job organizing these, I’m sure he’ll write some tips or offer suggestions to help those interested in adding a Genius Bar to their WordPress events.

Day Two: WordPress Developer Day

The offices of were packed with a lot of people hungry for more WordPress on Sunday.

The day was more informally structured in the Barcamp style, with three rooms open for different presentations and discussions. Several WordPress Plugin and Theme developers presented their wares and concepts, which I will cover more on soon. It was exciting to see where some are taking WordPress, changing the face and content of blogging in the future.

There were a lot of sessions in the day including discussions and code hacking advice and tips on WordPress documentation, , , WordPress Plugins, localization and internationalization efforts, Subversion and Trac, and more.

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An interesting discussion was lead by Barry Abrahamson, the WordPress server wrangler, about how WordPress pushes their servers to the hilt to maximize blogs and offer tips to others to optimize their server, especially those running high load systems. Barry put the questions and a summary of the answers in the Server Q&A — WordCamp Dev Day blog on using the P2 WordPress Theme.

WordCamp 2009 Summary

As a huge WordCamp fan, and having attended and presented at many WordCamps, the annual WordCamp in San Francisco is a major event, and a unique one. At over 700 attendees, I believe that this year’s event is the world’s largest WordCamp, outdoing WordCamps in Hawaii and Israel by only a few, by my unofficial score.

personally selects the WordCamp presenters for this special WordCamp, people who have influenced his own work and blogging efforts recently or over the years. He believes that if they can change his life, they can change yours. And he’s right.

Each year, through the live presentations and now the video versions hosted on , WordPress fans from around the world can learn from the best of the best in WordPress, SEO, community building, crowd sourcing, content building, site optimization, and the business of blogging.

With and grown now to over 50 employees, most were in attendance from around the world, giving fellow employees and WordPress fans a chance to personally thank and get to know those who make WordPress run and improve. During the breaks, especially around the WordPress Genius Bar, it was exciting to hear WordPress tips and tricks flying around the huge open lobby and halls of the Mission Bay Conference Center.

While WordCamp San Francisco 2009 is over, there are many WordCamps coming up around the world. Upcoming WordCamps include:

View Comments (2)
  • Lorelle,

    I think these conferences are really good and there is a lot of value add, i have only been able to see the youtube and other site videos of the conference (learnt alot). Do you know if there will be a similar conference held in London, Uk any time soon?


  • REcently watched the MAtt Cutts video on ranking using WordPress, man really does know what he’s talking about! really want to go to the conference next year

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