First WordCamp US in Nashville - Covered by Plesk

Plesk Covers the First WordCamp US Nashville Edition

A crew of 8 Pleskians from international offices and one MangagedDotCom partner united in Nashville for WordCamp US 2017. Definitely one of the biggest WordCamps with 1,700+ attendees from all over the world. Plesk was a proud sponsor and we were over the moon meeting our WordPress partners and friends in the renowned music city.

Watch our Plesk recap of WordCamp US 2017

WordCamp US Days

After our disappointing experience with shipment at WordCamp Seattle, relief washed over us as our shipment arrived at Nashville Music City Centre smack on time. So Thursday morning began with us setting up our Plesky booth with creative, useful swag. Socks, fidget cubes, yoyos, wristbands, lanyards and a variety of stickers, including the newly-released #Octapuu.

Then our dinner was full of WP sponsors, speakers and volunteers, followed by an exploration of the world-famous Nashville Broadway, where numerous bars, restaurants and air of live music surrounded us.

The actual WordCamp event started Friday at 8 AM at the Hallway Track. Here attendees got refreshments and official WordPress swag from the store while networking with sponsors and partners. People were amazed by all the swag we have brought to Nashville and helped themselves to most of our lot. Even the little ones were happy with their presents:

Of course, our official mascot Elvis Plesky couldn’t miss out as he posed with our booth visitors inside special photo frames. Including our buddy Bob! So much fun!

Plesk WordPress Toolkit Demos

Our Plesk booth was crowded during the entire event with all the Pleskians delightfully busy giving product and service info and demonstrating the all-too-popular WordPress Toolkit. Plesk proves once again that we’re here to simplify the lives of web professionals worldwide.

Talks at WordCamp US

But here’s what we thought. I was a busy speaker-wrangler, helping 14 inspiring speakers to set up, so not much time to attend talks. Luckily we can catch up with any talks we may have missed on WordPress TV! But one talk that stood out for me was Fat, Happy and Fifty by Marc Benzakein.

I also saw Alain Schlesser with a very ambitious introduction to Computer Science in a 10-minute Lightning Talk. As well as Andrea Zoellner’s interesting take on Why Tech Conferences Can Suck for Women (and How to Fix It).

News and Announcements

 

Gutenberg

A huge focus of this year’s State of the Word was Gutenberg. Matt Mullenweg, co-founder of WordPress, said Gutenberg is the longest feature development WordPress ever had. At WordCamp US, users could test Gutenberg and give feedback in real-time. They ran over 90 user tests. Matías Ventura then went on to perform a live demo.

This project will be released in April 2018. But we’re still waiting for better documentation, plugin development, and more feedback. Mullenweg will remain the release lead through 2018.

Hackerone

WordPress launched Hackerone in May this year – a program that rewards users for finding security breaches and bugs. This service will soon be available for plugins and themes too, making an overall safer WordPress.

Tide

This year, Tide will run automated tests against every plugin and theme in the directory. This way, developers and users can see which plugins and themes need work. Each test will not only have a pass or fail, but also show where the error is and link to Github where anyone can update it. Developers can even challenge the test.

WP-CLI

WP-CLI became an official WordPress project, led by Daniel Bachhuber and Alain Schlesser with 4 releases in 2017. A huge focus of Mullenweg’s speech last year was SSL and Let’s Encrypt. He called for every WordPress site to use this free service.

Mullenweg even announced that WordPress now officially powers 29% of the web and shared his 3 focuses for the coming year: Gutenberg Editing, Gutenberg Customization, and a Gutenberg Theme. Take some time to watch the State of the Word video.

Social Events

Sonja Leix invited me to “Kaffeekränzchen” – a German WordPress meetup.

Then we also joined the WP Engine party and events by GoDaddy and Post Status at “The Flying Saucer”. Thank you all so much for having us. The WordCamp US afterparty at The National Science Center ensured we had food and drinks while exploring the Center. After enjoying the final Planetarium show, it was time to head to Nashville Broadway for the famous WC Karaoke party.

Contributor Day

Our Jörg Strotmann participated in the hosting team – to the github repository: WordPress Hosting Best Practices Documentation. By the end of the day, team lead Andrew Taylor announced that his team already had two pull requests submitted – and by a new contributor too. Well done, Jörg !Watch the Contributor Day Video for more.

I joined the community team in the Diversity Outreach Speaker Training workshop. I want to encourage speakers from underrepresented minorities to raise their voices at WordCamps. At the end of the Contributor Day, I had the pleasure to meet Matt Mullenweg in person and to present him with a gift on behalf of the WordCamp Cologne organizers.

2017 Meetups and WordCamps

This year there were 128 WordCamps across 48 countries. 1,008 organizers in total. That’s up 33,9% from last year. This number was dwarfed by 4,379 meetups in 73 countries. Matt Mullenweg credited the event widget for increasing the meetup number by a third.

For WordCamp US, we had 21 organizers and over 150 volunteers working for over a year. And they did an absolutely amazing job – thank you for all your effort, guys!

Photo Memories of WordCamp US 2017

It was hard to say goodbye to all my WordPress friends and to my Plesk crew. As for myself, I decided to spontaneously fly to NYC and enjoy the Christmas atmosphere. Were you at WordCamp US? See if you can spot yourself in our photos below or in our full Facebook gallery. And let us know what you thought of the event in the comments below.

About

Carole is a WordPress Community Junkie and a passionate WordCamp organizer. She's been the WordPress Community Manager for Plesk since August 2017.

    Leave a Comment

    Start typing and press Enter to search