Featured Speaker: Dan Imbrogno

Dan Imbrogno

Dan Imbrogno

Dan is the lead developer at Blogging Squared, a small web design shop that specializing in helping businesses turbo charge their WordPress web sites. Over the last four years, Dan has gained experience in building powerful web applications using the WordPress plugin API. When not pouring over the Codex, Dan can be found slack lining in Trinity Bellwoods park.  Follow Dan on Twitter at @danimbrogno.

Why WordPress?

When I started freelancing out of university clients would come to me and ask me to build them a website. I’d tell them all about WordPress and convince them to give it a go. Now, four years later, most clients I meet ask for WordPress by name.

It’s really not surprising, WordPress is the cleanest, most robust and easily extensible open source CMS out there. For me, it’s a no-brainer.

What are you most looking forward to at WordCamp Toronto?

Freelancing is lonely work, so like many others I’m looking forward to connecting with other designers, developers and users. As a developer, I think it’s important to venture out from behind the monitor from time to time and interact with real live human beings.

Why did you decide to speak at WordCamp Toronto?

I’ve never really given a presentation before, but after attending some WordPress meetups, I realized that I had some experience that others could likely benefit from.

I’ve spent countless hours reading the WordPress Codex and digging through the core and I’ve fallen into and dug myself out of every pitfall there is. I am always trying to find cleaner, more elegant solutions to my development patterns and I think I can help some people avoid some of the setbacks I ran into.

I know I still have a lot to learn, and nothing forces you to polish your chops than getting up in front of a room of people and trying to convince them you know what you’re talking about, so I’m looking forward to learning as much from the attendees as they’ll learn from me.

What is your talk going to be about?

I’m going to build upon the earlier workshops in the day by walking people through some common skills you’ll need to master when building a WordPress plugin.

Attendees will download the tutorial plugin and install it on the local development environment that they set up earlier in the day.

The tutorial plugin walks users through building a plugin through successive layers of complexity. We start with relatively simple stuff, like using actions and filters, but quickly ramp up to some more advanced topics like plugin internationalization, ajax and creating tables for your plugin in the WordPress database.

What is one thing you want people to walk away with from your talk?

I hope that people walk away from the talk with enough knowledge to take their plugin development to the next level of complexity, cleanliness, efficiency and accessibility.

What is your favourite WordPress plugin or theme? Why?

Well, Hello Dolly is pretty sweet, but I think I gotta go with Headway. Their new beta looks pretty slick and I’m excited to start using this to speed up the design process.

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About Andy McIlwain

Andy is a front-end dev and community guy (GoDaddy, Toronto's WordPress meetups, and WordCamp). Find him on Twitter and his personal blog.
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