Talking SaaS at WordCamp Netherlands This Weekend

The Netherlands is one of the most active communities in the European WordPress ecosystem, and I'm very much excited to talk about Software as a Service applications in the WordPress context this weekend in Utrecht! WordCamp Netherlands is hosted in Utrecht this year, with a Contributor Day on Friday, Oct 14, and a couple of days with talks in two parallel tracks on Oct 15 and Oct 16. I'm basically closing the WordCamp with the last talk of day 2 talking about "Building SaaS with WordPress" while Franz Vitulli is talking about Slack and internal communication in the other room. I will share… Continue Reading

On WordPress Development Retainers

With over 40 people working at DevriX right now, we have revised our service solutions and focused on promoting a type of service that combines our recurring revenue goal with iterative development solutions for some of our clients. While we do provide maintenance services, we realized that a development retainer would be incredibly useful for most of our leads. This month we've started a new WordPress development retainer and signed a discovery session for another large one coming next month. There are a few more in our pipeline which our sales rep is looking into, sharing our process with our prospects and getting some valuable feedback for… Continue Reading

The Challenges Of Building a Site For a Friend

I often receive referrals or friends asking me to set up a WordPress website for them. It's usually something fairly small - such as a 5-page business website or a simple magazine website. They are close friends of mine or have been recommended through my network. They have received some offers, but are looking for a reliable solution instead of a shady freelancer or a random website building company. [caption id="attachment_12623" align="aligncenter" width="821"] Costs vs. Value[/caption] Generally speaking, I usually price services based on one of these two approaches: Free help for friends and family for trivial tasks and general guidance.… Continue Reading

Code Quality And Free Plugins

Update Apr 29, 2015: My friend Emil from ThemeReview.co announced their Plugin Review service which I highly recommend for all plugin authors, business owners and clients - high quality means higher security, better performance and compatibility for your project. We have these regular discussions on Open Source, the future of WordPress and such. I've been discussing the global community aspect and the challenges with the self-made development titles, so let's take a closer look at the community. Growing WordPress As I've said before, I'm all in when it comes to having an Open Source platform for everyone to use and play it. It's… Continue Reading

On WordPress Talent Shortage

Last week Andy Adams posted a great post - The WordPress Talent Shortage Might Be a Pricing Problem. I hadn't met Andy before, noticed the post through Brian and Jeffro, but I read it three times and I do agree with a lots of his thoughts and conclusions. I’d like to propose that the shortage of developers might actually be a pricing problem. Specifically, WordPress salaries and rates are not high enough to draw talent. What is the level of our experts? WordPress Development Experts If we ignore the Job Title discussion or the issues with the community experts for a bit, the developer community… Continue Reading

Web Development and WordPress Online Training

The end of my PHP course at the Software University is near, and I'm planning a new program for WordPress development. I've been teaching courses since 2006, take a look at my training portfolio. Few of the companies where I have trained employees are: VMware, SAP Labs, Software AG, Melexis, and I have also trained groups at CERN - the European Organization for Nuclear Research, and Saudi Aramco - the world's most valuable company. I am a seasoned teacher at several universities and technical schools, and I have presented at several WordCamps around the world, such as: Edinburgh, London, Oslo, Sofia, Porto, the Netherlands,… Continue Reading

Periodic Table, my First Public Upload

Recently I found a link to an app that I've published online almost 10 years ago and as far as I remember, it's my first publicly available application ever, free for download: I'm definitely not proud with the overall end product or the code quality produced back then, but that's my first contribution to the free software initiative and I felt somewhat sentimental. The application was written in Visual Basic and it was a cheat sheet of the Periodic Table of the Elements, displaying various details for each element like the atomic number, temperatures of boiling or melting, density. It… Continue Reading

Plugins Scalability

Recently, I've been thinking about the state of plugins. In my previous post I've mentioned the free and premium plugins, and additionally I could split them in other categories, such as: small and large, self-contained and extensible, user-oriented and developer-related, optimized and non-optimized. I could go further with secure/insecure and everything, but that's another story. I'd also like to cover the aspect of user-oriented plugins vs. developer helpers, which is a separate topic. Scalability According to Wikipedia: In electronics (including hardware, communication and software), scalability is the ability of a system, network, or process to handle a growing amount of work in… Continue Reading

The Low Barrier of WordPress

Coen Jacobs wrote a post recently, asking Is WordPress Too Easy? I was about to follow-up on that, but due to time constraints, my thoughts flew away, but I felt the urge to do a part 2 on that series, with some other thoughts. What is WordPress? No, I'm not going to define that as most people are already in the industry. But I keep getting various mixed signals from other people around me. The casual one that you've already heard is: "but WordPress is just a simple blogging platform". I'm fine with that and I have a few canned… Continue Reading

My Paradox With The Switch Statement

Ever since high school, I have always been suspicious when it comes to the switch statement in programming. It is quite intuitive if you think about it, but in my opinion it has various limitations in some scenarios: it's error-prone by missing a break; clause here and there chaining cases isn't always intuitive to read, in addition to the break; thing different languages have different rules for switch - such as the allowed switch types for input variables (Java used to disallow strings at all), objects, and especially what could be put in each case There are a few more,… Continue Reading