WordCamp Cape Town 2016

WordCamp Cape Town 2016 image

On the 8th and 9th of September <bold><a href="https://2016.capetown.wordcamp.org/">WordCamp</a></bold> was in town for its annual Wordpress meet-up, which was held at the beautiful River Club. With two days jam packed full of workshops, training, presentations, talks and networking, not to mention the great food and a chance to smash a few golf balls on the driving range, it promised to be an entertaining and educational event.

The first day, Thursday, was very hands-on with over 10 highly practical 60-minute workshops. These workshops were divided into three different categories, to cater for all relevant Wordpress / developer experience and capabilities, ranging from “User” to “Intermediate Developer” to “Advanced Developer”. Unfortunately, with Thursdays generally being a work day <!--yes, even in Cape Town-->, we only managed to slip away from the office after lunch to catch the final half of day one.

The first workshop we attended was presented by Daine Mawer and focused on Development for Designers, this was quite appropriate for us as I am traditionally a graphic designer and Dom a developer. The session provided both designers and content managers with an easy to grasp, graphical <!--like the saying goes, draw them a picture…--> and contextual understanding of how developers work. Daine went through a few web development concepts and standards like HTML, CSS, Servers and programming conventions <!--with the occasional swipe at non-mac users--> in an easy to understand way. The intention was to give designers a greater understanding of development and how developers work, without getting too technical.

The second workshop, after tea <!--and some yummy biscuits-->, focused on the benefits of using a Wordpress Framework like Genesis, and was presented by first-time <bold>WordCamp</bold> speaker Bradley Baumann. This workshop, despite the ever frustrating internet <!--or lack thereof-->, proved to be extremely worthwhile as Bradley demonstrated how to install and use the ‘Genesis’ framework, and how to use and customise the ‘Child’ themes that integrate with the framework. As an added bonus, after the workshop, all attendees were given access to purchase any of the ‘Genesis’ products at a massive 75% discount… sweet!

dom-and-anthony-wcct-2016.jpg




The second day, Friday, was single-track focused with the entire day dedicated to speaker sessions designed to inspire you to encode your life <!--see what I did there--> and build it, and your business, around Wordpress. After a quick meeting at the office and a few emails, we were off the River Club and made it just in time for the second session of the day which focused on Mental Wellness and how the Wordpress Community can help you with your problems, all you need to do is be willing to talk. The session was presented by Leo Gopal and dived into the harsh reality that not only our own mental wellness but also that of those around us, is more often than not the least understood and neglected part of our everyday lives. <!--#WPHugs-->


Lightning Talks followed with two 15-minute blasts from Jeff Pearce <!--updating us on what’s new in the web development industry--> and Jemima Baumann <!--Giving some great advice on how to improve developer – client relations-->, and then it was off to Morning Tea. Trisha Cornelius kept everyone going after tea with her bubbly personality, as her session focused on Customising Wordpress for the Reader Experience. This was followed by a very interesting session presented by Caitlin Gevers, which focused on “Click-to-pay-to-learn”. Caitlin, a self-proclaimed non-developer, showed us how Wordpress and a compilation of Wordpress plugins like ‘Sensei’ and ‘WooCommerce’ helped her run a successful online learning startup. This being the final session before lunch, like a herd of cattle, we all made our way upstairs to grab something to eat. Afterwards we slipped away and made our way back to the office to try and get some work done and catch up on emails. <!--yes… people in Cape Town do work on Fridays as well-->


All-in-all it was a good two days filled with plenty of entertainment and even more education. So whether you’re a designer, content manager, beginner or expert developer, we definitely recommend you attend next year’s<bold>WordCamp</bold> Cape Town. <!--A special shout-out and thanks to PayFast for the half-price tickets!-->

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