Foundation Friday – WordCamp Chicago 2013

Foundation Friday was divided into 4 tracks by experience level. We sold out very early, but to make sure those of you that attended and those of you who didn’t have the opportunity can review, we wanted to post the links to sessions with pictures and twitter reactions here:

2 million Blackhawks fans can’t even slow it down.

sincerely_jess_Jessica Yaeger @sincerely_jess_
I have never been around so many people in one location willing to help each other and share what they know. Kindness swoon! #wcchi

edpastelakEd @edpastelak
Learning good stuff at #wcchi already and we’re barely a few sessions into the weekend! Does not disappoint for my very first WordCamp! 

101 Track:

Domains & Hosting with Suzette Franck

#wcchi getting ready to speak on Hosting & Domains in #wp101, where is everybody? Too early?

mt_SuzetteSuzette Franck @mt_Suzette
#wcchi My slides from my #WP101 talk this am on Hosting and Domains:… Get your zone file on!

Components of a Good Website with Kari Sharp

About WordPress, Navigating the Dashboard & Getting Started with Your Blog with Andy Nathan

Planning and Implementing Your Navigation, Creating Pages & Posts with John Wondrasek

Defining Plug-Ins & Widgets; Setting Up Your Sidebar with Joshua Alexander

Setting Up Your Custom Home Page with Widgets & Slider with Kari Sharp

Preparing & Using Images for Your WordPress Site with Helena Denley

helenadenleyHelena Denley @helenadenley
Presentation complete – thank you to the audience for making me feel so welcome #longwayfromhome #wcchi

Resources for Reaching Your WordPress Potential with Suzette Franck

mt_SuzetteSuzette Franck @mt_Suzette
@mt_Suzette speaking at 5pm in 101 #wcchi “Resources for Reaching Your WordPress Potential” Slides:…

201 Track:

Control What You Can Control: On Page SEO with Sud Shanmugabaskaran

mikezielonkaMike Zielonka@mikezielonka
“@TheRyanMcRae: Had a great experience at #wcchi with @tunatraffic about SEO. Great sources! Well done Sud!” @Saravanan_Sud

E-Commerce Functionality with Brad Griffith

kwameshorterKwame Shorter@kwameshorter
At “E-Commerce for WP” #wcchi (@ University Center Conference Room w/ 4 others)

Type on the Web with Andy Christian

TerriLonierTerri Lonier@TerriLonier
If you were walking down the street, what type would your thought bubble be? Great preso by @andrew_cpht at #wordcamp Chicago. #wcchi

Simple CSS Modifications Using Inspector; Intro to Child Themes with Nick Pelton

Template Hierarchy with Brad Parbs

#wcchi@bradparbs is up next. Scott Offord ★@offordscott

Successfully Migrating WordPress with Collin Matthews

collinjmatthewsCollin Matthews @collinjmatthews

About to present Successfully Migrating WordPress at @WordCampChicago#wcchi

Clare Parkinson @clareparkinson#wcchi very sensible explanation of serialized data. Nice. @collinjmatthews

collinjmatthewsCollin Matthews @collinjmatthews
Also, here’s a more in-depth description of data serialization in WordPress as mentioned in my #wcchi Migration talk:…

collinjmatthewsCollin Matthews @collinjmatthews
Just had an awesome time presenting on Migrating #WordPress at @WordCampChicago! Now back to sitting in on cool sessions 🙂 #wcchi

Text Widget for the Non Coder with Gloria Antonelli

At #wcchi @gloriaantonelli is blowing my mind talking about text widgets. (Boom) (glitter)

Track 301

HTML & CSS Foundations with Josh Broton & Brad Parbs

HTML and CSS foundation by @joshbroton at #wcchi!

#wcchi Great talk on Sass by Brad Parbs in WP301. Sass a CSS compiler improves productivity

Type on the Web with Andy Christian

Now, in 301! @andrew_cpht: At #wcchi. Speaking at 9am in 301 and 10am in 201 on web typography.

RicksterMRick McGrath @RicksterM
“Good design is invisible” I’ll use that one. Thanks Andy. #wcchi


#wcchi, per comments in @andrew_cpht ‘s talk on Typography:… (on Comic Sans, etc.)

#wcchi, also an article on typography for rhetoric & comprehension (study to purchase)… @andrew_cpht

 Template Hierarchy with Brad Parbs

Per @bradparbs, For great examples of customized templates, see and look at the tabs for different archives #wcchi


Want to look at @bradparb‘s Wolf theme templates? Follow along with him here: #wcchi


@marktimemedia made an awesome template hierarchy chart, now interactive, as @bradparbs shows us in FF301 #wcchi,

What’s Your Query? with Jarrod Pyper

rzenBrian Richards@rzenIf you’re at #wcchi right now you want to be in @pap3rtig3rs’s session. Really, really.


Jarrod Pyper @pap3rtig3rs recommends these slides by @alexkingorg for more details on WordPress Queries:… #wcchi

Create Great User Documents with Gloria Antonelli

@GloriaAntonelli Appreciating your fantastic insight and information on user documents right now! #wcchi

Whoa awesome MT @WordCampChicago: #wcchi @GloriaAntonelli : why not use dummy text areas in your theme to describe how to set up the theme?

@GoRealBig is already using a tip from the presentation @GloriaAntonelli gave in 2011: go from forums to FAQ documents! #wcchi

@GloriaAntonelli loves this example of easy access documentation (NICE sidebar)… #wcchi

Tips from @TownConnection (Steve Daily) on a forum tool that will convert to posts for FAQs: – better docs! #wcchi

Steve Bennett @BigActual
#wcchi @GloriaAntonelli great idea for a book? “IDK What U Know or what U Don’t But I’m Going 2 Cover It All.”:-)

Great response to my “Create Great Documents for WP themes & plugins! What a great group! #WCCHI

Understand the Black Box of Arrays and Objects: DEBUG! with Dusty Filippini

t@dustyf rocking it out a #wcchi Bennett@BigActual

MrKyleMaurer@MrKyleMaurer@dustyf Getting my mind blown by your presentation on the Black Box of Arrays and Objects. Loving the debugging tips! #wcchi

#wcchi learning about <pre><?php var_dump ($keyword); ?></pre> to display the literal info in your db visually (with types too) via @dustyf

@WordCampChicago WOAH! #neato That’s so cool! Now I must var_dump all the things! @dustyf mt_Suzette@mt_Suzette

WordCampChicago@WordCampChicago Another audience tip for var_dump – add this to your php install for more formatting: #wcchi


Tip from @bradparbs: Get great test data for building your WordPress themes well #wcchi:

#wcchi Another tip from @bradparbs and @jjj: Override core functions of wordpress for custom development:…

Favorite pro tool from @dustyf and @AaronJHolbrook to understand what is happening with your themes/plugins:… #wcchi

@jji want WordPress APIs etc but without the “crusty” stuff that comes with backwards compatibility? Use this: #wcchi

Netbeans and IDE with John James Jacoby (impromptu session!)

Impromptu IDE talk with @jji in 301! Or snacks… we’ll see how this goes..

@JJJ#wcchi James Jacoby takes us on a quick segue into Netbeans and IDEs. Debugging tools are amazing. Bennett@BigActual

WordCampChicago@WordCampChicagoTip from @jji: Hide your toolbars & other confusing content for netbeans on install, just need files & code (reopen menus as needed) #wcchi

Why use netbeans? @jji says easy code navigation – control click to move between files to match up your usage #wcchi
Why use any IDE (like netbeans)? @jji says because they tell you what you’re doing now and what you used to do, easy to lean on #wcchi
The Magic of Netbeans! #wcchi@jji says live debugging with xdebug to find out *where* the code executes, call stack, etc. #wcchi#devtools
Why MAMP Pro over free? @jji: multiple local sites without storing them in different directories. #devtools#wcchi
DB migration? Not easy to do in php: most of the top tools cost $$, like RAMP and wp-migrate Pro (Automattic uses the import tools) #wcchi
RealBig Marketing@GoRealBig
Grateful to @JJJ for stopping by our session to talk about IDEs and Netbeans here at #wcchi

Git’ting Started: Everything you always wanted to know, but were afraid to ask about Git with Mike Van Winkle

#wcchi Git’ting started with git – here’s what we’re talking about: (version control) #devtools

Basics of Git: use github for your remote repository, but not required if you don’t want it #devtools #wcchi

#wcchi Don’t use GitHub as a secure backup location, always backup elsewhere. And use ignore to keep it from tracking the core files

eddiemoyaEddie Moya@eddiemoya
Would be great if plugin repo allowed github issues for bugs. Auth integration w. github should be simple. #wcchi

Object-Oriented Custom Post Types, Taxonomies and Post Meta with Matthew Boynes


Matthew Boynes @senyob: Challenges of custom post types & taxonomies: repetition, private by default (overall not too bad) #wcchi

EBarney@EBarney Really looking forward to Super-CPT with new version of WordPress! Great preview w @senyob! Current version:… #wcchi

401 Track:

The 401 Track was an “unconference” session for the developers in attendance, so we did not have a schedule posted. It was moderated by John James Jacoby of Automattic and Buddypress

At #wcchi we are in #wp401 and making decisions, not options! ipstenu (Mika E.) @Ipstenu

Ipstenuipstenu (Mika E.)@Ipstenu

Talking about user roles at #wcchi in #wp401

Fun in 401: RT @add_action_dan: a bunch of super smart people trying the get computers hooked up to projectors #wcchi@WordCampChicago


Stephanie Leary @sleary
Wandered into a discussion of the .org svn architecture with @ipstenu and @jjj. I’m not quite awake enough. #wcchi

Ipstenuipstenu (Mika E.)@Ipstenu
Now @jjj told us all about Moom – #wcchi #wp401 (also we’re going over how wp-login works)

kadamwhiteK. Adam White@kadamwhite
“I [like IDEs over text editors w/ plugins] because I like hammering without having to polish my hammer when I’m done” – @JJJ at #wcchi

.@JeremyFelt explains The Matrix (aka Vagrant) at #wcchi Adam White@kadamwhite

I am sooooo happy to see the stream of positive tweets about the first #wcchi Foundation Friday! #whew

4 thoughts on “Foundation Friday – WordCamp Chicago 2013

  1. Joan Koriath

    I signed up for WordCamp the first day of registration. As a newbie, I had no idea what to expect or even what WordCamp was all about. My plan was to come on Friday for a few hours and maybe Saturday afternoon. When the BlackHawks parade was scheduled for Friday, I almost didn’t bother coming downtown. With coffee in hand, I decided to attend. I grabbed an early train with the rest of the crowd in red.

    During my first session with Suzette Franck on Foundation Friday, I found myself wide awake and intrigued. I had absolutely no idea what WordPress was in the larger picture of the web. I loved all of it. Each speaker clearly loved what they did for a living, creative or technical. Their love for WordPress but more importantly the WordPress community was crystal clear. There was no judgement of my skills, resume or intentions as I asked questions. Watching friends and colleagues reconnect at “camp” was a throwback to regular day camp in the woods with the awful bug juice to drink and bad bus songs to sing. The environment at WordCamp enabled me to let my guard down and begin to think of the possibilities of WordPress. I ended up staying all day on Friday and came back first thing on Saturday. Going into the Happiness Bar was a little intimidating. Joshua Alexander immediately came up to me to offer assistance.

    I would sit in the reception area in between session and watch small business owners approach speakers with hesitance and hope. Each time the speaker stepped aside to give the person their attention, expertise and guidance. All of you are awesome and inspiring. Thanks to all that made my first WordCamp possible. Most importantly, thank you for restoring my faith that in today’s ” what’s in it for me” world, that connection in this community is the spark that ignites the WordPress flame.


    1. Emily Barney Post author

      Thanks so much for this comment, Joan! I’m really glad to hear it was a good experience for you and I hope you can come back next year too and learn more!

      1. Gloria Antonelli

        Joan, so glad you made it on Friday! You will find the WP community very friendly. I was in the first morning Sat session. I sat down next to a lovely attendee sitting by herself. Scanning her badge I noticed out she was from out of state and although a web designer she was a beginner at WP. The session started and it was more code then what she was ready for. I encouraged her to move to a different session to find one more what she needed. After she left the room I looked over the schedule and mapped out what I though would be more helpful to her current skill set and also told her to go to the happiness bar. Gratefully she enjoyed the day!

        1. Emily Barney Post author

          Gloria, it was a pleasure meeting you this weekend and hearing your talk Create Great User Documents. The networking aspect of WordCamp is often one of the most valuable factors for many of our attendees and I’m sure Rebekah (sp?) found that to be true with your encouragement, since at the after-party she was still circulating and meeting lots of people.

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