WordPress GTA Meetup Group Closed

Although I did not really want to do this it should come as no surprise to any of the WordPress GTA Meetup members as there were very few that continued to show any interest in keeping up.

To the best of my recollection, there have been three(?!) members that have inquired over the last year(?!!) if / when the WordPress GTA Meetup group would be gathering again.

Since I noted on several occasions I would be more than happy to continue organizing the group but unfortunately all of the fees for the group were coming out of my pocket (the venue, the dues, etc.) which with little to no interest from the majority of the members and Meetup themselves jacking up the prices for dues I simply had to draw the line and say enough.

I’m still around and more than happy to get together with local WordPress community members but it will not be as an official Meetup group … just some friends hanging out.

As it is, this site will likely get re-purposed in the future although I haven’t decided when or to what but it will most certainly be still related to WordPress.

PatioPress 3.0

WordPress Meetups in the summer can be a challenge; people go on vacation, kids go to camp, the weather does not cooperate … at all. The list can go on but those are a few of the more relevant and realistic reasons we have seen this summer season from our members. Life goes on and we all have our own to enjoy and enhance.

All that being written, we’re going to give this Meetup on the Patio another try … third time’s the charm or so we are hoping. So, let’s meet at the Krazy Cactus and enjoy some good food, good friends, and good cheer … and of course talk about WordPress.

Plugins of the Roundtable

It seems WordPress Plugins and related discussions are quickly becoming one of our favorite topics. Therefore, we will be continuing in those discussions with a panel-style all-in session where members can offer their opinions and recommendations based on plugins they are using.

Here is the event description from our next Meetup scheduled for May 13, 2013:

Keeping on the plugin band wagon, this meetup will be a Roundtable discussion about plugins.

Please bring 3 plugins you would like to discuss, also what they do and why you like them. We will take turns going around the table so that everyone gets a chance to discuss their plugin(s).

If you email Ed or Terri with your plugin list in advance (do not list them in comments), we’ll put them on a test site so we can all see them in action. Cut off time for you to email us your list will be Saturday May 11, 2013 @ 8:00pm.

We will try and get through all of the plugins that are brought to the discussion, but that of course will depend on time.

We are looking forward to this being another interesting gathering … don’t forget to send in your plugin choices so we can prepare our test sites.

A Review on Plugins – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

Our next Meetup will be on April 8, 2013 at the same GTA time in the same GTA place; or, at 6:30PM in the Comfort Inn Mississauga Room for those not familiar with our group. We will be having a presentation done by one of our organizers, Terri Caissie, on WordPress Plugins. Here is the write up from the Meetup Event posting:

Terri Caissie will be presenting A Review on Plugins – The Good, The Bad and The Ugly!

The Good: Useful well recommended plugins that work well. What would you recommend to your friends?

The Bad: What would you recommend to your enemies, dealing with plugin conflicts and what methods you can use to sort them out.

The Ugly: Epic Fails when installing and/or upgrading, different recovery methods.

If you have a plugin you would like reviewed or if you have examples, please list them here!

Terri will choose a selection of the suggested plugins to be used with the presentation.

CodeKit / PhpStorm

Our next Meetup on March 11, 2013 will be featuring Keith Lockhart and myself presenting our personal experiences with learning WordPress and the tools we use to create our works.

From the WordPress GTA Meetup.com site:

This meetup will be done in a slightly different manner than previous meetups as we will be having two speakers addressing the same basic topic.

They will be answering these questions:

  • How did you learn WordPress?
  • What tools have you used along the way?
  • What are you using now to create your works?

Keith Lockhart will be presenting his Mac-centric version of these answers finishing with Codekit, which is an IDE for Mac.

Edward Caissie will present a similar PC-centric version ending with PhpStorm, which is an IDE for Windows (and Mac).

Expect a little bit of everything from tips and tricks to workflow ideas and samples … all taken from the speakers’ personal experiences and portfolios.

Keith Lockhart’s WP-Magic Resources Link:

Here are the links “scraped” out of my PhpStorm presentation slides …

To see the Resource Links click here.To hide the Resource Links click here.

Here are the actual slides …

JavaScript – The Basics

Our next Meetup, and first presentation of the 2013 calendar year will be on February 11, 2013 and presented by one of our long standing members, Alfred Ayache.

From the Meetup event listing:

JavaScript handles the “behavior” part of a browser’s responsibilities. The other two are content (HTML), and styling (CSS).

In this presentation Alfred will introduce you to using JavaScript (JS) in the browser to enhance your web pages. He’ll cover basic JS syntax and data types, modifying the DOM, using jQuery, and AJAX.

If we have time, we’ll even get into enqueuing scripts in WordPress.

Recommended Tools and Accessories:

Book Review – Becoming a WordPress Development Professional

Recently one of our WordPress GTA Meetup Group members launched their book, Becoming a WordPress Development Professional.

I was fortunate enough to receive a pre-launch copy of the book from Curtis McHale. I made time to read it immediately (it was a slow day, but still took a few hours all the same). I am also glad I did make the time available.

The book covers a very good range of topics dealing with themes and plugins. The writing style and explanations make it easy for a new WordPress developer to gain valuable take-away ideas and insights. Long-time WordPress developers, such as myself, should also be able to gather useful and immediately implementable functionality in almost any WordPress project they are currently working on, or plan to, as well. For example, the book presents some interesting ideas on code organization and how to implement various scripts as well as techniques that improve site load times and scalability.

The book has my recommendation to add to most anyone’s WordPress reading list.

New Year – New WordPress

Our next Meetup is scheduled for January 21, 2013 at the Krazy Cactus Restaurant (one of our two usual haunts) at our usual starting time of 6:30pm. Look for us in the bar area …

… and from the Meetup announcement here are some more details:

The date, the time, and the place are all tentative but most likely set; we will be meeting on the third Monday (January 21, 2013) at the same time (6:30pm) in one of our two past venues ( at the Krazy Cactus Restaurant or the Comfort Inn).

The topic is open for discussion but if all else fails we will have had a chance to be using WordPress version 3.5 for at least a month (depending on your update preferences) and we can discuss what we see as its pros and cons.

I would also like to open some discussion points about our schedule for 2013 and what discussions and topic arcs we can or should be having.