I’m very pleased and excited to officially announce that I’ll be speaking at WordCamp Toronto 2009, which takes place the weekend of May 8-10. When I first caught wind of the event, I was immediately interested in attending. Having never been to a web development conference before, and with WordCamp Toronto being so close to home, not to mention right on target as far as the subject matter is concerned, it would almost be foolish for me not to attend. Then I received an email from one of the organizers of the event asking if I would be interested in presenting. I was hesitant at first, but decided to take the plunge when I had a hard time narrowing down a single topic I could speak about.

UPDATE, April 16th, 2009:
After much deliberation, I’ve decided that it’s just not feasible for me to speak at this year’s WCT event.

Over the past few weeks I’ve been making notes and doing some research on presenting at web events in general – watching other speakers from past events and reading articles with tips for speaking. While I’ve made some good progress in preparing for the event, I’ve still got a ways to go and feel that I’d have to push myself to hard to make it happen. The fact that I’ve never touched Keynote or any other slideshow app is just one of the many contributing factors that have lead me to backing out of WCT ’09. But most importantly, I’ve been inundated with client work as of late and am completely overwhelmed. Having such a large task lingering is only building unnecessary stress, which is not making anything easier.

Since I’ve already made some good headway and gained a decent amount of knowledge on the public speaking front, I’m going to continue as if I was still doing my presentation, but at my own pace. That way, I’m ready to go with another event comes along. There seemed to be a fair bit of interest in my topic, so I think it would be foolish for me to abandon it all together. Just for now.

I apologize to anyone who might have been looking forward to my presentation. I will likely still attend the event, but I just can’t swing the presentation at this point.

For the Newcomers…

A little about me and why you should come and see my presentation. I’ve been building sites exclusively on WordPress for over 4 years now. I work as a lone freelance designer/developer and handle projects from start to finish. From conceptual design mocks, right through to WordPress development. Over the years, I’ve built many different types of sites on WordPress , ranging in size from personal blogs to major label recording artists and some of the largest online publications. In other words, I’ve covered a lot of bases and know what I’m talking about… when it comes to WordPress, at least.

What I’m Speaking About

WordCamp Toronto 2009 Speaker

It was actually kind of tough to narrow it down to a single topic, as I mentioned earlier. I took this as a good sign, though. As it means I have plenty I’m comfortable sharing with others. But the topic I decided on is; Pushing WordPress to its Limits – Making the Most of Core Functionality. The summary I wrote for the WordCamp website is as follows…

I’m going to discuss advance uses of core functionality, and making the most of WordPress’ built-in functionality. From custom fields to query_posts, and conditional tags to the links manager. Some of which will be demonstrated using my own blog, and some recent client projects I’ve launched that are built on WP.

In my presentation, I’m going to use some sites I’ve developed to demonstrate some of the more advanced uses of core functionality and hopefully get people thinking about ways they can incorporate my methods into their own work.

Come On Out!

As far as web conferences go, WordCamp is crazy affordable and is shaping up quite nicely. Take a look at the speaker list to see who else is presenting, and if my topic isn’t of interest, perhaps someone else’s will be? Aside from getting my feet wet as a speaker, I’m really looking forward to getting out and meeting some of my peers in the field. It should be a great weekend for networking as well as learning some new tricks with our favourite web software. Come on out and say hello, hang out, and get your learn on!

16 Comments

That’s awesome Matt, congrats! It would be awesome if you posted your presentation online after you’ve given it so those who can’t attend can still learn your advanced techniques!

This is great Matt. Any chance this will be published on online video? I remember watching a conference online with Elliot Jay Stocks talking about the misconception about the term "Web 2.0" and wondered if this would be presented online in a similar way. Would be awesome to come see your presentation.

I don’t think I’ll be making it to your presentation as it’s a bit of a trip from NZ.

I would really love to see it though, so please make sure it’s recorded and released online.

Best of luck!

I’m going to echo the above sentiments. I’d love to see the talk but being in the UK it won’t be possible. It would be great if it was online later on, even as a transcript maybe?

I will probably get out to this if I can find a baby sitter. It’s going to be great exposure for you though. Your a bonafide expert mofo’!

I would be more interested in the content/marketing aspect then the codework though.

Don’t forget to make that shit funny!

Congrats!!!

Record and put it online, so people who live a "little" far, like me, can see it.

Good luck!

Congrats Matt, I would love to go if I had the time to make it to Toronto. I will look forward to hearing how it all went down.

Hah, it looks like everyone is in agreement, that I should post my presentation online after the event. I’m not sure how integral my slides will be, but if they end up being the presentation, then I’ll definitely upload them to SlideShare, or something of that sort. I have a feeling the event itself will be recorded, as it was last year. So my full presentation will likely make it online as well.

Wicked! Wish I could make it man. Looking forward to seeing the video of your presentation.

*hint hint*

‘Grats Matt. You deserve it!

Go Matt! I’dd love to come, but I’m all the way over in England!

How did you get the opportunity, were you invited to attend, or did you volunteer?

Will you be posting a review, video of your presentation once you have come back?

Hey Matt, that’s a shame to hear that your presentation won’t be happening just yet.

Heres an idea though, maybe you could put the presentation togethar as a screencast or something? That would be cool 😉

Totally understandable. There’s always another time :). Besides, you can’t rush it 🙂

Sorry to hear that you won’t be speaking! We all see the level of detail you put into all your work so I think it’s definitely understandable that you don’t want to rush it.

I had to design a presentation for a big name client about 6 months back… I was pretty much forced into do it by my previous employer. I had ZERO experience with Keynote, and hadn’t used PowerPoint since at least high school. But, everything turned out great because Keynote is super easy to use. It took me a day of playing with it to understand the basics but I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised how easy it is to use and create beautiful presentations.

Bummer dude.

Well look on the bright side, at least you’ll be more than ready for next year. 😀

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