Featured Speaker: Kathryn Presner

Kathryn Presner is a web designer turned Automattic Happiness Engineer, who gets to meld her background in crafting WordPress sites with a love of helping people and troubleshooting. She gives back to the open-source community by answering questions as a volunteer WordPress.org support-forum moderator and presenting at events like WordCamp, Podcamp, and Girl Geek Dinners.

Non-web pastimes include cooking healthy and delicious food, cavorting with her three cats, and marvelling at her first crop of homegrown organic garlic. Follow @zoonini on Twitter.

Presentations: A Beginner’s Guide to WordPress & Passionate About Plugins

A Beginners Guide to WordPress is geared to bloggers, web designers and programmers who are new to WordPress. Even those who don’t know a Codex from a Cadillac will feel comfortable here. Delving into WordPress from a beginner’s point of view, we use unintimidating plain language to explain the fundamental concepts of WordPress, from themes, to widgets, to plugins. We go spelunking in the admin panel and show real-world examples of what WordPress can do. Questions are welcome, and no query is too basic, so don’t be shy!

Passionate About Plugins looks at how to make an informed decision about which plugin to use and how to troubleshoot any conflicts that may crop up, exploring factors including the likelihood of getting support if something goes amiss. We’ll review some recommended plugins, from common types to a few of the lesser known, including security tools and SEO plugins.

What do you want people to learn from your talk?

I hope people become more confident about how to make a wise choice of plugin – and excited about the potential of plugins to enhance their site.

What attracted you to WordPress in the first place?

For many people, WordPress has a short learning curve, whether they’re a web designer, programmer, blogger, or business owner. It’s flexible and customizable, and makes it easy for anyone to publish on the web.

What are you most looking forward to at WordCamp Toronto?

I’ve enjoyed watching the Toronto WordPress community grow and evolve – I can’t wait to hang out with some of the folks I’ve met over the years.

Why did you decide to speak?

I’ve had loads of fun at every edition of WordCamp Toronto I’ve attended since 2010. It was a no-brainer!

What is your favourite WordPress theme or plugin, and why?

WordPress SEO by Yoast boasts some must-have features that every website can benefit from. It’s easy to set up and use.

» Click here for more posts from our Featured Speaker series.

About Andy McIlwain

Andy is a front-end dev and community guy (GoDaddy, Toronto's WordPress meetups, and WordCamp). Find him on Twitter and his personal blog.
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