WPTavern in 2010

If I haven’t had a chance to say it to you over Twitter or on the forum, Happy New Years! With that said, time to update everyone on what’s been going on. For starters, I took on more hours at work during the holidays since I almost ran out of cash. I’m doing ok now. I’ve discovered that working 4am-10am at my first job is a nice balance between what I do with content creation and the weekly paycheck. So, that’s what I’ll be working for the most part starting next week. During the holidays, I’ve really loosened up on the amount of content produced on this site and the advertisers have suffered because of that. I’ve discovered that once I fall out of my routine of keeping my eyes and ears in the know, it’s really difficult to get back into the groove. I’m looking forward to getting at least one quality post a day on WPTavern.com throughout the month of January.

As for the forum, I recently purchased a VBulletin 4.0 license. Over the New Years break, I upgraded the forums to the latest version only to discover that two of the mods I rely on as well as all the themes I had installed were not compatible. Instead of dealing with trying to find alternatives or spending time making a new skin, I’ve reverted the forums back to 3.8.4 Patch Level 2 and will not upgrade to VB 4 until my modded theme and the two mods are compatible. Now I know what it’s like for users of WordPress to upgrade their sites only to see the plugins they rely on fail to work. I completely understand the need to revert back to an older version or stick with an older version of WordPress until those plugins are updated. It’s a tough slope considering that the newest versions of WordPress usually contain security fixes and the like which trump features or compatibility. I don’t know what to advise now considering the situation I put myself through with the upgrade to VB4.

I like what I have going between the site and the forum so I will not be making any major shifts in terms of the software I use. I know quite a few people have said they would love to see WPTavern on BuddyPress while using bbPress but right now, BuddyPress on a single install of WordPress is fresh baked and bbPress is nowhere near what I’d like it to be. So I see no reason to deviate from my current setup.

As far as WordPress Weekly goes, I’ve been debating constantly with myself on what I’d like to do with the show. I plan on continuing to produce episodes throughout 2010 but I don’t think every show will be produced on Talkshoe.com. I’m thinking that I will reserve at least one episode a month to be recorded live on Talkshoe.com while all of the other episodes will be conducted over Skype and recorded locally, then uploaded to Talkshoe.com. To be quite honest, one of the biggest reasons I used Talkshoe to do the show is that it provided plenty of options for me to give a voice to the WordPress community. Anyone could call into the show and voice their opinion or talk about WordPress. This has happened on occasion but not to the point that I’d like. With that in mind, I don’t think anyone will mind the increase in audio quality with the non live recorded shows.

As far as WordCamps go, I’m starting off the year in Boston during the weekend of January 23rd to moderate an awesome panel around the subject of Monetization In A Free World. The panelists consist of Jane Wells of Automattic, Carl Hancock of GravityForms, Joshua Strebel of Page.ly and Brian Gardner of StudioPress. This is the first time I’ve taken a more active role at a WordCamp and I’m jazzed to be able to moderate a panel such as this. Depending upon how things go for WPTavern in Jan-March will determine if I am finally able to make WordCamp San Francisco this year. It’s all a matter of finances. Speaking of finances, wanted to give yet another shout out to Brian Gardner of StudioPress.com for generously paying for half my airline ticket.

WordPress Tavern will turn one year old next month. It’s been quite a year for the site as it’s grown beyond what I had hoped for in 2009, especially the forum aspect of it. I’ve been able to accomplish one of my longtime internet goals of creating a vibrant community. I want to continue to build this community throughout the year. Any referrals the current community member base can provide would be a great help towards getting to the 1,000 registered members mark before June of this year.

Speaking of community, it’s a bit of a struggle sometimes to put forth time and energy into WPTavern.com alongside the WordPress project itself. Sometimes I wonder if WPTavern.com is a segmented portion of the WordPress community where the energy spent in discussions and such would be better served on the WordPress.org domain. While I have not submitted any patches to fix bugs for WordPress, I have tried to contribute in other areas of the project such as the forum, IRC channel, generating thoughtful discussions around the project on both WeblogToolsCollection.com and the WPTavern forum, editing bits and pieces of the Codex, chiming in on ideas, bringing some of the behind the scenes stuff more into the forefront, etc. I’ve also tried to steer the intelligence within the WPTavern community into the WordPress project itself. I have no idea if anything I’ve done actually helps the project but I’d like to think so. I mean, every little thing adds up to bigger things right? I hope to continue to find that balance of pouring energy into WPTavern.com as well as the project itself.

That’s about everything that’s on my mind regarding WPTavern and 2010. If you are a member of the WPTavern community, feel free to tell your friends about it. Looking forward to meeting more new people throughout the year and becoming more involved in the project. I hope that everyone who hopped on the WPTavern bandwagon in 2009 is still on board to continue the ride.

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