I am getting ready to go to WordCamp Asheville this weekend to give the Keynote. I have had an interesting time preparing for it. Part of my talk is a history of WordPress especially looking at the decisions made along the way that were made by ordinary people that turned out to be game changers.
Matt Mullenweg was just 19 years old; a freshman in college in the spring of 2003, when he and Mike Little a random programmer in the UK, worked together on a forked a version of the open source blogging software, b2/ cafelog. Three months later they published the first version of WordPress. It is an amazing story about how in less than ten years, WordPress has become the leading website development platform in the world, and also created a loyal community to support it in every way.
Closer to home, WordPress has certainly been a game changer in my life. I would have never thought I would have a website development and marketing business ever, much less at this point in my life.
The research for the presentation has been fun. I feel like a cross between a detective and a stalker. In addition to researching the content, I have been reading up on doing presentations, as any good over-educated individual would do.
One classic book I finally read is Slide:ology by Nancy Duarte. Nancy spoke at the World Domination conference a few years ago which was rich with information but I never read her books and it seemed a good time for it. Slide:ology is well-designed and contained valuable information about the ways to prepare and structure slides for a presentation.
My favorite read on actually doing a presentation was on a website, Speaking.io whose tag line is “Because imagining everyone’s naked is terrible advice”. If you do talks this one is a must.
So wish me luck on my first keynote speech. I’ll let you know how it goes!
PS. This is a photo of Matt and I in 2013 leading to yet another rule to live by. Never get your picture taken with a person whose company, Automattic, is now valued at $1.16 billion, while wearing a monkey hat.