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Month: November 2014 (page 1 of 2)

Highlights of WCPL Speech: “From Confusion to Solution With WordPress”

The night before this speech, WordCampers, speakers and organizers all gathered together at the pub for its middle party. It was fun to see all of them again the next day, November 16.

WordCamp Polska is where I spoke for the first time, and I am very honored and thankful to share good vibes with you all.

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Following the speaker intro is something about Amimoto and DigitalCube – about the company’s ecosystem and its relationship with WordPress over the years.

When I first came to Japan, everything seems confusing, mainly because I don’t speak the language. Connecting WordPress to that, I am also not fluent in programming languages, and this made me feel overwhelmed at the beginning.

During my introduction to WordPress, I was intimidated of the “technical terms” and even scared to make a mistake. I was hesitating to click some buttons, as I think, perhaps I’ll delete some data.

When I saw some codes, my confusion heightened. I would compare the same feeling when I tried to operate a fancy equipment from Japan. Operating new and unfamiliar equipment is quite nerve-wracking, and I thought of the same thing about WordPress.

Originally, I found it to be really mind-boggling, but the good thing is, I was completely wrong; because the more I learn about WordPress, the more I see how user-friendly it really is. Because of this, now I got interested in learning about codes even though I do not have any computer-related degree.

This is where I discovered that I don’t have to be a developer or a programmer to work using WordPress.

Despite of living in Japan for some months now, I am still quite confused with some machines or equipment there, but at least WordPress is no longer in that list. What made me cross WordPress on the list are helpful sources like: Codex, wpuniversity, wp.org, wp.tv, blogs, tutorials and help from WP pros.

I should say that the way these people (WP pros) I’ve met are really inspiring. When I ask a question, their approach to the matter is sincere and very passionate that intrigues me why they feel that way towards WordPress. This thing alone deeply gives me motivation to explore more about it.

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WordPress speaks to everyone regardless of their race, language or culture. I neither need translations nor sticky notes as guides to what WordPress buttons are.

Since there are both no complex user-manual and no confusing buttons, work is enjoyable and more efficient. Therefore, I’m thankful to WordPress which made me feel relieved and empowered and even helped me find solutions despite my confusion. 

How to Prepare for International WordCamps

My first time to attend an international WordCamp was in Poland, which was held on November 15 – 16, where I learned a lot of things during my stay there and so I’ve decided to share my thoughts on how to prepare for WordCamps abroad.

Although this article is not the ultimate guide on what or how you should really be preparing for when attending a WordCamp overseas, I hope you find some tips here useful your future travels.

SAMSUNG

Noon time in Warsaw.

 

The Winds of Warsaw

According to taxi drivers and WordCampers,”3° C  is normal. We are experiencing quite a mild autumn here.”

I never thought that it would be this cold here. The weather could be quite shocking if you are not prepared. It’s recommendable to check the temperature to where you’re going so you can bring the right clothes. It’s cheaper to buy jackets in your country than the airport!

 

The Power is in the Adapter 

It’s a struggle to have a dead battery especially when you’re travelling. Check the voltage and whether you have the correct adapter, otherwise, you might have to spend a few Zloty here and there to call your hotel or the organizers. In any case, adapters are much more inexpensive than winter jackets, so if you don’t mind 2 Euros for an adapter, then you should be fine.

 

Jet lag 

If you’re coming from far away, you are most likely to have a jet lag. Learn from a pro traveller like Automattician Sam Hotchkiss, who arrived Poland 3 days before the event, which allowed him to adjust prior to WCPL.

 

Money and Mobile Apps

Watch out for the exchange rates, so you won’t run out of cash. Credit cards are widely accepted, but in terms of debit cards, it’s a possible payment option as well as long it has a Visa or Mastercard logo in it. Same thing goes for withdrawing through any ATM. Your cash card is no good there if it doesn’t have these logos.

It became a habit of mine that when I buy some stuff abroad, I convert the price into my local currency just to see if it’s cheaper or not. If you were in a plane for 17 hours just like me,  you just want to sleep and it seems that doing Math is a trouble. I really found the currency exchange mobile app very useful (as long as I have battery).

In Poland, you can buy a prepaid sim card for specific purposes – call, SMS or internet. And it’s very convenient to have one in case you get lost or want to connect with other WordCampers. Plus, you can get to Uber which is much nicer than regular taxis, according to those who are currently using it.

Another thing when you travel, most likely your computer, phone and other devices are still in your home country’s time. Don’t forget to adjust your clocks. You can also download an application like this so you won’t be late.

Even though I did not use the translator app, I thought it would be useful. Luckily, there’s a connection at the airport for me to translate what I had to say to the driver.

It might not be 100% accurate, but I think it’s understandable. I was already quite running late for the WordCamp Poland’s “middle party”, so I had to tell the driver this:

“Proszę, zabierz mnie do tego hotelu i proszę, pospiesz się, bo jestem spóźniony na imprezę! “

 

Drink like a Local 

The organizers did a great job with the party. Poludnik Zero (pub) was packed with WordCampers from abroad and all over Poland. That’s the nice thing about WordCamps – you get to meet all sorts of people where you can share and learn at the same time.

It’s impressive to see a wide variety of drinks from this place, but you will never get to experience the real culture if you don’t try the vodka, they said. And when it comes to parties, Polish people definitely know how to party. So if you are going to plan one, invite someone from Poland and you’ll see how lovely your party will be.

If I’ve missed to include other tips, please share what you know and leave a comment. Dziękuję! Thank you!

The Melting Pot: AWS re:Invent

AWS re:Invent is one of the most anticipated events this year for AWS customers and partners. Even the entire JAWS-UG community is excited about this.

Various AWS events (such as the AWS Summit, etc.) always seem to have something new for everyone. Starting from the coolest booths to the awesome parties and music. You name it, it’s there. So no wonder that this occasion brings all sorts of people from all corners of the globe, making Las Vegas the AWS melting pot this year.

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So if you’ve never been to a re:Invent before, here’s a hint of what it’s like according to the words of AWS Senior VP, Andy Jassy:

“This conference is different from most of the technology conferences. This is not a sales and marketing conference. This is an education and learning conference.” 

Speakers, sponsors and participants could all attest to that, making this event a great learning experience for all.

It’s exciting that they announced seven of their most recent services that I’m sure we all can’t wait to try. Like the launch of “Aurora”, their fifth and latest DB engine is available through RDS. It’s currently available on its preview mode for now, but you can sign up anytime.

With a staggering number of over a million active clients in AWS, you could say that it’s getting even greater. Their products, together with the people behind their services evolve as well. So clients and end users grow together with AWS. And you it’s an honor to shape the future with these guys.

If you’re not in Las Vegas, you can still catch up with their keynotes through this live stream.

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