State of the Word Live Blog

Welcome to the live blog of the State of the Word, at WordCamp US 2015! Follow along for live updates from Matt Mullenweg’s talk, and watch the live stream.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:44 pm

Thanks for tuning in to the State of the Word!

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:43 pm

Question: when will the minimum PHP requirement be raised?

Matt: when we change this, it may actually leave a lot of people behind instead of driving them to switch. It’s largely driven by web hosts, and so we’re doing a lot of outreach and encouragement there. All major web hosts in the WordPress world have programs underway to upgrade. Whenever we can, we try to do as much as possible to protect every website (including backdating security updates). The improvements in newer PHP versions may not be compelling enough to accelerate an upgrade, so there may be greater value in focusing on other tools like JavaScript. The importance of backwards compatibility has facilitated our current market share. We’ll use our power in the web world where we can to help here.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:39 pm

Question: what’s coming in terms of organizations contributing time and resources back to WordPress?

Matt: it’s growing, neat things are happening, we’re still not where we want to be. It’s a process, more examples are coming. There are good opportunities to promote and highlight options here.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:37 pm

Question: do you see any modifications to the plugin repository to support a premium/freemium ecosystem?

Matt: it can be a bad user experience when everything you’re looking for in a plugin directory has a “gotcha” – we have to be careful. There are other examples of tools introducing this kind of thing and bad things happening. WordPress will continue to be oriented toward a collaborative model, this is how we realize our vision of democratizing publishing.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:34 pm

Question: results of the community survey?

Matt: lots of data to go over, but basically more people are using WordPress, app development is growing, lots of people are making their living with WordPress, and other great trends are showing up. We’ll try to do a blog post about it.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:32 pm

Question: when will all WordPress development be on git?

Matt: Remember when we switched from cvs to svn? We had to re-do a lot of tools, and a lot of people weren’t happy. We’re updating a lot of our tools and processes, and git is included in that, especially with plugins. But we have some things to figure out, so stay tuned and know it’s something we’re fans of. Calypso was 100% developed on GitHub.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:30 pm

Question: what’s the easiest way to become a WordPress lead developer?

Matt: “annoy the existing lead developer with patches” – get active, build trust. Do the thing no one else wants to do. Development opportunities are opening up all the time and Matt hopes to see more and more folks with core commit access in the future.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:28 pm

Question: do rapid release cycles prevent developers from keeping up with the changing ecosystem and new tools?

Matt: People often think that some kinds of accelerated progress signal the end of the thing being developed. We can improve tools to help with the developer experience. We can be careful about making sure plugins are built as a team effort. But we will probably keep up the same pace, if not go faster.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:24 pm
Matt: WordPress as a community is great at accepting people no matter how they look. Inclusion is a core part of who we are. We can build companies and organizations around WordPress in different ways. Matt thanks people doing that building for doing it so well.
Sarah Blackstock December 5, 20156:22 pm

Matt answering questions from the audience.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:22 pm

Question: What can plugin authors do to prepare for better translations?

Matt: Keep updating your plugins. Work with the translation community to bring as many people into the process as possible.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:21 pm

Question: Accessibility is improving, amazing advances even in the last year. What leadership can we show around accessibility in the time ahead?

Matt: Agrees with excitement and efforts to incorporate accessibility. It can’t just be a checkbox, though, and we have to be intentional and thoughtful in how and where we approach it. Have to include languages, mobile and touch devices and many other aspects to accessibility along the way.
Sarah Blackstock December 5, 20156:20 pm

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:17 pm

Question: will JavaScript replace PHP in the template hierarchy?

Matt: Interesting things are ahead because of the API. We have an amazing front-end framework now, but we need to think about improving options for site admins too. PHP for themes for now, but there may be other things happening on the side.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:14 pm

Question: Will Calypso replace wp-admin?

Matt: Right now they’re separate and can co-evolve. Today there are many plugins that modify wp-admin, but Calypso gives us flexibility to do new things not possible in wp-admin now. We need to reexamine core assumptions the WordPress interface makes, and become more user-centric, less site-centric.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:11 pm

Question: which JavaScript framework should we learn?

Matt: Calypso is using React, but don’t worry too much about the framework. The important thing is to dive in, have fun, build a simple app, see what’s possible.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:10 pm

A questioner asks about the future of WooCommerce.

Matt: Commerce is going to be a key part of growing the WordPress market share. We’re adding developers, support and other resources for Woo. Imagine a Woo interface that’s API-driven, too. Exciting things happening here.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:07 pm

A great round of applause for Matt!

Now it’s time for questions from the audience. key
Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:06 pm

Dates for WordCamp US 2016 are announced! December 2-4, again in Philadelphia, get it on your calendar.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:03 pm

A homework assignment from Matt: Learn JavaScript, deeply.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:03 pm

“WordPress is going to reverse the trend of closed APIs”

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:02 pm

Customization will be extremely important. We can improve the new user experience with better customization.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20156:01 pm

A JavaScript + PHP API approach will become the best way to build a plugin.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:59 pm

Work continues to get top plugins and themes available in every language.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:59 pm

PHP 7!

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:58 pm

Looking ahead to 2016…

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:57 pm

LetsEncrypt (supported in part by Automattic) is making it easy and free to encrypt the web, making mass surveillance even harder.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:51 pm
Matt emphasizes that Calypso is only at version 1.0 – more to come! PHP is not going away, and yet JavaScript and API-drive interfaces are the future. “An API is the key of an open web.”
Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:48 pm

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:47 pm

Calypso is 100% JavaScript, leveraging React. Fully responsive, more social, facilitates great multi-site management, and works with both and sites. We can now think of WordPress as an application platform.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:44 pm

Matt discusses four examples of projects that have done really cool things with the REST API. Microsoft’s new ERP solution, Microsoft Dynamics AX, uses it for moving content within the application. Nomadbase uses it as a back-end. StoryCorps uses it to create, an application that lets users record and upload interviews. And then there’s Calypso…

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:38 pm

205 accessibility tickets have been worked on and completed since last year, up 80%.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:37 pm

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:37 pm

New victims, er, leads for upcoming releases: Mike Schroder for 4.5, Dominik Schilling for 4.6 and Matt for 4.7.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:34 pm

It includes scaffolding for the REST API, a new default theme Twenty Sixteen, responsive images, term meta and oEmbed for WordPress, along with a lot of other small updates.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:31 pm

This release has over 2,000 commits, over 400 contributors.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:30 pm

Version 4.4 is shipping Tuesday!

Matt invites release lead Scott Taylor to stage to talk about the experience. key
Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:29 pm

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:29 pm
A story about working more closely with hosts to address version fragmentation:
In August, Bluehost had over 2 million WordPresses, 1.6 million of those not on the latest version.
We developed tools to backup and then auto-update those sites, detecting any problems along the way. When 4.3 was released, they did 2.6 million updates (core, themes, plugins).
.006% of these cases generated support, most of those informational. And now ongoing WordPress support, including for hacked sites, is down 18%.
Sarah Blackstock December 5, 20155:29 pm

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:25 pm

Matt thanks the release leads for each of these, John Blackbourn, Konstantin Obenland and Drew Jaynes respectively.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:25 pm
There were three major WordPress releases this year:
4.1 Dinah Washington (Twenty Fifteen theme, most popular theme ever created, distraction-free writing, language selection on installation)
4.2 Bud Powell (press this, themes in customizer, emoji! )
4.3 Billie Holiday (menus in customizer, site icons, WYSIWYG formatting shortcuts)
Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:24 pm

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:23 pm

There were over 1 billion downloads from the plugins directory this year! We also added 9,000 new plugins to the repository. Wow.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:22 pm
Community updates

Lots of updates to the community site: measuring plugin activity instead of downloads, adopting Slack, open sourcing, localizing the plugin and theme directories, and adding support for language packs to all themes and plugins. key

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:19 pm

“Technology is at its best when it brings people together.”

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:18 pm
Stats about WordCamps in 2015:
89 camps in 34 countries, with 21k attendees.
601 organizers, 60% did it for the first time.
1.6k unique speakers gave 2.1k sessions.
Meetups were even bigger: 40k people attended 2k events.
Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:16 pm
New book!

Matt announces that this Friday December 11th, “Milestones: The Story of WordPress” will be released officially. key

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:15 pm

The first WordCamp in 2006:

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:14 pm

A moment of silence for Alex King – an original contributor to WordPress and a web developer – and Kim Parsell – who was a key WordPress community member.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:12 pm

Matt begins the 10th State of the Word by inviting us to thank the amazing sponsors, organizers and volunteers who made WordCamp US 2015 possible.

Sarah Blackstock December 5, 20155:09 pm

It’s official!

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:06 pm

Very exciting: by citation from Councilman Oh, December 5th is now and forever WordPress Day in the City of Philadelphia. What a great honor!

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:05 pm

City of Philadelphia Councilman David Oh is arriving on stage to make a special announcement.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:05 pm

Matt Mullenweg is taking the stage.

Chris Hardie December 5, 20155:04 pm

WordPress contributor, previous release lead and Automattician Konstantin Obenland is coming on stage to make some introductions.

Sarah Blackstock December 5, 20154:58 pm
The doors are open and the room is filling up!

Chris Hardie December 5, 20154:48 pm

Hi everyone! Some of us from the WordCamp US team are here to bring you a live blog of Matt Mullenweg’s 2015 State of the Word. key

3 thoughts on “State of the Word Live Blog

  1. Hi Everyone,

    Just wanted to let you know how much I got out of this sitting in on the live streaming from the Netherlands. I really liked that you captioned everything, because I’m an accessibility nut.

    Just as a note, it would great if you could publish the name of the seminar and the time on the live stream. I sometimes had to do other things and got a bit lost on where I was at times.

    Hope everyone is having fun at the after party.

    –Kind regards,
    Ellyn Larson

  2. Pingback: Why WordPress Day Matters - You, Too, Can Be A Guru

  3. Pingback: State of the Word 2015: マット・マレンウェッグスピーチまとめ |

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