If you’re a long time WebDevStudios fan and/or one of the brilliant people we’ve had the fortune of connecting with through the WordPress community, you’re probably familiar with the Professional WordPress books written by Brad Williams, David Damstra, and Hal Stern. The third edition of Professional WordPress is set to be released this Thursday, January 15th, and we could not be more excited about it!
In honor of the book’s release, we’re giving away one copy of Professional WordPress (signed by Brad Williams) and one Raspberry Pi, a nifty little credit card sized computer (you can read more about it here) for your own tinkering.
I sat down with Brad and asked him a few questions about Professional WordPress and working with WordPress in general. Read his sage WP insight below, and then use the Rafflecopter link below to enter yourself in the giveaway.
Why did you decide to write these books to begin with?
The main reason I was excited to write Professional WordPress is because there were no books covering more advanced topics on WordPress development and design. As I was learning how to develop websites using WordPress, I had a very hard time finding answers in a single spot. The Codex is very thorough, but really hard to follow. There are a ton of various resources all over the internet, but there wasn’t a single resource that covered it all. Professional WordPress changed that and I think the reviews of the book speak for itself.
It is THE definitive resource for advanced WordPress development and design.
What does Professional WordPress offer that other literature on how to use WP doesn’t?
The book offers a very deep understanding of how WordPress works. Understanding how WordPress works is important when learning how to create powerful websites with [the platform]. Interested in learning how to create a WordPress plugin? The book features an entire chapter on not only building plugins, but releasing them on WordPress.org. Want to create your own custom theme? [We also included a] chapter dedicated to theme design and development. If you are serious about learning how to build amazing websites with WordPress, this is the book for you.
I was originally drawn to WordPress based on ease of use. WordPress is very intuitive to work with out of the box, which is one reasons it has grown in popularity over the years. The focus on User Experience is an extremely important part of the development process for WordPress core.
In your extensive experience with WP, what have you learned that surprised you? Was there anything about WordPress a platform that taught you things that you didn’t expect?
I was originally surprised by the flexibility of WordPress. When you really start digging into the core of it, you start to realize how endlessly flexible that platform is. This flexibility has only grown over the years, which is a big reason why it’s such a great tool for any website.
What do you think is the biggest misconception about WordPress?
That WordPress is strictly a blogging platform. A few years ago that statement was semi-true, but WordPress has grown over the past few years into a full-fledged content management system that can power any type of website. At WebDevStudios, we’re known for pushing the boundaries of WordPress and really showing how flexible and powerful it can be. Demonstrating how WordPress can power any type of website is the way we like to squash that misconception.
What do you recommend the winner do with their Raspberry Pi?
I recommend setting up a LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, and PHP) stack on your new Raspberry Pi and use it for local WordPress development. This will give you a powerful little server in your pocket!
Although it may be hard to choose, is there one WP project that you’ve worked on/created that you’re particularly proud of? Why that one?
Easy! That would be the Microsoft corporate blog network. It’s powered by WordPress Multisite, and is a fairly traditional blog setup. The reason I am so proud of this project is because this is the first instance of a WordPress powered website running under the Microsoft.com domain. Knowing that my company helped launched this initiative always puts a smile on my face.
If you haven’t used Rafflecopter before, don’t be intimidated–as we said above, it’s easy as pi(!)! Oh, and PROTIP: You can submit multiple entries on multiple days (thus increasing your odds of winning!). We will announce the winner on Friday, January 16th, 2015. We ask that all entrants be 18+ years of age.
Best of luck, folks!