Ben has a BFA in Graphic Design from Iowa State University and has been working on the web professionally for about 20 years. He has presented on the difference between print and web design, web typography, WordPress widgets, high performance front-end performance optimization and other topics at various organizations and events, including several WordCamps. Ben now lives in Santa Rosa, CA but has previously resided in six other states.
WordCamp Session Title
Accelerating Custom Development with Dynamic Scaffolding and WP-CLI
Why Is This Important?
I think it’s a fairly unique solution to a fairly common problem, making it of interest to developers and agencies wrestling with similar issues.
How Did You Discover WordPress?
To be honest, I don’t recall the first time I used it, but it was quite a while ago.
How Do You Use WordPress?
I run an agency that builds websites for nonprofits, and we use WordPress for nearly all of them. Our own website, of course, also runs WordPress. Personally, my skills are strongest in theming more than site administration, content, strategy or back-end development; I’m reasonable solid with PHP and JS and very comfortable with CSS and HTML.
How Has WordPress Impacted You?
WordPress is what has enabled me and my company to be successful; our business depends on it. Maybe we’d be able to succeed with some other platform, I suppose, but after spending a few years as an “agnostic” agency it became clear to us that WordPress was the best choice for nearly every project.
I don’t think I would have started my company were it not for WordPress; at my previous agency we used a mix of platforms (mostly Drupal), and as a front-end developer working with Drupal’s theming layer drove me bonkers. That frustration played a large part in my decision to start my own business.
What Do You Do When Not Working?
Does “scrolling through my Twitter and Facebook feeds” count as a hobby?
My two kids and two dogs don’t leave me with a lot of spare time, honestly, but I do occasionally dabble in photography and I love being a football fan.
What Is Your Favorite Candy?
For a while M&Ms made a “Chili Nut” flavor. It was awesome.