Speakers: Tom McFarlin

  • Tom McFarlin: A Case for Building Web Applications on WordPress

    WordCamp Atlanta 2019Speaker: Tom McFarlin

    July 6, 2019 — I’ll provide an explanation for why WordPress is a great option for a foundation. First, I’ll talk about what a web application is. Then, I’ll cover the difference between a foundation and a framework. I’ll cover how it relates to WordPress (and what we can use out-of-the-box), what we may need to develop on our own, common practices for building such applications, and what a basic project may look like. Some very, very basic object-oriented practices for approaching a project is a help, but not necessary.

  • Tom McFarlin: Namespaces, Autoloading, and Improving Plugin Architecture

    WordCamp Atlanta 2017Speaker: Tom McFarlin

    March 24, 2017 — Imagine, for a moment, the ability to add a new class to your WordPress plugin and not have to worry about adding a new include statement and having the ability to organize the class into a pre-defined package structure.

    Sounds nice, right?

    Unfortunately, one of the problems that WordPress plugins developers face is having to work with older versions of PHP. But it’s really not as bad as you may think.

    Although we sometimes, we sometimes have the ability to use newer versions of PHP (and that’s great), it doesn’t mean we have to forgo poor development practices.

    See, depending on the paradigm with which we build our projects (namely, object-oriented programming), we have the ability to take a lot of redundant code out of our plugins.

    Furthermore, we have the ability to more easily organize our code at both a conceptual level and at a virtual level.

    In this presentation, I walk everyone through namespaces and autoloading, explain how they work, why they are beneficial, and then will show sample example code on how it works. I’ll also provide a downloadable plugin that they can use to study.

    Presentation Slides »

  • Tom McFarlin: Personal Growth – How Do You Run a Business While Keeping Up With Changing Technology?

    WordCamp San Diego 2016Speaker: Tom McFarlin

    May 1, 2016 — Running your own business is tough. There’s tons of things to think about, for sure. But how do you handle that, while also trying to stay current with all the technological changes that seem constant? How do you manage investing in your own growth? If there’s anyone who can share insights into the question, there’s no doubt it’s Tom.

  • Tom McFarlin: The Truth About the Environment (A Primer For Professional WordPress Development Practices)

    WordCamp Atlanta 2016Speaker: Tom McFarlin

    April 6, 2016 — This talk will focus on the purpose and significance of the three environments all professional developers should use when serving their clients.

    This includes:

    1. Development Environment
    2. Staging Environment
    3. Production Environment

    The presentation will not stick to a particular set of tools, though. Instead, it will acknowledge the fact that developers choose to use a variety of different editors, debuggers, and so on.

    Sure, various tools will be mentioned and recommended but none will be pushed on any of the audience – the ultimate goal is to inform those who are there what their options are.

    Further, we _will_ discuss the general workflow of going from development to staging and from staging to production and ways to easily and professionally move your code from one environment to the other.

    Finally, the talk will cover why this matters and how it benefits both you (or the business) and the customer.

    Presentation Slides »

  • Tom McFarlin: TL;DR – The Importance of Following the WordPress Coding Standards

    WordCamp Atlanta 2015Speaker: Tom McFarlin

    April 17, 2015 — Sounds boring, right? Maybe. But how many times have you inherited code from someone else only to find yourself spending half the time on the project trying to figure out what was going on with the code. This is a point of frustration that developers have all felt at some point or another especially when inheriting projects from another agency or another group of programmers. But it doesn’t have to be this way! In fact, coding standards make it possible to actually minimize frustration both for us and our peers.

    Presentation Slides »

  • Tom McFarlin: A Discussion and Introduction To WordPress Plugins

    WordPress Meetup GwinnettSpeaker: Tom McFarlin

    May 21, 2013 — Plugin Topics
    Understanding the differences in themes and plugins (and why this matters!)
    A look at the WordPress Plugin Boilerplate

    WordPress Gwinnett Meetup
    Organizers: Naomi C. Bush and Tom McFarlin

  • Tom McFarlin: Level-Up Your WordPress Development Skills

    WordCamp Atlanta 2013Speaker: Tom McFarlin

    April 26, 2013 — Tom speaks about leveling up your WordPress development skills through understanding the WordPress documentation, finding your niche, and educating yourself so you don’t have to run through the gamut of trial-and-error to level-up your abilities.

    Presentation Slides »