We had an amazing time at WordCamp Asia 2023 in the bustling city of Bangkok. Here’s our highlight reel of all the best bits!
If you’ve been following us for a while you’ll already know how much we LOVE WordCamp events— but if you’re new, let us quickly run down what they are:
A WordCamp is a conference that focuses on everything WordPress. WordCamps are community-organized events that are put together by WordPress users like you! Everyone from casual users to WordPress core developers participate, share ideas, and get to know each other.
WordCamp Asia 2023 was the first annual meetup held (as the name suggests) in Asia! There are also huge conferences for WordCamp Europe and WordCamp US, as well as 100s of regional WordCamp events around the globe.
What to expect from WordCamp:
- Networking opportunities
- Guided Workshops
- Discussion panels
- Informative talks
- Swag, prizes, and after-hour parties!
Touchdown Bangkok ✈️
For most of our XWPeople, their journey to WordCamp Asia started in their local airport. We had XWPeople attend in-person from 12 different countries and many more watched the event from home.
XWPeople at WordCamp Asia: 🇩🇪🇦🇺🇺🇸🇮🇳🇸🇬🇮🇹🇰🇷🇬🇧🇷🇸🇲🇾🇰🇭🇨🇦
And with Thailand having so many beautiful destinations on offer, some of our team even took a workcation before heading to Bangkok! 🇹🇭
XWP Team Day & The Bangkok Challenge 🦅
Before we got into the craziness of WordCamp, our team met up for a day of exploring, activities, and traditional Thai culture—including a fruit carving competition, where we saw all those hours playing Fruit Ninja finally come into play.
It was also where we kicked off the Bangkok Challenge, a competitive treasure hunt with challenges, including: Spotting local wildlife, grabbing a drink with someone from another continent, and eating the spiciest thing on the menu.
WordCamp Swag 👕
Anyone who’s attended an in-person WordCamp knows how amazing the swag can be. This time, we came along with our always-popular event tees featuring the Guardians of the Web! 🪐
But of course, we weren’t the only ones with goodies to share. Here’s a glimpse of some of the other amazing swag brought along by WCAsia attendees:
The Enterprise Gap Meetup 💡
That evening, our CEO Myles, and VP of Engineering Stéphane spoke at an event organised by Human Made to talk about the enterprise gap.
What’s the WordPress enterprise gap? It’s the distance between how WordPress is seen, and how effective it is for enterprise users.
We think that enterprise companies can move faster and deliver better digital experiences for their customers and readers by embracing the power of open source.
We also believe that WordPress is the best platform to enable this, and we must work together as an industry to close the gap between WordPress as a platform and ecosystem, and the needs of its enterprise customers.
Party on the Chao Phraya 🛳
That evening, a few of us also caught up with our friends at GoDaddy boat party to take in some views of downtown Bangkok!
Day 0: Contributor Day 🙌
Contributor Day is a special day designated for contributing to WordPress. Collaborate with new and existing contributors, meet new people and learn about the different ways to can get involved in the project. Contributor Day is for everyone!
This year’s contributor day was a massive success, with more new faces than ever learning about how they can get involved in the WordPress project.
Day 1 highlights 🚀
XWP Presentations: Through The Terminal With Milana Cap
On day 1, we had our fabulous WordPress Engineer Milana Cap take the stage for her talk “WordPress through the Terminal”
Remember the famous “5 minutes installation” process for installing WordPress? Let’s see what WP-CLI can do in 5 minutes. And everything else that can happen in the terminal in 40 minutes. We might actually make WordPress instances more secure. Or just break it.
This is not your usual presentation talk. This is a live terminal commanding; SSHing your WordPress administration and development; and releasing a Kraken or two.
XWP Presentations: Advanced Performance & Scalability for PHP Developers with Alain Schlesser
Through both theoretical principles and practical real-world examples, Alain examines what performance and scalability mean from a server-side development perspective and how you can optimize for them.
In this talk, he covers basic mechanisms like profiling, deferred processing and caching first to make sure we got the big chunks out of the way.
Then we’ll dive deeper into code that simply needs to run faster or in a more scalable way, covering things such as loop optimization, static data, opcaches and other mysterious concepts.
XWP Presentations: The Ultimate Newsroom QA: How to Manage Your Editorial Workflow Like a Boss with Francesca Marano
In 2013, Francesca launched a blog for female creative entrepreneurs. To her surprise, it became an overnight success in its niche in Italy. Nine years later, the blog is still going strong. It grew from a handful of contributors to a newsroom of over one hundred authors.
In December 2017, she was able to hand it off to a new team thanks to the smooth editorial processes she put in place.
In this talk, Francesca shares the challenges she encountered in creating a workflow for the authors and her experience in maintaining quality and schedule consistent.
She will share practical solutions that different teams can use to coordinate their efforts, recommending tips for managing user permissions, assigning editing and curation, and publishing.
Day 2 Highlights 🌴
Day two was buzzing with excitement as attendees were treated to a huge range of talks, covering everything from design and commerce to sensitivity.
Ask Matt Anything: Matt Mullenweg Questions & Answers 📣
One of the main events of any WordCamp is undoubtedly the live Q&A session with Matt Mullenweg, the creator of WordPress and CEO of Automattic.
At the larger WordCamps Matt live-answers questions from the crowd, giving the community a chance to get answers to some of their burning questions. You can watch the full session in the video to see how Matt responded to thee following questions:
- “Could we have a specific sponsorship for make teams?” — @DjevaLoperka (Who has now asked the first question at the last 3 WordCamps—on three different continents! 🌎)
- “How can we get more kids learning about contributing to WordPress?” — @niravmehta
- “How can WordPress designers and developers upskill themselves?” — @niravmehta
- With the wave of lay offs we’ve seen, what do you think that we, as a community, can do to create more jobs and stop the anxiety and fear that comes with the layoffs that we’ve seen?” — @michelleames
- “How do we make the open source, itself, resistant to strategy of commons?”
- “Do we have a plan to change it such that rather than all those details coming first, we ask as to what is the kind of site that you are trying to build, you know, with this particular installation?”
- “Some of the impactful ways, the Asian community in particular, can contribute to #WordPress in meaningful ways, the next 10 years?” @niravmehta
- “Lack of data on #WordPress plugin directory page, how many of them are actually downloading and how many are installing it? Feedback like that would be tremendously helpful for a freemium plugin.”
- “If you could travel back to one point in time, would you, and when?” @bobwp
- “People think WordPress it is for cheap websites, not enterprise websites. What can we do, as a community, to change the image of #WordPress?”
XWP Presentations: Is Learning React Necessary for Block Development? — Edmund Chan
In this talk, I’ll share my thoughts on whether one should learn React, the library which the block editor is written in and why.
You can read more about Edmund’s talk in his blog post “Is Learning React Necessary for Block Development?“
WordCamp Asia 2023 at a glance
Looking for a breakdown of this year’s events?
- How many speakers were there at WordCamp Asia? There were 60 speakers, including a few of our XWPeople (and a whole lot more who volunteered).
- What kinds of sessions are there at WordCamp Asia? There are talks, workshops, and lightning sessions (in addition to all the sponsor booths, many of whom have brought info, games, and competitions).
- How many people attended WCAsia 2023? More than 1500 people participated at the first ever WordCamp Asia
- Where is WordCamp Asia 2024? Taipei, Taiwan 🇹🇼