Speaker Spotlight – Chris Van Patten

As founder and creative director of Tomodomo and Van Patten Media Inc., Chris Van Patten has helped build communities and websites for Broadway performers, small businesses, tech news publications, and countless others. Trained as a designer, Chris focuses these days on user experience and technical strategy, serving as a mediator between client dreams and technical realities. While living in Buffalo, NY, Chris created “BfloFRED,” the Buffalo Front-End Developers meetup (later expanded to include sister meetups in Manchester, UK and Toronto, ON) and co-organised Buffalo’s inaugural WordCamp. He regularly speaks at events around the world (including eleven WordCamps in cities around the world), and writes at chrisvanpatten.com. @ChrisVanPatten

What’s been your best experience with WordPress?

Working with the WordPress community, whether releasing plugins, contributing code, or tutoring young developers is so rewarding. The community is so open, diverse, and really has a conscience. I think that makes WordPress really special.

Tell us a bit about your WordCamp Halifax talk.

I’ll be talking about strategies for bringing “modern” development practises into the WordPress world. There are a lot of negative opinions about the quality of WordPress code, and the experience of developing on WordPress. I want to show that it’s possible to work within the constraints of WordPress and have a workflow that’s as modern and intuitive as any new-fangled PHP framework.

What’s your favourite thing about attending WordCamps?

I’ve had the honour of being a speaker at WordCamps around the world, and it’s such a privilege to be able to meet so many interesting and talented folks in so many countries. It’s a good reminder of the power of technology to bring so many different types of people together.

Recommend one to three people in the WordPress world to follow on social media!

If you could have any superhero power, what would it be?

Flight! Then I’d be able to save on airfare.

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