This is a blog post from one of our sponsors. Be sure to visit all of our sponsors at the event and thank them for their support!
At WooThemes, we are perhaps most well known for WooCommerce, the leading eCommerce platform for WordPress. I’m sure that as an attendee of WordCamp Minneapolis, you probably already know at least a little about WooCommerce (but you can always learn more right here).
What you may not be aware of is that WooThemes is not only passionate about eCommerce, but also the WordPress community itself. Without the community, we wouldn’t be the company that we are today, not by a long shot. We owe so much of who we are to the influence and support of this great WordPress community of which we are a part.
In that light, we make it a point to give back to the community as much as we can. We also encourage others to get equally involved in building the WordPress ecosystem. Here are a few of the ways that we like to give back to WordPress, and how you can get involved too.
If you’ve never done it before, you’d be surprised at how easy it is to translate WordPress into practically any language. With a team spread all over the world, we have a huge opportunity to assist with this task, and we do: a significant number of our ninjas regularly contribute to the various languages in which WordPress is available.
On top of that, a few of our team members are editors for our respective locales, which gives us the ability to confirm and merge all the community submitted translations into WordPress core.
If translating WordPress sounds like something you would like to do, then have a look at this handy post that outlines the process in detail.
“If code is poetry, then documentation is prose.”
WordPress is a great platform for building almost anything, but any software platform is only as strong as its documentation – and WordPress is no different. A large part of contributing to WordPress involves writing documentation, both for the code itself as well as for how to use it.
This is something that we at WooThemes contribute to with great frequency. Whether it’s improving the inline code documentation (which is automatically pulled through to the new Code Reference), or assisting with writing user-facing guides on how to use WordPress, this is something that we love to do.
We are so involved in this, in fact, that one of our team members is leading the HelpHub project. This is an endeavour that is set to move all of the user-focused documentation from the WordPress Code, to a new and far more flexible WordPress platform. We also have a few more ninjas who are working on the HelpHub team to make sure it is all built and migrated correctly.
If you would like to get involved in the HelpHub project, have a look at the HelpHub page in the Docs handbook and jump in to lend a hand.
Engaging with the WordPress Community
While WordPress is great as a powerful piece of software, it is so much more than that. The community that surrounds WordPress is hugely influential, entertaining and helpful.
The easiest way to get involved in this community is to attend events like this WordCamp, but there are always additional opportunities available to get involved – for example, by organizing events for your local community. You can find out more about those on the Community blog.
At Woo, we value these community events so much that we make a point of sponsoring as many as possible. A large number of our team members are involved in organizing WordPress meetups and WordCamps in their cities. On top of that, a few of our ninjas are available as Community Deputies, which mean they are on hand to assist other community organizers around the world in a number of tangible and practical ways.
Making WordPress Accessible
It’s crucial that WordPress is as accessible as possible to as many people as possible, no matter what their situation in life is. To that end, the WordPress Accessibility team work hard to make sure that everyone has an equal chance of using and building with WordPress in whatever way they like.
One of our team members is a dedicated member of this relatively new team, and works alongside a number of other talented volunteers to ensure global accessibility for all WordPress users.
Of course, with WordPress being primarily a software project, the core code itself is of utmost importance. With that in mind, we make a strong showing of contributing code to WordPress core as often as we can. In fact, the last 10 major releases of WordPress (and many more before that) all include at least one member of the Woo team in the list of contributors.
One element of WordPress core that we are particularly proud of is the menu management system. It has evolved quite a bit over the years, but the menu management page that was first included in WordPress 3.0 was taken from our very own WooNav module, which we previously included in all of our themes.
If you would like to get involved in contributing to WordPress core, have a look at the WordPress Core blog to prepare yourself for the world of WordPress core development.
We Take Pride in Giving Back
As you can see, WordPress is a broad and varied world of opportunities with many skill sets being required to make sure that the project grows at a steady pace.
At WooThemes, we take great pride in our commitment to furthering this growth, and we encourage you to do so as well. Giving back to WordPress is one of the most rewarding things you may ever do – get involved today, you won’t regret it.