Conference at a Glance

WordTechCon is a new premium conference that will allow WordPress Theme and Plugin Developers as well as hosting services to learn from industry leaders at a relaxed pace in a wonderful location.


May 4th, 2018


Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Reasonable Conference Rate of $350 US
($175 for Students)

Conference Breakdown

● 1 Day Conference
● up to 2 days of sponsor access to delegates
● 1 Keynote addresses
● 12 Talks (2 concurrent sessions)
● 180 to 200 Attendees (Software Developers and Tech Industry Leaders)

Expected Talk Topics

Our talk topics hope to cover some or all of these topic categories: Plugin Creation, Theme Creation, CSS tips / tricks, Dashboard integration, PHP and WordPress, JavaScript / jQuery and WordPress, WordPress MySQL data structures,WordPress security, WordPress site recovery, Building a WordPress business / Commercial WordPress Development, Codebase Management, WordPress behind the scenes, REST in WordPress, Headless WordPress (REST API integrations), Server deployment and infrastructure management, Unexpected WordPress, UX, HTML5, Design Ideas, Agile Development, Mobile First Design, Tech Leadership, Soft Skills

Days until the Conference


Our Wonderful Sponsors


Gold & Silver

All Others

Recent News

Next Speaker Announced !

We are pleased to announce our next speaker. Local talent Ryan Welcher is coming to...Read More
January 16, 2018

Next Speaker Announced !

We are pleased to announce our next speaker. Karl Hughes is coming from Chicago, Illinois...Read More
January 10, 2018

2 New Speakers Announced !

We are pleased to announce our next 2 speakers. Eric Mann is coming from Portland,...Read More
January 8, 2018

SiteGround joins as a Branded Sponsor

We are happy to announce that SiteGround has joined the sponsors list as a Branded...Read More
January 5, 2018

ORACLE Speaker Announced !

We are extremely excited to announce our next speaker. David Stokes from ORACLE! He is...Read More
January 5, 2018

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Speakers are being announced as they are confirmed. Sign up for the news feed above to be kept informed of these developments.

Ryan Welcher

Speaker Bio

Ryan Welcher has been a web developer for over 13 years and over the course of his career has had the opportunity to work with many coding languages, frameworks, and technologies. He is currently a Lead Web Engineer at 10up where he builds enterprise level WordPress themes and plugins. In his spare time, you may find him contributing to WordPress core, reading up on a new technology or spending time with his wife and three children.


Getting Ready for Gutenberg

Just like winter, Gutenberg is coming. Will you be ready for it? Will your existing projects? In this talk, we’ll examine what Gutenberg is, what we need to know as developers to work with it, and discuss how we can prepare our existing projects so we can be ready when Gutenberg is released with WordPress 5.0.

Karl Hughes

Speaker Bio

Karl Hughes has been building software and teams for education technology startups in Chicago for the past several years. He is currently the CTO at The Graide Network where he oversees architecture, testing, and product planning.


A WordPress Developer's Introduction to Docker

If you’ve built many WordPress sites, you know that local development can be a pain to set up. Fortunately, there’s a new tool that promises to make many of those issues a thing of the past. Using Docker containers instead of installing PHP, Apache, and MySQL locally can save you time, help you share site configurations with your teammates, and make managing multiple instances of WordPress much simpler.

In this walk-through, we’ll take a step-by-step look at exactly how to set up WordPress using Docker. Along the way you’ll learn how Docker works, why containers are an improvement over virtual machines, and how this setup can eliminate the infamous “works on my machine,” problem.

Eric Mann

Speaker Bio

Eric Mann is a seasoned web developer with experience in languages from JavaScript to Ruby to C#. He has been building websites of all shapes and sizes for the better part of a decade and continues to experiment with new technologies and techniques. Eric is a Tekton working with Tozny (https://tozny.com) helping to engineer better, safer, more secure ways to identify yourself and control your information.


Practical Application Data Management

Applications need some data globally (i.e. database credentials), other data during runtime (i.e. application configuration), yet other data interstitially when performing operations (i.e. user data). This talk will help developers categorize the data their application needs and the security requirements characteristic of each category. It will also cover the proper ways to protect each category of data, from credentials management utilities to encryption, to integrated access control.

Attendees will walk away from the event armed with the tools required to keep not only their application safe, but also the data of the users who rely upon it!

Paul Bearne

How can I know I am writing secure WordPress code?

Even as an experienced coder, it can be daunting to try to write secure code.

But if you habitually make use of a few good tools and consistently apply coding standards, you should be able to significantly reduce potential vulnerabilities. As a bonus, secure code tends to be both performant and readable.

In this presentation, Paul will share with you a few of the tools that he’s found particularly helpful. He will also take you through some code examples to show the kind of problems these tools will highlight.  This should provide an effective starting point for establishing a best practice.


Speaker Bio

Paul Bearne is a senior WordPress full stack developer. He runs a web consultancy based in Southern Ontario, Canada, serving both a local and an international client base.

Back in 2006, Paul created his first plugin, Author Avatars (https://wordpress.org/plugins/author-avatars/), while working on a WPMU project for a multinational corporation. From this point on, the community, the flexibility and the momentum of WordPress has made it the platform of choice for his work.

Paul specializes in creating highly performant scalable, accessible and SEO friendly code (plugins and themes) for large WordPress sites that are often multi-site, multi-language, VIP and/or e-commerce.

He has made core commits in almost every WordPress release since 3.9, supports a growing list of plugins on WordPress.org, and is active in the WordPress community as a Meetup organizer and leader and regular speaker at WordCamps.

2018 sees the release of Paul’s first premium plugin, Matador Jobs https://matadorjobs.com/ .

You can find out more about Paul at http://bearne.ca/

David Stokes

Speaker Bio

Dave Stokes is a MySQL Community Manager for Oracle.  Previously he was the MySQL Certification Manager for MySQL AB and SUN.  He has worked for companies ranging alphabetically from the American Heart Association to Xerox and work ranging from Anti-submarine warfare to web developer.  He lives in Texas and per state law he has the required pickup truck and hound dog.


MySQL Security

MySQL is the most popular database on the web but do you know how to lock down your MySQL server? Do you restrict users to the database level? Table level? Column level? Or does ‘everyone’ use the root account ’cause you trust all your employees?  How good are you backups? Do you need at rest encryption, SSL, or need to use  third party password authentication system?  Does you server comply with your corporate policy on password rotation? How quickly can you set up a new accounting user or marketing user without copying from another account? If any of these questions made you queasy, then you should be in this session.

MySQL can be made very secure and newer editions have a ‘secure by default’ install.  But there are things you can EASILY do to make things more secure.  You can use at rest encryption to keep your data safe if someone happens to walk off with a disk drive, roles to ensure new employees in a particular job function get only the permissions they need (& not more), password rotation with expiration, password black lists (so ‘password’, ‘thebossisajerk’ or ‘s3cr3t’ is not a valid password and the server rejects attempts to use them), and many other features on the server side.

Plus we will look at SQL Injection and other techniques  used to get access to your data.  And we will look at operating policies like backups, account audits, and monitoring options to keep you data safe.In addition we will talk about performance settings that will leave you less vulnerable to things like DNS Zone failures and other common headaches.  And you will get to see how the Sys Schema, The MySQL Utilities, and MySQL Workbench can save time (and your behind).

Dr. Doris Chen

Speaker Bio

Dr. Doris Chen is a Senior Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, specialized in web technologies (web performance tuning, mobile web, HTML5, JavaScript, TypeScript and Java).

Doris has over 18 years of experience in the software industry working in several open source web tier technologies, Java platform, .NET and distributed computing technologies. She speaks at numerous international conferences and user groups including O’Reilly OSCON, Fluent, Dev Nexus, PHP, HTML5 Dev Conference, WebVisions, JavaOne, SD Forum, and worldwide User Groups. Doris works very closely to create and foster the open source community around Java, NetBeans, Glassfish, and related technologies. Before joining Microsoft, Doris Chen was a Technology Evangelist at Sun Microsystems.

Doris received her Ph.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) in computer engineering, specializing in medical informatics.


Practical Performance Tips and Tricks to Make Your HTML/JavaScript Faster

How to tackle real-world web platform performance problems in modern websites and apps? This session starts with a basic understanding of the web platform and then explores to a set of problem/solution pairs built from industry-standard performance guidance. In the talk, Doris will demonstrate performance tips and tricks that will help you improve the performance of your apps and sites today. Doris will discuss the following respond to network requests, speed and responsiveness, optimizing media usage, and writing fast JavaScript. These performance tips and tricks apply equally to web sites that run on standards based web browsers, as well as to modern apps.

Steve Grunwell

Speaker Bio

Steve Grunwell is a Senior Software Engineer at Liquid Web. Specializing in WordPress and application development he has worked with brands and organizations including Microsoft, TED, Xylem, Elmer’s, and Experience Columbus.

Steve has released numerous plugins in the WordPress.org repositories, including one from the grounds of The White House during the first annual National Day of Civic Hacking in 2013. When he’s not writing software he enjoys hiking, music, and writing about writing software on his blog.

Steve holds a B.A. in Telecommunications from Bowling Green State University where he graduated Cum Laude with minors in General Business and Recording Technologies.

More information, including portfolio work and his development blog, can be found at https://stevegrunwell.com.


Writing WP-CLI Commands That Work!

WP-CLI is a great tool when you don’t need a fancy UI, need to write scripts to perform regular maintenance, or to provide deeper functionality to your awesome plugin. Like WordPress, it’s free, open source, and far more powerful than some people give it credit for.

This session covers the components necessary to write great WP-CLI scripts; from structure to execution, arguments to output, attendees should leave the session with everything they need to know to implement WP-CLI commands in their next project.

Gene Babon

Speaker Bio

My current role as Tech Lab Instructor at Maverick Landing Community Services (MLCS) includes the following:

» responsible for facilitating and managing operations in the MLCS computer lab, instructing participants of all ages in the use of computer lab technology, software applications, and online educational programming and supporting lab outreach and engagement.

» launched East Boston Tech Meetup to help position MLCS as the technology training hub for people who live and work in East Boston and have an interest in enhancing their technical skills and job opportunities.


Getting Things Done: A Brief Intro to the GTD Methodology

Getting Things Done (GTD) is the work-life management system designed by David Allen to bring order to chaos. The GTD method rests on the idea of moving planned tasks and projects out of the mind by recording them externally and then breaking them into actionable work items. This allows one to focus attention on taking action on tasks, instead of recalling them. The presentation will outline the GTD workflow which consists of five stages: capture, clarify, organize, reflect, and engage. The talk will include a discussion of the relationship between the GTD methodology and popular web-based project management tools like Trello.

This presentation is intended for individuals who would like to achieve greatest work/life balance and managers who are tasked with “getting things done” while maintaining a low-stress work environment.


We are working on this !

About Us

Your crack conference planning board!

Peter MacIntyre

Peter MacIntyre has over 25 years of experience in the information technology industry, primarily in the area of PHP and Web Technologies. He has contributed writing material for many IT industry publications: Author of “PHP: The Good Parts” (O’Reilly); co-author: Pro PHP Programming (APress), Programming PHP (3rd Edition – O’Reilly), Using Visual Objects, Using PowerBuilder 5, ASP.NET Bible, Web Warrior Survey on Web Development Languages, and Zend Studio for Eclipse Developer’s Guide. Peter has another book covering WordPress that was published in May 2016.

Peter is a co-founder and past co-chair and past board member for the Northeast PHP Developer’s Conference held in Boston, MA and Charlottetown, PE Canada for the last 6 years (northeastphp.org). As well, Peter has spoken several times at North American and International computer conferences including PHPCE 2017 in Warsaw, Poland; PHP[World] 2016 in Washington, DC; ZendCon 2016 in Las Vegas, NortheastPHP 2017 & 2016 (Charlottetown, PE, Canada), Prairie Dev Con 2016 in Winnipeg, MB, Canada, CA-World in New Orleans, USA; CA-TechniCon in Cologne, Germany; and CA-Expo in Melbourne, Australia.

He is a Zend Certified Engineer in PHP 5.3 and PHP 4.0

Eric Mann

Eric Mann is a seasoned web developer with experience in languages from JavaScript to Ruby to C#. He has been building websites of all shapes and sizes for the better part of a decade and continues to experiment with new technologies and techniques. Eric is a Tekton working with Tozny (https://tozny.com) helping to engineer better, safer, more secure ways to identify yourself and control your information.

Chris MacKinnon

Chris A. MacKinnon is a Technical Consultant by day and a WordPress junkie by night. Chris has had the pleasure of building three online media companies from the ground up, using the WordPress platform, and selling the sites to reputable Public Relations firms in Massachusetts. Chris has also authored well over 600 articles for media companies including SmartComputing, Processor Magazine, Tom’s Guide, and MaximumPC. You can learn more about Chris and his writing escapades at  http://www.chrisamackinnon.com