FACES OF WORDPRESS: Nathaniel Schweinberg

Nathaniel Schweinberg

  • Nathaniel Schweinberg
  • WordPressing since 2009
  • WP Level: Developer, WordCamp Nashville 2013 Speaker
  • Fight the Current

When other developers ask Nathaniel Schweinberg “why on Earth” he would develop with WordPress, he has a ready answer.

“Why not is a better question,” he says. “WordPress is what got me into development in the first place. Using WordPress doesn’t make be a bad developer. It’s inspired me to become a better one.”

Nathaniel was introduced to WordPress in 2009 while at Florida State (though not as part of any class) and developed his first custom theme for an artist who needed a website with a portfolio of paintings and sculptures.

He moved to Nashville the following year to intern with a video company that did environmental projection and continued to work in WordPress. Clients would ask for a new feature and Nathaniel would figure out how to make it happen and ask members of the vast and supportive WordPress community for help if he couldn’t.

And now?

Nate has migrated from building WordPress sites to building custom plugins and now is using WordPress to build web applications. One project in the works is creating a 25-user social app for an art school in California. He talked about what he’s up to in a recent blog post:

I’m researching how to effectively develop an API, how to fully utilize Object Oriented Programming within the context of PHP, learning new server side languages, and better utilizing dependency management. I’ve learned how to use HTML and CSS preprocessors, version control systems, picked up a few extra languages, and how to manage my own server.

WordPress allowed him to pace his learning, step by step, and ease into deeper levels of development. It also allowed him to be self-employed, straight out of college.

For new developers, Nathaniel recommends starting with the basics, html and css, then diving into the WordPress core to understand how the php works. From there, you can bend WordPress “to your will,” he says, and use it “in conjunction with other tools.”

“Don’t let the framework get in the way of what you’re seeking to accomplish. It’s ok to use the right tool for the job.”

As part of the build-up to WordCamp Nashville 2014 Faces of WordPress will highlight members of Middle Tennessee’s great – and growing – WordPress community. We will feature WP users at all levels, newbies to advanced developers. And mark your calendar. This year’s Big Event is May 3, 2014.