Abul Khayer is working as a WordPress developer for several Web Development agencies for the past five years. He is the CTO of Search English and proprietor of his own Web Development agency Biggestech. He’s specialized in WordPress Security and WooCommerce. He’s the lead organizer of Dhaka WordPress Meetup and a deputy of the community team.
At WordCamp Biratnagar 2018, he talked about the common security threads that WordPress websites have to face.
An Exclusive Interview with Abul Khayer
Tell us something about yourself.
I am a tech entrepreneur and developer from Dhaka, Bangladesh and have co-founded an award-winning e-Learning startup called Search English which helps ordinary people to learn and practice English online. I am currently employed as the CTO of this startup. Apart from that, I own a distributed web development agency called Biggestech. I have been contributing to the tech community in Bangladesh in different manners for the last 4 years. I’ve been contributing to the local WordPress community from early 2017 starting from the meetup chapter program and organizing frequent meetups.
Tell us about your city and WordPress Community over There.
Being an emerging market, there is a healthy number of individuals in Dhaka who are building on WordPress. There are several companies who are doing fantastic jobs in the WordPress ecosystem. Most of the enthusiasts are not much into community involvements though, the number is growing now. There are always local meetups taking place; at least every two months now. We never had a WordCamp in Dhaka but we’re hoping for our very first one soon.
How and when did you start your journey with WordPress?
Well, I used to be a content writer on Blogger.com back in 2013. I was employed in two different web development agencies in 2014 as a marketer. From there, I learned about different web CMS. After leaving from my job the same year, I co-founded an e-commerce startup. I chose WordPress to build the website for not getting any other option to learn and build quickly. I loved the simplicity of WordPress and a ton of useful open resources online. Studying on it for a couple of months, I realized that WordPress is the best option for me to build a career. I determined for a serious career and started learning programming languages after that and from early 2015, I became a professional developer to date.
Any challenges you faced during your initial phase in WordPress? If so, how did you overcome them?
I had to face a lot of challenges during my initial phase of developing on WordPress as others do. Honestly, I had no idea where to start. I was not going through a set of lessons or courses to learn and build on WordPress. What I used to do was read blog posts, forums and watch tutorials on YouTube to learn. I had no one around but to ask in different community forums or people I was connected on social media once I got stacked. The era of self-learning was a great blessing for me to learn something new every day.
Were you excited about your talk in WCBRT2018? What was your talk about?
I was very excited about my talk in WordCamp Biratnagar 2018. This was my first ever participation in any WordCamp. Luckily, I appeared as a speaker in my first WordCamp and got a chance to talk about one of my favorite topic “WordPress Security Fundamentals”. Co-incidentally, it is the first WordCamp in Biratnagar. So, we had a lot of chance to learn and share among us.
What do you hope attendees will take away from your talk?
I tried my best to deliver the sense of securing WordPress websites. Since the majority of the audience was new to WordPress, I focused on the basics, kept it short and easy to understand. I believe the audience could learn what threats to their website were and how they could secure their websites from attacks.
Is this your first time visiting Nepal? Are you having a good time here?
This is the first time I’m visiting Nepal. I love the environment, culture and delicious foods here. The people, their friendly behavior, helping nature was mind-blowing! I feel like home here. I would love to visit again.
What do you think about the WordPress community in Nepal?
I had not been to many places though, I met WordPress enthusiasts in Biratnagar came from all over the country. Honestly, the crowd and interest of attendees were more than what I expected. Nepal has given birth to many promising companies for WordPress ecosystem. On top of that, the enthusiasm of new comers and the egoless participation (which is certainly one of the five good faith rules of WordPress community) remarkable. I really appreciate that there are active communities and contributors in most of the major cities in Nepal and this number is growing every year. I believe Nepal will contribute a lot to WordPress in the coming years. There will surely be many new major players from this country in the WordPress ecosystem.
Talking about WordCamps, what fascinates you the most about WordCamps?
It’s my first WordCamp and I didn’t have the chance to check out many. Although I always follow the updates and news about WordCamps held around the world. Attending here, I founded the networking opportunity with like-minded people very fascinating. Enthusiasts of WordPress don’t get enough chance to meet and hang out frequently in such a big crowd. You will get the opportunity in WordCamp to meet new people here, make friends, learn from others, and share your knowledge and experience.
How do you think WCBRT 2018 is different from any other WordCamps you’ve been to?
Since it’s my first WordCamp participation, I can’t explain much about it. However, to my knowledge following WordCamps news and updates, it has a massive amount of attendees for it to be called the first time. I loved the inaugural ceremony in typical Nepali tradition.
How have you been contributing to the WordPress community?
I’m organizing local meetups frequently to engage WordPress enthusiasts in my neighborhood. I have also sponsored multiple local meetups. Besides that, I have been contributing to the global community team as a deputy from 2017. Here I came to speak in WordCamp Biratnagar 2018 this time and would like to attend more in the coming days. I also contribute to Polyglots, WordPress.tv and Forum whenever I get time.
What advice would you give to new WordPress users who’re only joining the WordPress community?
My advice to new users would definitely be inviting them to get involved. It provides the opportunity for learning something new every day and helps others to learn from you. There are different teams to get involved in WordPress open source project. You can look into multiple teams that you’re interested in. Most importantly, be consistent and try to learn something new every day.
What do you think about the female participation in WordPress?
Diversity and Inclusion is one of the core values of WordPress. So, female participation is very much needed in WordPress to make it better. I strongly support it. In recent years we’ve noticed a significant growth in female involvement in the WordPress ecosystem. There’s a particular movement within WordPress called “Women Who WP” to encourage the participation of female in the community. In WordCamp Biratnagar, I saw a healthy percentage of female attendees which is undoubtedly a positive sign. I would recommend the local female WordPress enthusiasts from Biratnagar and all over Nepal to get involved in “Women Who WP” program. (https://womenwhowp.org)
What is your go-to source for anything and everything WordPress?
My go-to source for anything on WordPress has always been the WordPress Developer Handbook, Support Forum, and Codex. Besides that, I always search on Google for something I don’t know. I follow Stack Overflow, Github for reference and YouTube tutorials to broaden my knowledge. There’s one blog I should mention I used to follow when I was a beginner called WP Beginner.
Besides WordPressing, what do you do for fun?
I love to watch movies and other inspiring videos on YouTube when I’m tired of working. I’m addicted to Social Network. I have been using social networks for 8 years now. I spend times exploring Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn when I’m neither working nor watching movies or other staffs. Reading online is another hobby turned into the habit now. On top of that, I’m a travel freak, too.
And lastly, Gutenberg editor was released with WordPress 5.0 as the default editor. Do you have any thoughts to share?
I strongly support and appreciate this new move. I know Gutenberg is getting mixed-opinions among users. However, I loved this futuristic change of WordPress editor and other major changes that came along with WordPress 5.0. It’s currently in a very basic stage of development. I hope that in the nearer future, users will adopt it and take the full fledge of advantages.