Meet Zack Tollman, WordPress Expert

Zack will be joining us for WPSession #3: Performance Driven Development on August 4th, 2013.

Where can we find you on the internet?

Zack TollmanI am a developer with The Theme Foundry and you can see all of our awesome themes on I write about WordPress things on and tweet from @tollmanz.

When and how did you get started with WordPress?

I think I first installed WordPress in 2005 or 2006. I was initially intimidated by it because it was such a large project with so much code. I took a closer look at it later in 2006 when I became fed up with writing a custom content management system (CMS) solution for a client. I knew that WordPress provided this for you out of the box and decided it was time to learn how to use it to power my sites rather than waste more time trying to build my own custom CMS.

What resources to you turn to when you want to learn something new?

I usually turn to people. I have found that building relationships and mentorships with people who can do things better than me is a really rewarding experience. In the WordPress community, we are extremely lucky to have WordCamps all over the world, which enable and foster these types of relationships. The friendships that I have made at these conferences (as well as other places) have been the single biggest asset to me as a developer.

What is your favorite WordPress feature/aspect?

Currently, I am in love with the ID3 tag support for audio files that will be released in WordPress 3.6. If you have an audio file that is properly tagged, WordPress will read this data upon upload and make it available to you. It even adds an embedded album cover as a featured image for the attachment. Huge props to Scott Taylor (@wonderboymusic) for this significant contribution.

What is your favorite development tool and why?

Git is my favorite development tool. After starting to use it on a daily basis, I’ve come to view it as a tool and not a version control system (VCS). It has some extremely powerful features (e.g., bisect, reflog, merge strategies) that give you a lot of flexibility with and insight into your codebases. I could give up a lot of development tools, but definitely not Git.

What advice do you have for others looking to become WordPress experts?

Go to WordCamps. Talk to people. Do not build stuff alone. Be open to criticism and feedback. Solicit criticism and feedback. Give criticism and feedback. Trust your instincts. Do not forget to sleep.

Bonus Question: What is one interesting non-WordPress-related fact about yourself?

I love hockey.