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The Sharing and Caring of the WordPress Community Shines

In Why Giving Away Your Code is Not Dangerous, Abhijit Nadgouda of ifacethoughts looks at the issue of “sharing” and Open Source from an interesting perspective:

Imagine you run a transport service, ferrying passengers to destinations they want. A part of your job is to follow maps, find out new routes and build your knowledge about them so that you can take your passengers to the right destination. Now, if someone asks you for directions for going from one place to another, would you hesitate? In fact you would only be helping that person out by giving out the directions. Someone else comes too for them, and so you just make them available to everyone. Would that be a problem? It will hardly be, since your job is to enable your passengers to reach their destination, which is more than just directions…

There are other businesses, like the ones that sell maps or your competitors which might use directions given by you for themselves. But that should hardly matter, because directions is just one ingredient of the entire solution you offer. On the other hand, you giving out directions can only help you. It will create goodwill about you and also prove your dedication towards maintaining a record of your directions. Others who have to come to know of a better route might inform you about it or update the directions in your record. Or they might inform you about temporary impediments in the route. All this is going to help you in your own business.

One of the great joys of working with WordPress is the Open Source and WordPress Community, a group of people who volunteer their time not only to help out on the various support forums, mailing lists, chats, and , the online manual for WordPress Users, but also who publish and share their code solutions and tips. By helping each other, everyone benefits.

Each week on my WordPress Wednesday report on the , I highlight articles from those who share their WordPress tips and techniques.

Here are some recently highlighted articles to remind you of the sharing and caring that makes the WordPress Community so very special.

WordPress Tips, Tricks, and Techniques

The following collection of WordPress tips, tricks, and techniques cover a variety of WordPress versions. Take care to note which version is covered before implementing any of these techniques. And always backup FIRST, and DURING.

Help the WordPress Community Grow

We need more articles on how to use WordPress. If you would like to help the WordPress Community, you can publish articles on your blog, if it is in line with your blog’s purpose. Please email me as I may include them in my own lists and help promote them.

To go even further and make a timeless contribution to the WordPress Community, why not write for or donate the use of one of your articles for the .

There are volunteers all over the world working to translate articles in the WordPress Codex to support WordPress in different countries, including Arabic, Basque, Chinese, Croatian, French, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Polish, and Spanish.

To help you write your article or prepare it for donation to the WordPress Codex, see Tips For Writing Good WordPress Tips and the Codex Guidelines.

Your contribution and volunteer effort would help everyone and contribute to the overall knowledge and techniques for using WordPress.

Are you fluent in a language other than English, too? Why not give some love to the WordPress Community by helping with the efforts to translate WordPress, through the programming core or through translation of the documentation.

If you are a master WordPress coder and hacker, you can help with WordPress Development by reporting and fixing bugs or even digging into the core itself to improve it. WordPress works better because people like you cared enough to help to work better.

Help is also needed in the and WordPress.com Forums, guiding users with questions through the process of using WordPress and helping them solve their problems.

There are many ways to help and contribute to WordPress. See Contributing to WordPress for more information and help give some directions to someone who doesn’t know the path.

Or maybe make it part of your holiday gift and New Year’s resolution to give some love back to the WordPress Community this year.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network, and author of Blogging Tips, What Bloggers Won't Tell You About Blogging.

9 Comments

  1. Posted December 24, 2007 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Completely off topic:

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and yours, Lorelle! It’s great having you around!

  2. Posted December 24, 2007 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for including a couple of mine Lorelle, always happy to help!

    Merry Christmas :-)

  3. Posted December 24, 2007 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

    Excellent article Lorelle and nicely said. I have a couple of posts in mind for WebLogToolsCollection.com which will aim to help out those who would like to contribute to WordPress in ways that don’t require the knowledge of a code monkey. As you eloquently stated in this article, there are more than a handful of ways for your average Joe to help make WordPress a better piece of software.

    I also wanted to point out that, what you have presented here in this list of WordPress related articles is a good example of the terms “Widsom Of Crowds”. There is no one person who knows everything there is to know about WordPress. But if you take the combined knowledge of all of the individual blogs posting information about specific aspects of WordPress, whether it be a plugin review, theme release, or a simple code hack, you begin to see this bigger picture of the enormous collection of knowledge that is out their on the net, related to the WordPress software.

    Interesting way of looking at it and I always enjoy taking a step back and looking at things via the big picture.

  4. Posted December 25, 2007 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    Excellent article.
    It´s beautifully.
    Very good!

  5. Posted December 25, 2007 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

    “Giving away code” != “giving directions”.

    “Giving away code” can mean snippets and tricks and such, but here it seems to apply to OpenSource projects that, to be simple and honest, are far more like maps than like verbal directions.

    A system comprised of dozens of files with thousands of lines of code … that’s like giving someone directions when they ask? For one thing: verbal directions are transient/volatile … a ready to install app is quite different.

    In his post I took another tack, that he simply over-stated the case. I didn’t want to get into how his logic was specious.

  6. Posted December 27, 2007 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

    As I said on the post you reference, the analogy is beyond silly.

    Giving away code is not analogous to giving directions. It’s more analogous to giving away your ferry for free. Sadly most Open Source folks are so desperate to justify their “religious” fervour on this subject that they will buy into any excuse.

  7. Posted December 30, 2007 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    I’ve got a whole blog dedicated to the MU branch of Wrodpress. There’s some definite differences people don’t quite expect.

  8. Posted December 31, 2007 at 1:19 am | Permalink

    I must say thank you too all the generosity of the WP community! As an upstart coder (just getting into PHP) it’s good to have a strong community to help. I think that’s one thing that is being bread out of a lot of Americans, we get so stuck on helping ourselves that we forget that we can’t help our selves. The only way that things truly work is for everyone to help everyone else, but too many people hold onto the selfish “well what if I help them and they don’t help me” philosophy that often times nothing gets done. It’s not always about if they help you back directly, if you help them, and they later on help someone else that’s good enough for me!

  9. Posted December 31, 2007 at 2:52 am | Permalink

    Hello lorelle,
    I am about one month using WordPress and I am impressed with the management system. The plugin and all the nice theme to tweak my blog. I want to wish thousands of Thank You to the WordPress team and all the developer that put an effort for a better commmunity.Happy New Year 2008!


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