About Me

Hi, my name is Jonathan.

I am a developer educator from Cape Town, South Africa with a passion for open-source software.

Picture of me speaking at WordCamp Europe contributor day in 2023
Profile photo courtesy Nilo Vélez

Developer Educator at Automattic

In May 2022 I joined Automattic as a full-time sponsored contributor to the WordPress project, working with the Training team on Learn WordPress. We create educational content for the WordPress community, and my focus is on developer-related content.

Joining the dotorg team at Automattic was a “coming home” of sorts, as I’ve made many friends in the WordPress space who work at Automattic, and now I get to be part of the open-source team that works on the WordPress open-source project full time.

Senior Technical Writer at Delicious Brains

In 2021 I decided to take my love of writing, my experience as a software developer, and my interest in the fields of education and developer communities and accepted a position as Developer Educator at Delicious Brains. About halfway through my time there the role changed to Senior Technical Writer.

Delicious Brains is a dedicated team of experts who love making software for their fellow WordPress developers. My job is to help them build amazing technical documentation and insightful developer-focused content that informs and delights our developer community.

Development Lead at Castos

From 2017 to 2020, I was Development Lead at Castos. Castos is a podcast hosting and analytics service that powers and supports the Seriously Simple Podcasting plugin for WordPress

When I left, Castos had grown from just Craig and me to a distributed team of 12, the plugin was used by over 20,000 podcasters around the world, and over 10,000 active customers using the Castos service.

Expert at Codeable

From August 2016 to September 2020, I solved technical problems for clients from around the world through Codeable. I focused on plugin development (both custom plugins and plugin extensions) and theme development, specifically adding custom functionality to themes via child themes or plugins. As of the 1st of October 2020, I left active freelance development to focus solely on Castos.

Writer, Blogger, and Podcaster

Besides this blog, I have also written for the WordPress.com Go blog, the Jetpack blog, as well as Smashing Magazine, and WP Tavern.

In my spare time, I host a small WordPress focused podcast where I interview folks from all over doing interesting things with WordPress. If this is you, let’s chat.


Whenever the opportunity provides itself, I try and speak at local events about various topics, including development, freelancing, PHP, WordPress, and Laravel. So far, I have spoken at WordCamp Europe (2019, 2023), WordCamp Cape Town (2016, 2018), WordCamp Johannesburg (2018, 2019), PHP South Africa (2017), and DevConf (2022).

WordPress contributor

WordPress has given me so much, so I do what I can to give back. I’m a community deputy, and I’ve been on or led the WordPress Cape Town organising team for three years. In September 2020, I stepped down from organising local WordPress meetups to focus on the WP Notify project.

Get in Touch

If you want to chat, feel free to find me on any of the following networks.

Alternatively, email me if you want to discuss a project, have a question, or want to say hi.

If anything you’ve found on this site was useful to you, and you want to say thanks, you can always buy me a coffee. I generally order an almond milk latte because I like the steamed milk texture but get a stronger taste of the espresso.

Latest Posts

  • Are you attending WCEU 2023?

    If you’re planning to attend, and would like to connect, please comment on the post.

  • My WordPress Origin Story

    This year, WordPress turns 20. To celebrate, the folks in the Marketing Team are running a 20 Days to Celebrate 20 Years of WordPress, From Blogs to Blocks campaign. For day 1, one of the prompts is: What is your WordPress origin story? Hello, world! My journey to WordPress was tied to my journey of…

  • Introducing Sendig – a new WordPress block theme

    It all started, as most things do, with an idea. When I joined Automattic as a developer educator in May 2022, members of the WordPress Training Team had been working on a block theme developers course for Learn WordPress. I joined those efforts and ultimately that course turned into three different courses that we published…

  • Celebrating my first year at Automattic

    person holding lighted firecracker

    Today marks my 1 year anniversary at Automattic as a sponsored contributor to the WordPress project, specifically with the WordPress Training Team. Over that year I’ve created 22 Tutorials, 32 Online Workshops, and 3 courses for Learn WordPress, collaborating with a dedicated team of both sponsored and volunteer contributors from all over the world who…

  • This is why developers should blog more.

    black screen with code

    This weekend I was building a block that needed to to the following: Using create-block, I’d scaffolded a new block, which gave me the following code in my edit.js file. I then started tweaking the block structure, to support a select box, and hard coded some options: Next, I imported the api-fetch package, which would…

  • Why I walked away from Gracie Jiu-Jitsu®

    man walking on floor

    Including the registered trademark icon seemed relevant somehow… To most people outside of martial arts circles, this might be the first time you’ll ever hear about the difference between Brazilian jiu-jitsu (aka BJJ) and Gracie Jiu-Jitsu®. In fact, unless you have an interest in the arts, you probably don’t even know the difference between Brazilian…

  • How should I promote my open source work better?

    Social media applications on mobile

    What tips, tricks and tools can you share with me as to how I can promote my work to a wider audience?

  • How I lost 12.5kgs in 2021 and kept it off in 2022

    Whenever I run into people who’ve not seen me in person since before the pandemic, they are surprised at how different I look today. Personally, I don’t see it, until I go looking for photos of myself before 2020, and then look at more recent photos. The differences are quite remarkable. For some context, here’s…

  • Developing WordPress Blocks without React

    Code. Free public domain CC0

    One of the most common complaints I hear from long term WordPress developers boils down to the fact that to develop blocks for the WordPress Block Editor, you need to set up the JavaScript development environment (Node.js + npm + @wordpress/scripts) in order to start building blocks. This is not entirely true, as it is…