About Me

Hi, my name is Jonathan.

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

Profile photo courtesy https://www.sitombe.com/

Developer Educator WordPress Code Instructor 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 Senior Technical Writer at Delicious Brains.

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 supporters 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.

Speaker

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), 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


  • Using a MacBook As a Long-time Ubuntu User – The Week of Mac

    Macbook

    This post summarizes my (almost) week of using a Mac, as a long-time Ubuntu user. You can read why I tried this experiment here. Thursday – Day 1 The first annoyance started when I connected the MacBook up to the USB type-C hub I had purchased. While the hub did its job well (more on […]

  • Using a MacBook as a Long-time Ubuntu User – Preparation

    Using a MacBook Day 0

    If you read my last post, after 30 years of using computers, I bought my first Apple laptop. I’ve long been opposed to using Apple products for various reasons. However, the combination of the new Apple silicon and a requirement for access to an Apple computer for my work means that I now own an […]

  • Apple Silicon MacBook Air – Unboxing and Initial Thoughts

    MacBook Air

    If you’ve spent any time reading this blog, you will know that my personal operating system of choice is Ubuntu. I’ve used Ubuntu since 2006, first as a local development server (a physical box hooked up my local network), and then switched to using it as my daily driver in 2008. I had short stint […]

  • Async Conf – An Asynchronous Online Conference

    brown and black wooden chairs inside room

    Ever since the world of tech conferences went to shit last year, I’ve not attended any virtual ones. They don’t appeal to me at all. The main reason is that when I attend conferences, it’s to meet up with my fellow attendees, greet old friends, meet new ones, and discuss all manner of topics. Attending […]

  • From Digital Ocean App Platform to Self Hosted SpinupWP Managed VPS

    Earlier this year, I threw together a silly little joke app built on Laravel in a couple of hours. I had merely wanted to participate in the Digital Ocean App Platform Hackathon and had no further plans for the app. Another App Platform Hackathon participant liked it enough to contribute some substantial improvements, including a […]

  • WordPress Developer Educator at Delicious Brains

    This week I started my new journey as the WordPress Developer Educator at Delicious Brains. I could not be more enthusiastic about where this path will take me. Why Delicious Brains? Delicious Brains is a WordPress focused company that not only I admire but they have a solid standing in the WordPress community. They build, in […]

  • 4 Years at Castos – and Why It Was Time to Leave.

    Castos

    This year marks my 4th working at Castos on our podcast hosting, analytics, productions platform and Seriously Simple Podcasting, our podcasting plugin for WordPress. Today also happens to be the last. Looking back Craig Hewitt, founder, and CEO of Castos, first contacted me on December 27, 2016. He let me know he’d recently purchased the […]

  • Migrating My Cloud Virtual Servers to SpinupWP

    I’ve never been a fan of managed WordPress hosting. Don’t get me wrong; I appreciate what managed WordPress hosts do, and they are definitely doing amazing work, but it’s just not for me. As a developer and server admin hobbyist, I prefer to own my own VPS (virtual private servers). I started using Rackspace Cloud […]

  • How Taking the 16 Personalities Test Helped Me Understand Myself Better

    For the past three years, I have been having some serious thoughts about my future as a software developer. Since I turned 40 in 2017, I’ve been wondering if the path I was on was the right one for me. This led to a lot of frustration in my work, especially when it came to […]