WordPress Basics
and Beyond

About This Talk…

Over 60 million people have chosen WordPress to power the place on the web they call "home."

WordPress is a free and open-source content management system written in PHP and MySQL. It started as a simple blogging tool in 2003 and has evolved into a versatile website building system.

Nearly a quarter of the top 10 million websites are built using WordPress (as of January 2015). There are tens of thousands of plugins and an untold number of site themes to choose from.

This talk will discuss the basics of installation, theme selection, theme customization, plugins and their uses, the page/post relationship, editing content and backup strategies.

A demonstration site will be used to showcase basic tasks in WordPress and questions are encouraged!

About the Presenter

M. Douglas Wray

Doug Wray has been herding ink and electrons since the 80s. His early career included working as an Electron Microscopist and then a Desktop Publisher in the printing industry as well as very early website design. He's proud to be someone who understands the concepts of digital halftones, vector vs. raster as well as a range of other abstruse subjects, earning him the nickname 'Guru.' He's been using WordPress for close to a decade and loves to share his enthusiasm for it. He can be found at MacWebGuru.com - he lives in Longmont with his wife, daughter, three dogs and a very longsuffering cat.


Installing WordPress

WordPress Codex: Famous 5-Minute Install

  1. Download and unzip the WordPress package if you haven't already.
  2. Create a database for WordPress on your web server, as well as a MySQL user who has all privileges for accessing and modifying it.
  3. (Optional) Find and rename wp-config-sample.php to wp-config.php, then edit the file (see Editing wp-config.php) and add your database information.
  4. Upload the WordPress files to the desired location on your web server:
    • If you want to integrate WordPress into the root of your domain (e.g. http://example.com/), move or upload all contents of the unzipped WordPress directory (excluding the WordPress directory itself) into the root directory of your web server.
    • If you want to have your WordPress installation in its own subdirectory on your website (e.g. http://example.com/blog/), create the blog directory on your server and upload the contents of the unzipped WordPress package to the directory via FTP.
    • Note: If your FTP client has an option to convert file names to lower case, make sure it's disabled.
  5. Run the WordPress installation script by accessing the URL in a web browser. This should be the URL where you uploaded the WordPress files.
    • If you installed WordPress in the root directory, you should visit: http://example.com/
    • If you installed WordPress in its own subdirectory called blog, for example, you should visit: http://example.com/blog/

That's it! WordPress should now be installed.

Frequently-Asked Questions

Choosing a Theme

You need to decide on your basic site structure and functional needs. Real estate site? Photography site? Both image-intensive but with different internal needs. Deciding how you want to present your information helps you choose. Themes ARE flexible but for every 'flex' there is a control so the admin can get pretty complex.

Be sure to look carefully at the features/options/support for any theme you're considering.

Customizing Your Theme


Extend and Expand the Functionality of WordPress.

41,144 as of this writing with over 1 million users

Some Favorite Plugins

Pages vs Posts

Two types of content to serve two different purposes.



Publishing / Editing a Page

If your site has a 'static' homepage then you need to create it and designate it such.

Backup strategies

Useful and Informative Links

Thank You!