The following is an interview with Bruce Elgort, a teacher here at Clark College. He teaches PHP and other web programming classes in the Computer Technology Department. I chose to interview Bruce because I wanted his perspective as a user of WordPress for networking. I chose my questions to fit under the theme of “How is WordPress useful?” This is a question that many people who don’t plan to use WordPress specifically for business might have, so I thought it was an important topic to cover.
Bruce Elgort (@belgort) served as the Chairman of OpenNTF, the preeminent open source community for the IBM Collaboration Solutions development platform from 2001-2013. He is also the co-creator of IdeaJam, the award winning idea management software from Elguji Software, where he serves as President and Chief Executive Officer. You can hear Bruce regularly as the co-host of the Taking Notes podcast.
Additionally, Bruce is often asked to speak around the world at technology industry events about trends in the technology space as well as entrepreneurship. As part of his commitment to give back to his local community, he serves as a board member of the Clark County Skills Center, and is a technology and event volunteer for the Children’s Cancer Society.
How long have you been using WordPress?
Bruce has been using WordPress for his blog since 2010. However, he has been blogging on other platforms since 2001.
How do you use WordPress?
First and foremost, Bruce uses WordPress as a way to blog and share about his interests. He focuses on using it to stay connected When asked about the extent to which he blogs, Bruce said, “I’ve never done career-type blogging [referring to professional bloggers]. A lot of people do, and a lot of people do it really well, but I’ve never done that.”
Still, he asserts, blogging and networking can be beneficial to a person’s career, saying “Career-wise, blogging helped me build a personal brand within my technical community.” Having a blog creates a connection between Bruce and others in his field. Even if they haven’t met him, they know about him and his interests because of his blog. Bruce sums this connection up with the term “passive awareness.”
Why did you start using WordPress?
Bruce transitioned to using WordPress because of its simplicity. WordPress is very user-friendly and provides options for bloggers to make their blogs fit their needs. WordPress is easy to use and provided the tools that Bruce wanted to have for blogging.
How has WordPress and blogging benefited you?
WordPress makes it possible for people to know Bruce and connect with him before even meeting him. Bruce’s blog is a part of his career and digital identity, creating opportunities to publish content, including a podcast. WordPress is beneficial to Bruce because it is a professional tool that he can use to share information and network with others.
Would you recommend WordPress to others?
Bruce enthusiastically recommends WordPress to others, saying, “It is the blogging platform…it’s the only blogging platform I recommend.”
It is open source with huge support from developers, creating an ecosystem for bloggers. The only downside to WordPress that Bruce mentioned is that some companies may not allow the use of open source software. Bruce considers WordPress “the Apple of blogging” because it provides such a detailed user experience that is simple and intuitive.
Our interview concluded with Bruce saying, “It’s a really amazing tool, it allows you to publish on the web…whether you’re a college, a small business, a bakery, whatever, you can share and create an entire website with it.”
Check out Bruce’s blog on WordPress!