About Josh

Josh Pollock - JavaScript & PHP Engineer, Adult Human.

I make commerical open source products, mainly with WordPress.

Right now, I help build the WordPress plugins Ninja Forms, Caldera Forms and SendWP at Saturday Drive. I'm also working on Imaginary Shapes, a privacy-first habit forming app built with React and Blockstack.

Since 2014, I've been a part of the WordPress open-source community. I've contributed to WordPress core, spoken at over twenty WordCamps, including WordCamp US and have written a ton of tutorials about WordPress development. I live in Pittsburgh, PA with my wife Alica. I collect rocks, cactuses and Star Wars toys.

This about page is a bit of a journey, beacuse Josh. I also maintain a reasonably up to date LinkedIn if you want a more linear timeline.

I Make Stuff

After playing guitar in bands in high school, I began my career as a recording engineer. Music has always been my passion, helping others write, record and produce their music was a real joy. One of my favorite parts of my work today is that I get to listen to a ton of music.

I have always been a nature lover and concerned about our environment. This led to me getting a few degrees in Environmental Studies. While I was in grad school, I became interested in how online communities, especially open source software movements could provide a model for a more sustainable economy. I started blogging with WordPress.com and contributing to blogs, all of which were powered by WordPress.

Of course, beacuse I'm a nerd, I wanted to customize how the WordPress sites worked, and I found out I could and a community that wanted to help me learn how. Making small changes to WordPress sites is how I got started learning to code. I got more involved in the WordPress community, first by joining the all-volunteer team that reviews WordPress themes and then as a WordCamp speaker and volunteer. I've learned from our community more about writing software and building distributed and often times self-organizing communites then I ever did in school. Also, I have time to read science fiction books.

Open Source Community Advocate

Today, I get to help build commerical open source software that helps other people create what there own business, or tell there own story. Doing this, and writing about how has been really fun. I’m most proud of Caldera Forms, a free WordPress plugin. I was co-founder and lead developer for CalderaWP. Before being acquired by Saturday Drive, our small team, on three continents, grew the plugin to over 200,000 active installs and over two million downloads.

Before Caldera Forms. I was the community manager, and a developer for the plugin Pods. In addition to contributing to development, documentation and technical support, I helped create Friends of Pods, a community fundraising program to fund the project.

Being a teacher and lover of information, I’ve spoken at over twenty WordCamps. I’ve spoken about Gutenberg Block Development, Accessibility, the REST API, and more. You can watch videos of some of the talks here. I’m a WordPress Core Contributor and am a co-organizer for WordPress Pittsburgh.

I am proud to be the author of two books on WordPress. For many years I was a regular contrubitor to Torque and before that Evato Tuts+.

What I'm Up To Now

Today, my focus at work is on helping the engineering team responsible for Ninja Forms, Caldera Forms and SendWP transition to working remote, and to test-driven development. While I love PHP, preferably with Laravel, right now I'm having the most fun with React.

I've been sharing what I've learned about Gitlab CI, React with TypeScript, WordPress block development and other topics on DEV. I'm also writing a small ebook on JavaScript testing in and around WordPress.

Pull Requests Welcome

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