Ben is a lifelong Nintendo fan who likes to build websites, and make video games. He buys way too much Lego.
In January or February this year I had the idea of making some sort of advent calendar website for christmas. I wanted to share something with the online community – I just wasn’t sure what.
In mid October I started thinking about it again. I decided that WordPress was the obvious candidate and so the idea behind my latest project, WPAdvent, was born.
WPAdvent is my attempt to bring some awesome special offers to the WordPress community and to help promote other WordPress developers – maybe introducing you some you don’t know.
The concept is that every day, for 25 days, there will be a new WordPress special offer.
I didn’t think anyone would want to give me things for free, it has to be a win win solution, and at first i thought nobody was interested. However I have now managed to fill up all 25 days of offers with some amazing members of the WordPress community. Check out the partners page to see who is involved.
My idea when building the site was to use as many free/ cheap tools (or software I already own) as possible. This was in part to learn new technologies and in part because I didn’t want to spend loads of money on something that could potentially flop.
So – I ended up selecting the following software and services:
- hosting – nearlyfreespeech.net – basically a pay for what you use type service. So far I have been really pleased with nearly free speech – they would be a great start for any website on a budget.
- framework – codeignitor. I use it for everything that doesn’t need WordPress, great software.
- comments – facebook comments widget. This may also work as free advertising.
- feeds – feedburner, naturally.
- image editor – Fireworks – My favorite web design tool. I purchased it for other projects so feel it’s ok to use it here. It’s my one web design indulgence, I don’t own any other (expensive) software
- code editor – Netbeans – My code editor of choice. I was recently turned onto Netbeans and it is now my fave software for this type of task.
I have actually not done any promotion. The whole point of the concept means it is the sort of thing people will want to promote naturally and organically (at least that is what I am hoping). This has already been proved with the amount of people who have tweeted and signed up for the site. With any luck once the site is live it will continue to grow exponentially as people tweet and blog about the offers that are going on.
If you’re interested in WordPress then WPAdvent is definitely a site you should be visiting over the month of December.