Farewell Weblog Tools Collection

Sadly, this is not an April Fools’ Day joke.

After ten years of providing news on WordPress and other blogging platforms, Weblog Tools Collection is coming to a close. The site won’t be going anywhere, it’s in good hands now, and should at least be archived and accessible to everyone for a very long time.

My history with Weblog Tools Collection is rather surreal. Eight years ago, I wanted to try this “blogging” thing that everyone was talking about. I scoured the net, looking for reviews, message boards, insane rants, anything that would help me decide where to start. I found a post on Weblog Tools Collection (I can’t remember which) and had made up my mind, I would start blogging with WordPress. Now, here I am working for Automattic, quite possibly because I found a post on Weblog Tools Collection eight years ago.

Three years ago, I had just been let go from my job in the middle of a rather rough economic situation in the US. I spent almost an entire year unemployed, and due to my naïveté in accepting a full time job as a contractor, could not collect unemployment insurance. That year was spent applying for any job that I could find and helping out in the WordPress Support Forums. One lucky day, I saw an opening for editor at Weblog Tools Collection, applied for the job, and Mark Ghosh hired me the very same day. It was incredibly surreal to finally have someone care enough to hire me after almost a year of unemployment, especially for the blog that got me started on WordPress. It was like my WordPress career had come full circle.

Through those three years, I published 788 posts on Weblog Tools Collection as pretty much the sole author since I was hired, though there were a few guest posts from time to time. A few months into writing for Weblog Tools Collection, my confidence had been restored, and I dove after the job that I had always wanted. I applied for Automattic’s Happiness Engineer position and got the job.

I continued to write for Weblog Tools Collection alongside my work as a Happiness Engineer. It was too much fun to let go, but now is the time to say goodbye. Eight years ago, Weblog Tools Collection got me started on WordPress. Three years ago, I started writing for Weblog Tools Collection. Now, I am happily employed at Automattic and proud to say that I was with Weblog Tools Collection up to the day it closed.

Where to now? I’m glad you asked. Where to Find WordPress News was the last post published on Weblog Tools Collection before Mark’s farewell post. I’ll also be blogging about WordPress more frequently here, though not as frequently as I did on Weblog Tools Collection.

Mark, if you’re reading this, thanks again for everything! It has been one heck of a surreal and fun ride!

RWBY: Anime Beauty and the Beast?

The third trailer for RWBY is out, this time focussing on the character Black.

The rumor of RWBY being an anime-style treatment of popular fairy tales doesn’t seem to carry as much weight with Black as it did with Red, who really seemed like Red Riding Hood given the red hood and the fact that she was fighting wolves. Even White had a significant nod towards Snow White with the fixation on mirrors in the trailer’s lyrics. With Black, I’m really reaching with my assumption that Black is Belle from Beauty and the Beast. While we don’t know Black’s name for sure, scattered mentions refer to her as Blake Belladonna, which certainly seems to come close to Belle. She also refers to her companion as Adam, which is the name of the Beast in Disney’s adaptation.

Though the fairy tale connection has been declining rapidly since Red’s trailer, I’m still looking forward to this.

Coworking with Robots

The future is here, or rather the future is at the new almost-finished Automattic headquarters in San Francisco.

In case you don’t know, Automatticians are employed all throughout the world, most work from home, and only a comparatively small amount work from San Francisco (though you could say that San Francisco is the city with the highest concentration of Automatticians). Thanks to the magic of Double Robotics, any Automattician can now feel like they’re part of the crowd at the San Francisco headquarters by taking control of an iPad on wheels.

If your curiosity has been rightfully engaged, gaze in wonder as Theme Wrangler Konstantin Obenland tours the new headquarters, and check out the tweet below from Lounge Manager Warren Kleban for a quick look at the robot in action.