Speaker Spotlight: Lucas Cherkewski

Lucas is a designer and developer who has worked professionally with WordPress and other platforms for six years, for a variety of clients. In addition to client work, he follows and contributes to open source civic design efforts, working to improve the relationship between citizens and their governments. Passionate about reading up on new design principles, and about supporting reuse and easy maintenance, he’s been working with pattern libraries and the design and development methodology they suggest for two years.

Lucas will be giving a talk titled “Tiny Little Pieces: Designing and developing with pattern libraries“.

What is your favorite improvement to WordPress this past year?

Though it’s not directly related to the core project, I applauded WordPress.com (and other hosting providers) when they announced support for automatically applying Let’s Encrypt SSL certificates to custom domains. HTTPS should be a non-negotiable at this stage, and seeing big moves towards making it easily accessible is very exciting.

Why did you decide to speak at WordCamp Montreal?

Great city, great people, and WordPress—is there any question?

What is your talk going to be about?

We’re going to dive into designing and developing with pattern libraries. Instead of designing in terms of pages, we’ll zoom in on the components that make up those pages. Designing with patterns creates more modular and extensible designs, and provides exciting opportunities for designers and developers alike.

What is the one thing you want people to walk away with from your talk?

Building designs that are modular and easy to extend helps everyone involved: designers, developers, clients, and, most importantly, the people using our websites.

Who in the WordPress community inspires you? Who do you follow?

Though there are so many, there’s a few I’d like to call out. Chris Van Patten, for being a great boss and for questioning a lot of the common wisdom about how we use WordPress to build websites. Josh Pollock and Roy Sivan, for their awesome work with the REST API. Chris Wiegman and Carl Alexander, for their writing and guidance which has improved both my development and how I work with servers. Michal Bluma for his astounding range of front-end talent, and for being a great developer to work alongside. Rachel Carden for conceiving and working so hard towards WPCampus, an important widening of the scope of WordPress conferences. Matt Cromwell and the team at WordImpress/Give for the important, and impressive, plugins that they’ve created. Meagan Hanes for her incessantly positive attitude about the past, present, and future of WordPress—she inspires me to stick with it.

What new feature would you like to see in the future?

Though not necessarily a new feature, I’d love to see a mindset shift towards even more modular, pluggable code and designs. Building times and plugins this way makes it easier for anyone to build websites using our work; developers and designers of third-party themes or plugins should always keep in mind how someone using their work might want to extend or change it in the future.