WordCamp Kyoto 2017 swag: Wapuu Keychain & sticker

WordCamp Kyoto 2017 Photos

WordCamp Kyoto 2017 took place on June 24-25. Around 350 people gathered at Kyoto University and enjoyed the time togeter as WordPress enthusiasts.

Day 0: Travel & Speakers Dinner

On the day before the event, two of my colleagues and I took a bullet train from Tokyo to Kyoto. We walked around Kiyomizudera Temple and Nineizaka, then went to the Speaker’s Dinner in Sijō.

Day 1: Session Day

Saturday was a session day. We arrived at the venue early to set up Automattic (Jetpack/WooCommerce) tables. All went by fast – I gave a talk about WordPress.com (video/sildes), attended a session about translation, and mostly talked to people at the sponsorship table.

The organizing team did a great job excecuting the event, closely focusing around session while keeping a relatively simple overall setup. They had beautiful and very original swag too!

I received some more Wapuu stickers and postcards from Tachibana-san, who went to WordCamp Europe in Paris.

At the after party, I talked some more people… For someone who work alone for most of the days and use typed words as the main means of communication, it felt as if I was intensely training my vocal cord during these WordCamp days.

Day 2: Contributor Day

Then on Sunday, about 100 people participated in the Contributor Day. I helped as a mentor for the documentation and polyglots teams.

It was a very well-organized setup and each team got a lot of things done in a day. There were many first-time contributors — it looked like they had a good time while learning how to get involved in many aspects of the WordPress project.

Day 3: Coworking

On the final day, some of us met up at Tenrō-in Bookstore (天狼院書店) for a little bit of coworking. It’s a renovated old house with two floors of coworking/café space.


This trip made me realize it again that the WordPress community in the Kansai region (= Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, etc.) is very strong. With multiple local leaders that have experience in organizing WordCamps and meetups, the team is diverse and giving good infulence to each other.

I’m sure they will put together a great WordCamp next year – you should come and see it yourself, and get to know this part of Japan too!

A Day in Ueno Zoo & Children’s Library

It was a sunny Saturday yesterday and we went to the Zoo & the International Museum of Children’s Literature in the Ueno Park area.At the Zoo, Lisa and her friend Hayato enjoyed a monorail ride as well as watching elephants and monkeys.

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Ueno Park, full of lotus leaves

We had lunch at Park Side Cafe, then walked to The International Library of Children’s Literature. The reading room on the first floor had a section of transportation-related books, where both of the kids spent some time opening several books one after another.

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The International Library of Children’s Literature

After saying goodbye to Hayato and his parents, Lisa went on playing at a playground across the zoo. Then we walked by the Shinobazuno-ike pond and head home. She fell asleep on the way back – it was a fun day!

#上野公園 #紫陽花

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Kamakura, May 2017

We took a day trip to Kamakura, which is a town in Kanagawa prefecture 1-hour train ride away from Tokyo Station.

First, we arrived at Kamakura Station around 11:10 and had lunch before it gets crowded. ROOFTOPS near the station was a hit (though you need to be prepared to get really messy!).

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Avocado & grilled tomato burger at ROOFTOPS

Then, we strolled Komachi Dori Street to Tsurugaoka Hachimangu (鶴岡八幡宮) Shrine.

From there, we walked more to see the bamboo grove in Hokokuji Temple (報国寺). The quiet zen garden was a nice contrast to the vivid shrine. Some bamboo shoots and young stalks

We took a local bus and Enoden train to the Great Buddha, then walked by the Yuigahama beach.

Kamakura has so many places you can easily visit within a day. We picked some of the major spots to visit since it was my first time there (Keita’s second), but it felt like I only saw a small portion of this old town. We kept walking around until it’s time to go home.

It’s a great destination to take a short trip to while in Tokyo. So much closer than Kyoto but you still get to see & learn the historical parts of Japan.

Kamakura Travel Guide (japan-guide.com)

WordCamp Europe 2016 Slides & Photos

Last Friday, I presented a talk about the Japanese WordPress community at WordCamp Europe 2016 in Vienna.

The video will be published on WordPress.tv at some point. Meanwhile, here are some points for those who had missed it:

  • Japanese is the most widely used non-English WP locale (12.3% of non-English locales)
  • WordPress is by far the most popular CMS in Japan today (78.5% share – higher number compared to 59.5% for English sites)
  • Meetups are held almost every weekend somewhere in Japan. We make it easy to see events across Japan through the WordBench website and the event calendar. Many of the chapters create unique banners for each event.
  • The online community is also active, with many contributors on translation, documentation, support, bug fix & report, and Wapuu too!
  • Show others how to get involved, recognize their hard work, and help out.
  • Your own contribution can be multiplied if you help others to contribute. It’s necessary to grow the community for WordPress to succeed.

It was a pleasure to have had an opportunity to share what I’ve seen in the local community for the past 13 years. As I said in the talk, my goal is to help others contribute to WordPress so the “small steps” of more people can build up to form a long stride. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions!

Day 0 (WCEU Picnic) Photos

Francesca and I hosted a picnic at Burggarten near the venue on Thursday.

#wceupicnic #wceu #wceu2016

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Day 1 Photos

Day 2 Photos

The childcare support at WCEU this year was really great.

Thanks #wceu organizing team for arranging a visit to the children's museum. It was fun! 💕

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Photos: Contributor Day

Having discussion face-to-face was the best part of the Contributor Day.

WordPress Meetup Tokyo: November 2015

Last night, I co-organized the 24th WordPress Meetup Tokyo. This meetup group for English speakers hosts smaller and more intimate get-togethers compared to WordBench Tokyo, which is in Japanese.

Toru did a presentation on the upcoming WordPress version 4.4 with an emphasis on the responsive image feature, based on his talk at WordCamp Tokyo last month. I showed a couple quick demos on how WordPress post embed works and the new Twenty Sixteen theme.

WordPress 4.4 embed test post

A screenshot from my test site, displaying a WordPress post embed on the Twenty Sixteen theme.

Next speaker was Sarah Cada from the Philippines. I met her when I was at WordCamp Philippines 2012 and kept in touch through our mutual friend (now a coworker) Andrew. Sarah came in as a special guest to this meetup while she’s visiting Tokyo as a part of her first trip to Japan. She talked about her involvement in the Philippine Web Designers Organization, the state of local web communities, and painfully slow internet connection there 😛

Jeff Crawford shared his experience building a business site using a theme from Thrive Themes. Jeff had shown me his site Connect-Local with another choice of a theme at a previous meetup, but this time he said he’s really happy with the ease of customization.

He also mentioned other WYSIWYG customizable themes he had tried: OptimizePress and Beaver Builder.

Junko from Kagawa joined us, and Ichi from Meetup.com Japan was also there

At WordPress Meetup Tokyo with Sarah, Mayuko, Junko. なかなかない組み合わせ!

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The next meetup is not yet scheduled, but be sure to join the meetup group if you’re interested in getting a notification about it.

Photos: Automattic Table at PHP Conference Japan 2015

Last Saturday, I staffed the Automattic sponsor table with two of my coworkers at PHP Conference Japan. Thanks to the great team of organizers, this conference in Tokyo has been growing in size and popularity year after year.

Since I was around the sponsor area all day, I only saw that part of the event. I still got to listen to a few sessions that took place in the same hall, including the keynote by Rasmus Lerdorf.

If you missed our PHPCON table, I hope to see you at WordCamp Tokyo 2015 (October 31 – November 1)!

Tokyo Coffee Festival 2015

Tokyo Coffee Festival.

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This morning, we went to the Tokyo Coffee Festival 2015 at United Nations University.

Out of 10 coffee from different roasters/coffee shops I tried, I really liked:

(I tend to like balanced flavor with minimum acidity)

There were many roasters/shops from outside of Tokyo, and I enjoyed getting a taste of their unique coffee.