Reflections on 2014

2014 was a tough year. The toughest year for me, yet. I’ve been debating for a few days whether or not to write a reflections post. I’ve just returned from my first gym session of 2015, and feel pretty positive, so I reckon what better time than the present to write this.

This year past brought several life challenges I’ve never had to endure, until now. These challenges are deeply personal and not entirely appropriate for this blog, so I won’t go into specifics. One interesting characteristic of a challenge is how it forces you to re-examine and re-evaluate other areas of your life. Large portions of 2014 were spent reflecting inwards, inspecting myself and my lifestyle and making small, yet highly impactful, changes to how I approach the world. One of these changes was to hack myself and get my fitness lifestyle under control. While this happened from late 2013, 2014 was the year where I kicked this into high gear… and it feels great! Continue reading

Achieve any goal (and track your progress) with Lift

"Lift" LogoLets face it, we all have those tasks in life that we with we did more often- “I should really blog more”, is one of mine (hence this blog post). Sometimes, we have surges of motivation in which we begin our good habit-forming tasks, only to forget about them a few moments later.

The big question is, why shouldn’t we be keeping good habits and achieving our desired goals? I can’t think of any reason other than human nature, really.

Enter “Lift”, a web and iOS app that encourages good habit forming, helps to track progress and adds encouragement via the sending and receiving of “props” from friends connected through Facebook and Twitter.

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Surf’s up- Woo goes surfing

Yesterday morning, some of the WooThemes crew went for a surf at Surfer’s Corner in Cape Town. For most of us, this was to be our first time on a surfboard (and was my first time a wetsuit, full stop). This certainly made for a memorable morning outing.

On Fridays, WooThemes works remotely. With Magnus down in Cape Town for a few days, we took the opportunity to go out and enjoy the beautiful Cape Town summer. And what beautiful weather it was.

We met up at Surfer’s Corner in Cape Town (a popular surfing spot in the Southern Suburbs) and rented some gear from one of the local surf shops. The beach was packed, there was plenty of activity in the water (and the shark spotter flag was black, which means there’s poor visibility, but we won’t focus on that :P).

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Good morning, 2012!

As I type this, it’s 6:16am on January 1st, 2012. For the last 30 minutes, I’ve been up with a cup of coffee and bowl of cereal, welcoming in the new year (this after having gone to sleep at around 12:30am as well). Despite the early hour, I’m ready to get 2012 started and get moving!

2011 was a year of much excitement and many developments for me. Travels, WordPress plugin releases and exciting developments at WooThemes, coupled with the inclusion of our new family member, Maddie (now almost 5 months old), made for a truly amazing year.

With 2011 now firmly in the past, I’d imagine the usual chain of thought is happening with you all as well… “what new years resolutions should I make?”, “should I make any new years resolutions at all?”, “can I actually keep any of them?”. These are three questions that have been on my mind on and off for the last day or so (clearly, new years resolutions don’t weigh down on me :P). I figured, lets cement a few down in a blog post as a starting point, and see if it’s possible to get them done sooner rather than later in the new year.

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A quick word on inspiration and driving output

What is inspiration? Where does it come from? How can it drive productive output? These are all valid questions.

At this moment, it’s a little misty outside my window. It’s early and I’m almost on my way to a nice hot cup of tea. This doesn’t seem related to the post at all, does it? It is. All of these factors are instrumental in driving productive output from within me. A relaxed environment with average, slightly overcast, weather conditions and the want for a soothing cup of tea. Continue reading

A quick word on inspiration

This afternoon, while thinking of what I could write about today, I got to thinking about the concept of inspiration. Where does it come from? How do we channel it? What is it, really?

I find inspiration to be an enigma. It can come from anything (a walk in the park, your favourite band, a smell in the air) and can be channeled into anything. For me, I’ve discovered that inspiration usually stems from things where I appreciate the quality of the end result; for example, a really slick looking design, really neat and streamlined code that serves an amazing function or a song that makes every vein in my body jump for joy.
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5+ Websites for daily inspiration and fun

Inspiration is a feeling that can arrive in an endless variety of packages…from neatly wrapped parcels to boxes bursting at the seams to explode. Being at a computer for a large part of the day, I find inspiration in many nooks and crannies online. There are a few websites that I visit regularly that I find to be great sources of knowledge and information, in addition to offline activities that spark inspiration. Below is a list of a few websites that create inspiration, as well as a bit of fun reading for after the inspiration boost has subsided. Continue reading

When no words arise…click (Sunset Mini Photo Essay)

While blogging, I have found that blogs that are updated frequently (frequency is relative, ofcourse) are visited and interacted with regularly. As not everyone has the gift of the gab (or the gift of the type?) words don’t always spring to mind to write a blog post.

As this blog discusses my interests, sometimes it’s good to kick back and “smell the roses”, as it were, and type less. Thus, I present, a mini photo essay inspired by this evening’s sunset and the beautiful country that we (South Africans) live in.
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Design Dosage – Daily Inspiration

“Inspiration! Get your inspiration here! Step right up! Step right up!”

Designers and developers alike are always searching the web for the latest trends in design and code. There are many websites offering tutorials, tips and commentary on the latest innovations in the web fabric. Design Dosage is a recent addition to that list.

A new-comer on the scene, Design Dosage offers a different category for each day of the week, covering a range of popular design and development search terms. A week at Design Dosage looks like this:

Designers are also able to submit their work to Design Dosage for feature in a particular category. Only the very best work is featured, keeping a high standard of work on the gallery.

This project is, in my opinion, a great display of what South Africans are up to on the web. The base theme used for the gallery is the free ‘Snapshot‘ theme, created by Woothemes, and the project itself was started and is maintained by a South African web designer. Keep up the inspiration guys! 🙂

For a daily dose of design inspiration, visit

What are your thoughts on Design Dosage? Got anything to say to the creator? Share in the comments below.

The first post

Here it is, at long last. “Lost In Mattyville” is live. 🙂 I have, over the last few months, been experimenting with several ideas for themes, content, an approach, etc…and here it is, version 1.0 of “Lost In Mattyville”.

On this blog, I intend to discuss trends in technology, design, the web, music, WordPress and whatever comes to mind, really. I also would like to share some writing and possibly a few tutorials on things I’ve picked up in either design, code, music or whichever direction this blog takes me in.

Before I move on, some credits and shoutouts I want to put out there.

– Icons used in this theme by Liam McKay of Function Web Design.
– Lifestream widget by Darren Hoyt and Matt Dawson at Category4. Originally created for the Agregado theme.
– Original flickr widget by WooThemes for the Typebased theme.
– Theme inspiration and reference from the BASE theme by FRESH01.

Thanks guys. 🙂

On a last note for this post, this blog is still under development. If you notice anything that could be better or that isn’t working well, please let me know. I hope you enjoy reading my writings. 🙂

Post image courtesy stock.xchng.