About

Open Parenthesis is a blog about free and open source software, internet strategy, and building compelling experiences for the web and mobile, written by John Eckman (me).

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I’m the CEO of 10up, a digital agency focused on designing and building compelling, content-centric experiences on open source platforms, especially WordPress.

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Why is this blog called Open Parenthesis?

It’s meant to bring together two key concepts that have dominated my professional career – writing and coding:

1. Parentheses in writing are often used to insert explanatory text not directly related to the main point (see the wikipedia entry). (I did a PhD in literature & culture, and spent years teaching in a university English environment).

2. Parentheses in software development are used for a variety of reasons in different languages, but often they’re used to pass parameters to functions (or to indicate the parameters a function receives). (I’ve spent the last decade working in software development, specifically on the web).

The site’s called “Open Parenthesis” (the singular of parentheses) because the idea is that the conversation is open ended.

It starts an explanatory insertion (like this one), but it can’t yet be closed.

It resembles a function taking parameters, but we can’t yet close the parentheses because we don’t know yet what the possibilities are.

Finally, there’s also the notion of “Open” because I’m focused on open source software, as well as open-ness and transparency of conversation in general.

Thanks for reading – please feel free to leave comments or email me at eckman.john AT gmail.com