Sometimes, I just have to escape into codeland. It’s my happy place. In this case, it was a redesign (again!) of my own site using WordPress. It seems an odd thing for a developer to do, knowing this is my chance to impress you with killer graphics and bleeding-edge coding. Tell the truth, the effort doesn’t feel like time well spent anymore. The whole internet business has changed so much since I began 1993 that I might as well do as many of my clients have and go the free route.
Grabbing a download is cake. Installing it onto a server is a bit of a trick, however, as the screen capture above can attest! What I did was up the .zip via FTP and expand it right into the root of the server. After renaming the folder to the proper subdirectory and building the database, all that needed to be done was to edit the wp-config and install.
OK. I’m greatly oversimplifying, but the core matter is the same. Open Source software is often better than that built by developers and can be used for free forever. It is robust and feature-filled right out of the box. There are countless templates, add-ons and code snippets for the webhacks out there. Most of all, it puts the creative process into the hands of the owner rather than the developer.
That was the rallying cry of Web 2.0 that cut web maintenance budgets web-wide. We wanted to give content control to its creator, then were upset to realize that subscription payment and update fees were lost in the shuffle. I have been using the format for years on my culture blog, but it wasn’t fully embraced until the San Diego Eruv site, which was built in an afternoon and handed off to its corporate committee to maintain. Soon thereafter, it was used for my hosting site and for my community. Now, I have more WordPress installations out there than I can count.
I’ve grown to love WordPress. The menus are easy to create and change. The sidebar widgits are like old friends. Like I said, I’m in my happy place.