Post-Move Thoughts on WordPress

So, obviously, I’ve been getting familiar with WordPress after moving from a hosted solution running ExpressionEngine. And, I have some thoughts and observations.

ExpressionEngine has greater flexibility, but it’s harder to use.  I think most people could run a blog on WordPress with little to no programming knowledge.  If you want to run EE, you’d better at least know HTML and CSS, and preferably know some PHP.    Also, you should know how to FTP and be able to set unix directory permissions.  Not to mention be able to familiarize yourself with the system of variables EE uses to assemble your pages for the browser.

Now, I can do all of those things, so ExpressionEngine worked for me.  Or, I should say I was able to get ExpressionEngine to do what I needed it to do.  I’m sure it’s a very powerful tool for people with more web design and admin experience than I have, but it’s more than what I need at this point.

But, there’s much more that I like about WP than it’s ease of use.  These are the things I’ve come to appreciate in the few days that I’ve been using WP:

  • First and foremost, it’s easy to use.  I know I said this already, but it bears repeating.
  • It automatically updates my Twitter feed when I submit a new blog post.  Now, I don’t have to remember to update Twitter, run the URL through Tinyurl, etc., just to make sure the people who are using RSS (Dave) know when I’ve updated.  (I’m sure there’s probably a plugin for EE that does this, but it’s built right into WP.)
  • I noticed that my posts have “Possibly related posts” automatically linked to at the bottom of posts.  Very cool.
  • Automatically generated iPhone compatible site.  This is the biggie, I really love this feature.  I’ve been thinking about, and actually playing with, a mobile version of the old site for some time.  The fact that WP automatically does this is a killer feature for me.  (And it’s way better than anything I would have come up with.)
  • Until I decide to pony up the dough for custom CSS, I can preview and switch themes on the fly.  (Redesigning and switching themes in EE is not so easy.)

There’s actually much more.  There are a lot of smaller things that fall into the whole “ease of use” thing, which I won’t break out here.  I just wanted to point out the things that really jumped out at me after using WP for a short period of time.

Again, I have nothing against ExpressionEngine, and it served me well for quite some time.  The driving force behind my moving to WordPress was not by any means to get away from EE, but a financial decision to stop paying for web hosting that I really didn’t need anymore.

Having said that, I really like WordPress.

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