WordPress Works

Yesterday we moved the wine log over to www.zinmasters.com. In the process we switched from Moveable Type to WordPress.

I’m pleased to report that the whole thing went flawlessly. WordPress installed, MT exported, WP imported, Lisa fired up her spiffy new CSS editor and made the site look the way she thinks it should. We registered with the aggregators, and opened a bottle of wine, all by 4:30.

We brought up the new site both for egoboo (it’s much spiffier) and because we’re hoping to get some revenue from it. We have affiliate banners running and once the site’s merits come to be appreciated we want to get Google adwords as well.

The switch in weblogging apps was also multiply motivated: WordPress is GPLed, so there are no issues with what we do, nor will there be annoying changes. Buying a commercial site license for MT would be a minor expense. However, they’ve changed the rules already a couple times, and I fear they will again as Six Apart’s business model evolves. The GPL isn’t about to change.

Equally important, MT was crufted together over a period of years, and uses an ad hoc templating system. In contrast, WordPress is a second generation blogging system, and deliberately uses a CSS/PHP template system designed to generate valid XHTML. Note first that MT is moving in that direction, and secondly that Lisa hides her head under the covers at the sight of an MT template, but customized zinmasters herself with no help from me.

There is one other noteworthy difference between MT and WordPress. MT builds a static HTML site, and when you change something you have to rebuild the site. WordPress however builds pages on the fly from the MySQL database. For a low traffic (and narrow piped) site like ours, I think the extra flexibility (keyword and category searches that really work) is worth it. A site serving a million pages a day might see it differently.

By the way, I also looked at Syncato which is apparently a full fledged xml content management system, with a blogging front end. The enhancement possibilities are quite intriguing, but when the author (Kimbro Staken) says it’s too hard to set up, well, I’ve already got a six week todo list. In contrast, WP was MT (which already know) done right.

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