Goodbye Wordpress

Goodbye Wordpress

So about 13 years since I moved from a tiny little proto-blog app (the long departed "Project Steve Guttenberg", also my first contribution to PHP development, long before Github and pull requests) to an early version of Wordpress, I'm moving again

Because it's nearly the 20's again and it seems all development roads lead to something written in some sort of Javascript library, I've moved to Ghost.

It seemed like a good idea, I may find myself regretting it. Much like I said way back when I switched last time, we will see how it goes.

Things I will not miss:

  • Bloat. I have a recollection that Wordpress was meant to be light and responsive, moreso than it's grandad "Moveable Type". That's... kinda not entirely the case anymore, and with the number of PHP libraries etc etc needed for most functionality, it has become what it's sworn to destroy, but without the Perl (but with FPM unless you're a mod_php masochist
  • Complexity. On the server side, it's not too bad (Apache+mod_php is easy, nginx+php-fpm like I was prior to today a little more challenging) but getting something usable post-install takes days, and it's not fun due to a total lack of interface consistency.
  • Clutter. There's a million plugins for Wordpress as every code monkey and VC wannabe writes one for their given niche or Yet Another SEO Plugin or some bullshittery to make your site quicker/fancier/more appealing etc etc. Most of them are utter shit, and reimplement well worn paths, poorly. I worked out fairly quickly that I didn't need to be spammed daily by WordFence or that the site has been auto-updated to microversion  foo.  I've got minimal plugins here, but I've got Google AMP, Sitemaps and some SEO out of the box, which is really all I need. I don't even have comments on because let's be honest, 99% is spam (oh and goodbye ephemeral Akismet API keys...)
  • Awful editors. Gutenberg still sucks, and the old "Classic" editor reminds me of Microsoft Turd 2000. It's probably why I don't blog much, because the formatting gets fucked like a hooker on payday.

Things I will genuinely miss:

  • Themes. There's lots of them, some are good (quite often the standard, as-shipped Twenty<Foo> ones) along with the frameworks (Genesis, which powers VanDemears Friesians for example)
  • Widgets were handy; you've probably noticed the lack of them here. WP's embeddable widget/menu capability was kinda nice (pointing to  friends' websites or social media accounts that aren't ZuckBook or Twitler, sadly the only options here. Give me LinkedIn/Twitch/Github/etc buttons, Ghost dev!)

That being said:

If you're running a business, absolutely run Wordpress or Drupal or whatever toots your horn (just not fucking Joomla, that's not a CMS it's a honeypot with a user interface) especially if you're selling stuff (WooCommerce is quite OK not gonna lie). If you can't be arsed hosting or know someone that will do it for you, SquareSpace seems to work nicely (ask my brother - TurlockAndCo or Russell Fleming Photography)

If you're a developer or IT wonk who just wants something simple without the bloat this might work - or Gatsby or Jekyll or similar Markdown-and-GitOps geekery suits. Horses for courses.

Until I think of something else to spam here, enjoy.