Finally I’m here on WordPress. I thought that I should write the first post here, on the travails of an irregular blogger. Last week when I decided that I wanted to finally exit out of tblog and move into a blogging site that allows me a little more features, little did I know that deciding on what I wanted and getting it in a particular site was difficult.
Before you’re wondering what I’m talking about, let me say that I have already been in the blogosphere for sometime, and have my previous posts at http://shikha.tblog.com.
Why did I exit out of tblog and why have I finally decided to unload my baggage at wordpress? In between these two sites, there was also another choice: blogspot. When I decided to shift to a better blogging site, I first chose blogspot, mainly cos I was more familar with it (courtesy some people’s blogs I used to read ;)) and I thought it would have everything I wanted. After spending a week exploring the blog features and customizing it to suit my tastes (which was difficult since I had to go back to refreshing my brains on css and html, and use them to tweak the template to my satisfaction), I realized that blogspot didn’t have two features that I really wanted on my blog site. Yikes. So I moved out, bag and baggage into wordpress. Been exploring the features from today morning, and so far things are good. Let me put up a few points to contrast tblog, blogspot and wordpress so that its easier for people like me out there, who aren’t sure what to use:
|Feature||HTML Editing in Posts||Categories||Tags||Bkmarks||HTML Links in comment||Images in Posts|
|Feature||Site Feed||Custom Template||Comment Moderation||Additional Pages||Site Statistics|
|Tblog.com||YES||MODERATELY FLEXIBLE (colors/images can be edited. Html can be added in predefined sections)||NO||NO||YES|
|Blogspot||YES||VERY FLEXIBLE (Html/Css editing permitted)||YES||NO||NO|
|WordPress||YES||NOT MUCH (have to pick from known templates)||YES||YES||YES|
There were some more points I wanted to list out, but I realized that fitting the table into my template is a headache considering the limited editing capability wordpress provides for each template. For some of the templates, you can edit the image on the top, but some allow editing of only the sidebar contents. What I found irritating was that I couldn’t edit the size of the post/sidebar, and had to stick to downsizing my table, so that the side bar wouldn’t end up on the bottom of the page.
Other things that I noticed: Both blogspot and wordpress allow multiple members on the blog. Tblog and wordpress have a similar interface for editing the post. All allow images within the posts. Flickr is well integrated into wordpress, so you can automatically add it in the sidebar without creating a flickr badge and adding as html. WordPress has a lot of cool features in fact, so if you put aside the lack of flexibility in customizing the template, its a very good site for blogging.
I should also add a disclaimer on this post 🙂 – This is by no means an exhaustive list, and have been compiled in a hurry, so in case I’ve put NO in places where it should be YES (because I may not have succeeded in finding the relevant feature) or vice-versa, do correct me. I’ve been at wordpress for about 2 and 1/2 hours now, and so far everything is fine (except my gripe about the template). So I guess this is home for now!!
Addendum: Courtesy Balaji, Akash, Umesh and UmeshUnni, I’ve discovered (or rather been told) something additional about WordPress: WordPress.com allows minimal template customization, however WordPress.org provides a free publishing platform for blogging that provides highly customizable templates for the blog, and another interesting add-ons. The only catch is that with the software, you need to have some place where you can host the blog (whereas WordPress.com provides hosting). So the gist is: if you want a simple yet powerful solution for blogging and cannot be worried about where it is hosted, then WordPress.com is ideal. Alternatively, if the blog customization is really one of your demands, then you’d better work out a place for hosting the blog, cos WordPress.org is the solution for you!
Yet another addendum: I have a couple of rants about WordPress.com. Although the experience with WordPress.com has been by far the best as compared to the other two blogging sites, it has a really crappy html-editing feature for posts and pages. Many times when I save the posts with tables, it automatically substitutes <br/> for <p>, or removes some of the line breaks within the columns, causing havoc with the formatting of my post.
Another irritating problem is with the comments. Sometimes, the comments don’t appear even after submitting them a couple of times, and sometimes, comments do appear, but the count of comments near the post doesn’t get updated. Its as if the comments were never added…