Thinking of dumping WordPress

October 14th, 2012 at 3:16 pm

After the last upgrade of WordPress, some minor aspects of my website are still broken. I don’t really have the energy any longer to fight WP, tinker with its godawful PHP innards, and fix those problems after each major update.

In other words, I’m nearing a conclusion to dump WP altogether. Still don’t know what I’ll do instead, but maybe rolling my own is the best solution in such a case. It will give me ultimate control, as well as a fun project to hack on. To avert the danger that this will be one of those eternal projects that will be finished only after the Internet is replaced with something else, I will continue blogging using the existing platform in the meantime. If you run into some glitch with the website, please let me know.

P.S. recommendations for a good hosting / platform to run Python 3 web apps would be appreciated.

Related posts:

  1. Migrating to WordPress
  2. Book review: “Thinking strategically” by A. Dixit and B. Nalebuff
  3. Upgrading to WordPress 2.2
  4. Upgrading WordPress

16 Responses to “Thinking of dumping WordPress”

  1. MoritzNo Gravatar Says:

    Have you considered a static blog compiler?
    There are tons of those, even written in Python.

    https://github.com/EnigmaCurry/blogofile/ or https://github.com/ametaireau/pelican or https://github.com/posativ/acrylamid

    You have the full power of Python for compilation, but the websites are plain HTML and therefore super fast.

  2. elibenNo Gravatar Says:

    Moritz,

    Yes static vs. dynamic is a big point to consider. Static pages have their charms, but some problems as well. Dynamic content *is* occasionally useful, like for comments, plugins, and so on.

  3. LeibovichNo Gravatar Says:

    1. GAE worked for some people I know.
    2. It is not too hard to bolt on comments on static blog. The easiest path is disqus-like service, either hosted on your server or outsourced. https://github.com/mpalmer/jekyll-static-comments#readme
    3. There’s a dedicated pelican host. Never used it, so I can’t testify its quality, but integrating with dropbox is a nice idea. http://calepin.co/

  4. MoritzNo Gravatar Says:

    The generic solution for comments is to use Disqus, which has some nice features and is easy to embed, but of course, it’s an external service, which gives some people headaches.

  5. anonymousNo Gravatar Says:

    You can have a static site and comments by using Disqus

  6. Michael MolNo Gravatar Says:

    I’m very fond of prgmr.com. It’s a bare-bones setup; they give you a VM image and ssh access to the console, and that’s it. But I like it, and it’s what I run Rosetta Code on.

  7. elibenNo Gravatar Says:

    Thanks all for the good suggestions.

    Thinking out loud, one problem that I will likely have with all ready-cooked solutions is the special needs of my blog. Most importantly, I would like to keep all history intact. That is, all permalinks of previous articles need to keep functioning correctly (my blog has too many internal and external links to allow this to change).

    Moreover, while the next solution will surely be something like reST-based, the current blog content is actually HTML (which I autogenerate separately before posting the more complex articles). So this will have to have a special provision as well.

  8. DhilipSivaNo Gravatar Says:

    Welcome to the club. I had this same issues with WP. Now I decided to write something on my own.

  9. ripper234No Gravatar Says:

    Not Yet Another Blogging Engine :(

  10. elibenNo Gravatar Says:

    Ron,

    Actually, I have to admit to selfishly not planning any “engine” per se. Just a home-cooked solution for my specific needs. You’re right, there’re too many “engines” out there even now.

  11. LeibovichNo Gravatar Says:

    I don’t see why you can’t use something like Jekyll for new content, and write minimal glue code to keep all the old links intact. Actually I would’ve made a static dump of the blog (eg, by a web crawler a la HTTrack), dump it at /archive. Then I’d use jekyll for the new blog. I’ll have an .htaccess rule to search requests in /archive/ if they are not found in Jekyll’s output.

    Markdown (and thus Jekyll, supports inline HTML BTW, so that’s not a problem.

  12. elibenNo Gravatar Says:

    Leibovich,

    Easier said than done :-) That is just one of the backward compatibilities I’ll need to retain, and the solution is not clean if the blogging framework knows nothing about it. I.e. involving .htaccess is not exactly a nice solution. And there are others. But the main point being this: I’ve been fighting WordPress for the last N years because it’s a general framework and I need a specific solution. Since I only have one personal website, and since it’s an important asset for me, I’m not sure I want to spend the next N years fighting with another framework, be it Jekyll, Pelican or something else.

  13. Giuseppe CarusoNo Gravatar Says:

    I was going to suggest Pelican as well, but I do understand your thoughts.
    I believe, then, you should write it in Django.

    1. It has the admin app integrated to make your own dashboard and save (precious) time
    2. It would solve you the problem of old URLs by using the urls.py RegEx configuration
    3. It would adapt to your current URLs schema for the same above mentioned reason
    4. It could even introspect your WP DB to create your models almost automatically

    Finally, I didn’t investigate, but I am sure there will be some kind of “WP to Django” app out there.
    A quick google to “wordpress to django” seems returning some useful link indeed.

  14. StevenNo Gravatar Says:

    Try octopress (http://octopress.org). If you go to the site, you will see a default install. Its built on jekyll but comes with some defaults set up for blogging. You can update the blog via rsync or use a git repository.

    Its designed for coders, with baked in (really awesome) code display/prettifying and the whole update your blog using git.

    Free hosting on github pages or heroku

    You can focus on design and writing. No code (other than your template choice and scss/css) needed unless you want to add your own special sauce.

    Built-in social for a bunch of stuff, plus disqus for comments

    Nice looking default responsive layout

    You get the design power of a cms without the responsibility

    Yo site will be faaast!

    There are some other plugins for additional features, or, build your own

    Last but not least Jekyll supports migrations from wordpress! (Almost) Everything!!
    https://github.com/mojombo/jekyll/wiki/blog-migrations

    The docs are great for both Jekyll and Octopress, and I would highly recommend you check it out. I’ve never used markdown previously, and I am beginning to really enjoy the process of just writing.

    Just try it, you might like it. It will only take you 5-10 minutes to set up and it looks great out of the box.

  15. Nathan FNo Gravatar Says:

    I’ve also been contemplating dropping WordPress. I’ve been looking into building a custom solution with the Yii Framework. Maybe you should look into Yii as well.

  16. PanosNo Gravatar Says:

    You could try Nikola. It is a static website generator in pure python and it has a wordpress importer.
    http://lateral.netmanagers.com.ar/weblog/posts/why-use-something-else.html
    http://lateral.netmanagers.com.ar/weblog/posts/nikola-wordpress-importer-improvements.html

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