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welcome to the occupationwordpress

In July of 2001, I broke my Greymatter installation. Because I couldn’t find a way to import the broken installation’s entries into a new installation, and because this was pretty much the low point for Blogger‘s reliability and that was the only alternative, and because, finally, my experiments with php-based comments had worked out fairly well, I decided to create my own CMS.

Bemus!, as I named it, went through to versions before I thought I might release it to the public to provide others who didn’t want to use Blogger or Greymatter with a third choice (not counting Livejournal and such, because why would you?). But first I’d have to rebuild it from the start to make it usable for people other than me. As I was finishing the installation scripts, Movable Type came out and started getting heavy use. Its feature list overlapped Bemus’s pretty much exactly, so I saw no point in continuing user-friendlying Bemus. But I also saw no point in switching to something with the same features but whose code I couldn’t edit.

So, for the next four years, almost, I kept using and extending Bemus. Generally it worked pretty well–any time I created something strange I needed the database to treat specially, I could recode whatever was necessary. Want to convert it all to colored blocks? Easy enough. Morse code? Simple. But then, during my long slowdown and eventual hiatus–for which there were many, many reasons that aren’t worth talking about–I realized I didn’t like it much. Editing, which is something I’ve never been a fan of nor done over much, was nearly impossible in Bemus; I had to open up phpMyAdmin just to correct typos. And the text box I entered entries into was just that: a text box. I hadn’t gotten around to prettying it up (rather, I had, then accidentally deleted the stylesheet). These things matter over time.

I realized yesterday that, if I was going to start doing this thing again–and I want to now, very much–I was going to have to either fix up Bemus or switch to something else. Since fixing up Bemus has taken up more time in the past year than writing things to put in it, and since the only way I’ve be able to edit it is live on the server, in Emacs, through PuTTY, I reluctantly–even if it’s annoying, your own cms feels more personal, and there’s a certain prestige, a certain seriousness, in having made your writing tool yourself–decided to look at what other people had written while I’d been tinkering around.

And I found WordPress: PHP and MySQL-based, which means editable and customizable by me; GPL’d so that updates will never start costing money the way Movable Type has; and, most importantly, rich with features–all of Bemus’s but a few I never used anyway and plenty more.


Filed by shaun at July 6th, 2005 under blogging tools

I like how this ends with “So:”

and that’s it

Comment by Yossef — 7 Jul 2005 @ 5:56 pm