Feedback required – yea, that means you!

Author WordPress for DummiesAs you can probably guess – I’ve been spending large portions of my days writing like a fiend and working to meet the deadlines for the WordPress for Dummies book. I shall have 25% of the book completed in about another two weeks – of course, that is before my editors get their hands on it and whip out their red pens and send it back to me… but, at least, until then – I will have the satisfaction of at least feeling like it’s done and accomplished. I’ll just put the pending red pen edits out of my mind and pretend it’s all done and dusted… for now.

The book covers the various different aspects of WordPress – – as well as the different flavors. For instance, the hosted solution provided by the fine folks at WordPress.com, the self-installed version that you install on your own web hosting account, as well as the Multi-User solution used by many blog networks to run multiple blogs on one domain. Each flavor has a specific purpose and each varies, one from the other, in terms of management and maintenance.

So, as you can imagine – my brain is on WordPress overload as I attempt to sort through all of the information and how best to present it. My passion for WordPress is well known, for those who know me. For those who don’t – – I’ll just mention that I promote the use of WordPress to anyone who asks… and even those who don’t ask. It’s a phenomenal piece of software that has made my life easier – – as well as the lives of my clients.

What I’d like to hear from YOU is this…..(non-WordPress users can skip this, of course)… what are your favorite features about WordPress? Do you have a favorite plugin or two that you just could not live without? If you blog with WordPress – why do you like it and is there anything in particular that lights your fire?

If you’re reading this and you are a WordPress user – – feedback is required.

You will not be able to leave this blog until you’ve left your comments about it. I have guard dogs at the doors who will sniff out non-participants! Ha! Ok, well… not really – – but I’d really super appreciate your feedback and comments if you have something WordPress-y to share today!

OH! And be sure to leave me your email address (which will not be published publicly, by the way – only I get to view email addresses left here) and your blog address in case I feel the need to contact you and have you elaborate on your comments.

Much thanks in advance!

21 thoughts on “Feedback required – yea, that means you!”

  1. Well…I’d tell you I can’t live without my plugins…but 1) I don’t use WP anymore, 2) I never put them back online for download since the domain switch, and 3) I don’t think you could use them anyway since I have *gasp* profanity in my url. πŸ˜‰

  2. Yes, we know your site has been dutifully added to all the SafeSurfer type sites known to man to ban your shitty URL from young eyes – you bad girl! :@)

    Since your switch to EE – you are a missed contributing memeber to WP users, for sure… and now you’re moving to O.C.? You’re *almost* a lost cause – – but i still love ya anyways 😑

  3. Well, here are my thoughts on WordPress, which probably aren’t going to be much help. I like it because it’s simple and doesn’t require much thought, which is good because I’m not a thinking kind of guy. I write what I want, upload goofball graphics if I have them for that post, arrange it all so it looks the way I want it to, and press publish. I found it an amazing relief after the situation I found myself in last September when I was booted off Yahoo. I guess all that was a blessing in disguise to get me off Yahoo and Sitebuilder and onto Blogs-About and using WordPress. I haven’t been a deep WP user for long enough to give you any more feedback than that. But I would be happy to help in any way I can. πŸ™‚

  4. What I 😑 about WordPress. (Sit Ubu Sit. Good dog.)

    I like the amount of information you can obtain in the dashboard. I like knowing the latest news, I like that it feeds in links as part of the admin panel. I like how straightforward each “accessory” is. Manage categories – right at the top you can opt to add a new one. Also at the bottom, in case you were scrolling and feel a little mouse-laze. I like that when you’re writing a post, the most frequently used basic tools are open, and the others are collapsed. I like that you can save and continue editing, and can preview what it looks like to add formatting or spellcheck. I like the delayed post function. I like all the options you have. I like that I’m in control of every aspect of how my blog is going to be published, through the stylesheet, plugins and insane amount of template tags options. There’s so much to like, it would probably be easier to list the things I think could be improved. That list would be much smaller (but then again, you also already know what that is.)

    :d

    Do I get a gold star? I don’t have any blinkies. /:)

  5. Leanne, that’s one of the things I don’t like about WP: The RSS feeds in the control panel. πŸ˜› I don’t know how it is now, but back when I was using it, WP’s server were always so damn slow, that it slowed down my login. I eventually had to edit the index.php to remove all those feeds (this is from the days of 1.5 and early 2.0/MU). x(

    But, I gotta agree with you on the preview-post-in-iframe thing. That’s pretty damn cool. πŸ™‚

  6. I love the ease of WordPress and my favorite plug in is the smilies (lol, is that a plug in?)(*)

    The one thing I am trying to learn more about is the CSS – what is necessary and what is not.

  7. Hmmm… there’s so much to like about WP! I like the ability to publish a post in advance and have it appear on a particular date/time. I like the integration with other popular tools like Flickr. I like the fact I can use Windows Live Writer to edit/publish posts. I love the anti-spam tools like Akismet.

    On a more advanced note, I like the fact that with a little PHP knowledge you can build a website on top of WP, using WP as your content management tool behind the scenes. We’ve done that here.

  8. Leanne: The feeds in the Dashbaord are really helpful, for sure – especially in finding new WP features, plugins, themes and other bells and whistles. It’s good stuff. The administration panel is very simple and straight forward – it doesn’t leave a whole lot of questions as to where a user needs to go to accomplish certain things. And yes, you get a gold start for no blinkies. Yay you! (*)

    Danalyn: Can’t say that I’ve ever experienced a problem with the dashboard loading slow upon login. Maaayyybeee once or twice in the last 3-4 years, but nothing I could hang my hat on. Once thing I would recommend as an option in newer releases of WordPress is to give the user full control over those feeds. To either disable them completely – – or an easy interface so the user can determine which feeds they really want in there. Maybe I don’t want to read Matt’s feed in the Dashboard and would rather replace it with yours from your shitty blog? :)>- That would be a cool option!

  9. Dave: You did hit the nail on the head about one of the major selling points about WordPress when you said “I like it because itÒ€ℒs simple and doesnÒ€ℒt require much thought..”

    I think that WordPress definitley has enough meat to it to keep even the most experienced programmer/developer happy and busy – – yet, at the same time it is easy and friendly enough to allow non-techy types to use it with ease, as well.

    On a personal note to you… Happy Valley is still sitting on my desk.. not two feet from where I am right now. But I am sorry to say I have not gotten the chance to read it yet πŸ™ I really wanted to have had it read by now – – but I will, the very first chance I get. I’m a slacker, please forgive me πŸ˜€

  10. Vicki: Smilies are great! <:-p They add much fun to comments and posts and can sometimes really get the tone of a comment across in a way that just straight typing fails.. You can tell, with the use of a smiley, if I'm kidding around, poking fun, being sarcastic or pissed off... gotta love them smilies! :-b CSS is a great thing to learn and understand.. but again, in order to USE WordPress - - CSS knowledge is not necessary, just a nice thing to know πŸ™‚

  11. Michael: Nice job with the popcorn site! I have created a few websites using WP that don’t necessarily LOOK like blog sites at all.. heck, some of them don’t even have a blog on them, period – – but using WP as the content management system to control and manage the content was the perfect solution for these sites. My entire site at E.Webscapes and at Blogs About are powered 100% by one installation of WP – – I really enjoy the extensibility of the platform.

    Thanks! :d

  12. Hey you know there is a feed plugin that lets you choose the feeds you want to display in your dashboard. :d

    er…don’t ask me for the link though. :-\

  13. I know of the plugin – have never used it. Would be much nicer if the WP folks would build it directly into the Dashboard as an option for all users and make it easy for a brand new users to have control over those feed display options, tho. It’s on my WP wishlist πŸ™‚

  14. It would be really cool if all plugin developers (and places where plugins are made available) tracked the # of downloads and that info was kept on a master list, so that some very important progammers could incorporate those into the base file structure. Quicktags, for example – why on earth do we need a plugin for that? Why isn’t that built in? Comment subscription – nested comments, avatars, too. The most popular stuff, after a while, should be integrated, I think.

  15. Integrating some of the ‘popular stuff’ will only serve to bloat the code – – much of the draw to WP is that the developers have minimized code bloat and have maximized outside developers ability and opportunities to extend the platform by developing fun and functional addons/plugins.

    What is cool and popular to one group of folks may totally turn another group off (for example, my feelings on the snap preview plugin.. can’t stand it… even though it is popular with a lot of folks and I see it everywhere. b-( )

    My feeling on the dashboard issue is this: if they are going to provide a dashboard that pulls in feeds by default, then users should have an easy interface to change the default. WP shouldn’t assume every user wants to read the feeds that are given to them, or even want the feeds there at all, for that matter.

  16. Moving to WP was a dream from the old version of Movable Type I was using. I now can quickly and fairly easily change themes and add ads to my weblogs. The plugin architecture adds easy functionality. (If only the plugin designers better documented their creations.)

    The best thing of WP is the community of innovation. The core software is getting better and people come up with new plugin ideas all the time.

    One grip I have is the field to enter trackbacks should be longer than one line. It’s annoying having to use the arrow keys to scroll through them.

    Notice that isn’t a big complaint which says something about WP.

  17. Sean – good to hear from you. Are ya keeping warm these days?? Awfully cold in our parts!

    I made the switch from MT to WP back in 2003 and never looked back, it was a slick transfer back then – – now 4 years later, its even better.

    Your WP gripe is a valid one – you know they have a new forum at WP called “Ideas” where users can submit their ideas and “Wish List” for the next release of WP 2.2? You can find it here – – you should put your suggestion in there.. its such a small thing and a pretty easy UI design change, it wouldn’t take much to fulfill that request, I shouldn’t think πŸ™‚ Perfect for sites that do multiple trackbacks within their posts.

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