I want to blog, where do I start and why should I use WordPress?
Article by James DuPont
Okay, so you want to start your own blog. So where exactly do you start? Basically there are two options open to you:
1. You sign up with a free blogging service like WordPress.com.It’s free and it only takes a few minutes to sign up. Once that’s done you can blog away. The only problem with this is that you can’t have your own domain name – you can but it will cost you a year – so your domain name will look something like this: http://mygreatsite.WordPress.com (unless you pay,then you can have any domain name you like). So if you’re happy with that then get over to WordPress.com and get blogging.
2. You have a domain name and a hosted account, which supports MySQL, and PHP and you want total control over your blog. In this case then,there is no question but to use WordPress, it is simply the best.
What is WordPress?
“WordPress is a powerful personal publishing platform,and it comes with a great set of features designed to make your experience as a publisher on the Internet as easy, pleasant and appealing as possible.We are proud to offer you a freely distributed, standards-compliant, fast,light and free personal publishing platform, with sensible default settings and features,and an extremely customizable core.”
So what can WordPress do and why should you use it? Here are just a few reasons why you should use WordPress:
1. If you’re into programming, it’s licensed under the GPL so you can mess with the code and contribute to the development of WordPress.Also, it runs under the PHP and MySQL platform – both open source and popular so there’s no problem with stability and support.
2. You have complete control over WordPress as it is designed to be installed on a web server or shared hosting account. You can even install it on a desktop pc or intranet.
3. WordPress is easy to install and upgrade. It takes just 5minutes!
4. It’s easy for readers of your WordPress blog to keep track of any new posts as the RSS 1.0 (aka RDF), RSS 2.0 and ATOM specifications are fully supported.
5. The URLs for all the pages in your WordPress weblog can be made to conform to a standard with all the links being understandable to humans and search engines alike, which is essential for search engine optimization.
6. WordPress is PingBack and TrackBack ready, which is useful for connecting to other weblogs.
7. WordPress manages users by controlling their user-levels so you can control who can create and modify content.
8. Each WordPress user can create a personal profile and decide whether or not their profile is displayed.
9. WordPress uses templates to generate the pages dynamically.This means that you can control the presentation of content by editing the templates.
10. WordPress has its own template and file editor so that you can edit within your browser without having to download any files.
11. WordPress uses readily available themes, which you can use to style your blog. You’re welcome to edit these or create and share you own theme.
12. There are a great number of plugins (which extends the basic functionality of your blog) available to allow you to do just about anything you want with your WordPress blog. You can also create you own plugins.
13. WordPress gives you total control over your blog, right down to password protecting a post.
14. You can upload pictures or files and either link to them or have them display within your WordPress blog.
15. You can email your posts and have them appear in your WordPress blog.
16. WordPress allows you to keep in touch with your audience through the use of comments, trackbacks and pingbacks.
17. WordPress prevents spamming through allowing you to moderate any comments. WordPress can also notify you via email as soon as a comment appears.
18. WordPress allows you to manage links with ease via its Links manager.
In summary then, WordPress is easy to install and use with you in total control. WordPress themes enable you to quickly and easily change the look and style of your blog while WordPress plugins gives you the flexibility to do just about anything with your blog. Go get it, WordPress.
About the Author
James DuPont works for Independent Digital creating dynamic websites and will be happy to help you with your website and WordPress blog. James can be contacted via the Independent Digital contact form.