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Thread: Wordpress rant

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    Wordpress rant

    Ok I didn't know where to post this and the wordpress forums didn't do any good.

    Somebody (non-computer-savvy) asked me for a simple website that they could update themselves. So I thought I'd give Wordpress a go. I've heard it's as simple+easy as it gets, and it would be good for me to have some knowledge around it as well.

    So I downloaded and installed the latest 2.8.x build and started studying and building the website. I used the Pages panel for a static website (not a blog). I figured most stuff out but... for the most part, it has been a frustrating experience.

    1) The visual editor is a joke. I could not enter empty lines between paragraphs most of the time. And that's just one example. Very unpredictable.

    2) I had to use the HTML editor to do some BASIC stuff, like separate paragraphs with <p> tags. They weren't by default yet they displayed as if they were (with spaces between them). Another joke... my HTML code was either neglected or changed arbitrarily when I made the changes.

    (and I wanted to be able to do all the work through the Visual editor, because the client would only use that anyway. If I -a web developer- can't make sense of it, what should I expect from the client?)

    3) I had to upload all the images through the built-in media manager. If I uploaded images through ftp, I couldn't see them from the control panel. Are you serious?

    4) The image paths were all hardlinked to http://localhost/blah.. blah I had HUGE fun when I uploaded the website on the server and most of the images (except those in the theme) did not show up.

    5) I have to go database scouting to change the 'localhost' to the server address, every time I upload/update the site to the server. Why can they not put that info in a .php file to save us this unnecessary trouble?

    Seriously now... is that what you would expect from a platform that is so popular and has been around for so long?

    rant over...

    thanks for listening

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    SitePoint Addict EJ's Avatar
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    Hmm... I will agree with you on the point about uploading images via FTP not being much of a success, but I wouldn't really agree with your other points. I don't use it as much now as I used to, but I don't have many problems at all with it.

    Never let one bad experience stop you from trying it again later. Now you've had some experience with it you should have more success next time.
    “There's a way to do it better - find it.”
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    doing my best to help c2uk's Avatar
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    1) The visual editor is a joke. I could not enter empty lines between paragraphs most of the time. And that's just one example. Very unpredictable.
    why would you want to have an empty line between paragraphs? if you want more space between paragraphs just increase the margins.

    2) I had to use the HTML editor to do some BASIC stuff, like separate paragraphs with <p> tags. They weren't by default yet they displayed as if they were (with spaces between them). Another joke... my HTML code was either neglected or changed arbitrarily when I made the changes.
    even so you don't see the <p> tag in the html editor, ultimately it gets parsed as <p> - i.e. you don't have to add those html tags in the html editor to create proper paragraphs. So nothing really wrong here either.
    Dan G
    Marketing Strategist & Consultant

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    Thank you

    Quote Originally Posted by c2uk View Post
    why would you want to have an empty line between paragraphs? if you want more space between paragraphs just increase the margins.
    Good point. Yet sometimes you do need some extra space on certain occasions, you should be able to do that simply. Throwing CSS to this problem is overkill... it should be a trivial thing to achieve. I hit enter in the visual editor, I see an empty line, I expect it to stay there... *shrug*

    Quote Originally Posted by c2uk View Post
    even so you don't see the <p> tag in the html editor, ultimately it gets parsed as <p> - i.e. you don't have to add those html tags in the html editor to create proper paragraphs. So nothing really wrong here either.
    I just realized this by looking the page source that gets delivered to the browser. Seems like the wordpress HTML editor is not a true HTML editor at all... I don't know what it is. Great.

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    doing my best to help c2uk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvanGR View Post
    Yet sometimes you do need some extra space on certain occasions, you should be able to do that simply. Throwing CSS to this problem is overkill... it should be a trivial thing to achieve. I hit enter in the visual editor, I see an empty line, I expect it to stay there... *shrug*
    Trying to solve this by just throwing a bunch of semantically incorrect linebreaks at the problem isn't much better, actually it's worse.
    Dan G
    Marketing Strategist & Consultant

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    Thanks. I do get what you're saying, and I do agree with you on a strict standards/development perspective. To the client, however, the Visual editor is "something similar to their word processor". If the client wants an extra blank line here, but not there, and not on all text paragraphs, because that's how they do it in Word and it works for them... training the client to think like a web developer (when they barely know what a browser is) is not an easy (nor enjoyable) task. The price to pay (semantically incorrect linebreaks)... I'd take that any day.

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    doing my best to help c2uk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvanGR View Post
    Thanks. I do get what you're saying, and I do agree with you on a strict standards/development perspective. To the client, however, the Visual editor is "something similar to their word processor". If the client wants an extra blank line here, but not there, and not on all text paragraphs, because that's how they do it in Word and it works for them... training the client to think like a web developer (when they barely know what a browser is) is not an easy (nor enjoyable) task. The price to pay (semantically incorrect linebreaks)... I'd take that any day.
    you know what, I was really pleased when Word finally made proper paragraphs on enter and not just simple line breaks.
    Dan G
    Marketing Strategist & Consultant

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    SitePoint Wizard ryanhellyer's Avatar
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    The reason for the <p> tag issues is because WordPress doesn't actually use HTML per se, it uses markdown language. I think this is partly due to legacy support since the older versions used it as a way to make the posts easier to write for novice HTML coders, but with advent of the visual editor it is now more of a hindrance than a help. It's still handy for the comments section though.

    Quote Originally Posted by EvanGR View Post
    3) I had to upload all the images through the built-in media manager. If I uploaded images through ftp, I couldn't see them from the control panel. Are you serious?
    That would get very messy. Each image in WordPress is processed into thumbnails, medium, large and the original size. By FTP'ing the files, you would then need to get WordPress to find them all then process them. It gets around this hassle by just getting you to upload them via the web interface. And since you can upload as many as you want in one hit it generally isn't considered to be a problem.

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    SitePoint Wizard ryanhellyer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EvanGR View Post
    5) I have to go database scouting to change the 'localhost' to the server address, every time I upload/update the site to the server. Why can they not put that info in a .php file to save us this unnecessary trouble?
    Yes, that is a bit of a flaw. It only takes a jiffy to convert them all with a simple MySQL query though so it's not the end of the world. There are plans underway to automate some of this stuff in the future by adding all links to things in the media manger with shortcodes instead of HTML. So the URL's would be calculated on each page load based on the URL for the upload folder - meaning that when you changed site URL's, the media URL's would get transferred accordingly.

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    The only thing that bothers me about wordpress is like you said, it won't let me put extra line breaks when I want to. Which really messes everything up when I have multiple photos and short text next to each photo
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