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Harold Mansfield
08-06-2012, 02:46 PM
I have definitely seen a pattern over the last 3 years, that people keep wanting to build the same things over and over again, and for the most part, I have a hard time faking enthusiasm to build them.

1. Paid Directories. I don't understand where these people have been for the last 10 years, but paid business directories are really old, tired ideas that never work like the person thinks they will. Outside of the Yellow Pages and local phone companies who spend money to promote their online business directories, I just don't see businesses lining up to pay to be listed on directories that aren't linked to a larger media company.

I have however, built local directories for smaller communities that don't have the larger resources, and those have seemed to work out well. And business directories that are a part of an overall community such as Fashion or Cars. But at this point in the game, building a niche directory alone, in a large market has been done to death. And I wouldn't use WordPress do to it anyway. I use a designated directory script.

2. Photo/Video sharing. I just don't see how you can spend $2k to do what You Tube, Flickr, and Pinterest have spent millions to do and expect to make any kind of dent in the market and make any money. I could be wrong, but I just don't see it. And I can't recreate those sites on that kind of budget.

3. A Community like Facebook. I'm sorry. I turn this down on GP. There is no way to ever satisfy anyone who thinks that they can rebuild a Facebook with one WordPress guy, shared hosting, and a budget equal to a few of my old bar tabs.

4. Free Blogging Community. If it's for a specific community of people, like say inventors. Then I'm all for it. But if you are trying to use WordPress, just to offer what WordPress.com already offers...I feel I need to tell you what you are up against and what it really takes to do that and run it.


Most people tell me to shut up and take the money, but it's not that easy. I can't take a job that I know the client is not not going to be happy with and is not taking everything into consideration. That's not worth the money, because when reality hits them, and they see that they are underfunded, and don't have the resources to do what they envision in their heads when they are dreaming at night about how easy it is to get rich online, they are going to blame it on you.

I have been successful at times, in getting people to refocus their idea on current technologies to improve on something or direct them towards a specific niche...basically reworking the entire project to something that may actually work. But I've lost more of those, than those that I could persuade. And when I checked on them weeks or months later to see how they are coming along, they either have some monstrosity built, or are hosting an online ghost town.

But is that my job? I'm definitely better at clients who are building something online for thier business, than I am cleints who are trying to build something online as a business and don't know anything at all about anything online.

Should I shut up and just build what people want, even though I know they are going down the wrong path and wasting money?
Is it really any of my business?

If you build Widgets 5.0. And the entire world is using Widgets 5.0. Could you take money from someone that want's you to build them Widgets 2.0, even though you know no one is using that version anymore?

KristineS
08-06-2012, 05:07 PM
That's a tough one Harold. On one hand, part of me says "on their own head be it". I see people proposing businesses all the time and they haven't even done the barest hint of research about whether or not their idea will work, or even tried to understand what they need to do to succeed. I used to try to help those people, but I'm getting further and further away from that mindset. If you want to succeed you have to be self motivated, and if you can't even do the basic research, then you're most likely not going to succeed, but it's not my job to tell them that. People need to take responsibility for their own actions.

On the other hand, if you have the knowledge and expertise, and people are looking to you because of that knowledge and expertise, isn't it incumbent upon you to share it? If you know something is going to be an almost guaranteed failure, should you speak up?

I guess my feeling is generally that you should give them the information and what they choose to do with it is up to them. Let's face it, if they're not listening to you they probably won't listen to anyone else, and the money is going to be spent with someone. I'd just come up with some form of contract that spells out what you told them and that you're not responsible if the idea bombs spectacularly.

Harold Mansfield
08-07-2012, 11:06 AM
I guess my feeling is generally that you should give them the information and what they choose to do with it is up to them. Let's face it, if they're not listening to you they probably won't listen to anyone else, and the money is going to be spent with someone. I'd just come up with some form of contract that spells out what you told them and that you're not responsible if the idea bombs spectacularly.

I am careful not to take on jobs where the client wants to tie the performance of the site to the build. You'd be surprised how many people think that you are also going to insure that their site gets a lot of traffic, or launches with a high ranking. I do take responsibility for the on site SEO, usability and guiding them in the right direction to target their demographic. But that's where the build portion of the site ends.

tylerherman
09-02-2012, 02:23 AM
That is a tough one. When someone comes to you with money and wants you to build something you know is going to fail. You might get bad rep because of it but it is a paycheck. If it's a short gig i'll take it but if I have to get tied to the person, like they want me to manage their site I pass, just feel bad watching a sinking ship you built yourself.

nealrm
09-02-2012, 06:18 PM
I see a few ways of handling this.

Price yourself out of those markets. You won't be accepting money for an idea that will fail not are you having to reject their idea.
Develop templates for those product and sell them dirt cheep. Since they are likely to do the project with or without you, this way you can minimize their financial loose, they would learn something about business and you would make a little bit about money.
Develop a website or pamphlet about what would be required to succeed with these sites. List the competition and what they are offering. Spell out what needs to be overcome and that they will need something to make their site special. Have them review it and then talk to you about the website. At that point you have done your moral duty to inform of the risks. You can accept payment with a clear mind.

Gabe
10-16-2012, 11:43 AM
Harold, I think you're doing the right thing by only deciding to work with clients who you're a good fit for and have the right expectations. If the customer ends up unhappy, nobody wins. They may not understand it, but you're doing the right thing by saying no. Unfortunately, they'll just move on to the next person rather than adjusting their expectations. I'm not sure how your pricing works, but maybe just raise prices on those less desirable projects to make it worth your time and to price out the potentially problem customers. Usually the cheaper customers are the ones with unrealistic expectations and are the biggest headaches in terms of support.

cobase
10-16-2012, 12:08 PM
Having worked as an investor and with many entrepreneurs, I think you're doing right by simply passing. It is incredibly difficult to tell someone (in a way that registers) that their idea probably isn't going to work, or that they're building something that already exists. People can get so focused on their idea and on how successful they're going to be that they shut off all feedback and act in very irrational ways. I have also seen my fair share of "we'll build the next facebook for a few thousand dollars"; it's part of the learning process that those entrepreneurs are going through. It's probably best to give some polite feedback and decline the offer, which it sounds like you're doing today.

fayt
10-16-2012, 01:46 PM
I always stay away from wordpress and related sites.

billbenson
10-16-2012, 05:52 PM
I always stay away from wordpress and related sites.

Why would you stay away from the most popular cms unless you don't want to specialize in it?

fayt
10-17-2012, 09:39 AM
It's too limited, 9 out of 10 wordpress sites I come across all look the same, like a blog. I believe in professional looking websites like Ebay, Facebook, Linkedin, etc.
Generally "Wordpress" text is all over the website too, so people know it's a freebie.

I just always believed in hand coding from scratch and building a unique website.

Gabe
10-18-2012, 07:25 AM
9 out of 10 wordpress sites I come across all look the same, like a blog.

WorPress started out as blogging software and still primarily is at its core (i.e. the WP loop). Over the past few years it's become more and more like a CMS. But just like anything else, most people just use the same overused free/premium themes. You're right though, the vast majority of WordPress sites are very similar...but the vast majority (99.9%) of WordPress sites are faceless blogs because the bar for entry is so low now. Companies who use WordPress for their sites are a minority. But with a good designer you can make a WordPress website look like anything. The benefit of WP is the huge open source and premium community.

I may have agreed with you a few years ago about WordPress being subpar, but I think if you dig in to the new stuff that the top designers are putting out, you'd be impressed. I understand what you mean by building from scratch (I used to do it), but there are better and more efficient ways. When you use a CMS like WordPress you're doing your customers a favor. Now they have a framework they can use for years to come, can export their content and easily import it somewhere else, they can manage and update it themselves, etc. WordPress empowers lay users.

Whether you prefer a CMS like WordPress or coding from scratch is a matter of opinion, but you really can build unique sites with WordPress despite its blog-centric core. That said, other CMSs are better suited to certain purposes, but coding by hand is only a better answer in a small number of unique projects.

fayt
10-18-2012, 07:51 AM
I am glad to hear they have improved.

jamesray50
10-26-2012, 04:35 PM
It's too limited, 9 out of 10 wordpress sites I come across all look the same, like a blog. I believe in professional looking websites like Ebay, Facebook, Linkedin, etc.

I disagree that all wordpress sites look the same. Mine doesn't. It is professional looking. I get compliments on it. When I go to the websites for the same industry as me, most of them do look the same because they were created from just a few different templates from just a few companies. Very few of them are custom websites like mine. And I haven't had any limitations in what I want to do on my website.

Harold Mansfield
10-26-2012, 04:55 PM
It's too limited, 9 out of 10 wordpress sites I come across all look the same, like a blog. I believe in professional looking websites like Ebay, Facebook, Linkedin, etc.

That's a great way of thinking, but none of those sites are created by one web guy working from home on a few hundred or few thousand dollar budgets. They are multi million dollar websites with the support of a team of hundreds of people to run them EVERY DAY. No offense, but you aren't building those.


Generally "Wordpress" text is all over the website too, so people know it's a freebie.

I just always believed in hand coding from scratch and building a unique website.

If you learn more about it you will see that you can customize it to do and look however you want, just as you have always done, including white labeling all of the logos and references to WordPress for your own company for the benefit of your clients. All of my client WordPress dashboards have my chosen content, tools, widgets and company information, logos and links.

It's a CMS, not a prepackaged website builder. You do what you want with it. The more code you know the better.

Also, would you say websites like The New York Times, Huffington Post, General Motors, The Speaker Of The House, Ben and Jerry's, CNN, Reuter's, Forbes, UPS and VW look "limited" and "like a blog"? Those are built using WordPress.

Seems like you haven't learned much about WordPress in the last 5 years or so. You'll be suprised.

fayt
10-26-2012, 10:35 PM
Actually Wordpress is limited, I was at a meeting tonight with a professional speaker who is an expert on this stuff, it's called The Ivy Group and they are known all over the United States. She was able to tell everyone exactly why Wordpress shouldn't be used in dozens of ways. Yes it's quick and easy to do, something you can build without knowledge of code. But every single piece of pre-built software has limitations.

billbenson
10-26-2012, 10:56 PM
Actually Wordpress is limited, I was at a meeting tonight with a professional speaker who is an expert on this stuff, it's called The Ivy Group and they are known all over the United States. She was able to tell everyone exactly why Wordpress shouldn't be used in dozens of ways. Yes it's quick and easy to do, something you can build without knowledge of code. But every single piece of pre-built software has limitations.

I think you missed Harold's point.

Yes it's quick and easy to do, something you can build without knowledge of code. But every single piece of pre-built software has limitations.

You can use an existing template, but you can also make your own. It's set up so programmers can highly customize it. The database is very well thought out. If there is something you need that won't work there is nothing stopping you from adding an additional table to the database. It gives you a good platform to start from. A good predesigned CMS is good for 99% of the web sites out there and the good ones like WordPress allow the customization you need for just about anything.

The only downside I see is the hack rate. Wordpress is a bigger target for hackers because of it's high usage.

Harold Mansfield
10-27-2012, 12:14 AM
Actually Wordpress is limited, I was at a meeting tonight with a professional speaker who is an expert on this stuff, it's called The Ivy Group and they are known all over the United States. She was able to tell everyone exactly why Wordpress shouldn't be used in dozens of ways. Yes it's quick and easy to do, something you can build without knowledge of code. But every single piece of pre-built software has limitations.

Or you can look at the list of Fortune 500 and successful companies that utilize it successfully to create very profitable engaging websites, or how it alone singlehandely is the driving engine behind social medial article sharing.

Every software has limitations. Period. It's not so much what you use, but how you use it.

I too can think of a dozen ways that you should not use WordPress. I can also think of a dozen reasons why HTML websites are outdated, and obsolete. Or why you shouldn't use just about anything product or software that you can name...Windows, iOS, Bell Telephones, Butter, Lemon Pledge. You name a product and someone out there hates it and thinks it's the worse thing since the plague.


Yes it's quick and easy to do, something you can build without knowledge of code. But every single piece of pre-built software has limitations
It's open source and any limitations are your own. Not the software. If you know how to code, program, design, know your way around a database, you can do what ever you want with it. Just because it can be easy to use for novices, doesn't mean that it's limited in design and functionality for those that know what they are doing. It's not.

Pick the method that's best for you and the purposes that you need it. But don't try and tell millions of websites online everywhere in the world that they are crap if they aren't 100% hand coded HTML from scratch just because you saw one speaker.

Gabe
10-27-2012, 12:50 AM
When it comes down to it, whether WordPress is for you or not is a matter of opinion.

In terms of facts, the capabilities of WordPress vs. coding by hand are only limited by the abilities of the developer. If you dig into the code, you'll see why. I haven't yet seen a single design or functionality that can't be done in WordPress. But just like anything else, talent costs money. If you look at free templates or sub $2,000 work, that's what you're going to see. But then again, holding fast to your opinion is easy if you only look and listen for things that support your current stance.

I had never heard of the Ivy Group before so I checked out their website. It's not built on WordPress, but in your words it looks like it was built on a sub $500 WordPress budget—it’s pretty poorly done. Anyway, the Ivy Group is a marketing firm...that sells web development services. They don't advocate using WordPress to build your own website? Strange... I'd advise against taking some third-rate marketing firm's pitch for its services as gospel about the capabilities of a user-friendly, DIY web development platform. I'll assume I don't have to explain why.

In the end, those who code by hand, or have their sites coded by hand, will pay the price. The web changes so quickly and there are new technologies out all of the time. Many WordPress sites are already using HTML 5, can implement new APIs in a few clicks, allow clients to quickly and easily make their own updates, significantly reduce web development/redesign costs, and on and on. It's no surprise why more Fortune 500 companies (yes, with multimillion dollar marketing budgets) use WordPress than any other. I promise you, it's not just because they were able to find a free theme they liked. Just Google 'fortune 500 wordpress' if you're curious.

Although these aren't the best, most creative WordPress sites I've seen, it'll give you an idea of what you can do with it: WordPress › Showcase (http://wordpress.org/showcase/)

Anyway, to each their own. If you don't like WordPress, that's fine, but don't sell yourself short by overlooking it because you don't understand its capabilities. It’ll cost you in the long run. A shitty, average looking website costs you customers but most businesses don’t realize it because they’ve never had a high quality, high converting website.

In terms of research, it’s much better to work backwards. Learn about search engine optimization, internet marketing, why people buy things, trust, authority, optimizing conversions, other ways to increase revenue with your online presence and how much it costs to do it right…then learn about WordPress…then decide.

Harold Mansfield
10-27-2012, 01:21 AM
I'll just add this short list if well known websites that are built using WordPress:
Notable WordPress Users — WordPress.com (http://en.wordpress.com/notable-users/)


You probably also don't know this but Automatic, (the company behind WordPress) has a long list of enterprise level clients that they host and run their sites. Rates start at around $3k a month and go much higher.
Our Services WordPress.com VIP (http://vip.wordpress.com/our-services/#hosting)


WordPress is also used heavily by the United States Government on many websites, 100's of Government blogs, and websites of Elected Officials. It is one of the suggested products that the U.S. General Services Administration tells the other Government agencies to use. as you can see on their resources page for department heads and administrators:
https://www.apps.gov/cloud/cloud/category_home.do?&c=SA

WordPress is far more advanced, used and trusted than you seem to know.

billbenson
10-27-2012, 01:34 AM
In the end, those who code by hand, or have their sites coded by hand, will pay the price. The web changes so quickly and there are new technologies out all of the time. Many WordPress sites are already using HTML 5, can implement new APIs in a few clicks, allow clients to quickly and easily make their own updates, significantly reduce web development/redesign costs, and on and on. It's no surprise why more Fortune 500 companies (yes, with multimillion dollar marketing budgets) use WordPress than any other. I promise you, it's not just because they were able to find a free theme they liked. Just Google 'fortune 500 wordpress' if you're curious.


I'm not a web designer, but I think you could look at this in a different way. You could develop your own CMS. There's a lot of design work done for you already. Set it up like a Wordpress or Joomla database with changes that make sense. Use php includes for every section (which is what the major cms's do).

What's in it for your customer, probably not a lot. However, the customer is locked into you unless he wants to change platforms completely.

billbenson
10-27-2012, 01:42 AM
@fayt - how do you design sites. Strictly html, do you use databases, if so which? Are your sites a custom CMS?

Brian Altenhofel
10-27-2012, 01:55 AM
WordPress is also used heavily by the United States Government on many websites, 100's of Government blogs, and websites of Elected Officials. It is one of the suggested products that the U.S. General Services Administration tells the other Government agencies to use. as you can see on their resources page for department heads and administrators:
https://www.apps.gov/cloud/cloud/category_home.do?&c=SA

They only recommend it as a blogging platform - basically where you don't have do deal with any remotely sensitive information.

Most government agencies', departments', and elected officials' websites (like *.house.gov or *.senate.gov) are being migrated to Drupal right now for standardization and compliance, as well as ease of integration into various outdated datasources.

For me, I just build installation profiles or Features/Apps for commonly requested things and sell them as products rather than hourly services.

Gabe
10-27-2012, 02:18 AM
I'm not a web designer, but I think you could look at this in a different way. You could develop your own CMS. There's a lot of design work done for you already. Set it up like a Wordpress or Joomla database with changes that make sense. Use php includes for every section (which is what the major cms's do).

Building your own CMS is a lot of work and you'll run into the same issues of keeping up with changing technology. The beauty of using a developed CMS is in saving time/money in development since you have thousands of other developers helping. Creating your own CMS is worthwhile if you have that kind of budget and development team, but it's not practical for most. In the past I've tried building a custom CMS based on WordPress and it just wasn't worth it. It was nice, but the development time and keeping it updated just wasn't worth it. There's more to running a business than coding. To each their own though.



What's in it for your customer, probably not a lot. However, the customer is locked into you unless he wants to change platforms completely.

I think that's bad business. Why wouldn't you do what's best for your customers? How about delivering enough value and quality customer service so that they want to stay with you? Not forcing them to stay with you because it's hard for them to switch. It all comes back in the end. It all depends on what kind of business you run and how you want to treat your customers I guess. Customers may be naive, especially if they're new to a market, but they're not stupid. True customer loyalty is earned, it's not a well hidden trap.

This is a great discussion though, good points all around. But just like anything, it's hard to convince someone of anything until they try it. Unfortunately, it takes a lot of time to learn enough to really understand the capabilities and limitations of any system.

fayt
10-27-2012, 08:15 AM
@fayt - how do you design sites. Strictly html, do you use databases, if so which? Are your sites a custom CMS?

I use html, css, php, etc. Usually I use databases, it depends on which website I need it for. Only one is CMS, I update things by hand.

As for users of wordpress, there are thousands of websites that look like blogs that people try to pass off as websites. It is blogging software. I just don't think it should be used for a professional website. I've seen so many awful websites with it.

Harold Mansfield
10-27-2012, 11:37 AM
They only recommend it as a blogging platform - basically where you don't have do deal with any remotely sensitive information.

Most government agencies', departments', and elected officials' websites (like *.house.gov or *.senate.gov) are being migrated to Drupal right now for standardization and compliance, as well as ease of integration into various outdated datasources.

That's not exactly true. There are plenty of Gov websites run on WordPress that aren't blogs. I get a little sensitive when people try to pigeonhole WordPress that way. And the U.S. Gov online just went through a huge overhaul over the past 4 years, and I haven't seen this massive implementation of Drupal.

The truth is that the U.S. Gov has 1000's of websites that are built on all kinds of platforms. My point was to show fyat that he was making false assumptions about the software from what seems to be very little knowledge.

But with that said, a lot of the information that the Government puts out everyday IS blogging. Everything from Department of Homeland Security updates, to FEMA, House Oversight Committee, Congressional Votes, and Committees. The U.S Government blogs all day, everyday. So I'm sure there is a lot of truth to that statement as well.

But more importantly, The U.S. Gov is not going to use WP or Drupal or any other open source "blogging" platform for sensitive information or any critical infrastructure.

Harold Mansfield
10-27-2012, 11:59 AM
I use html, css, php, etc. Usually I use databases, it depends on which website I need it for. Only one is CMS, I update things by hand.

As for users of wordpress, there are thousands of websites that look like blogs that people try to pass off as websites. It is blogging software. I just don't think it should be used for a professional website. I've seen so many awful websites with it.
fayt, there are thousands of websites that look like crap no matter how they were built.

I've seen plenty of hand built websites that look like garbage, but should I then say that all hand coded websites are garbage and shouldn't try to be passed off as professional websites?

I respect your opinion, but you aren't making a lot of sense. You are trying to blame the software instead of blaming the designers of the websites that you don't like. WordPress IS HTML, CSS, PHP, and Databases and then some. So obviously it's not the code, because you just said that's how you do things.

So there must be some other reason that you seem to have this disdain for it. I'm not saying you or anyone has to use it or even should use it. It's not for everyone or every project But dislike it for actual reasons...not unfounded generalizations.

Brian Altenhofel
10-27-2012, 03:35 PM
That's not exactly true. There are plenty of Gov websites run on WordPress that aren't blogs. I get a little sensitive when people try to pigeonhole WordPress that way. And the U.S. Gov online just went through a huge overhaul over the past 4 years, and I haven't seen this massive implementation of Drupal.

The truth is that the U.S. Gov has 1000's of websites that are built on all kinds of platforms. My point was to show fyat that he was making false assumptions about the software from what seems to be very little knowledge.

But with that said, a lot of the information that the Government puts out everyday IS blogging. Everything from Department of Homeland Security updates, to FEMA, House Oversight Committee, Congressional Votes, and Committees. The U.S Government blogs all day, everyday. So I'm sure there is a lot of truth to that statement as well.

But more importantly, The U.S. Gov is not going to use WP or Drupal or any other open source "blogging" platform for sensitive information or any critical infrastructure.

I was just pointing out exactly what the link that you used as a source said.

Here's a non-comprehensive list (http://groups.drupal.org/government-sites#USA) of US .gov sites running on or migrating to Drupal. I get a constant stream of RFP's for .gov sites - and nearly all of them spec Drupal.

billbenson
10-27-2012, 05:43 PM
I use html, css, php, etc. Usually I use databases, it depends on which website I need it for. Only one is CMS, I update things by hand.

As for users of wordpress, there are thousands of websites that look like blogs that people try to pass off as websites. It is blogging software. I just don't think it should be used for a professional website. I've seen so many awful websites with it.

The consensus here and as Gabe pointed out, is that building a custom web site and in particularly a database driven site is much more time inclusive to produce the same quality product. I have trouble seeing how you can compete with CMS's as it will take you much longer to develop a site. Most small businesses need a fairly simple site or a shopping cart which again is another CMS.

billbenson
10-27-2012, 06:19 PM
Building your own CMS is a lot of work and you'll run into the same issues of keeping up with changing technology. The beauty of using a developed CMS is in saving time/money in development since you have thousands of other developers helping. Creating your own CMS is worthwhile if you have that kind of budget and development team, but it's not practical for most. In the past I've tried building a custom CMS based on WordPress and it just wasn't worth it. It was nice, but the development time and keeping it updated just wasn't worth it. There's more to running a business than coding. To each their own though.



I think that's bad business. Why wouldn't you do what's best for your customers? How about delivering enough value and quality customer service so that they want to stay with you? Not forcing them to stay with you because it's hard for them to switch. It all comes back in the end. It all depends on what kind of business you run and how you want to treat your customers I guess. Customers may be naive, especially if they're new to a market, but they're not stupid. True customer loyalty is earned, it's not a well hidden trap.

This is a great discussion though, good points all around. But just like anything, it's hard to convince someone of anything until they try it. Unfortunately, it takes a lot of time to learn enough to really understand the capabilities and limitations of any system.

Ya, building one CMS is a lot of work. If built properly, you could use it over and over again.

Changes come along. PHP functions are depreciated. HTML5 comes along. I don't think its as bad as you say though. You don't need to upgrade all of your customers sites to HTML5. There are a lot of sites out there that are using very old versions of HTML and still work for their owners wanted. The main reason I see for doing something like this is offering more security from hackers. The other one is you lock in your customers.

You said you don't agree with the concept of locking customers into you. Think about this. One of Apples strategies all along has been to lock in their customers. They did it in an ethical way by developing a family of quality products that all work together. But still, they are locking in their customers. Many companies do this sort of thing. Everybody wants to retain customers. As long as you are giving a quality product to your customer, I don't see an ethical issue.

Brian Altenhofel
10-27-2012, 06:55 PM
I have trouble seeing how you can compete with CMS's as it will take you much longer to develop a site.

Same here.

I mean, with a CMS for a typical brochure site with a minimally custom design and all content ready, that site can easily go from domain registration to live in <4 hours.

Right now I have a plan in place to attempt to deploy an eCommerce site with 20K+ products in under 4 hours. I'm just waiting on the paperwork.

jamesray50
10-27-2012, 08:02 PM
As for users of wordpress, there are thousands of websites that look like blogs that people try to pass off as websites. It is blogging software. I just don't think it should be used for a professional website. I've seen so many awful websites with it.

I think if I was trying to build a website on WordPress it would look like a blog, I don't know anything about building websites. Even if I read manuals and instructions and whatever help I could get, it still wouldn't look good because I don't know anything about building websites. But, if a professional used WordPress then it won't look like a blog if the customer didn't want it to. My website doesn't look like a blog. There is a blog on my website. And my website is not awful.

I thought that was one reason there were so many templates to choose from for WordPress, so you could pick one that worked for your industry. Oh, I can't tell by looking at a website if it's WordPress or something else (except for some cookie cutter sites like the one Intuit has). Usually I scroll down to the bottom of the page to see if it says there what kind it is.

fayt
10-28-2012, 09:40 AM
Having pre-made templates for free means hundreds of thousands of people are using that same template design. To the point where people are like "I've seen this design somewhere before". I believe using a template based system is just as bad as using free clipart on your website.

I agree, it is the designers who mess up websites and make them look awful. Wordpress was created as a CMS so that people with no programming experience could use it and also those with lots of experience to do less work, by having a pre-built system. It was a great idea, however I just prefer the old school ways.

billbenson
10-28-2012, 10:10 AM
Having pre-made templates for free means hundreds of thousands of people are using that same template design. To the point where people are like "I've seen this design somewhere before". I believe using a template based system is just as bad as using free clipart on your website.

I agree, it is the designers who mess up websites and make them look awful. Wordpress was created as a CMS so that people with no programming experience could use it and also those with lots of experience to do less work, by having a pre-built system. It was a great idea, however I just prefer the old school ways.
But you don't have to use clipart and you can make a custom template.

Harold Mansfield
10-28-2012, 11:36 AM
Having pre-made templates for free means hundreds of thousands of people are using that same template design. To the point where people are like "I've seen this design somewhere before". I believe using a template based system is just as bad as using free clipart on your website.
What makes you think that this is somehow how you HAVE to use WordPress? Why can't you seem to comprehend that using WP as a CMS for the administration of your website doesn't have to have anything to do with what you make it look like on the front end? You seem to be talking about WordPress.com.


I agree, it is the designers who mess up websites and make them look awful. Wordpress was created as a CMS so that people with no programming experience could use it and also those with lots of experience to do less work, by having a pre-built system. It was a great idea, however I just prefer the old school ways.
And you will have old school websites and only attract clients that have old school needs. What do you do when someone needs WordPress help? Tell them how horrible it is and totally disrupt thier web presence by redesinging everything?


It was a great idea?
Seriously. What web are you working on?

You make a lot of unfounded assumptions about WordPress and the people that use it. And as informed as you are trying to sound, it's pretty obvious that you aren't. I normally wouldn't be that harsh, but I hate it when people just blindly throw out baseless accusations to tear something down, when it's obvious they have no idea what they are talking about.

Look, I'm not saying that you are wrong in regards to what you prefer. But what you are saying about WordPress is wrong. WordPress is a CMS. It is not a design. Why do you have such a hard time getting that?

I've heard this argument before about different things on the web over the years, from people that think they are some kind of web or design purists because they have choosen NOT to learn anything new on the web, refuse to recognize changes and do everything like it's the 1980's. Not just with WordPress but with anything newer than Netobjects Fusion.


And on your argument about websites looking alike? Look around. There isn't a whole lot of originality when it comes to business websites. They all pretty much follow the same 5-10 layouts, merely customized for the situation, different colors and images...your website included. Headers are mostly in the same place. Logos are top left. Introduction. Same navigation. What works is pretty much the same across the web. It's just different sizes, shapes and colors of the same elements.

Your own site could easily be a WordPress website. It looks like every basic WordPress template that I've ever seen since 2005. I can code that design in a few hours, if that. So where is the difference and the originality that you've gained? Your argument seems to be that it's better to code that design for an HTML site than it is to code the exact same design for a site running WordPress and somehow the HTML site is better because you're some kind of web purist and your HTML, CSS, PHP, Js, HTML5 and SQL is somehow so much different and flexible than mine which is somehow limited because I'm working on a different web than you are. That's ludicrous.

Like I said, don't like it, don't use it. That's fine. I'm not saying everyone should use WP or that it is for every situation. Of course not. But don't try to justify your dislike of it by making things up that simply aren't true. Just because you don't know how to do it, doesn't mean that it isn't done or doesn't exist.

fayt
10-28-2012, 12:32 PM
It's in my opinion and experience with it.

Harold Mansfield
10-28-2012, 12:43 PM
Of course I respect your opinion. But web as a whole is pretty much limited to your skills and imagination. WordPress isn't limited in how you can design for it. So that's an unfair characterization of it.

fayt
10-28-2012, 06:26 PM
Every CMS is limited, since you don't have access to the core structure of it, or even if you could, you'd have to have a ton of knowledge of programming. Open source is good, but would need to be an editable format so professionals can keep improving it.

Harold Mansfield
10-28-2012, 06:52 PM
Every CMS is limited, since you don't have access to the core structure of it, or even if you could, you'd have to have a ton of knowledge of programming. Open source is good, but would need to be an editable format so professionals can keep improving it.

It is editable. You can make changes. You have complete access to the core files of every aspect of it. You can make your own add ons and plug ins. There are a ton of adjustments that you can make to the core. Design is totally open to what you want to make. You have total access to 100's of pages of codex. And it is constantly being improved by the community.

I don't understand where you keep seeing limitations. Everything you are saying it doesn't have or you can't do, it has, and you can. And the better you are with PHP, HTML, SQL and CSS as you say you are, the sky is the limit.

Why do you keep saying it's this closed, limited software? It is not. For what it's made for, it is completely editable if you know what you are doing.

Do you really think online publications like The New York Times, who has unlimited resources, would use a software that was as limited as you keep trying to say it is?

You really should learn more about it before you continue to make false assumptions:
http://codex.wordpress.org/Developer_Documentation

billbenson
10-28-2012, 07:38 PM
Every CMS is limited, since you don't have access to the core structure of it, or even if you could, you'd have to have a ton of knowledge of programming. Open source is good, but would need to be an editable format so professionals can keep improving it.

You can change the database as you see fit, you can add or edit functions, you can completely edit the look and feel of the site, and you can change or add css or js pages.


"or even if you could, you'd have to have a ton of knowledge of programming"

You are a web designer. I expect you to have a good knowledge of programming and have contacts to farm things out that you don't know. A large part of a good web designer is being able to program.

fayt
10-28-2012, 09:47 PM
So you're saying it's an open source project. The whole purpose of wordpress was for blogging. People have turned it into a website tool. I'd like to know why.

billbenson
10-28-2012, 11:06 PM
So you're saying it's an open source project. The whole purpose of wordpress was for blogging. People have turned it into a website tool. I'd like to know why.

Most programs grow and improve with time.

Gabe
10-29-2012, 02:05 AM
The whole purpose of wordpress was for blogging. People have turned it into a website tool. I'd like to know why.

It's better to ask why not, otherwise you might as well ask why people are using the internet to watch movies and have conversations about using things for anything other than their intended purpose. This conversation is getting silly.

fayt
10-29-2012, 08:04 AM
I agree, it's getting a bit hostile.

libra
10-29-2012, 09:18 AM
IMHO, it would be more fruitful if the discussion compares the merits and shortcomings, if any,
of the few CMSs which are now available to web programmers, rather than expounding the
capabilities of Wordpress, or in Fayt's case, apparently expressing a personal disdain for it,
for whatever reason.

Gabe
10-29-2012, 09:53 AM
I think we should just go old school and have a deathmatch.

A WordPress site vs. a hand-coded website in a fight to the death. Anything goes except no DDoS attacks.

Welcome to Thunderdome.

Harold Mansfield
10-29-2012, 03:34 PM
So you're saying it's an open source project. The whole purpose of wordpress was for blogging. People have turned it into a website tool. I'd like to know why.
Because it got better and is a full CMS and publishing software now. It's not 2003 anymore and it's not called B2/Cafelog anymore.
It's grown. Learn:
WordPress - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WordPress#Releases)

fayt
10-29-2012, 10:06 PM
It'll always have a bad taste for me. But glad it's more useful now.

billbenson
10-29-2012, 10:56 PM
It'll always have a bad taste for me. But glad it's more useful now.

But in all your posts you haven't said why. You say it's bad. Why? Is the database poorly designed and if so how? Is the capability of the functions bad? If so how? Don't tell us you think its bad. Toss some facts in there.

fayt
10-30-2012, 08:16 AM
I already said my opinion in multiple threads.

billbenson
10-30-2012, 11:12 AM
Opinions, not facts. You haven't proven one point.

libra
10-30-2012, 11:42 AM
O taste, and see that the CMS is good. :)

fayt
10-30-2012, 07:32 PM
They were facts at the time, perhaps it's a bit dated, but nonetheless.

libra
11-26-2012, 04:35 AM
...
I have however, built local directories for smaller communities that don't have the larger resources, and those have seemed to work out well. And business directories that are a part of an overall community such as Fashion or Cars. But at this point in the game, building a niche directory alone, in a large market has been done to death. And I wouldn't use WordPress do to it anyway. I use a designated directory script.


Notwithstanding your views about it, incidentally, I am rather keen to start a niche-type directory of sorts, but not with WP.

I am mulling over it, but what I am more concerned about is not the take-up rate, but rather how to keep the directory listing itself up-to-date. Say, if there are many customers listed in a particular directory, many would surely have ceased to exist. For a well-populated directory, this can be a big headache. How can one overcome that problem?

What do you think are the best ways to keep the listings up-to-date, preferably requiring pro-active participation on the part of the customers whose details are listed? Any suggestions for consideration? Thanks a million.