From Textpattern to WordPress

It took a few people to convince me to move my blog from Textpattern to WordPress. Not because I think WordPress is worse, I just didn’t want to spend too much time recreating my templates. A couple of weeks ago, I finally decided to move on and leave Textpattern behind. As a content management system, it was useful, but it never quite managed to do what I wanted.

For the new site, I did a slight re-design. I wanted to make it cleaner and better for reading. One of the biggest design changes was using Georgia typeface for post body content instead of Arial/Helvetica. I also moved from a 12-column to a 24-column grid design. To speed up the redesign process, I used the framework. I have to say I am really happy with it so far.

I keep hearing that WordPress has a very powerful theme engine, but didn’t realize how true this was until I started working on my own theme. At first, I was a bit worried about creating one from scratch. I tried to find a base theme to start from, but didn’t find anything that matched my taste. I ended up following this great tutorial from Ian Stewart to create a theme from scratch. Ian goes in great details about every single step I need to follow to build my own theme. I was pleasantly surprised how easy it was.

Along the way, I learned some PHP. I have to say I don’t like it. It is ugly. I think PHP syntax doesn’t make a lot of sense, especially the use of “.” to concatenate strings. In a way, I like the simplicity of Textpattern template tags a bit more. Obviously I still am very new to PHP, so my opinion is not final.

Let me know what you think of the new design. You can view the old site here.

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