Building your site when you're not a programmer

Its been a fast growing, ever changing world, don't you think?

Just a couple of years back, nobody would've thought that ordinary people would care about what Kbps-Mbps they would want to have as their connection.  Now, its surprising that even the young ones know about Trojans, PHP, and networks.

The ancestors of technical know-hows were successful in imparting the knowledge that they had when back at their time, it was a priceless thing.  The top graduates of the Philippines in IT industry are now growing old as their mentors were, but their knowledge is no longer as priceless as their teachers' were before.  The great minds have brough the tech industry in such glory and limelight that it wouldn't be surprising if grade one students nowadays are no longer afraid of computers.

Appliances, toys, games, self helps, household guides, etc have now been influenced by technology, and no one wants to be left behind.  After the dotcom bubble, almost everyone wanted to have their own site.  Soonafter, blogs came about.  Now, no kid in town is unaware what a blog is, and for sure, they've had lots before.  Its all about creating your identity online.

Programmers are still much needed everywhere, I guess, next to nurses, we still have the highest employment rating (note that I'm excluding call center agents).  Several companies have opted to get the best programmers to ensure the best product quality is pushed to the market and with security measures.  But there are of course, some who would rather do it themselves, especially those that really wouldn't want to spend retainer fees because they require less programming aspects.

Not that I resent their thoughts, after all that's part of the business, but sometimes, there are limitations, and it really takes quite a leap from the common thinking to consider the benefits of programming for the future.  With this, I'd like to introduce CMSes and Wordpress.

Just a couple of days back, I've been preoccupied with thoughts about CMSes and blogs.  For our company site, we made it all from scratch, and CMS from scratch too.  Knowing that it would entail time and thinking vs pre made CMSes it still had much advantage over the latter.  I'd like to express more of my thoughts on this.

Blogs are personal pages of individuals, mostly collection of thoughts posted by order of postdate.  These can comprise text, pictures, videos, etc.  You can get a free account from major blog providers like blogspot, livejournal, msn livespaces, social networks, or in i.ph.  Blogs are meant to be flexible and easy and quick.  That is why Wordpress was made.  It was a blog engine that was quick, easy and flexible to setup.  Atop this reason, it was also popular and had many add ons and themes that users can choose from.  If you have your own domain, and wanted to have your blog within minutes, then  this is the right choice.  Of course there were others too like Mephisto, TypePad, etc.  Some are commercial, some are free.  You can take a pick, but all will provide the same purpose.
Now, what a bout more professional pages?  Say a company?  There are choices from the top, and famous opensource CMSes like Drupal and Joomla.  Both provide you more content to be put up.  Joomla focuses more on front end interface, while Drupal enjoys its more functional approach.  Some say Drupal is more technical than Joomla.  I don't know.  I like Drupal better, maybe because Joomla(Mambo) was known to be unsecure.  Personally, I believe that its better to hire developers for a corporate site, because these CMSes provide more known bugs and sometimes provide limitation in what they can offer, whilst having an in-house developer would save you worries on whether what you want is doable or not.

But there is an altogether new idea.  An idea of using Wordpress as your CMS.  Honestly, I think Wordpress is the best for blogging, but not for building websites.  Its lazy of a programmer not to build a content management section and just rely on Wordpress' flexibility alone to take care of adjusting the site.  It may have everything needed for the none know-hows on technical coding, but it cuts you down on the features.  Soon enough, you'll find yourself waiting for plugins to be made, requesting them in Wordpress forums, and/or trying to get developers to do tweaks for you.  Real hassle.   If you want to know if you should or should not use Wordpress as your CMS, then find out here.

Ah, well, 'nuf said.  If I had a project, I just won't forget to create for them a good architecture so that they can easily replace templates without bugging me.  I'd also make careful planning for their CMS.  With that being said, they won't have to spend retainer fees, or bug me forever for changes they want to have (only when really really necessary).

Maricris Nonato

I turn tech ideas into websites using Ruby. I'm a budding Buddhist practitioner, passionate about health & fitness, and a cat fanatic!