WordPress is More Than Just Blogging Software

If you take a step back and look at the successful premium WordPress themes available today, the first thing you’ll notice is that they offer much more than the standard blogging template that most free WordPress themes offer.  You’ll find magazine themes, news themes, video themes, social networking themes, and all sorts of other themes that are designed to function as content management systems.

In looking at the future of WordPress, my hope is that the standard build of WordPress will continue to grow and many WordPress plugins will fill the gaps to make a fully functional content management system.

Recently BloggingPro did a great job of showing the versatility of WordPress with their post showing 7 different ways to use WordPress.  In their post, they highlight these 7 ways you can use WordPress:

  1. Blogging
  2. Photoblog
  3. Tumblelog
  4. Magazine
  5. Online Shop
  6. Contact Manager and Customer Relations Management
  7. Twitter Platform

Click over to see the examples of each!

I personally use WordPress for most of my content sites, including several static sites, a tumblelog, and of course several blogs.   Its versatility is amazing. In what unique ways have you used WordPress?

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  • Collection of WordPress Resources

    As I mentioned in a post written last month, I wanted to collect everyones WordPress resources so I could throw together a WordPress resources page. After all, WordPress is community-based and it seemed like a good way to support WordPress users. I am proud to say that I was able to combine my favorite WordPress sites with yours to create a WordPress resources page here at Hack WordPress, which I hope people will find useful.

    If you are wondering why a couple sites are left off the list, it is probably for one of two reasons. The first is that I don’t know about it and the second is because I had to leave off (for the most part) any submitted blogs that occasionally write about WordPress (such as a category or whatever). This is because the collection of WordPress resources is already very large and these types of lists can get out of hand if you don’t draw the line somewhere.

    As with my WordPress theme galleries and other lists I maintain here, my ultimate goal is to keep this page useful. As a result, I will make every attempt to keep this page updated over time. You can help by letting us know if you find any invalid links or you would like to see something added.

    As for the list itself, here is what I’ve collected so far:

    WordPress Blogs WordPress Themes
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  • Wanted: Your WordPress Resources

    Here at Hack WordPress, we pride ourselves on bringing you all sorts of WordPress hacks, theme and plugin reviews, and we also try to create some good WordPress discussions whenever possible.

    One thing I get asked a lot is why I link out to other people so often. The answer is fairly simple. There are a lot of people that are as passionate about WordPress as I am, and these people do great work. Some are other “WordPress niche” blogs, while most are just bloggers who occasionally write about WordPress on their blogs. Either way, I don’t look at them as competitors, but rather as other WordPress enthusiasts and I try to give their posts some additional exposure.

    One thing I’ve been planning to do is to create a resources page for this site which collects other great WordPress resources. For now, the list will be limited to WordPress niche blogs and web designers that use (and write) about WordPress, but it may expand in the future if I can incorporate other blogs that cover WordPress and still keep the page both useful and manageable.

    Here is where I’m hoping you can help me out. I’ve got about 15 blogs in my feed reader and I know there are a lot more than that. If you run a WordPress blog, you are a WordPress designer with a personal blog and write about WordPress, or you are a reader and have a few favorite WordPress blogs you enjoy reading, can you drop me some links in the comments below? That way I can put together a list for my WordPress resources page.

    I’m going to try to get the blogroll put together this weekend (hopefully with feeds as well) and will also do a follow up post to give these blogs some more exposure.

    Update: You can now check out our WordPress Resources page.

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  • How To: Spelling WordPress

    I figured the title of this post would probably catch everyone’s attention!  

    Generally speaking, I am not one of those people that gets anal about spelling.   I always make a conscious effort to spell things correctly and use words in the proper context, but it usually doesn’t bother me when I’m reading someone else’s work and things are misspelled (wrong “there”, etc.).  I’m sure some of my published works even have misspellings from time to time.   For whatever reason, however, I have noticed that a lot of people don’t seem to know how to properly spell WordPress. 

    Do you know how to spell WordPress?  For those that never really gave it any thought, WordPress is spelled with a capital “P” in the middle.   Now, it doesn’t really bother me so much when bloggers misspell WordPress on their blogs, but with the recent explosion of WordPress blogs, it does bother me a little that these WordPress bloggers don’t even know how to properly spell the product that their blog is focused on.

    When you write about WordPress on one of your blogs, are you spelling WordPress correctly?

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  • How To: Manually Backing Up Your WordPress Blog

    Comments Off on How To: Manually Backing Up Your WordPress Blog

    In the past I’ve talked about some great WordPress plugins for backing up your database.   This is a great way to backup your WordPress blog for people that don’t know how to do it manually.   You can also set it up to do your backup automatically, which I find extremely useful because I run several websites that need backed up.

    Throughout the past few years I been fortunate to meet a lot of bloggers, and I’ve found that many prefer to avoid plugins as much as possible, or sometimes they are just the kind of people that like to be hands on and learn how to do things themselves.   For these people, Performancing recently posted a Bloggers Guide To Safely Backing Up Your WordPress Site, where they detail the steps you need to take to manually backup your WordPress blog.

    As a quick note, if you decide you want to manually backup your WordPress blog, you’ll first need to make sure you have FTP access for your website and the ability to access your Control Panel (CPanel).   From there you will want to follow the steps in Performancing’s guide to create a backup of your posts and a backup of your database.

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  • Revolution Releases New Forum Skins

    Not only does Brian Gardner of Revolution fame have some great Revolution themes available for sale, but Brian has also shown a tremendous talent for running and marketing his business. He just seems to get it.

    First Brian decides to promote his products by offering an affiliate contest for this month and offers some amazing prizes, and now Brian has continued to add value to his product by releasing a series of free Revolution forum templates to compliment each of his premium WordPress themes. Currently the forum templates are for the popular free phpBB3 forum software, but it looks like he has plans to do the same for vBulletin users.

    Here is a sample of how a few of these templates look:

    Revolution Pro Media Forum Template

    Rev Pro Forums

    Revolution Magazine Forum Template

    Rev Mag Forums

    So, what does this mean for you as a potential buyer? If you purchase one of Brian’s Revolution themes (or if you have previously purchased one), you can now easily set up a corresponding forum to match the layout of your website, at no additional charge. This is one of the many benefits of purchasing a theme from Brian.

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  • The Prelude to WordPress

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    Ever wonder where Matt Mullenweg came up with the idea for what we now know as WordPress? I bet most people have wondered at some point, because at the time, the idea of starting up a business where the product would be free and everyone had access to the code was a recipe for disaster.  At the time, the concept of open source software wasn’t exactly mainstream and there wasn’t a good way to monetize it.

    I was happy to discover that back in 2003, you can actually find a blog post by Matt on his blog titled The Blogging Software Dilemma, where he writes about the idea of the perfect blogging software. Here is a bit of his post:

    What to do? Well, Textpattern looks like everything I could ever want, but it doesn’t look like it’s going to be licensed under something politically I could agree with. Fortunately, b2/cafelog is GPL, which means that I could use the existing codebase to create a fork, integrating all the cool stuff that Michel would be working on right now if only he was around. The work would never be lost, as if I fell of the face of the planet a year from now, whatever code I made would be free to the world, and if someone else wanted to pick it up they could. I’ve decided that this the course of action I’d like to go in, now all I need is a name. What should it do? Well, it would be nice to have the flexibility of MovableType, the parsing of TextPattern, the hackability of b2, and the ease of setup of Blogger. Someday, right?

    Click over to read the rest.   You can certainly see the wheels turning as Matt began to put together when would eventually become WordPress, and almost a year later Matt updated the post stating that this idea eventually became WordPress.  Thanks Matt for seeing this idea through and to the rest of the WordPress team that has made it happen.  Your hard work has made all of our online lives better!

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  • Support WordPress by Displaying Gravatars On Your Blog

    Do you have a Gravatar (Globally Recognized Avatar)? As a loyal fan of the WordPress software that runs each of my weblogs, I feel that it is important to support WordPress in any way that I can. Because this blog focuses on WordPress, that is especially true here.

    You may remember that last October Automattic, the company behind WordPress, purchased Gravatar. In the time since then, they have revamped the infrastructure of Gravatar to drastically speed things up, integrated it into the WordPress.com platform, and then updated the Gravatar WordPress plugin to function better with self-hosted WordPress blogs.

    If you don’t already have a Gravatar, I recommend you first sign up with Gravatar for a free account using whatever e-mail address you normally use to leave comments. Once confirmed, it will then prompt you to upload the avatar you want to use. You’ll need to use the e-mail address used for your Gravatar in the e-mail address field of the comment form (all in lower case) when leaving a comment for the Gravatar to display properly next to each comment.

    Now that Automattic is backing it, and WordPress.com blogs have integrated them, I think that over time Gravatar will continue to grow and the service will continue to get better. It is with that belief that I decided to add individual Gravatars to the comments on this blog (I also revamped the comments section to better support it).

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  • How To: Add a WordPress Comments Moderation Notifier

    Comments Off on How To: Add a WordPress Comments Moderation Notifier

    Depending on how you have your WordPress blog set up, you more than likely are receiving a flood of comment moderation notices in your e-mail inbox from incoming comments and trackbacks/pingbacks. This is not a bad thing, but can often become tedious as your comments continue to increase.

    The How-To Geek has created a solution to this problem by creating a WordPress Comments Moderation Notifier.  Once you’ve downloaded the software and installed it, it will place an icon in your Window’s system tray. You will then want to add your site’s URL and login information in the settings, then determine how often you want it to check for moderation. This also requires you to upload and activate a WordPress plugin.

    This application then uses the WordPress API to check for comments awaiting moderation and then will display a pop up box once there are comments that need moderating. You can click on the icon to access your WordPress comments moderation queue.

    WordPress Comments Notifier Pop Up

    You can also easily access your WordPress moderation queue at your convenience by using the icon in your system tray.

    WordPress Comments Notifier

    If you decide to go through with this application, I recommend you place a shortcut to the notifier in your Windows startup folder so that it will be opened every time you restart your computer.

    One feature I would like to see is the ability to monitor multiple WordPress blogs for comment moderation. A high percentage of WordPress users now seem to run more than one blog at a time, so this application won’t offer much value to those bloggers. Otherwise, I find this application very impressive and useful for people running a single blog.

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  • Search Engine Optimized (SEO) WordPress Theme Gallery

    When picking out a new WordPress theme, there are a lot of factors to consider. Do you want a 2-column theme or a 3-column theme? What about AJAX comments? Maybe you want specific colors? No matter what your preference is, one of the main factors you should probably consider is how search engine friendly your theme is going to be.

    There are a lot of WordPress SEO techniques that theme designers can use when creating their theme to help optimize it for search engines, and several authors have taken the time to do so. Here are what I feel are the best search engine optimized WordPress themes:

    2-Column Search Engine Optimized WordPress Themes

    Sodelicious Theme

    Sodelicious Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    Modern Blue Green Theme

    Modern Blue Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    YourBlog 2.0 Theme

    YourBlog 2.0 Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    PassionDuo Theme (3 Colors)

    Green: Demo | Download, Red: Demo | Download, Blue: Demo | Download

    Yakuter Tema 2.0 Theme

    Yakuter Tema 2.0 Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    3-Column Search Engine Optimized WordPress Themes

    Big Blue Theme

    Big Blue Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    Redie 3.0 Theme

    Redie 3.0 Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    Ambient Glo Theme

    Ambient Glo Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    ProSense Theme

    ProSense Theme

    Source | Download (Orange, Blue, and Gray) | Demo

    Cutline Theme

    Cutline Theme

    Source | Download | Demo

    Have a search engine optimized WordPress theme you’d like to see included in this list? Feel free to comment below with a link and I’ll see about it getting added!

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