In the summer of 2003, I dabbled with some basic HTML. When I first got my hands on a copy of GoLive (from Adobe) it opened a world of discovery.
It also opened a Pandora's Box of troubles. As much as I knew (or thought I knew) about HTML, there was always something else to learn. And then I head about this "CSS" that all the cool people were using. I needed to learn how to code sites with HTML, and learn how to use CSS.
After 3 long years of slogging through website redesign after website redesign, I figured I'd just stop. There's just no money in making a website look good (unless you know people--I don't know people). That takes the story to 2009--or more rightly, pretty much every month after 2009.
WordPress is something I've used since about the release of version 2.0. I wouldn't say I was an aficionado, but I did hack and crack and bend it to my will for 6 or so years. As WordPress has grown, its feature set has as well. There is a ton of waste in that thing. As of late, it just seems way too...limiting.
That shouldn't make sense. Something extremely complicated and diverse should not cause me to not want to use it. But that goes back to what I used after I used WordPress the first time. Something called Movable Type.
After using it the first day I was hooked. It's an amazingly diverse machine that lets you do basically anything you want to. It's fun, strong, and incredibly, incredibly not used by anybody anymore. The developers have left (for various reasons). The momentum has ended. The company is...I'm not really sure what happened with Six Apart, but they're no longer relevant.
That's sad, because WordPress is getting bigger, and bigger. And that's not always a good thing. Actually, I can't really think of times (other than football teams and dragon-fighting) when being bigger is always better.
I've been itching to stop the WordPress merry-go-round for a while. In 2009 I made the effort to get into blogging again. Even if I was just going to hit it once or twice a month, just to put something in the ether.
What I found after a few months it was very liberating when the schedule meant that I was going to post whenever. It makes it a lot easier to fit that schedule. Later I just...stopped.
It wasn't like I meant to stop writing, it just happened. The creativity was gone. The drive was gone. The reason to write...gone. For whatever reason, I wondered if there was another story to tell.
But having to go through the pains of making sure WordPress made everything perfect just made me not want to use it. If there was some way I could keep...just...writing...I'd do that. If there was just some way to make it so I didn't have to fit into a mold.
That's when Brent Simmons helped me immensely. He put out a plea for "baked weblogs" because so many sites die under the pressure of too many hits. And they're unnecessarily slow. And, in my case, full of stuff I never wanted.
What's funny is, I've always like that name. Now I'm running the system on my site. Plus, I can add new pages without worrying how it's going to muck up my page structure.
My precious page structure.
It's great for writing. It's easy administration (there is no administration). And I can add or remove as many stupid HTML tricks as I want to on a page-by-page basis. It's really awesome.
Sure, I'll miss out on updating the plugins or theme, or sub-theme, or child-theme, or...whatever else they come up with next. Instead, I'll be writing. That's a good thing.
I missed that, and now I've got that back.