Tuesday, October 25, 2005

WordPress.com Golden Ticket

Today I got Wordpress.com Golden Ticket into my inbox:
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away you entered your email address on http://wordpress.com/ to get a blog.

We're now inviting small groups to use WordPress.com and your email address was selected today!

Visit this address to get started:

While you're on a string of good luck it might be a good day to buy a lottery ticket. Better move fast though, because this invite will expire in a week, no exceptions.

The WordPress.com Team
I gave it a try at wahyu.wordpress.com. Nice admin panel, and of course different with mine here.

I agree with redrag.net regarding this:
  • The installation was dead easy. Pick a username and title, enter your email address. Done.
  • Nice new colour scheme — bolder, more teal than grey. The dashboard looks a lot cleaner, and it’s far more welcoming than Wordpress. That’s important if it’s going to compete with Blogger.
  • The default theme is Kubrick, and there’s a nifty menu to choose one of 8 themes. Unfortunately, there’s no scope to customise them in any meaningful way. Hopefully that will change in the near future.
  • It includes 25MB of space for file uploads, including images, movies and MP3s (with a cap of 1.5MB per file). It’s a good idea — 25MB is enough for many people, and paid plans to expand that storage would give the service a viable income stream. Of course, you can use sites like Flickr to host your pictures, too.
  • The interface is based on WordPress 1.6, which is still in alpha — but this version is very polished. The WYSIWYG editor produces pretty good code, although I had a bit of trouble with the separator. You can always change back to the old “raw” input, on a per-user basis.
  • At least, the options say Personal Options (including rich v plain editor) “are just for you, they don’t affect other users on blog.” But I can’t work out how to add multiple users. I guess that’s a feature that hasn’t been implemented yet, so group blogs are ruled out for now. (However, the new user system in 1.6 is pretty sweet, and I expect it will find its way onto WordPress.com when the rough edges are knocked off.)
  • One concern I’ve got is comment spam. Although the new service appears to have the same “spam words” interface as WordPress, it really needs plugins to do a thorough job. The increase of spam on Blogger blogs shows that this will be a real problem, and it’d be nice to know what is going on behind the scenes to filter spam.
  • Come to think of it, there’s no way to use plugins at all. That’s one of the biggest benefits of using WordPress (or Movable Type) instead of Blogger. It’d be great to see them allow plugins in future, though it would no doubt pose some technical/security difficulties.
  • The invite system is integrated with your blogroll, so you can tick a box and the invitee will be added to your blogroll automatically when they activate their account. Nice touch.
I still have an invitation, if interested can contact me. I’d really like to give the invite to a commenter (or a lurker, for that matter) who wants to give blogging a burl. They’ll jump the queue ahead of people who are already blogging.


CanI Clean It said...

Thanks, this is one of the better posts I've read today. I share your vision about that. Thanks man!

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