WordPress vs. Blogger evaluation
Posted by schroeder915 on December 11, 2006
I’ve been trying WordPress for about six weeks now, after becoming totally exasperated with Blogger’s tendency to just clock endlessly while publishing posts, and its frequent connection issues. My experience using WordPress.com so far:
- Overall, better page design templates.
- I like the ability to use categories (but I’m still trying to figure out how best to categorize posts).
- There are far better tools than Blogger provides for administering the site.
- Ho-hum page loads.
- Feeds to Google, Technorati, and other online search engines, seem to be a lot slower than Blogger (which might make sense, since Blogger is now owned by Google). This is an important issue if you want potential readers to see that you have something relevant to a current issue or event.
- Occasional connection problems — far less frequent than Blogger, but still a showstopper.
- I’ve been waiting for days for authorization to edit the blog’s CSS after paying a $15 PayPal fee for an option to upgrade. Getting access to the CSS is especially important to me, since some of the formatting is really annoying (like font sizes that are either too small or too big, and blockquotes eliminating line breaks so that I have to manually insert them). Creating lists (like this one) requires manually highlighting each list element to insert a symbol. You can’t just select a block of text and create a bulleted list (as you can with Blogger), and once again, the line breaks disappear in the published post — extremely annoying behavior, in particular since creating blockquotes or list items adds two line breaks above and below the selected text, requiring the user, once again, to manually re-format the text to eliminate the added space. So yes, as I’m composing this message, I’m manually adding list item tags to each list element, removing the added line breaks (which serve no purpose in the published post), and then additionally adding manual line breaks between elements, (I’d show how to create a manual line break, but the standard PHP way of escaping the tag element with a “\” doesn’t work). These sorts of manual edits are made all the more difficult by the fact that it’s hard to select a long block of text in such a tiny edit window when you can’t see the entire block of text without scrolling, and then, the window scrolls up and down too fast to accurately select the desired text.
- The edit window is miniscule. Composing messages often requires grabbing the mouse to scroll up and down through a post to re-read. It’s like driving with all but a three inch square of your windshild blacked out. Come on! WordPress could better optimize the screen real estate. The most important thing that people want to do is write — so WordPress should maximize the ease of doing that. (Update: Problem solved. I now have all the real estate I could want, thanks to a tip by Dangerblond tip to go into the options settings and reset the writing box. This is one option where, as it turns out, WordPress definitely has Blogger beat).
- There’s no button to change font colors. The only way to do it is to manually insert font tags.
- Yesterday I noticed a message prompting me about a space limitation. I had used six percent of my 50 megabyte limit. I can upgrade to a gigabyte or more for $20 per gigabyte. The last time I bought a hard drive, it was under a dollar per gigabyte. Come on! 50 megabytes? I really don’t like this model.
- I still haven’t been able to move over Blogger images. They are often blocked from displaying in WordPress by Blogger. The best solution seems to be to port my old Blogger posts to a Web server where I’ll have access to a MySql backend database, and to then alter the paths in the database after copying images to a different host. This ought to be a fairly rudimentary process if I only had access to my WordPress.com database, but alas, that isn’t allowed.
Overall, I’m not convinced I’ll stay with WordPress. I’m not saying others shouldn’t try it, but it’s definitely a different experience from Blogger.
As for Blogger, well, they have plenty of their own problems.