WordPress started in 2003 with a single bit of code to enhance the typography of everyday writing and with fewer users than you can count on your fingers and toes. Since then it has grown to be the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world, used on millions of sites and seen by tens of millions of people every day
What You Can Use WordPress For
WordPress started as just a blogging system, but has evolved to be used as full content management system and so much more through the thousands of plugins and widgets and themes, WordPress is limited only by your imagination.
Connect with the Community
In addition to online resources like the forums and mailing lists a great way to get involved with WordPress is to attend or volunteer at a WordCamp, which are free or low-cost events that happen all around the world to gather and educate WordPress users, organized by WordPress users. Check out the website, there might be a WordCamp near you.
Out of the Box
Great software should work with little configuration and setup. WordPress is designed to get you up and running and fully functional in no longer than five minutes. You shouldn’t have to battle to use the standard functionality of WordPress.
We work hard to make sure that every release is in keeping with this philosophy. We ask for as few technical details as possible during the setup process as well as providing full explanations of anything we do ask.
Design for the Majority
Many end users of WordPress are non-technically minded. They don’t know what AJAX is, nor do they care about which version of PHP they are using. The average WordPress user simply wants to be able to write without problems or interruption. These are the users that we design the software for as they are ultimately the ones who are going to spend the most time using it for what it was built for.
Decisions, not Options
When making decisions these are the users we consider first. A great example of this consideration is software options. Every time you give a user an option, you are asking them to make a decision. When a user doesn’t care or understand the option this ultimately leads to frustration. As developers we sometimes feel that providing options for everything is a good thing, you can never have too many choices, right? Ultimately these choices end up being technical ones, choices that the average end user has no interest in. It’s our duty as developers to make smart design decisions and avoid putting the weight of technical choices on our end users.
Clean, Lean, and Mean
The core of WordPress will always provide a solid array of basic features. It’s designed to be lean and fast and will always stay that way. We are constantly asked “when will X feature be built” or “why isn’t X plugin integrated into the core”. The rule of thumb is that the core should provide features that 80% or more of end users will actually appreciate and use. If the next version of WordPress comes with a feature that the majority of users immediately want to turn off, or think they’ll never use, then we’ve blown it. If we stick to the 80% principle then this should never happen.
We are able to do this because we have a very capable theme and plugin system and a fantastic developer community. Different people have different needs, and having the sheer number of quality WordPress plugins and themes allows users to customize their installations to their taste. That should allow all users to find the remaining 20% and make all WordPress features those they appreciate and use.
Striving for Simplicity
We’re never done with simplicity. We want to make WordPress easier to use with every single release. We’ve got a good track record of this, if you don’t believe us then just take a look back at some older versions of WordPress!
In past releases we’ve taken major steps to improve ease of use and ultimately make things simpler to understand. One great example of this is core software updates. Updating used to be a painful manual task that was too tricky for a lot of our users. We decided to focus on this and simplified it down to a single click. Now anyone with a WordPress install can perform one click upgrades on both the core of WordPress and plugins and themes.
We love to challenge ourselves and simplify tasks in ways that are positive for the overall WordPress user experience. Every version of WordPress should be easier and more enjoyable to use than the last.