What is WordPress? What is WordPress Theme & Plugin

What is Wordpress

What is WordPress?

WordPress is based on PHP (a language designed for web development), and MySQL (a database management system).  It is a Content Management System (CMS) which is free and open.  WordPress must be installed on a web server.  The web server may be part of an internet hosting service or a network host.

There are two ways we can use WordPress.

  1. You can host your WordPress blog directly on WordPress.com or
  2. You can host your WordPress blog locally or on any hosting which supports WordPress. You can download WordPress source from WordPress.org

For single-user testing and learning purposes a local computer may be used.

Importance of WordPress

By February 2017, 27.5% of the top 10 million websites were using WordPress.  It is said to be the most popular method of website management or blogging in use today, and supports more than60 million websites.

Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little founded WordPress, and it was released on May 27, 2003.  It is released under theGPLv2 Licence.

It consists of a web template system and uses a template processor. The architecture is a front controller, which routes all requests for those URIs that are non-static to a single PHP file.  This file parses the URI, and then is able to identify the target page.  This feature allows support for permalinks which are more human-readable.

What is WordPress Theme

What is WordPress theme? When using WordPress you are able to install and change between different themes.  With these themes the user is able to alter the look and functionality of the website without change the core code or content of the site.

On WordPress websites, at least one theme must be present, and each theme must be designed using the standards of WordPress.  The PHP must be structured, the HTML must be valid and there should be Cascading Style Sheets.  WordPress has an “Appearance” administration tool on the dashboard, and from here you can directly install a theme.  You can also copy theme folders into the themes directly.  One way is via FTP (File Transfer Protocol).  PHP, HTML and CSS, which are found in themes, are able to be directly modified so as to change the behaviour of a theme.  Themes can also inherit settings from other themes, or even override selected features.

Types of WordPress Themes

There are two categories of WordPress themes – free, or premium.  Free themes are available in the theme directory on WordPress, and you can purchase premium themes from various sellers or developers.  Users of WordPress are also able to create and develop their own customised themes.  ‘Underscores’ is a free theme created by the developers of WordPress, and is one of the most popular as a basis for new themes.

What is WordPress Plugin?

What is WordPress Plugin?The architecture plugin on WordPress gives the user the ability to extend features and the functionality of either a website or a blog.  There are more than 50,316 plugins available, and they each allow users to customise their sites to suit their specific needs.  These custom functions and features range from the optimisation for search engines, to client portals (used for private information), content management systems, and content displaying features, such as widgets, or navigation bars.  They may not all function properly as they are not always up to date with upgrades, but they are mostly available through WordPress.  You can download them, or use the WordPress dashboard.  Packages are also available through third parties, at a cost.

WordPress – Mobiles

WebOS, Android, iOS, Windows Phone and Blackberry have native applications available.  They are designed by ‘Automattic’, and include a set of options, including the ability to add new blog posts or pages, and to work with comments.

WordPress – Other Features

An integrated link management feature, friendly search-engine, and a clean permalink are some of the features available when you use WordPress.  It has the ability for posts to be assigned multiple categories, and also has support for the tagging of posts.  There are automatic filters and they will standardise the formatting and style of text in posts.  ‘Trackback’ and ‘Pingback’ standards are also supported by WordPress.  This is a useful feature for displaying links to other sites.  Posts in WordPress can be edited by using HTML, the visual editor, or other plugins that are available for customised editing.

WordPress A Multi-user and Multi-blogging Platform

Before the introduction of Version 3, only one blog per installation was supported by WordPress.  There was a method of running multiple concurrent copies from different directories if the configuration was adjusted.  WordPress created WordPress Multisite, which allows multiple blogs to be created within one installation, and they can be administered centrally.  WordPress MU allows those who own a website to host blogging communities, and allows them to manage the blogs from just one dashboard.  WordPress MS allows eight new data tables per blog.  With the release of WordPress 3, Multisite has merged into WordPress.

History of WordPress

The precursor to WordPress was b2/cafelog, and it was estimated that it had been installed on about 2,000 blogs by May 2003.  Michael Valdrighi was responsible for writing it in PHP so it could be used with MySQL.  Valdrighi continues to be a contributor to the development of WordPress.  WordPress is the successor to b2/cafelog, but another project is being developed, called b2 evolution.

Matt Mullenweg and Mile Little created WordPress, but it was a friend of Mullenweg, Christine Selleck Tremoulet, who suggested the actual name.  In 2004, ‘Movable Type migrated to WordPress.  By October 2009, the Open Source CMS Market Share Report noted that WordPress had the greatest brand strength for this type of package.

WordPress – Future

Mullenweg has reported that WordPress has a future in social, mobile and also as a platform for applications.

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