Software constraints in blogging software

WidgetI’ve been working with WordPress for about two months now and I am still getting used to it. My blog seems like an open-ended project, one that will never finish. Maybe that seems like a rather obvious statement, since a blog is a tool for continuously expressing your thoughts. What I actually mean is the form or shape of the blog. I feel like I am building a house and even though the framework is done, the house itself is under constant construction.

The framework itself feels restrictive and I have been looking for tools to accomplish what I want. In the case of WordPress I have been looking for Widgets and Plug ins that can achieve what I want. Or rather, the backend tools that shape and form my blog. Plugins and widgets are solutions to the restrictions in the WordPress software, but are restrictions being reproduced on another level? What kind of constraints are built into the internet on the content level? How does software control meaning (content). These are several questions I am planning to ask myself in my MA thesis.
I recently came across two related posts: Ranting on WordPress Plugin Development by Justin Shattuck and Ranting on WordPress Plugin Development by David at Blogger Pro

2 thoughts on “Software constraints in blogging software

  1. Anne,

    First, good luck with your Thesis. I am hoping to find a digital copy over time that I could read once you’re finished with your research and writing.

    There exists numerous issues when trying to “remove restrictions” across WordPress. Some questions you might ask yourself, are we creating more restrictions with plugins. Are plugins in themselves, restrictions? Creating a system or framework such as wordpress that has hooks available for everything imagineable is nearly impossible, or would require a huge amount of time.

    Plugins simply modify data, adjust output and display various levels of information based upon what a user wants. You can’t please everyone; unfortunately.

  2. Dear Justin,

    Thank you for your comments. My thesis should be ready and available for download somewhere during the summer of 2007 (if all goes well and according to planning of course ;) ) Right now I would consider plug ins an answer to the constraints WordPress imposes on its users. Unfortunately only programmers have the ability to work around these constraints because they have the technical wizz to actually build a custom solution to the posed constraint/problem. I think it would be also useful and interesting too look at the community that is creating and writing these plug ins. Also the larger trend of widgets is worth looking at. The “Widgetize Anything� WordPress plug in is a great example of this. Oi oi. It is time to get my scope narrowed down :)

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