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I am facing a dilemma, over the past six months I have been building my website from scratch and I put plenty of hours into it using standard html/css/php/mysql/javascript and jquery...

My website provides a service on a membership only basis, I was wondering if it is smart decision to start transitioning to wordpress? At the moment, I have no experience using it although I heard of the many advantages...

I am a freelance web developer/designer and I am trying to decide if regularly working with wordpress is worth it? are there any drawbacks?

I enjoy the 'coding' part of web development which is why I tried to stay away;)

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3 Answers 3

Personally, I feel it depends on your level of competence with the language you're using. If you build something from scratch are you able to make the application secure? Do you know about escaping user input and SQL injection? Are you aware of XSRF attacks and how to prevent them? Until answer to all of those questions is yes, then I would not recommend working from scratch if you need to get something out quickly.

That being said WordPress is not necessarily going to be your best bet, it sure as hell isn't going to be flexible as anything you write yourself.

What I would recommend is using some form of PHP Framework, which will provide you with a a base for building PHP applications and will take care of a lot of mundane features automatically which will allow you to quickly build your app. The PHP framework I use myself is CakePHP, but there are many out there and the "recommend me a framework" question has been asked many many times.

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thanks for the reply, considering I am not a novice and am taking security measures I will stick to standard coding. will probably play around with wordpress to get a better understanding of what it IS and NOT capable of... will also looking into using a php framework. –  MHZ Jul 31 '12 at 16:41

If I were you I would at least tinker in Wordpress, it's a major platform and people hire Wordpress developers for any number of reasons so as a career development option knowing Wordpress can only be advantageous (even if it means knowing reasons to avoid it). Also if you like the coding aspect there are plenty of options to get involved in that with Wordpress since it's open source you can make contributions and plugins it will give a different perspective to your skill set working on a larger piece of software then you would likely build yourself as well as working in a different type of environment then you generally get working on your own. In terms of making the switch for your own site it's up to you I like having the process of specing and designing software so I continue with small projects built from the ground up but would say you're limiting yourself if you don't ever branch out.

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From my experience this is one of those things that is more of a preferential thing than anything else. There are some differences though. You mention that you enjoy the 'coding' part of website design, which you can still get if you are using word-press. However, you don't get the feeling like you "own" your own site. I know all of my websites in and out, and I stay away from wordpress just because If a problem occurs with one of my sites, I can navigate to the exact line of code, and modify it. Versus in wordpress, you have to learn what function/module/etc is causing the issue, and then if you change that function/module, you need to research what function/module that change will effect.

There are things though that word-press is more useful for. Such as blogging, or temporary websites, or a bunch of other things. If I am building a custom, top of the line application or website, I will code it myself. But if it is for a project page, or a blog, or something that has several repeated processes (such as a login), it is much easier to go with something that has been tried and true. I would say that it depends on the situation. The key to success is not to try a one-method-fits-all approach, but approach everything with a different tool.

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"However, you don't get the feeling like you "own" your own site. I know all of my websites in and out, and I stay away from wordpress just because If a problem occurs, I can navigate to the exact line of code, and modify it." <-- thats exactly what I am afraid to lose! thanks for the insight:) –  MHZ Jul 31 '12 at 16:19

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