Posts Tagged ‘Apache’

Using a Content Management System (CMS)

Monday, August 1st, 2011

Content management systems have been around for many years and while they have their pitfalls, they also offer a tremendous advantage over hand coded HTML websites. The primary difference is that the content management system provides you with a web-based interface to modify the contents of your website. If you are unfamiliar with HTML, this prospect might scare you. However, if you know how to use email than you have enough skills to use a content management system and update the content on your website by yourself.

Even designers are using content management systems for the final product because it’s much easier to hand off the completed website and a fully functioning back end control panel that empowers their clients to make changes without having to call the designer every time they want to add a new sentence or change a heading. There are lots of content management systems available but WordPress is probably the most commonly used. It’s easy to install, easy to manage and even easier to use. If you have a complex website that is database driven or have some special function that you think might be incompatible with WordPress, it’s very likely that the developer can integrate that functionality into WordPress and still give you enough control to make changes to your content without whacking all of the code that they created.

The thing that blows me away about Word press and other content management systems is that there is literally an army of developers who create widgets and plug-ins for WordPress and most if not all, are free. So if you need to add a scheduling function to your website, you can typically just search the plug-ins and find one that you like and that is rated very highly by other users, then easily add that your website yourself. This whole process could take (5) or (10) minutes as opposed to (5) or (10) days with a developer, and your cost is nothing.

Another cool thing about WordPress is that it runs on open source operating systems (you can run it on Windows too) and WordPress itself is totally free. So you can essentially run this free application on a server running an open source operating system and open-source web server software like Apache. WordPress is also a very light weight application so it will only use a small amount of resources on the server. This doesn’t mean that WordPress is not capable of serving up millions of webpages because it certainly is. In fact, there are tremendous amount of very popular blogs and websites running WordPress right now that serve tens if not hundreds of millions of page views monthly.

While WordPress is not for everyone and content management systems in general are not always a good fit, they’re certainly worth a look if you’re tired of waiting around for your Web designer or developer to return your phone call or email because you need to update the telephone number on your website.

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