Web Design & Development Guide
WordPress is a
blog publishing system written in PHP and backed by a MySQL database.
WordPress is the official successor of
developed by Michel Valdrighi. The name WordPress was suggested by
Christine Selleck, a friend of lead developer
The latest release of WordPress is version 2.2.2, released on 5 August 2007.
It is distributed under the
GNU General Public License.
XML, XHTML, and
- Integrated link management
- Extensible plugin support
- Nested categories and multiple categories for articles
- TrackBack and Pingback
- Typographic filters for proper formatting and styling of text
- Static Pages
- Multiple Authors
b2, the precursor to WordPress, was also written in PHP for use with MySQL by
Michel Valdrighi, who is now a contributing developer to WordPress. Though
WordPress is the official successor, another project,
b2evolution, is also in active development.
WordPress first appeared in 2003 as a joint effort between Matt Mullenweg and
Mike Little to create a fork of b2.
In 2004 the
licensing terms for the competing
Type package was changed by
and many of its users migrated to WordPress - causing a marked, and continuing,
growth in WordPress's popularity.
WordPress's administration interface
WordPress releases are named after well known jazz musicians. WordPress 1.0
was codenamed Mingus (after Charles Mingus).
WordPress 1.5 was released mid-February 2005 and codenamed Strayhorn
Billy Strayhorn. It added a range of new vital features. One such is being
able to manage static pages. This allows content pages to be created and managed
outside the normal blog chronology and has been the first step away from being
simple blog management software to becoming a full
content management system. Another is the new template/theme system, which
allows users to easily activate and deactivate "skins" for their sites.
WordPress was also equipped with a new default template (codenamed Kubrick
after the late
designed by Michael Heilemann.
WordPress 2.0 was released in December 2005 and codenamed Duke after
jazz pianist and composer
Duke Ellington. This version added rich editing, better administration
tools, image uploading, faster posting, an improved import system, and
completely overhauled the back end. WordPress 2.0 also offered various
improvements to plugin developers.
On 22 January 2007, another major upgrade, WordPress 2.1, codenamed Ella
after jazz vocalist Ella Fitzgerald, was released. In addition to correcting security issues,
version 2.1 featured a redesigned interface and enhanced editing tools
(including integrated spell check and auto save), improved content management
options, and a variety of code and database optimizations.
WordPress 2.2, codenamed Getz after
tenor saxophonist Stan Getz, was released on 16 May 2007. Version 2.2 featured
widget support for templates, updated Atom feed support, and speed
optimizations. Wordpress 2.2 was initially slated to have a revised taxonomy
system for categories, as well as tags, but a proposed revision led to the feature being held back from
In January 2007, many high profile
Search engine optimization (SEO) blogs, as well as many low-profile
commercial blogs featuring Adsense were
targeted and attacked with a WordPress exploit.
A separate vulnerability on one of the project site's
allowed an attacker to introduce exploitable code in the form of a
back door to some downloads of WordPress 2.1.1. The 2.1.2 release addressed
this issue; an advisory released at the time advised all users to upgrade
In May 2007, a study revealed that 98% of WordPress blogs being run are
In a June 2007 interview, Stefen Esser, the founder of the PHP Security
Response Team, spoke critically of WordPress's security track record, citing
problems with the application's architecture that make it unnecessarily
difficult to write code that is secure against SQL injection vulnerabilities, as
well as other problems.
WordPress supports one weblog per installation, though multiple concurrent
copies may be run from different directories if configured to use separate
WordPress MU is a fork of WordPress created to allow simultaneous
blogs to exist within one installation. Wordpress MU makes it possible for any
one with a website to host their own blogging community, control and moderate
all the blogs from a single dashboard. Notable communities that use MU are
WordPress.com and Harvard University.
WordPress development is led by Ryan Boren and Matt Mullenweg. Mullenweg and
Mike Little were co-founders of the project.
The contributing developers include:
- Dougal Campbell
- Mark Jaquith
- Donncha O'Caoimh
- Andy Skelton
- Michel Valdrighi
- Peter Westwood
Though developed much by the community surrounding it, WordPress is closely
associated with Automattic,
where some of WordPress's main contributing developers are employees.
WordPress is also in part developed by its community, among which are the WP
testers, a group of people that volunteer time and effort to testing each
release. They have early access to nightly builds, Beta versions and Release
Candidates. Upgrading to these versions, they can find and report errors to a
special mailing list, or the project's Trac tool.
On 10 July 2007, following a post by Mark Ghosh in his blog Weblog Tools
Matt Mullenweg announced that the official WordPress theme directory at
http://themes.wordpress.net would no longer host themes containing sponsored
Although this move was criticised by designers of sponsored themes, it was
widely applauded by WordPress users, many of whom consider such themes to be
Douglass, Robert T.; Mike Little, Jared W. Smith (2005). Building Online
Communities With Drupal, phpBB, and WordPress. New York: Apress.
Hayder, Hasin (2006). WordPress Complete. United Kingdom: Packt