Panasonic Youth

Why I switched from Roller to Wordpress

I’m a Java developer, and going with Roller for my first blog seemed like a logical choice. It was quick and easy with JRoller, and I liked the idea of being able to mess around in the source if the spirit moved me. I’ve been blogging for only about six months now, but I’ve realized that Roller really has some limitations compared to some non-java blogging packages. Note that my experience is with JRoller specifically - I did not have it setup on my own server.

I have two main issues with Roller- the lack of strong community developing plugins, themes, or enhancements - there are some, but not much. The second is the future development direction seems much more geared towards group-related features. It seems usability and functionality for the individual user get put on the back burner. Don’t get me wrong, Roller seems to be the most full-featured java blogging package there. It just seems to still be rough in areas that Wordpress or Blogger aren’t.

Other more minor issues:

  • the admin interface is clunky and annoying
  • no ability to set permissions or passwords on posts for private or "friends-only" posts (JIRA issue)
  • theme support limited and modifying the default themes was difficult
  • import/export limited - I still see no standard export function beyond copying the rss feed out, which only works for a limited number of posts
  • no rss feeds for comments - this may be an option that JRoller just has turned off?

WordPress was a breeze to setup on my virtual private server on the fantastic RimuHosting. There are endless themes and plugins and cool things you can integrate with it. There is even an Ajax spellchecker! Googling for any sort of support issue turns up a ton of help. The developers seem to be more “end-user” focused. And its written in PHP, which I’ll try not to hold against it.