If youve been doing some online surfing, then you must have heard a lot of rants about WordPress of recent. So, whats it all about anyway? Well, WordPress is basically a website creating and managing tool and its arguably the most commonly used in the world, as it is well-known with popular sites like The Rolling Stones and The New Yorker, among thousands of other high-class websites.
With WordPress, you can create (or manage existing) personal websites, business websites, blogs and online stores. One of the features that make WordPress so popular is the fact that it is totally free and it has no hidden charges.
Why is WordPress Free?
Someone may want to ask, how can such a valuable tool be free? Wouldnt it be more profitable to sell it? Well, theoretically it would generate more revenue for the company, but WordPress operates as an open source project, which makes it open to contribution and modification by thousands of people world-wide. So, in essence, WordPress is not owned by a single individual or company, but by thousands of good-spirited geeks world-wide.
Though a core team of developers spearhead the project, anyone can report bugs, contribute patches or suggest new features. Also, the project leaders are not constant, they change from one version to the other. So, if youre very actively involved in the community, you may very well become one of the core contributors for the next version of WordPress.
WordPress.com Vs WordPress.org: Which is Which?
Some people often confuse wordpress.com and wordpress.org, but these are two very distinct platforms. WordPress itself is the online tool that helps you create and modify your websites, but the two sites above, are the platforms through which it performs its functions. So, the question then is which one do I use? Well, it all depends on your needs.
www.wordpress.com is a web-hosting service, that allows you create your own website for free, and runs it on the WordPress servers. So, if youre looking to have a website of your own, free of charge, then this is where to go. However, if you desire to have your own domain name, then you will have to pay a small fee. Also, with this service, you will not have access to the thousands of available themes and plug-ins available on WordPress, except you pay for it.
On the other hand, www.wordpress.org is for people who want to self-host their websites (i.e., outside WordPress). When using this version, you will have total control over the functionality and design of your website. Of course, this may mean extra spending on third party hosts, or for download of themes and plug-ins.