I think we are. Lately I’ve been a bit more active with various sites I own and also found that WordPress isn’t suited for everything (who would have thought). Apparently there is no decent forum plugin/tool for WordPress, after trying all 3rd party plugins and bbPress I gave up and went with MyBB. Only to discover I had to actually “create” the site instead of run a setup and download plugins from a repository I had to actually use Google and go to a site to get plugins. Ravishing!
WordPress with all its users, help files, community, awesome plugins and most of all. The billion and 1 hooks and the super extensive and over-complete API’s to get things done. Often it seems excessive and bloat but just wait ’till you do not have all that. It’s like going back in time! And it’s not just MyBB who fails at proper user-friendliness, too.
Over the past week I’ve been installing, testing and mostly tweaking my MyBB installation. Which I have been doing for other sites for some time. But this one I got into trouble again.
And I felt like all that was missing was using Terminal and Shells to get things done. Why can’t a popular CMS/Forum like that not have a proper and modern plugin system. And what’s wrong with having a central place for your files?
For example, I installed a few plugins and a theme and had to edit core files, rewrite the .htaccess myself and upload files here, and there, and some more there, oh and here as well.
I needed a good and proper manual to even install the most simple plugin. And most come with decent instructions. But seriously?
Files that do admin stuff go in to /admin/inc/modules/ (or something) and the actual plugin goes in /inc/plugins/ (I think) and image files go into /images/ but also into some other vaguely describe place.
And installing a url_rewrite plugin actually required me to edit all kinds of files so the forum would use the pretty urls instead of the default and I had to add lines to .htaccess myself. I’ve never felt more alive!
Editing the theme is a whole adventure in itself. Obviously the standard of themes is extremely low. So it took a while find one that’s a bit decent. But man are they coded poorly. And the editing system, while advanced is very confusing. With its cryptic names and every button having its own template using Smarty I think. Who ever thought up Smarty should be stabbed and burned. Seriously, what a mess that makes in the files. And every theme uses its own convention and classes. So you can’t just take a bit from Theme A and use it in Theme B. Or at least, the bits I wanted to re-use were vastly different and not interchangeable.
But I won! I think I beat it in shape! It took only 6 days to get it right. And if I decide to change theme tomorrow it starts all over again. Because plugins are integrated into the theme, not the forum. How delightful!