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As I mentioned earlier , the proliferation of spam comments and the flap over Movable Type’s new licensing scheme motivated me to search out other blogging software. As I looked around, my two favorites were TextPattern and WordPress . Given the title of this post, you can probably guess which one I chose.

It took me a couple hours this morning, but I managed to wrangle my MT entries into WordPress, and even got my templates mostly working. I initially evaluated WP 1.02, the latest release, but decided to live on the edge and actually use the current release candidate of 1.2. Overall, it’s very impressive. What have I gained over Movable Type?

  • an improved, stream-lined editting interface that doesn’t require multiple windows for assigning more than one category
  • a template system that doesn’t rely on magic tags, but rather exploits the power of the underlying language (in this case PHP); this might not seem like a lot, but it’s allowed me to recreate parts of MT that WordPress doesn’t provide an interface for (like template “blocks”)
  • templates that live on the filesystem, which makes editting and back up a lot easier
  • oh yeah, and it’s really, really Free. Mark Pilgrim has an excellent post on this very subject, and when smart people agree with me, I feel better.

So why not TextPattern? I have to admit, I was initially drawn to the clean lines and good looks of it’s user interface. Yet somehow, even after reading the license and seeing that it allowed redistribution, I didn’t feel good about it. And then I read this page in the TextPattern forum, and realized that if I chose TP, it’d be MT all over again: free enough for now, not free enough forever.