Pushing For Innovation

The WordPress ecosystem is rife with copycats and we’re severely lacking a couple of unique ideas. Due to the popularity of WordPress and the obvious success that designers / developers and businesses have experienced in recent years, many more are flocking to the platform to make a quick buck. Which would’ve been absolutely fantastic for all those involved, except that these newcomers are not bringing much newness to the table.

via The Copycat Stagnation | Adii.


7 responses to “Pushing For Innovation”

  1. There’s lots of innovation happening if you ask me and even among the ‘copycats’ the bar is pretty high as compared to 2 years ago (see related post about the 35$ themeforest themes). Adii’s post sounds a little self-congratulatory to be honest (not very surprising since they have accrued a lot of credibility & success). But…it’s pretty conceivable that today’s Woothemes is tomorrow’s DIYthemes.

  2. There seems to be a certain amount of rockstar self-delusion going on there – instead of focusing on the “newcomers” that he believes are copying his “brand/model/product strategy”, Adii could have retained his early lead by innovating beyond just making great-looking themes … gloss != innovation.

    Instead, he let those newcomers pioneer frameworks and non-subscription based revenue models, a pretty bad strategic mistake that will become more obvious as WordPress continues to establish itself as a platform.

    As far as innovation is concerned, there is a lot going on but we haven’t yet scratched the surface of WordPress’ potential. Adii was right to highlight Gravity Forms, my perception is that they are the company which is doing the most to lay down foundations for an explosion of innovative functionality via add-ons.

    Only a few days ago, I posted a feature request to the Gravity Forms forums, suggesting a stripped down (and, therefore, highly flexible) add-on that would add bookings, appointments, reservations and rentals functionality, for which the lack of WordPress options has always puzzled me, as it would obviously be a massive market.

    Carl responded that they are moving in that general direction and, for anyone who creates with WordPress, knowing that a company like Rocket Genius is focused upon expanding what WordPress can do, concentrating on inventing the future of WordPress rather than wasting time self-aggrandizing and disparaging their competitors, that is truly exciting.

  3. The problem is WP is from the bottom-up an exercise in bad coding and this permeates into how plugins and extensions to the cms are developed. It needs an OOP rewrite, restful architecture, MVC patterns etc.

  4. @donnacha of WordSkill – gloss != innovation, to be sure.

    I’ve been rooting around in core, and while I see some truly hair curling code, I also see both vast opportunity for improvement… and that improvement actually taking place.

    One of the most exciting things I’ve seen lately is a plugin which emits a static site from a WordPress installation. Obviously, commenting has to be handled 3rd party, but that’s not a bad thing. I’m currently writing static sites with combinations of POSH, Erb and various and miscellaneous Ruby utilities and Rake files. Static html from WP sounds pretty darn cool.

    I have to agree, WordPress’ potential has barely been scratched.

  5. @marc – people have been saying this for years, each time a new fad in programming rolls into town, but it’s only fair to ask: why have none of these wonders of “proper” coding yet managed to magic up any sort of production-ready alternative to WordPress? One that actual, real users choose for actual, real uses?

    Don’t pay too much attention to armchair critics who don’t understand the difference between talking and doing. If someone, someday, somewhere produces a better publishing platform using Rails or whatever, great, we can all jump over to that but, for now, WordPress is where the action is – use it, enjoy it, improve it.


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