So, when I started this blog this morning. I knew off the bat that I didn’t want to set-up and manage another wordpress installation on my own host. Primarily because I don’t have SSH access on my host, and having to update wordpress over passive FTP every time there’s a new release is a real pain.
I then checked to see if sparecycles.wordpress.com was taken. It wasn’t so I set it up. I’ve been toying with the configuration on and off during the day.
One of the things I love about wordpress is its external API that allows developers to create widgets and plug-ins to easily incorporate features and content from other services. There are thousands of these. But apparently they are only for plugging in to the downloaded software version, and not the wordpress.com blogging service.
Additionally, I have to pay an upgrade fee in order to manually modify the theme that I have applied to my account.
This seems like a real loss for the service. I haven’t read much criticism on this, but I’m assuming the decision behind this lies in security. I can see wordpress being very cautious or resistant to hosting third party content on their servers. But with a cautious approach and some ingenuity I would think that some of these limitations could be overcome.
WordPress.com, given the underlying software and community, has the position and power to become the Facebook of blogging services. The apparent lack of user-powered creation and customization is a missed opportunity.
Of course, I’ve only been playing with this for a few hours. So there may be a way, but it’s not obvious through the admin interface, which would be a different kind of loss.