moveable type teaching too expensive
If you haven’t already looked at Mena Trott’s post announcing that Moveable Type 3.0 will suddenly be, well, rather expensive, really, go check out the awesome list of trackbacks. Customers talk back – on the corporate website. Wow.
I note with amusement that my use of Moveable Type with my students isn’t even on the pricing list – US$699 is the maximum price, and that only covers 20 authors and 15 blogs. I have 55 active blogs with an author each in my installation. Moveable Type handles it, but obviously it’s not built to make administration of that many users and blogs easy, and indeed, it is a pain. I think it’s fine to charge for software, but suddenly going from free (beer not speech) to pay without warning isn’t that cool. And given the software doesn’t work very well for the purpose, that price – or whatever they’d charge – is too steep. There’s no way I’m going to ask my students to install Moveable Type themselves again, so I guess next year’s web design students won’t be using Moveable Type. Anyway, the default templates are really complicated for students to figure out, and there’s the spam issue, which admittedly might be improved with the new version.
WordPress has been recommended by several (it’s recommended in half the trackbacks to Mena’s post), and it’s GPL which is good. My university’s already installed Simplog (previously called MyPHPblog, and websited here), but with little info about features). Simplog is open source too. It’s simple alright, perhaps too simple – last time I checked you couldn’t edit templates, only choose from a list of presets – but I notice the new version has trackbacks and comments and it would (gloriously) require absolutely no administration from me.
Our university’s committed to using open source software (at least, that’s the theory) so I really should switch, I guess.