MovableType 4 vs. WordPress 2.2

Mashable compared MovableType 4 and WordPress 2.2. I wouldn’t agree with Byrne that “Movable Type 4.0 is light years ahead of its predecessor not to mention any other blogging tool on the market” but they have caught up to a lot of basic features — pages, WYSIWYG, pagination, user registration — that have been lacking in the platform for a while. That, plus the fact that they support WordPress imports and cloned our pages API does show that they’re gunning for some switchers regardless of what they may say in public. (I’m cool with both of those by the way, it was good of them to adopt existing standards instead of invent new ones. In fact it’d be nice if they could export to WXR as well as it’s pretty semantically rich and the current MT export format leaves a lot of important stuff out, like slugs.)

21 replies on “MovableType 4 vs. WordPress 2.2”

I wouldn’t worry unduly. Competition is good. It keeps everyone on their toes 🙂

I have installed and played with MT4 (as well as Joomla, Mambo, Drupal, Habari and Serendipity) and the admin interface looks polished and MT has some decent features.

However, I now have so much invested in WordPress (.com and now .org) with all the plug-ins and the knowledge I have accumulated, it would take something pretty earth shattering to force me to migrate away from WordPress.

well there are some valid points. You guys really have to work on the backend “interface”. The “we are programmers not designers” approach doesn’t fit a project like wp anymore (and i’m not talking about the Richt-Text-Edtior / Editor). JS Effects doesn’t make a pretty / logical interface :/

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I think it is good to use different systems. I think different sites should have different things. There are some things I want wordpress to have that either it has and I haven’t figured it out yet or it doesn’t and other programs offer it. So I love a little friendly competition

I was thinking about checking out MT4 since they had new features, but it just takes so damn long to upload then install that I just said forget it. Dialup is not fun when you wanna do stuff like this.

Matt, WXR has worked well for the importing/exporting I’ve done with it. However, you should think about documenting the extension’s structure.

WXR’s biggest appeal is that at the very least, you get your site as a feed—even in programs that don’t understand the extension. A good specification will increase the incentive for Movable Type and other programs to use it to its fullest.

It’s been suggested before, and it can help WXR become a success across the board.

Mike, it’s no more or less documented than the Pages API, and if they’ve written an importer they already have everything they need to know to do an exporter. They could even use mt: namespaced elements for anything they do that doesn’t map to what we do, and that’d be pretty neat.

However I still do plan to get a spec doc up for it one day. If that were a condition of them supporting it I’d happily prioritize it.

The damn software won’t even download properly, I go to the download page, I click download, then it redirects back to the download page even though it directs me to a page with an automatic download, thus nothing is downloaded, can someone tell me why?

I tried it last week, like Jenny said: long download, even longer upload. Its to big! And at this moment, there are almost no themes or plugins available.

hahaha!! I tried installing MT on xampp and it threw an error, nothing works despite that everything is working correctly, Perl sucks!!!! this wouldn’t happen with WordPress, MT is just a nightmare, tsk tsk tsk not good for a first timer, but I’ll stick with WordPress thankyou!!! 🙂

Movable Type is a godsend because WP’s admin API is a joke. It’s a snarled, entrenched codepile that isn’t going to get better anytime soon. Both bill themselves as CMS-worthy, but WP just doesn’t cut it without massive hacking. Try doing any simple restructuring on the admin side, and you’ll see what I mean.
Check out almost any admin plugin that does something interesting and you’ll see how many bad hacks it involves. Apparently the core team thinks “a break from a forced interface would be too confusing for users” and “there isn’t enough demand”, both of which are specious, to say the least.

Most of the plugins I use mainly impact the admin side of things. I don’t consider them to be hacks, though you might, but from a pure-user point of view the hundreds of admin plugins out there are very functional.

Our admin is polarizing, some love it and some hate it. Personally I like it but am very aware of how it can and should be improved, hence our investment with Happy Cog in the new admin for version 2.4, which was talked about at WordCamp.

Personally I have created a more beautiful version of the admin interface, in fact all CSS is used, I think it should be used for WP 2.3, honestly it might turn a few heads around about their pet hate for the interface. Although the whole interface can be improved in a later release for now a few changes should change some opinions.

It doesn’t look too different, however a few inconstancies have been fixed, used a different font (Verdana) made the nav menu prettier and bolder, the border around the wrap div is a light blue that blends in nicely with the faint blue background, also when you hover over the planet WordPress boxes, they turn a light gray color.

I don’t know where to show the CSS, but would WP trac do?

Another suggestion matt, in the future of WP, the people who work on it should be divided into teams that exclusively work on one aspect of the software, phpBB does this and it works well. An example of what I’m talking about would be to seperate people (given their talents) to put them in a certain group that this entirely focused on a certain part of WP;

* The security team (monitors and fixes security issues)
* The bug team (finds, reports and eradicates bugs)
* The art and interface team (all interface and art of WP)
* The suggestion team (focuses what people want, and determines what should and shouldn’t go)
* The coding team (coding the software itself)
* The “other affairs” team (handles the general stuff of WP, like etc)

I like to know what you think Matt.

And Derek, you have to understand the circumstances involving open source software, it’s in it’s nature to be customized to the extent who he/she feels wants, so if your not happy with how ugly the WP interface is, it’s your job to customize it anyway you like, unlike MT, it doesn’t allow any sort of customization without approval of it’s owners, that sucks. Personally I put power and customization ahead of beauty, WP is a lot of things got to do with customization, it’s just that it takes time for it to be improved in every aspect, that can be beauty in itself.

I tried out a late beta of MT4 because I needed to get away from Blogger, which is very limited particularly with private hosting accounts. MT wouldn’t finish its setup, even after I’d checked 3 times over to make sure I’d done the upload correctly along with the entries in the db. Then I decided to give WP a try, even though I’d had a rough experience with v1 a couple years back. It installed and setup effortlessly in about ten minutes.

Now I don’t mean to displace blame here: I’m no geek, and I’m sure sixapart isn’t at fault for my problems. All I can say is that WP worked and the overall versatility and ease of the product is way ahead of what it had been two years back. If anything is “light years ahead” of anything else here, it’s WP over Blogger. Which made me think: how can an open-source product so easily out-perform something made by a corporation worth $600B whose employees are virtually all CMU, MIT, and Stanford grads? So I wrote something about that.

@Steve – I assure you that is absolutely false. There are a number of ways to modify the UI in Movable Type, none of which require the permission of Six Apart. In fact we built mechanisms into Movable Type specifically so that users and developers could easily customize the user interface. The same remains true for MT4 as well. In fact, one of the design goals of MT4 was to give MORE was for users to modify the interface through APIs so that we could ensure that the modifications people were making could be maintained from release to release (thus preventing the need for plugin developers to constantly rev their software to keep up with releases we might make.

And now with Movable Type going open source there is one more avenue for modification – and that is modification of the core.

I personally don’t like to sacrifice either beauty or customizability. That is why MT4 gives you both.

Byrne Reese
Product Manager, MT

@Brian – While I don’t think it is totally fair to compare a beta to a stable production release of any product, I sympathize with the difficulty you experienced. Of course, the purpose of the beta was to flush out problems just like the one you encountered. In fact, if memory serves, I believe we did address your specific issue in a subsequent beta.

Anyway, I am sorry you had trouble with the beta, but I am glad you made a switch to a product you are happy with nonetheless.

Byrne Reese
Product Manager, MT

Sorry to “spam” this comment again but I was recently altered by this little snide remark Located Here I couldn’t believe I stumbled across this myself! I laughed my head off when I read this insane post taking a direct personal attack towards me, which is apparently very critical of WordPress, it surprises me the issue they make out of a suggestion I made, whats the harm in that?

Another thing, the download page at MT wasn’t working at the time(although later did) and when I did finally install the software, all I got were CGI errors, I was in no way trying to put down MT. I suggested matt considered my suggestion about the interface I never “told” him anything as in a way that I said that he should or must, I was being helpful, seesh you cant do anything right without being criticized for flamed for it. The suggestion I made for a team is a good one, but of course thats up to matt to decide, whether or not he thinks its fine. By the way I’m not wordpress fanboy as you proclaim me to be, now who’s delusional! It surprises me how you host your bitch blog on itself, my there are so many FREE hosting services out there? maybe your trying to create an impression or something, whats next?