#heweb10 - Wait … WordPress can do that??

APS / 4:15 pm / Monday
Web ManagerRichwalsky, John Carroll University
Jesse Lavery, Allegheny College

Full house for this session — lots of people already using wordpress; lots of interest in role management, ldap auth, caching.

Why wordpress?

  • open sources, extendable, scalable and hackable
  • robust community of users

Many ways to generate content

  • browser
  • third party apps (livewrite, marsedit)
  • iphone, ipad app

A few different things you can do with wordpress:

  • Blog
    • user friendly
    • full control over design, layout, elements
    • free and premium themes
  • CMS
    • Running 3.01 multisite (Allegheny has 151 WP sites with 104 users/editors and growing — including administrative, departmental, committees, students)
    • Author note - we’re using WordPress at Vanderbilt for all main news website, our magazines - and released a WordPress theme that any department can download and use (with a full featured control panel that allows them to completely customize their site; it’s so cool to see a completely new site appear that we didn’t have anything to do with other than providing the WP theme!!)
    • Must have plugins
      • Amazon S3 (media not housed on your server) — also Dropbox Plugin works similarly
      • Breadcrumb NavXT
      • User Role Editor
      • WP Super Cache
      • WPTouch (create mobile version of your site)
      • (author note - you can accomplish many plugins functionality without a plugin - which is better for your server… only call functionality on pages its needed on.)
    • Custom Post Types
      • use to change rotating banners
      • use to add specific types of content (videos, reviews, faculty profiles, etc)
  • Learning Management Software
    • ScholarPress (integrates with buddypress)
    • features similar to Blackboard, sakai, moodle
      • private courses, groups, forums and blogs
      • classes can be archived, materials reused
    • more user friendly than (insert your LMS here … LOL)
    • extendable
    • CUNY Academic Commons — built in buddypress
  • Online Magazine
    • author note - we have almost all our alumni magazines in WP - works perfectly! (Listed under Alumni Publications) Users can follow the feed and automatically will know when a new issue comes out; commenting allows for discussion; these mag websites make it simple for magazine content to be featured and linked to from the homepage and other highly trafficked pages. Before they had WP sites … the mag content wasn’t something we linked to because we didn’t want to dump a user into a 60 page PDF where they have to find the article!
  • Social Network
    • buddypress
    • go from zero to social network in 7 minutes.  LOL
  • Job Board
    • go from a corkboard of paper … to a quick WP site
    • their HR office uses this for job postings
    • alumni uses it for volunteer opportunities
    • JobPress theme - $79
      • heavy lifting done by the theme
      • features front end submission, filter by category, time stamps, paid submissions, etc.
  • Classifieds
    • Uses same theme JobPress
    • Garage Sale on Campus
    • Free for all for students, faculty, staff — post whatever you want
  • Event Calendar
    • GigPress
    • easily customized
    • rss and ical feeds
    • good for general events - great for regular performers / groups
  • Create a book
    • plugin - Anthologize
    • create a book from your blog / cms content
    • publish in print and digital formats
    • archive student and faculty pages

Other Resources

  • wordpress.org
  • smashing magazine
  • six revisions
  • WPMU Dev

This post was written by:

Lacy Tite - who has written 10 posts on .eduGuru

Lacy is a web developer for Vanderbilt University (Go 'Dores!) in the  University Web Communications office (which is responsible for the Vanderbilt homepage and all top level pages - as well as providing development, design, content management, communication strategy assistance to the entire Vanderbilt community.)  Follow Lacy: twitter | VU project blog | delicious