OTB on WordPress

Well, it’s official: OTB has switched from Movable Type to WordPress. While MT is a very robust platform, it’s a huge space hog for those who, like me, use individual archives for posts and post a lot. There are 6581 posts and counting on OTB. Furthermore, the way it’s designed requires a “rebuild” every time a post is edited, a comment is added, and so forth. Some things require rebuilds of the entire site. As a site gets bigger, it takes longer and longer to do that. Even on broadband, it was taking over 30 minutes.

I had resisted the changeover because I wanted to maintain all the functionality of the site and only MT allowed things like inline TrackBacks (see, for example, the Beltway Traffic Jam, where all the TrackBacks from other blogs show up as links below my signature block) and because WordPress combined comments and TrackBacks in the same listing, which I found annoying. Kathy Kinsley, of the On the Third Hand blog and BlogHouse web design, created plug-ins to fix those things and imported the 6581 posts, 16,213 comments, and ensured that all old links are properly redirected. She charges a nominal fee for the service.

If you notice any glitches, let me know in the comments section of this post or via e-mail.

UPDATE: Posting time is approximately 1 million times faster.

UPDATE: And it’s nice to be able to make minor edits to one template and have it automatically show up throughout the site.

FILED UNDER: Blogosphere, OTB History, , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Mark says:

    Font looks smaller…and I think that is better.

  2. Kevin says:

    Now you can add the GZip page compression. I’m not sure if that’s turned on by default, but you should look for it.

    How about a before, after disk space comparison?

  3. jen says:

    It looks the same to me too, except for the significantly smaller font in your blockquotes. Here at work it’s not going to be a problem for me to read. At home, where my settings are much smaller, I won’t be able to read it without a magnifying glass.

  4. Wow, a pretty impressive switchover; if you hadn’t pointed it out, I wouldn’t have noticed (unless I looked at the URLs).

    One minor problem: on Firefox 0.9.1 under Linux, the labels for “Name” etc. on the comment form are located to the right instead of the left of the fields.

  5. The site looks the same on IE and Mozilla. On the Opera browser, however, the blockquotes are not indented, though the borders are there.

  6. Kathy K says:

    I do have the gzip option on, Kevin. Problem is all the stuff loaded from offsite doesn’t get gzipped.
    I’m going to wait a day or two before cleaning up the hard drive completely (just to be safe). He’ll have a lot more disk space after that… I’d estimate he’ll get at least 100megs back, and probably more.

    I’ll see what I can do about the font. The design is exactly the same, except I fixed a few HTML errors. I have a feeling the font size was adjusted for the errors and fixing them unadjusted it…

  7. If I had to guess, the font difference has something to do with the site now rendering in Standards mode instead of (presumably) Quirks.