Support » Requests and Feedback » Side-by-Side Pivot and WordPress Comparison

  • I thought a few people might be interested in this…

    I love Pivot, but WordPress has been tempting me to some degree. So, to check which worked better for my needs, I delved into WordPress, modifying templates, using plugins, and even writing a few plugins of my own. Luckily, there was a pivot to wp import script that was 90% done, so a little tweaking and I could copy my pivot-files into a MySQL database. Total time I spent? Like 6 hours, but I also learned a lot more PHP along the way.

    The end result
    My blog (pivot-based) at and my test WordPress blog at look and act basically identical.

    From there, I’ve been able to actually see the changes and compare the pages.

    My observations?
    In WordPess’s Favor

    • WordPress renders faster– Pivot seems to hang a little bit on processing the PHP command of my “random image block”, which WP doesn’t.
    • WordPress (despite the time I spent learning it) has a much more open API and is more highly customizable, with a larger base of people hacking away, building new widgets, themes, and plugins.
    • I like the ability to moderate posts and comments, and the interface to do so, in WP, something I wish pivot would adopt.
    • The MySQL backend lets me run queries and dynamically sort information a lot quicker and more intuitively. I really wish “Pivot — MySQL version” would become a reality.

    Pivot is currently winning, though.
    In Pivot’s Favor

    • Pivot has better comment composition (textile, etc).
    • Pivot handles media MUCH better. While writing a Pivot post, I can seemlessly upload an image, generate a thumbnail, and include it in the post. Even with plugins, that’s a difficult task in WordPress. This is something I had never really recognized before, and a good lesson. I commend the pivot team!
    • Pivot has nice little features like “post rating” and great “open in new window” support.

    What I wish Pivot would learn from WordPress

    • Configuration Interface Design. Clicking “Next” twice and “Save” once isn’t an intuitive (or sensical) way to change a setting on the first page of Weblog config. WordPress’s admin interface is beautiful, and well laid out. Pivot already has a sidebar of categories and sub-categories in it’s Admin theme– I wish the config options would be broken out and sorted on individual pages.
    • Better dynamic handling. I shouldn’t have to hit “re-build the frontpage” after every change I make to a template.
    • User levels / A Post and Comment Moderation system.
    • Database back-end to enable an API– a great thing I can easily (almost ridiculously easily) do in WordPress is create a link that returns, say, “articles by user:Teisha in year:2004 in category:linkdump”. I don’t even know if this is remotely possible in Pivot (I don’t think it is, and if it is, the API is not well-documented)

    What WordPress could learn from Pivot

    • Better default media handling. Even the Gallery2 plugin requires you to manually upload through a different program, find the location, and insert that between tags. Pivot’s ability to browse, upload, generate thumbnails, and place all within the post dialog is a goal that WordPress should set.
    • I guess that’s it.. better media support might tempt me to WordPress

    I’d love feedback from anyone about what you think. Am I on target with these observations? Am I misreading the capabilities of the various programs?

    If anyone is especially curious about my process, I’d be happy to post the templates I used to modify WP, the plugins I modified and wrote, and the derivative of the script at MakeYouGoHmm that I used (I modified it to fix a little error and to insert the wordpress “more” template tag between intro and body of imported Pivot entries).

Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
  • As a totally newbie in weblogging I started off with Pivot.
    A disaster of 2 days work in/with Pivot,,, even theme-changing in firefox resulted in a bug in the posting. Continously rebuilding the files. There where one uses the GUI for writing articles and posting, seems like pivot sometimes forget some tags which results in a crashed frontpage look and some html verifying of the latest articles too look for the mistakes. Themes,,, so much more to find for WordPress, so after 1 day of install and putting back the previous articles ever written, I stay with WordPress

    Sorry to hear about your problems with Pivot, patjepayer– Like I said, I think Pivot has interface issues (I write my pivot posts without using the WYSIWYG interface, so I may miss some annoyance). This comparison was cross-posted here and on the Pivot Forums, with the hope that these kind of comparisons will help both software suites improve.

    Looking over plugins today, it seems that some are getting closer to Pivot’s intuitive handling on in-post images. I may install some later and test.

    I appreciate any comments!

    hey Druid, nice comparison… it’s always enlightening to see how two products stack up… I really like your site’s theme, and I was wondering if I could have a copy of the WordPress theme? I find your three column layout is very nicely done, superior to the ones currently available. If you are inclined to share the theme (which I would use in an obscure country-level domain in Spanish, not exactly visible) let me know, my mail is my b o l o n k i [at] gmail dot com.

    So, I found the IImage Browser plugin, which pretty well solves the media handling problem in WordPress. That’s a big swing in WordPress’s favor, and further demonstrates the advantages on an open and extensible design.

    v0.2 of the pivot to wp importer script has been posted (same URL as above). paradoxdruid, I incorporated your suggestion (the db table bugs I’d been notified by another person about earlier). Any comments on that please hit me up on the blog.

    I’m curious: you only made suggestions to 3 lines of code, but there are some 250+ lines of code in that importer, so I’m confused by the it was “90% done” part of your comment above unless you added a bunch more code (y/n?)

    Anyway, I’d be interested in seeing this other code you modified/wrote so perhaps we could combine to make one super easy import script for folks to be able to use to switch if they liked.

    One thing I’d like to change is the config section to be through the browser like the WP install. It’s easier for folks that aren’t familiar with coding to follow that type of UI.

    Also, I noticed there was our standard commercial copyright stub on that file. That should *not* have been there and will be changed to a GNU license just like WordPress in the next update. People are welcome to use, reuse and modify that code despite the copyright stub.

    Drop me a line and get in touch on this, paradoxdruid 🙂 You can call my office if you like or stop by our irc chat at #scriptschool. Thanks 🙂

    GNU, lol, I mean GPL license! Long day.

    Hey TDavid-

    Glad you’re updating the script! It sure saved me a lot of time and effort, and I appreciate it being around.

    My 90% figure was more a off-hand remark than any accurate measure. Besides changing the database error, I also added <!--more--> to the script output between the Pivot Introduction and Pivot Content, so that WordPress would correctly recognize the intro section as the stuff that goes on the main-page, while the content goes on the entry-page behind the cut. So, really, the script was 99% done.

    I really want this script, but the links are no longer working. I am using Pivot right now and want to give WP a go but the import-rss imports all funky with some [[CDATA stuff that is breaking the entries. Anyone have a valid link to this script? Thanks.


Viewing 8 replies - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
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