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March 2009
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WordPress helps techno-incompetent redesign our site

Stewart hard at workAs part of International Bring Your Luddite To Work Day we allowed our Content Marketing Director, Stewart Kirkpatrick, to redesign our site.  Now, the boy can do words, pictures and what users like but, to be frank, couldn’t code his way out of a paper bag. In fact, getting him to make a cup of tea involves a map, a torch and painstaking discussions on the essential nature of the word “kettle”. It does sound a bit of a risk entrusting the care of our corporate site to somebody challenged by the technical problems of turning on a light switch. But we had a secret weapon: WordPress. WordPress is the free, open source, Web 2.0 content management system. It is so simple to use that if you can handle Microsoft Word documents (or not in the case of Stewart) then you can make WordPress work for you. As well as offering simpicity it can also be as complex as you need. And this is where the rest of us weighed in with our technical expertise. This site uses a heavily customised version of the Atahualpa theme. To make it as sophisticated as we wanted it to be we’ve given it a cocktail of plugins that we have found to be particularly effective – though some  needed a tweak or two.  These range from SEO to mobile versions to video display and beyond. As for how the new site looks, it’s less Stalinist than the previous version but remains true to web guru Clay Shriky’s dictum: “behaviour first, design second”.
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