WordPress is a free and open source content management system (CMS) based on PHP and MySQL, according to Wikipedia.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, that means nothing to me!
Well first off we will briefly define what is a content management system. It is also called a web management system. This is software or a group of applications that allow a person or organization to create, edit, review and publish electronic text.
So basically it is a program run usually on a web host or server that allows you to easily manipulate text using only a web browser. It has a front end and a backend. The front in is the user experience where people can browse and look at your documents or web pages. The backend is where the administration of your document or web pages are managed.
Content management systems are designed for web publishing and usually provide options and features to index and search documents and also allow for specific keywords and other metadata to be used by search engine crawlers.
Okay Well That Still Means Nothing To Me You Say, Right?
Then just think of it this way, CMS is like a program on your computer that serves up your documents to be seen in a web browser. Except instead of being on your computer it is being run on an Internet hosting server.
And you can configure, add applications and functions, and edit all your documents without leaving your web browser. All the while, people can access all your documents that you create to be seen just through their web browser using your Internet address or URL.
Okay So Back To WordPress
WordPress is the largest and fastest growing CMS software. Since its inception in 2003 it has continued to expand its functionality to allow more complicated website development reaching way beyond a simple blogging tool. As of this writing it is used by more than 26.4% of the top 10 million websites.
At the same time it has continued to remain simple and easy to use at its basic level for those wanting to publish their writing online.
So now you know that WordPress is this funky content management system, and you know that WordPress is the most popular publishing platform on the planet.
So Why Would You Want to Use It?
Well you obviously know how use a word processor right?
The thing you type into when you write.
Well if you can use that, then you can use WordPress. Except when you save a document in your word processor to your hard drive, instead you hit publish in WordPress and you basically are saving your document to the Internet for the world to view.
And it really is just like using a word processor at its basic level. The area in which you write has similar formatting options for your text, similar features for adding images, lists, numbering, you even add hyperlinks to items similar to the way you would add them in a program such as Microsoft Word.
And if you prefer to continue to just write using your word processor, you can always just copy and paste your text into your WordPress document.
Within WordPress you can also create pages, posts (which are also considered articles), add audio, video, and many other things. You can tag your articles with subject matter markers, categorize your articles and content, create fillable forms, and even set up online shopping sites.
And the beauty of it is, you can do all this without knowing any HTML coding, or any programming whatsoever.
And that is the overall purpose of this platform. To allow you to create and publish your content, your information, your articles, your web pages without any programming knowledge.
Oh and did I mention that the entire WordPress application is available to anyone free of charge!