Let me start by saying that I really like WordPress. I use it on several blogs and don’t see myself going to another blog platform anytime soon. The problem is that when I come up with a idea for a new project I tend to start of thinking “how can I get WordPress to do this”.
A perfect example of this is a site that I set up called Daily Font. The idea behind Daily Font is that every day a new font is added to the site to give those with a font addiction a steady stream of new fonts.
When I started Daily Font I thought that WordPress would be the perfect back-end since I could publish sets of posts and set the date in the future so that a new font would come online each day.
The first snag I came across is that it took me way too long to create the sample graphics. Having a sample of the font was critical since nobody is going to download a font without seeing it first. Each font had to be downloaded, installed, a graphic created in Photoshop, that graphic uploaded, and then the font uninstalled from my computer so I didn’t wind up with thousands font fonts. My solution was to hack the WordPress upload script so that when I uploaded a TTF it created a graphic of the font name in that font style using GD. It worked, but it was clunky.
The other snag was that I had to keep track of the date of the last font. Keeping track of dates took quite a bit of effort as I added more and more fonts.
Using WordPress I would spend about 5 minutes a font, which was not bad all considered but that meant I was spending an hour and a half each month uploading fonts which seems too long to me.
So I started from scratch. I fired up my PHP editor and started creating a new version of the site. Now all I have to do is type in a few fields, pick what categories the font needs to appear in, and click upload. The script takes care of unzipping the file, creating the sample graphics, and adding the records to the database. It even gets the last date in the database and adds a day for the current font so I don’t have to track dates anymore.
I just uploaded about 40 fonts taking the site through mid-October and spent less than 20 minutes.