I’m writing this post so I don’t have to constantly explain my reasoning to everyone in #habari. This is not a post describing how bad Habari is, it is a fine product. It’s just not ready for me and I’ll explain why.
Everyone who visits my site knows that I like to change themes. The lack of quality themes on Habari is one thing that is keeping me from changing. Themes aren’t a make or break deal, but I do like to change things up and not having the ability to do so with a variety of different themes is something that will weigh heavily on my decision. If there was nothing else that made me hesitant about switching, I’d do it. But there are other things.
Lack of widgets or modules built in are something I really want. Because I like to change themes often, not having a widget system for sidebars and whatnot makes things difficult. I like to rearrange the contents of sidebars, footers, etc. without having to edit code. It’s not that I don’t know how to edit the code, it’s just that, these days, I shouldn’t have to.
Lack of documentation makes it hard to do the things I want to do. Back in the pre-widgets WP days this page was my Bible. When editing themes, I still use this page quite often. Habari’s documentation is seriously lacking and it’s difficult to find what it is I need to accomplish certain things. WordPress’s codex spells it out in a great way. This isn’t Habari’s fault, they are young. It took a long time for WordPress’s Codex to get to where it is now. Even a lot of the plugins that are released for Habari have come without clear documentation.
There are also other things that aren’t as big, but I wonder why they aren’t included. For example, Habari uses tags instead of categories. So why isn’t there a template tag to display a tag cloud? You have to use a plugin in order to display it if you want one. I’m sure there are other things like that but I’ve not dealt with it enough to see what they might be. Also, since the codebase is ever changing at this early stage, it takes a lot to keep up with themes and plugins as they are changed quite often and, well, WordPress is much easier to do with the introduction of the automatic plugin upgrading. I can’t tell you when the last time I had to edit a theme because of a WordPress upgrade.
So, there are a few of my reasons why I’m not switching to Habari…. yet. Hopefully, once they mature a little, these things will be introduced and worked on and it will make the transition from WordPress to Habari easier.