I make no bones about the fact that I develop websites in WordPress, and I do so with no shame. Even typing that seems silly, but as I start following other developers more and more online it’s becoming very apparent that there is an elitist stigma around the platform.

But as with many folks that I know in the dev community, WordPress was our way in the door. You hardly need to know how to write a line of code to pump out a halfway-decent looking custom website that actually works. But when curiosity and creativity gets the best of you, all it takes is a quick trip to the Codex with a few hours to kill to learn some foundational programming skills like writing loops and instantiating objects (whether you know what those terms mean at the time or not).

Do this over and over and over again, and eventually you’ll learn enough to really break something. And if you keep breaking things, eventually you’ll learn how to start fixing them. This is how many engineers are born.

Is WordPress the only platform you can tinker with as a code newbie? Of course not. But it’s definitely the largest, and I’d wager that the resources available for debugging common beginner problems are unmatched by any other framework or CMS out there. And sure, it’s a bit clunky, but so am I when I’m learning something new.

But what’s most amazing to me about WordPress is that, despite these complaints from developers, is its staying power on the web and its consistent march forward since the early days. Long gone are the days that WordPress can be boxed in as purely a blogging platform. My agency uses it to build performant business-class websites with all sorts of custom functionality and tailor-made solutions to a myriad of challenges. And amazing modernization advancements in core, like the REST API and WP GraphQL, you can harness the power of WP’s popular content management tools on the back-end while tapping in to the fancy new JavaScript front end of your choosing.

So yeah, I am Chance, I’m a developer and I still really like you, WordPress.

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