Newsforge: A lot to like in Serendipity but nothing compelling to switch

Open source news site Newsforge has published a review of the 1.0 version of Serendipity, the blog script that I used for previous versions of the Cybercafe Experiments.

According to the article, installing Serendipity to manage your blog “is a breeze” and shouldn’t be a problem to someone who has experience installing web scripts like WordPress. What sets Serendipity apart from other blog content management system (CMS), according to the article, is that it gives you the option to use databases other than MySQL: PostgreSQL and SQLite.

Serendipity also got high marks from Joe “Zonker” Brockmeier, the author of the Newsforge article, for its ability to import data from other blogging scripts. Brockmeier tried it out and he was able to import data from his blog with two years worth of posts “with no problem at all.”

Brockmeier said that after days of playing with Serendipity, he “found a lot to like” though nothing that puts it above other blogging CMS and nothing “compelling enough to make you switch.” He did take a dig at Serendipity’s claim that it was better than WordPress because of the type of license it is released under. He said “the Serendipity team could use their time a bit better by working on the software rather than license-bashing.”

I used Serendipity when I started blogging in one of those free PHP/MySQL websites. I liked the software so much that I used it to run the first attempt by Sun.Star at blogging. While I wiped out my blog data while upgrading my Serendipity installation to an alpha version of the script, it wasn’t because of the software. I messed it up when I forgot details of the database I was using and, in a moment of lunacy, deleted all entries with a few misguided keystrokes.

The only reason I transferred to WordPress was that my wife liked it. I installed various blog CMS for her to evaluate for a website project and she really liked the way WordPress manages blogs. I did not want to monitor updates and learn how to maintain two different blog CMS so I decided to also use WordPress. I have been using it for more than a year and I couldn’t imagine leaving it for some other blog script. I have invested a lot of time and effort to learn how to tweak it to suit my needs.

When Serendipity released the milestone 1.0 version last month, I made a mental note to eventually try it. I haven’t been able to try it out yet because of pending projects and assignments but I still hope to try it before the month ends.

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