Should PHP developers learn WordPress?

Developers generally have a love-hate relationship with WordPress. The platform is incredibly popular, but it’s a chore to program in. There are countless clients and jobs floating around in WordPress, and the talented developer will never have to worry about work and money. Does that mean WordPress development should be on your top priority?

I personally don’t think so. If you’re committed to writing excellent code and learning best practices in software design, WordPress is hardly the platform to aim for. There’s a lot of magic going on in WordPress, and you’ll be hard-pressed to make it do what you want. Besides, beyond a simple website or blog, WordPress is notoriously hard to extend.

That said, I don’t think you should be WordPress-illiterate either. For creating a personal blog or a simple website for a client, WordPress is a very good option. What I suggest is that you learn the basic structure of WordPress, become familiar with its administration, and get an idea of how theme files are laid out. This will be enough to help you make minor tweaks here and there when the need arises.

Other than that, stick to your favorite framework! 😀

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