Having recently acquired some unix hosting I’ve been experimenting with various PHP/MySQL based applications. WordPress for example that this blog runs under, as well as Joomla for CMS and phpBB for forums.
Having been a long time user of ASP applications some of my experiences have been quite refreshing, especially with respect to ease of installation on shared space in some cases.
Now just the other day I decided I needed a Wiki for a new project. I’ve been using the ASP.net driven FlexWiki for some time now and have been very happy with it’s ease of install and the small changes I usually want to make to look and feel. When it came to choosing a unix based option I immediately plumped for MediaWiki, it seemed an obvious choice being that it runs the most famous Wiki out there, WikiPedia.
Oh how wrong could I have been though. When it came to skinning it to get a look that suited my purpose, it became a complete nightmare. The skinning system is a complete disaster area and it requires more work than I have time for to get your head around it. Yes it can be done, as witnessed by the Mono-project website or the Mozilla Dev site, but it’s a complete bitch. The mixture and muddle of markup and PHP code is just simply unprofessional.
So I had a look around and after a while searching I came up with a beautifully easily skinnable Wiki software. PMWiki has a great philosophy behind it’s code base and a simple skinning system that is a joy to behold after wading through the nightmare depths of MediaWiki.
I shall enjoy designing a nice template later tonight.