Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: WordPress For Dummies, 4th Edition
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This is Lisa Sabin-Wilson's 3rd Edition of her bedrock "WordPress For Dummies". I own all three editions and each is thicker and filled with more knowledge than the prior edition. If anyone asks me how to learn, manage and use WordPress, this is what I recommend.

It is truly A through Z coverage. Sabin-Wilson is, in my opinion, one of the best technical writers around. Her language is clear, uncluttered and free of artifice.

Logically enough, she begins at the very beginning explaining what WordPress can do for you. To her credit, she doesn't hold it out as a panacea for all that ails you. She doesn't promise you that you'll earn millions or will win public office. Sabin-Wilson simply tells you how to set up your blog and then moves progressively into the minutiae of creating and managing a WordPress blog. (And yes, operating a blog is like most other things in the world - a series of small details that you must repeatedly (i.e., daily or thereabouts) attend to. In fact, one of the chapters is appropriately entitled "Establishing Your Blog Routine".

"Wordpress For Dummies" is thorough. The WordPress Dashboard is explained as is the use and, perhaps more importantly, the customization of themes. (With WordPress, your blog or website can look however you like it, but getting it right is not necessarily simple.)

Another important Sabin-Wilson covers in some detail is using WordPress as a Content Management System. Although she treats it in some detail, I personally wish that she would write a book on this subject alone.

In all, none of the other WordPress books I've read - and there are quite a few of them - measure up to the standard that Linda Sabin-Wilson has set in all three editions of "WordPress For Dummies". Each edition has been extensively revised to stay as current as possible with WordPress releases.

A total delight to read and use, it is, in my opinion, the gold standard for learning, managing and using WordPress.

Jerry
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on November 20, 2010
If you want to learn WordPress there are much better written and more complete books out there. This book is severely disappointing in a way that Dummies books rarely are. The author touts herself as an expert and there's no doubt she knows some things about WordPress. However, her writing is not that great and you'll find that you're left with more questions about certain things about WordPress than you were before you read the book.

If you want to hear about how great Lisa is, buy the book. She uses every opportunity to showcase her site and things she's done, tooting her horn as only people who are self-described "experts" tend to do. Again, I am not used to this type of flagrant self-promotion in a Dummies book. It's annoying.

The author has capitalized on the fact that she "wrote the book" on WordPress, but it isn't written well or that great of a book.

Check out "Digging Into WordPress" or "WordPress Bible" for truly great resources.

Beginners would be wise to take advantage of the free WordPress codex: it's the official manual for WordPress. There are specific sections for people new to WordPress there. Also check out WordPress.tv for how-to videos.
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on February 5, 2012
I just don't understand the reviewers who gave this book only one or two stars. I would give it a hundred stars if possible. I've looked at a lot of Wordpress books and in my opinion this is the one to start out with. It covers Wordpress.com and Wordpress.org (the book explains the difference and it's a big one). It starts out with the basics of getting your site up and running and then moves on to the more advanced topics like plug-ins, widgets, pages, posts, etc. (don't let any of that terminology scare you). Lisa also explains how to choose your domain name and set up a hosting account.

This past weekend I was able to attend WordCamp Atlanta and meet Lisa as well as Matt Mullenweg (the co-founder of Wordpress and a genuinely nice guy). I found out that Lisa is a great presenter as well as a great writer.

My recommendation to any beginner looking to learn about Wordpress is 1.)buy this book, 2.)find a Wordpress meetup in your area via meetup.com, and 3.) find the nearest WordCamp and attend (inexpensive and worth it).

If you follow this advice, I guarantee you that before long, you will be hooked on Wordpress and have a killer looking website or two!
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on October 23, 2010
I bought the book about three weeks ago and still have my WordPress site hanging by threads, not completed. Although I'm not really a computer "Dummy," I found the book either too simple or not well organized ... and I really don't know which. All I know is after spending several hours trying to figure out how to configure the basic template recommended to do what I wanted to do, I lost interest and decided to "think about it." I found the explanations too often reverted to a programming language which I didn't speak: It looked like I needed to study PHP as a prerequisite.

The book seems to be full of good information, but at least for me, it was hard to convert all the info into a workable WordPress site. I'm sure it could be done, but I'm looking for another book.
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VINE VOICEon October 18, 2011
Massive amounts of well-written and helpful information and detail and step-by-step instructions. This is a worthwhile book to have if you have or want to start a blog at Wordpress. It extensively covers both the freebie Wordpress.com and the Wordpress.org program you can download free .
I am starting my second blog at Wrodpress, and I would not be without it. I refer to it frequently.

But be advised: I bought the Kindle edition, same content but, as far as I can tell, it lacks the index this print version has. Perhaps those that configured the book for Kindle thought that the Kindle search capacity would suffice. It just doesn't always work well for me, though, so I miss the index. So I would give the Kindle edition only 4 starts.

Nevertheless, I highly recommend this book.
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on February 10, 2012
I must not be the intended audience for this book, as I have had run several blogs and managed my own sites using other software, just not with Wordpress. I figured this would give me a overview of all of the features and an example of their use. Instead I got a primer on how to blog, how to upload an image and how to make a post....ugh. Almost nothing is mentioned about the CMS features of Wordpress, which is why I wanted it in the first place.
In my opinion this book is for absolute beginners only.
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on November 25, 2011
Great book as a resource to using Wordpress. I downloaded lots of information from the Wordpress forums and thought I had a good idea on how to get my blog to look professional. I customized it and now I find out I should have used "child themes" what a great feature. If only I had bought the book BEFORE I customized the site. Haven't visited the website as discussed. Looking forward to learning more. Good investment even if you hire someone, you'll know what work is involved.
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This is the fourth edition of "WordPress For Dummies" - and the fourth edition I have purchased.

Lisa Sabin-Wilson is an undisputed master of WordPress, her research is thorough and her writing style makes the knowledge she conveys very accessible.

There is a misconception that WordPress is easy to use. That is true for the hosted WordPress, which requires virtually no understanding of information technology, computers, etc. But the moment you step out of the cocoon of the highly protected hosted environment, you'd either better have at least a moderate knowledge of CSS, PHP, HTML, FTP, server operations and a few other subject areas. The author does indeed do a good job of explaining what you need to know, but if it is all new to you, it is very easy to get lost.

I am a bit puzzled as to what all is new in this fourth edition. One chapter I personally consider important on using WordPress as a Content Management System has been removed from the book and is available on the web. There is now an appendix on upgrading, backing up and migrating and the book, as a whole, is about 40 pages longer. Granted that WordPress is a program that is substantially changed, on occasion, from one version to another. But I think author or publisher or both should explain what is new in each edition.

At this point, I use "WordPress For Dummies" primarily as a reference. Substantial portions of it are old news to me, but I have found that I can generally find the information I need quicker in this book - and in better written form - than searching for the same information on-line.

Overall, whether beginner or pro, this is an excellent WordPress introduction, guide and reference. Beginners should understand, though, that WordPress is not drop-dead simple once you contemplate modifying it and especially when you leave the security of the hosted version.

Jerry
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on October 27, 2010
Lisa Sabin Wilson did not write this book for the novice. The book is difficult to follow, having you jump back and forth to learn basic tasks. It is written more for one who has experience in designing websites or blogs.
Wilson should have referenced to a basic sample blog on the internet that she could have created and then using the book, walked the reader through each step of the dashboard as to how the site or blog was created. Her basic information is already on the WordPress site. The illustrations are difficult to read.
I can not recommend this book.
I have used many ....For Dummies books over the years and this is the poorest I have purchased in teaching one who wants to set up a blog. She is a BIG fan of WordPress and it comes through in the book.
Most learners just want to set up a blog, and do not want to become expert bloggers as this book spends many pages on.
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on November 22, 2011
I gave up on Wordpress a couple years ago and switched to tumblr, which I found to be much simpler. However, I've recently started writing a lot on my blog, something tumblr isn't great for. So I switched back to Wordpress. I would've switched right back to tumblr, or maybe move to Blogger, but this book saved Wordpress for me. It enlightened me to the fact that the site has made a lot of improvements over the last couple years (since I stopped using it) that make it worth sticking around and getting used to.

So this was the perfect book for me, switching from one site back to the old one I once loathed. Now I'm loving it.
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