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Summary:

During a Q&A with former rival Anil Dash at paidContent 2012, WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg acknowledged the blogging platform’s complexities and revealed he has been working on a “radically simplified” WordPress. You can see the full video here.

Anil Dash and Matt Mullenweg at pc2012

Not that long ago, Matt Mullenweg, a founding developer of WordPress, and Anil Dash, once chief evangelist of Six Apart and Movable Type, were publicly feuding over open source and the relative merits of their respective blogging platforms. But that’s another country. Six Apart was acquired by Say Media and Movable Type is under control of a Japanese firm while WordPress continues to grow and evolve with its parent firm Automattic. As for Mullenweg and Dash, now cofounder of consultancy Activate, and CEO of start-up ThinkUp, the two got together on stage at The TimesCenter during our paidContent 2012 for an informative interview — and then went out to lunch. (Unfortunately, we couldn’t mike the lunch.)

A couple of highlights from the interview:

Blogging has been declared dead at least five times. But that’s like saying creativity is dead, or personal expresion is dead. Ultimately some percentage of the people who get a taste for it through Facebook and Twitter want their own space. And for the most part, that’s a blog.

And from the avid photographer who goes by @photomatt in his social media life:

One of the things I’ve been working on for the past few months is a radical simplification of the interface. WordPress, it’s a complex tool, it’s like the back of a digital SLR … but that doesn’t work on a phone.

Here’s the full 20-minute video:

And here’s Mullenweg’s take.

Disclosure: Automattic, maker of WordPress.com, is backed by True Ventures, a venture capital firm that is an investor in the parent company of this blog, GigaOm. Om Malik, founder of GigaOm, is also a venture partner at True.

  1. Always enjoy listening to Matt’s interviews / talks. Seems like such a successful guy that has his feet firmly on the ground. He really gets what it’s all about. More please!!!

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    1. Alex Vasquez Monday, June 4, 2012

      Absolutely the truth. Super grounded person and very approachable. Met him at a WordCamp in San Diego… Did shots with the guy, after telling him to cut his hair. His response to that request was just an awesome story. Really, just a cool guy.

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  2. I followed this exchange fairly closely and created a video response to Matt’s announcement.

    There has been a considerable amount of talk about what a “radically simplified WordPress” might look like.

    I see this as an opportunity to take stock of the WP platform as a whole and where it’s heading on all platforms, mobile or otherwise.

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  3. It’s a very funny video because Matt actually forked the code from Movable type to start WordPress in the beginning! hahaha. No wonder he loves open source so much!

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