I’ve been following Brandonleblanc for a while on twitter. Brandon is a pretty cool guy and when I saw him post about updating his blog, I went to check it out. That’s when I saw his post about his upgrade escepade.Naturally, I felt his pain. I’ve been down that road before. You suddenly feel very isolated as you ponder over what to do to get your site back up. You, of course, reach out to google — the source of all knowledge — hoping to find the answer. You start pouring through forum posts, reading other blog posts, trying different google search queries hoping to stumble upon that page that will solve your problem. It’s a very lonely and dark time.
It sounds like Graffiti could have done a lot better job documenting the upgrade process at the least. At the most, they should make their update an easier process by doing the heavy lifting for their customers. If they are going to compete with other blog engines like WordPress and MovableType they’re going to need to. WordPress prides itself on the “5 minute install” and their upgrades are a snap. Even Joomla has an easy install process. To have your blog crash and burn like Brandon’s did is just inexcusable in this day and age.
The fact is, more and more average end users are going out and getting blogs and hosting and jumping into the fray. I’m not saying Brandon is an average end user, but software developers need to think about them. As a client of mine once said, you have to design for Joe Clickpack. Joe Clickpack is punching on the keyboard with two fingers while he’s sipping a beer and yelling at his noisy neighbor. He’s not a .Net guru or PHP Wizard. He wants it simple and easy. That should be the goal for all of us.
Hopefully Graffiti will get it figured out and the next install will go easier.