WordPress, developed as a fork off the original b2/cafelog software, was co-developed by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little. It first appeared in 2003. Originally a blog platform, it has grown over the years into a robust publishing platform that millions of people and organizations use in a myriad of ways for maintaining their site's content.
Like jQuery, WordPress is flexible and extensible. Matt and his fellow WordPress developers at Automattic have taken care to make sure WordPress conforms to current W3C web standards. A WordPress site's design and additional, custom functionality can be easily controlled and updated using the platform's APIs, which streamline theme and plugin development.
You should keep in mind, as someone who is looking to enhance your site with jQuery, just how dynamic a WordPress site is. WordPress uses a MySQL database and set of theme template pages as well as plugin pages, not-to-mention hundreds of core functionality pages to generate your site. This means a final displayed XHTML page's markup comes from many places; from the theme's template files, from post and page content stored in the MySQL database, and some of it may be defined in the code of a plugin or widget that the installation is using.
The more you know and understand about your WordPress installation and how its files come together, the more easily you'll be able to enhance the site with jQuery.
The next diagram illustrates how WordPress serves up a complete HTML page to the browser:
My WordPress Site Just Another WP Site
WordPress WordPress WordPress
MySQL theme files plugins files content
Completely new to WordPress?
Again, I highly recommend the book WordPress 2.7 Complete by
April Hodge Silver and Hasin Hayder. This book is an excellent resource.
It covers everything you need to know about WordPress and will also get you started on working with WordPress themes and plugins.
Interested in going deeper with WordPress?
If you're comfortable with using WordPress but would like to understand more about theme and plugin development, then you should definitely check out WordPress Plugin Development by Vladimir Prelovac, and, if you'll excuse the shameless plug for my own book, WordPress 2.8 Theme Design.
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