Unchallenged fact: open source software (OSS) development is the future of web and mobile applications. It comes as no surprise that Wiredelta is all about open source. OSS is a great competitive solution for anyone building a digital product to set up and manage a web or mobile application. The adoption of open source frameworks is Wiredelta’s secret weapon that gets more powerful as the open source communities continue to grow.
However, the open source world is massive, and you can easily lose your way in the incredible amount of options available. For instance, WordPress offers an immense amount of themes and plugins, for free! Its a jungle, which almost feels like the internet before Google came along and sorted all websites with PageRank.
As a result, Wiredelta recently launched a theme directory, where we added more than 70 of the best free WordPress themes out there. We dug deep within our own themes as well as WordPress contributor’s rigorously-tested themes to find the best available for free. Allow us to share some insight on why we started setting up a free theme directory with WordPress.
“I know plenty of theme directories, what is unique about this?”
Excellent question. The process of selecting a theme, adding some plugins and choosing hosting for your website is not exactly cutting edge. Many providers have already done the same from WordPress.org to Godaddy. What makes Wiredelta unique is that we are mixing open source libraries from various frameworks and our professional development teams, giving you a fully integrated solution from idea to launch! With open source software and artificial intelligence working as the engine in Wiredelta you end up with a really powerful platform to assemble and build your website! If you get tired of your Wiredelta setup, you can always take the source code and database, install on another server and continue where you left off, no closed gardens!
Basically, Wiredelta sees the world of software as a place where it’s very easy to get lost for clients. We want to solve that, and we think screening for an awesome theme directory is the first stepping stone in achieving an automated process for building custom websites.
You can get lost trying to find the right theme. Not anymore with Wiredelta!
Why only open source frameworks?
For starters it seems like open source software seems to be taking over. It’s a very unique thing in the software industry with everyone building software using open source to some extend. The question is if the websites built by software companies are open or closed. It’s ironic, really; so many website builders are built on open source software but generate closed sourced websites and apps where you cannot access the source code or database.
To get an overview of how others work with theme directories and open source software we split in four camps:
- Agencies. Most build custom applications with a wealth of open source libraries (themes, plugins, components, modules etc). Some agencies decide to build their own website builder and close source that as proprietary software, this is the ultimate lock-in tool agencies have to prevent clients from using other providers, which takes us to the next camp:
- Drag and drop website builders. Incredible platforms with one major problem; you cannot gain access to the source code or database. If you set up with Wix or Squarespace and you suddenly realise there is a feature they don’t offer, then you’re stuck, you cannot download the work you have done and install on another server to build on top. Unfortunately, this is often the case, especially for web and mobile applications where new features come out on an almost daily basis, which makes it next to impossible for website builders to keep up with demand from users. A way to accommodate for this is to build an “algorithm” that learns, iterates and builds the website based on your preferences automatically.
- AI website builders. Platforms like TheGrid are trying to automate the process of building websites using AI; an exciting endeavour with huge potential as AI is indeed the future. Tragically, they duplicate the same mistake that drag and drop website builders made; pouring millions of dollars into building a closed box that doesn’t allow access to the source code. In other words, you could have a rock-star CTO, but if your website is built with a website builder, your CTO wouldn’t be able to build on top of your current work and have to start from scratch.
- Freelance portals. You may think our last hope, not quite. Freelancers share many pitfalls when up against a professional software development company. Also, in order to have the rights for the codebase, you may have to strike a deal with the freelancer you use.
At the end of the day, the question is whether providers build solutions for clients that they can obtain access to or not. With Wiredelta choosing to build a theme directory and later an integrated process with open source softwares like WordPress, no users will end up being stuck in a closed garden when using Wiredelta.
WordPress powers 26% of all websites on the web, a stunning number dominating 60% of all CMS powered websites. At the same time, the WordPress community is the largest CMS community in the world; it’s been collecting more than 4000 themes and almost 50,000 plugins! With these impressive statistics, choosing WordPress for starters was a no-brainer as we want to solve the problem of navigating the jungle of open source libraries. With such a large database of themes and plugins its like finding a needle in the haystack when building a WordPress website, and that’s exactly the problem we intend to tackle!
When pushing the open source movement within software, a key advantage is the incredible amount of awesome themes available for free within frameworks like WordPress; the hard part is to find them! Granted, you can find beautiful premium themes out there on directories like Themeforest and Templatemonster. However, the gap between free and paid themes is getting smaller and smaller; the community provides new amazing free themes every day! After all, the best things in life are free!
Are we limited to WordPress and being free?
For now, yes. We need to focus on solving one problem at a time, and we want to do nothing short of an amazing job. We are still very open-minded towards other platforms; we have no problem adding themes, modules, components and plugins from other open source frameworks like Prestashop, Magento, Joomla, Drupal etc. Eventually, we might even expand to paid content, but only if we see the users benefitting from it.
The current plan is to expand the number of free themes and plugins to the platform from WordPress. We aim to screen and add more than 200 themes and plugins within 2016; then, with the release of the new platform, we’ll start collecting data on what users choose and add more content from there.
What does Wiredelta get out of it?
Wiredelta exists to “transform volatile ideas into rock-solid products”. It’s our mantra, our code of honor. We spent four years creating websites, web apps and mobile applications. Now we are doubling down on building a platform that automates a lot of the tedious processes to get a digital product live, without locking in our clients in a closed garden! Setting up a process to choose a theme for your website is the first step in doing so!
If we succeed, then we’ll grow our customer base vastly, and a portion of these will convert into paying customers that connects with our developers in their client area to build custom functionality on top of the initial setup. We are very excited to launch our integrated process in the platform, bringing open source websites to the masses! Come one and all to the Wiredelta family and join our quest!
You can check out the theme directory made on wiredelta.com/shop
To get early access to the full platform we are building, check out wiredelta.com/signup
Here’s a first glimpse at our shop.