Not only does WordPress dominate more than 25 percent of the internet but it has now conquered space. NASA recently updated a blog post explaining the benefits they’ve received since launching the NASA GRC WordPress website, which first launched in July 2007.
The post highlights several of the benefits for using WordPress including ease of use, low cost, SEO, and more.
Search Engine Friendly
The basics of SEO are already built into the system. It encourages you to fill out title tags, categories, and meta descriptions.
“When a site curator posts a news-related item on a public-facing NASA WordPress site, the major search engines are automatically notified to catalog the new content; additionally, the system automatically builds XML sitemaps to help search engines correctly catalog and prioritize your content in their databases,” the post said.
Though this isn’t new, it is a great service for any site owner that doesn’t have a strong SEO background. NASA is able to deliver important news quickly.
Section 508 is a government-wide accessibility program. It is essential that every government-sponsored website adheres to it. Luckily for NASA, WordPress does it automatically.
“Our NASA WordPress themes (the HTML/CSS design, structure and programming) is already Section 508 compliant, and new Section 508 issues are addressed as the overall theme is upgraded. Essentially, only the content (text, photos, videos) that a site curator adds will need to be verified for Section 508 compliance by the curator,” the post said.
Content Separate From Design
Another huge time saver is that content is separate from design. That means that when you change your theme, the old content will change with it. No more going through every old post or image, and making sure it lines up with the new design.
“There’s no need for wholesale, time-consuming revisions of your entire site if and when the design changes,” the post said.
When everything is done for you, you can focus on the content.
This blog post is one small step for WordPress and one giant leap for open-source software. I know that was a cheap joke, but it really illustrates the exciting role open source is beginning to take in the US government. NASA isn’t the final frontier.
The White House And Open Source
A few months ago, The White House not only announced Whitehouse.gov would be open source but asked for input from developers.
People added suggestions on GitHub to help create the federal source code policy and this month, the results were shared. From the analyzed data, custom open-source code was born.
The announcement post, titled “The People’s Code,” explains the uses of Code.gov.
“The policy, which incorporates feedback received during the public comment period, requires new custom-developed source code developed specifically by or for the Federal Government to be made available for sharing and re-use across all Federal agencies,” the announcement said.
This isn’t the first case of the US government using open source, but it takes the practices government-wide.
“By opening more of our code to the brightest minds inside and outside of government, we can enable them to work together to ensure that the code is reliable and effective in furthering our national objectives,” the announcement said.
In the coming months, Code.gov will be released and people from all over will able to share and access government code.
It’s a huge year for open-source projects. From the White House to NASA and beyond, code is being shared and collaborated on for a more transparent world.
For more NASA puns, check out Doc Pop’s News Drop, our weekly news video.
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