WordsPlatz Blog Software
For me, at least, it suffices as a completely satisfactory substitute for WordPress. Unfortunately, however, since it lacks features many bloggers would find desirable, such as comments, trackbacks, and the ability to directly ping sites to notify them that your blog has been updated, other bloggers might not be quite so happy with it.
Fortunately, since WordsPlatz is free, open source, and public domain, theoretically other people could build any needed features or repairs in.
WordsPlatz's missing features and possible glitches aside, there are definitely a few things to be pleased about in WordsPlatz. Since I didn't want to tick off my web host or have my blog be especially vulnerable to the Digg effect due to making too many database queries, I wrote WordsPlatz with the intention of having it execute a lot fewer database queries than WordPress, and making it so it wouldn't query the database every time a blog page is loaded. So, compared to WordPress, WordsPlatz indeed queries the database relatively sparingly, and never when readers are just loading pages of your blog.
I suspect WordsPlatz could even be adapted to never use a database at all, but, relying a little on a database made my life easier and quite possibly rescued me from the fate of spending yet more months on my life on the chore of programming.
WordsPlatz makes your blog easy to navigate, with hyperlinked tables of contents near the top of each blog page, other convenient links to other locations on the same page (top/bottom/TOC/down/up), and archives in chronological order. WordsPlatz provides an RSS feed, and, though it can't ping any site directly, you can use FeedBurner or Ping-O-Matic to ping sites to let them know your blog has been updated.
If you want a blog like my blog at Astroblahhh.Com, this is the software you should use. Just bear in mind that you're pretty much on your own as far as making improvements and modifications. I accept suggestions, but it may be a long time before I implement them, if I ever do (and if a certain feature is too difficult, I might not even be capable of implementing it). Programming is often pretty hard for me, and far from my favorite thing the world to do.
You shouldn't use WordsPlatz if you're unwilling to edit source code, or want a blog with comments, which can directly do pings and trackbacks, which is more likely to be updated frequently and to contain lots of fancy cutting-edge new features, which has a large community of users and developers who can offer you extensive technical support or hand-holding, custom templates, and which your web host might even have a simple one-click installer for. If you need or want any of that, you should probably try something like WordPress.
Part of why I made WordsPlatz public domain is because I would love to see many (or all) of WordsPlatz's features make their way into every blog software currently in existence.
The only major obstacles to modifying and expanding WordsPlatz I can think of off-hand are the facts that WordsPlatz is rather messily coded, with often bad, confusing variable names, a few functions that are almost duplicates of each other (but not quite, so they can't just be combined without effort), not very thorough comments, or sometimes actually obsolete comments which I lazily never revised, and not much documentation. At least, though, WordsPlatz is relatively small, and isn't spread out across 5 zillion separate files.
WordsPlatz is intended to run on a web server with PHP and a MySQL database. You can either upload it to a web server online, or use it offline on your own computer, provided you have some web server software on it.
To develop it, I usually used the Windows version of XAMPP, an easily-installed distribution of the Apache web server software, bundled with PHP, Perl, MySQL, and other stuff, which is available for Linux, MacOS, Windows, and Solaris. It worked so identically to a regular online web server that I scarcely had to change a thing when I uploaded WordsPlatz to my website.
Here's WordsPlatz's manual, which is also included in WordsPlatz's zip file.