Shortcodes were introduced in WordPress near the beginning of 2008, and ever since then blogging has never been the same (well, sort of). From dedicated plugins to built–in generators for themes, they have become ubiquitous with WordPress.
But, is that a good thing?
Most themes and plugins offer some sort of input mechanism to enter custom shortcodes to display content, it is then stylized with CSS and/or jQuery effects like tabbing, slides etc…
More often than not, your shortcode will look like this, in the most simplest of examples as provided by the default WordPress gallery function –