theme trials (and errors) begin

i am intending to try changing the theme – like going into a dress shop and trying on some new (or in this case, 2nd hand) clothes, and parading them around in front of a mirror…and some people who may care to comment. i will not stop (trying to) chang(ing) my outfits until i get tired.

in RL i like to wear a different outfit everyday, after all.

i don’t mean to imply i’ll try out a different theme every day though…

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  • eldon says:

    one issue about this – these themes will still need to be tweaked perhaps, e.g. i’m not sure whether the width of the main pane will be suitable or adjustable, whether the top photo will be well-integrated, and so on. hence, assistance may be required.
    also, something not well clarified above – comments are sought.
    silence – does it imply acceptance?

    • mike says:

      hm. I am thinking of the Roles and Capabilities proposal I submitted to the list for a vote two weeks ago. No comment there either.

      Which again begs the question.

      But, as you experiment, you will have your request from me. (ahem, I do have one consideration I would like to put forward: can orange and black be reserved for October?)

      • eldon says:

        um, i am very much open to requests. in this case i am curious – is ‘orange and black’ merely a colour range you would like held for october, or is it the name of a theme (they have some names!)

        2nd question is, why do you want it held for october? i mean why october, and why orange and black (a favourite combo of mine btw. thinking of tigers especially as grand animal design)?

  • hoon says:

    As an experienced tweaker i can visualize possibilities the naive tweaker cannot.

    The original theme we’ve been subjected to for the last week has been tweaked in these ways:

    1. Stephen (hi!) substituted new header images and stuck them in the images folder in the themes directory.
    2. Stephen took the color scheme to green highlights
    3. Stephen believes Michael adjusted the width of some of the body and sidebar wrappers
    4. Stephen reordered the sidebar elements.

    My modest advantage is only that I understand how the pages are styled by the CSS. making new header images was simple. I downloaded the stock header; noted its dimensions; and then made new ones in Photoshop.

    If you just substitute various themes Eldon you will see that the blog’s contents get translated into the new theme. Also, if you go to the Appearance page on the dashboard and then to Widget sub-page, there are the drag and drop elements of the sidebar.

    The other basic nuance is that every theme has its default ‘out-of-the-box’ configuration. Tis the default the tweaker thrashes.

    • mike says:

      You believe correctly, sir, where my meddling is concerned. I did find myself monkeying with the knobs to see what could be done with them and left them at the setting I found to be most appealing on a strictly subjective basis without further comment. Partly because it seemed that this theme might have as short a trial run as the others.

      I find a lot to like about this theme, but it is all functional. I am no better qualified to comment on the cosmetics of a theme than I am on, say, Erin McKean’s choice of dress at her TED presentation. Beyond brilliant content, I found her adorable, possibly more so because of her boldness. That hat would have worked with that dress (Tim Gunn be hanged).

      There are certain components of functionality that I find desirable for their utility. Most seem to be predicated on making sure the theme is designed with the feature set of the current version of WordPress in mind.

      • eldon says:

        OK, since it is just us three here for the moment, i will confess to my first theme choice: ahimsa. at first glance it incorporates all the features we already have, but as a naive wordpress user, i am likely not to notice something not-there, so to speak.
        i admit, the colour scheme and shapes are attractive and welcoming to me.

        now, as pointed out previously, for example i uploaded various themes to my testbed blog, and although they looked OK in preview, when they were up in all their glory i shrunk back.

        i have had minimal experience with CSS coding, so i am not at all confident… of course, i am wiling to learn, but my method is not liked by IT people. e.g. i would like a CSS tweak sent to me and then i am given a task to perform on/with it. that way, i can engage with the file, and see what it does when uploaded. trial and error indeed.

        [bateson would also scoff at this inductive method – he seemed to prefer the deductive i believe]

  • hoon says:

    Also: the trial and error approach is facilitated by the WYSIWYG nature of preview and implementation. If you like a theme but don’t like some aspect, just point it out.

  • eldon says:

    OK, well, as can be surmised, i haven’t done the trial yet. i’ve downloaded the file, but wondered whether to unzip before uploading it, (so i confess to having asked mike about this), and in the meantime, began to get worried that it would be too much of a challenge to everyone’s aesthetics. but now i think this may be reading others though my own lens.

    i previewed the theme, and as far as i can see it all looks OK, but i can’t tell if it realy will be until it’s put in use…

    in the matter of pointing out aspects i do not like, most of it involves colour and background images… and then, how to explain that in text, and also there is the problem for me of seeming to BUG people with continued requests for assistance.


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