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Archive for May, 2006

WordPress Theme: Prebuilt

A new theme has been released recently that uses AJAX effects and includes Flickr support. The theme, called Prebuilt, is a one and a half column theme design with more than just your blog post information on the main page.

Prebuilt

Prebuilt was created not to be heavily graphical and feature a lot of ajax goodness, but to be effective while at the same time, an easy way of learning WordPress. Working in harmony with our series on WordPress Customization, Prebuilt can become your new favorite theme.

Some of the features of Prebuilt version 1:

  • Clean Commented Code – Know exactly what you’re doing, because we’re cleaned the code up and organized everything.
  • Flick Integration – Using the Flickrss plugin (included), pull your most recent flickr photos from yourself, a group, or a pool.
  • Recent Comments And Enroll Comments – Theme comes already setup for integration of these two plugins, plus they are included in the download.
  • Pure Code And Css – An extremely lightweight design, Prebuilt stays true to Devlounge and Astereo meaning by remaining Valid XHTML and CSS.

Check it out at Devlounge.

Categories: WordPress Themes

Theme Viewer New Ownership?

Just a week or two ago, new themes were quickly being added to Themes.WordPress.net, but now all of that activity has stopped and recent attempts by a few people to get their themes added have gotten no response. It seems the Theme Viewer is no longer being added to by the person known as Shadow.

On the 25th of May on the WordPress support forums he posted this:

Please note that I no longer have anything whatsoever to do with the WordPress Theme Viewer and all theme submissions should now be sent to the new administrator.

So long and thanks for all the fish…

No word yet on who the new owner and operator is yet, but I hope this wonderful resource does not die. Lately it has been getting some heat on it from other theme gallery owners, and I hope that is not why Shadow stepped down.

Many people are hoping that this will also inspire others to go ahead and program their own galleries to replace the theme viewer where many people have had outspoken opinions on what should be added and changed.

Categories: WordPress News

Movable Type 3.3 Coming Soon

As the new version of Movable Type gets ready to hit the internet, Six Apart have let it be known that they are going to run an open beta on it soon.

We have some great news: Movable Type 3.3 is just about ready and the beta test will be starting next week! While we’ll be posting details on some of the goals and best features of the latest version tomorrow, we wanted to let you know that it was coming and gather some feedback while we’re in the preparation phase.

The beta test will last three weeks, and at the end of which, they will most likely release the full non-Beta release of Movable Type 3.3.

Are people excited about this? I know that a few sites still use Movable Type, but once you have it working the way you want, do you update/upgrade to the latest version?

I know Darren Rowse has expressed issues with Movable Type 3.2, and so it sounds like he is hoping this new version will fix those problems. It is pretty sad when you are not excited about new features in a new version, but instead are looking forward to the bugfixes.

Categories: Movable Type News

Shuttle

Shuttle Theme PageShuttle is a project that some well known WordPress users took upon themselves to try to help beautify the WordPress administration panel. The admin panel in 1.5 was just plain ugly, and while many things were improved in 2.0, it still isn’t perfect, which is why many people love to spruce the look up using Steve Smith’s Tiger Admin Plugin.

The crew that took up the task include: Khaled Alfa (of Broken Kode) Michael Heilemann (of Binary Bonsai), Joen Asmussen (of Noscope), Chris J Davis (of Chrisjdavis), Bryan Veloso (of Avalonstar), Joshua Sigar (of alphaoide), Matt Mullenweg (of Photomatt) and Ryan Boren (of Boren).

If you use WordPress, you have most likely heard of atleast one or two of these people if not all of them.

Recently, Khaled let the world know that the mock-ups were done, and released the screenshots to the world. While they do look much nicer than the current WordPress Admin panel, I really don’t know if it was a far enough departure from what we have now in WordPress 2.0. I guess what it really comes down to is how fast the community can put it into motion by integrating it with WordPress.

One of the areas that impressed me the most was the change they proposed for the Themes area. While only a small change, I think it will make the world of difference to those that have five or more themes installed in WordPress as the current theme area can look like a mess when you have more than a handful of themes.

To see all the screenshots, head on over to the Shuttle page at BrokenKode.com.

Categories: WordPress News

SlimStat and WP-SlimStat

Many people have been happy with ShortStat statistics application and its WordPress plugin WP-Shortstat, but many of us found that it died after a while, or can’t get it to work in the first place. Our options seemed limited. Do we go ahead and buy Mint for $30 a site, which is created by the same person who did ShortStat? Or do we search for something else?

Well some enterprising people have take ShortStat and fixed it up, added some new features and so came the birth of SlimStat.

I’ve been using Shaun Inman’s great ShortStat for a while. However, I wanted to be able to drill down into the stats and look at things in more detail.

When I started editing the code, I kept thinking of more and more things I’d like to change. SlimStat is the result.

SlimStat is free, and there is also a WordPress 2.0+ plugin to make the installation even easier, though it uses SlimStat 0.9.2 rather than the current 0.9.4 release, so it will be up to you deciding on your current code editing abilities if you want the latest version of SlimStat without direct integration into WordPress or a slighly older version inside your admin panel.

SlimStat 0.9.4 can be grabbed from: Wettone.com
WP-SlimStat 0.9.2 can be grabbed from: Duechiacchiere.it

Categories: Blogging Tools, WordPress Plugins

Give Your Old Template to the Masses

Wisdump, the new name of WhiteSpace, has a great article up where Scrivs says that when you are moving from an old blog design to a new one, you should package up your old one and give it away to the masses to have. Not only can it be a great promotional tool by including a link back to your own site, but it can be really great to give away themes and see them being used and modified.

Some designers change their site design quite often, and many of those designs never see the light of day again, but with a growing number of WordPress users, you could give your old themes away, with no or limited support. You could see hundreds of backlinks, kudos from those that have enjoyed your contribution, and with the fast changes designers make, they could give away four or five a year, making them a staple in the theme environment, especially to new bloggers, that can’t design.

The first thing that people wondered is if Scrivs was going to give away his old Whitespace template, but since its on MovableType, he said:

Well the old Whitespace was using MovableType and I just don’t plan on doing anything for that system again, but I will make sure to start archiving these WP themes.

So in half a year, you might see the Wisdump theme up for grabs for free. Very cool, and I hope more designers follow suit.

Categories: Blogging News

WordPress Theme: Flower Power

flower powerOver at TalkXHTML.com a new WordPress theme has been released called Flower Power. It is different from a lot of themes as it is left aligned, rather than centered on your screen. It is a two column theme, with some strong red and blue’s to it.

It’s called Flower Power version 1.0. This layout is for WordPress 2.0.x and is quite different. It’s left aligned, with red and blye styling. It’s narrow with bigger font than our Sweet Blossoms layout. I hope you guys like it, I’m really enjoying it, and actually it is one of my favorite themes.

Check it out over at TalkXHTML.com

Categories: WordPress Themes

10 Essential Blogging Tools

Over at Duct Tape Marketing there is a great post about tools that can be essential to your blogging routine.

Things like a feedreaders, e-mail subscription options, ping services, bookmark managers, blog stats tools, and desktop posting applications.

While he does not cover every option around these different topics, he does highlight some of the more common ones, which most likely he uses in his daily routine.

So, you finally decided to take the blog leap. You’ve heard all about the marketing and search benefits so you stepped up to the plate and signed up for a TypePad, MovableType or WordPress blog software package and now you’re a blogger.

Okay, now what? Add the ten essential blogging tools listed below and you will also be well on your way to creating and promoting a blog that is a powerful marketing tool. I’ll explain the use of the tool and offer some suggestions, including the tools I use on my own blogs including the DuctTapeMarketing blog.

Some of the things he mentioned I use as well. I recommend Bloglines, FeedBurner, and del.icio.us as well. Some changes I would make is that I would use BlogFlux’s Ping service rather than any other.

As for tracking blog statistics I would currently recommend Slimstat, a stats program you host yourself based on Shortstat, and unlike Mint, it is free.

Categories: Blogging Tools, Blogging: How To

WordPress Plugin: WP Wetfloor

Here is another interesting plugin. I don’t really see the point in doing this, but it could be for that stylized blog that needs an effect like this.

WP Wetfloor allows you to add reflections (a.k.a. the wetfloor effect) to images on your WordPress blog. This is my first plugin, all comments and suggestions are appreciated.

See examples and download it at Siuyee Presents.

Categories: WordPress Plugins

WordPress Plugin: Ubernyms

Here is a really interesting plugin. I don’t know how useful it would be to the masses at large, but for technical people it could be a lifesaver.

The purpose of ubernyms is to allow you configure a set of frequently used abbreviations that will be automatically encoded nicely whenever you use them. The goal is to make them visible in a way that is literate for both humans and computers. In other words: we tag them appropriately for your computer, and expand them as necessary for humans.

Check it out at Huddled Masses.

Categories: WordPress Plugins

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