Fab WordPress Theme Tutorial

A note to Future Andy:

When you do decide to create your own WordPress theme from the ground up, this tutorial is absolutely fab. If it were a book, I’d buy it.

Actually, it explains the strength of printed books over webpages, in certain situations. Writing a theme is somewhere in the same category as writing an entire piece of software. It’s not a simple trick or tip that you can skim through and then use. You need to sit, read, focus, think, and assimilate.

That doesn’t really work so good when the medium forces you to sift the actual content from amongst all the crap that competes for attention on a webpage, makes you click a link to move from page to page and article to article.

If I ever threw out my copy of Danny Goodman‘s seminal “Complete HyperCard Handbook,” then I’m a damned fool. I don’t do a whole lot of HyperCard development these days (seeing as we’re nearing the tenth anniversary of HC’s death, and the fourth anniversary of Apple finally getting around to burying the body). But my copy was a wonderful artifact of an important time in my life. It was probably identical to every other copy of this book ever sold: dog-eared, scuffed to hell, tape keeping the spine together, fingerprints and food stains on every other page…in short, it was a book that bore the proud battle scars of an awesomely useful reference that got used every day and which was read everywhere. I remember taking it with me to my summer job every day. I read it on the bus over, I read it during my lunch break, and I read it on the bus back home.

Natcherly, this was mostly due to Danny’s God-given gifts. The HyperCard Bible is still a standard of excellence that few tech books have attained since. It took you from the fundamentals all the way through advanced techniques, and did so in a way that was always clear and enjoyable to read.

Mad props to Danny, as always. The point is that I don’t know if I and other HyperCard developers would have gained such a broad, deep and holistic understanding of such a beefy topic if we could only consume the knowledge in isolated, individually-wrapped bites…and had to dodge animated offers to punch monkeys and slap sumo wrestlers while doing so.

3 replies
  1. Philip
    Philip says:

    Andy, just snuck in here to say hello and to say stick with WordPress.
    I have become a convert slowly over the past few months.
    I do all the sites we build now with WordPress but the most important tool for the job of theme editing is CSS Edit.
    http://macrabbit.com/cssedit/
    I don’t know if you have used it before but it does take a bit of effort to understand what it allows you to do.
    Perhaps read the instructions but I am not a big fan of that concept.

    CSS Edit is the type of software that web developers keep secret from their competition.
    That and their list of favourite plugins and widgets.
    I plan to rebuild my own sites when I get a chance and the client work slows down a bit.

    Love your work, I hope one day to hear you have published your own podcast.
    We do some rubbish podcasts here in Australia like my photogeek.tv.
    Cheers for now and your URL is safe with me….

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  1. […] Andy Inahtko from the Chicago Sun Times gets a tip about CSSEdit from MacRabbit. Thanks Andy for taking notice of the photogeek and reading the post. […]

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