Ladies and gentlemen the wait is over. I am happy to announce that WP-Forge v5.0.2 has finally made it to the showroom floor and I have to say folks that I am extremely excited about this release.
Before I go into detail about this release though, I have to give a very BIG thank you to everyone who helped beta test. You provided me with some valuable feedback and helped me correct a few issues. Without your assistance she would probably still be in beta.
The one feature that I am happy about the most is the implementation of my own version of the Theme Customization API, which was introduced in WP 3.4.
I could have released a newer version of WP-Forge back in November when Zurb launched their new version of Foundation. However, I was inspired to add my own version of the API to WP-Forge by looking at another WordPress/Foundation theme known as Reactor developed by Anthony Wilhelm.
Reactor is a really great theme and when I saw the functionality Anthony had incorporated using his own custom API, I just knew that I had to include this somehow.
This however, turned out to be easier said than done. Based off Anthony’s work, I searched for information that would easily show me how to accomplish this and I found a ton of tutorials. So many in fact that it took me a while to wrap my head around the entire issue. Needless to say, once it became clear, I was able to plug away until I was satisfied with the final result.
So what did I include with the customizer? Here’s a quick rundown of the available sections. I’ll cover each one in depth shortly.
The standard section that you would see if a theme has support for a custom header. This was moved to the API section. You can upload a logo, change the Site Title and Site Tagline and you also have the option of hiding the Site Title and Site Tagline if you wish. You will no longer see “Header” in the “Appearance” section.
This section deals with the main menu area. It does not have the typical functionality you would expect. You can select to display the main menu within the the theme or set it to display above the theme. You can also make the main menu scroll with the page or you can make it “sticky”. You can also choose to display the site title as the main link in the main menu or you can change the text to reflect anything you want.
In this section you have the ability to set the theme to show full posts or post excerpts. You can also choose to show or hide post thumbnails.
This allows you to change the default text or “copyright” text that appears in the footer
This is basically the standard Background section you would see if a theme had added support for custom backgrounds. You can use an image for the background and choose all of the appropriate settings such as background repeat, background position and so on. Or if you prefer you can set a color for the background. This was removed and placed in the API itself, which is why you will no longer see “Background” in the “Appearance” section.
This section deals primarily with the colors of text, page titles and links.
Now I did contemplate adding a selection of fonts to choose from. After some careful thought I decided against it. I believe this would have added an unnecessary amount of bloat to the theme which is what I do not like. If you look at a majority of themes out there, you will notice they have a ton of options that really are not needed. I believe in the old adage of KISS (Keep it Simple Stupid). Besides if you wanted to use another font, you can easily add it yourself or utilize one of the many plugins available that will do it for you.
Now keep in mind, though this is a new release I do have to go in and adjust a few of the posts that show you how to add some of the functionality in Foundation to a page or a post. These changes do not happen “automagically” even though I wish they did. So please be patient while I update these posts as well as the demo site. If you see that something isn’t working the way it was before, do not panic. It could be that I haven’t gotten to it yet. If I do find a bug, rest assured that i will update the files on Github. I will also post a status update, so if you haven’t signed up for my mailing list, please do so, so you can be notified of any changes.
Last but certainly not least – Your thoughts please
I have been thinking about getting rid of WP-Starter, which is the child theme I created for WP-Forge. She has not been updated as of yet. I have only received a few inquiries regarding WP-Starter and I have noticed there have only been a few downloads. This has me thinking that she is not something people want to use. I myself was using it here on ThemeAwesome.com, however I am strictly using WP-Forge by itself.
So I would like to know if I should continue with WP-Starter or put her out to pasture.
So there you have it. I hope you enjoy using WP-Forge as much as I have enjoyed putting it together for you. Remember, use the theme to learn something new, create something awesome, have fun and, more importantly, share what you have learned with others.