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Sometimes we have to dive deep into some scary code to make a theme or plugin do what we want. Here are some articles that deal with such things.

Keep in mind that software evolves fast and a tweak that worked a year ago may not work anymore today.

  • Jay Versluis 8:51 am on May 20, 2018 Permalink | Reply
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    Categories: Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    How to increase the font size in Automattic's P2 Post Box 

    Front page posting is what the P2 theme is all about – but I personally find the default font size on the front page a bit too small. Perhaps it’s my raging tired eyes. In every child theme I write for P2, I usually increase this – both for immediate posting, as well as for text editing (which also happens inline on the front page).

    To do that, add the following to your style.css file:

    /* larger text for post box and editing */
      #postbox textarea #posttext, textarea.posttext {
      font-size: 1.3em !important;
    }

    This will address the font size for both inline editing as well as posting. I’ve chosen 1.3em because it integrates well into my other settings, but feel free to choose something larger or smaller (1.2em or 1.4em respectively). You can also choose a defined point size like 16px if you like.

    To also address the text box for default comments, we can add this:

    #respond textarea, .textedit textarea {
    	font-size: 1.3em !important;
    	color: #555;
    }
    

    By default the font colour is black, so #555 tweaks it to be the dark grey that the rest of the P2 text has.

    Happy hacking!





     
  • Jay Versluis 9:52 am on May 18, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Releases   

    Categories: Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    P2 Categories – Version 1.6 released 

     

    Last week I found some time to update my fork of Automattic’s P2 theme, aptly titled P2 Categories. In addition to all the greatness of P2, it’s been adding front-page category posting since 2013 (and hasn’t seen an update since then either).

    Here’s what’s new in the latest version:

    • fixed the drop down menu, which was no longer working since Safari 10
    • rewrote the whole theme from scratch, based on P2 v1.5.8 (2016)
    • fixed a bug that would not show the correct number of posts in a category
    • added new p2-categories-functions.php file
    • updated a call to a deprecated WordPress function with wp_get_current_user()
    • fixed several PHP 7 deprecation warnings
    • updated class constructors to use __construct() methods
    • hunted down undocumented features and documented them
    • added a changelog file

    P2 is no longer maintained by Automattic, except for dire security patches. I’ve noticed several deprecation notices, both for WordPesss 4.9 as well as PHP 7.2.1 and fixed those as well.

    Get the latest version on GitHub

    You can download the latest version of the theme over on the official GitHub Repository. Feel free to examine the code, tinker with amendmends and share with everyone who wants to use P2 with categories:

    Why is this version not on WordPress?

    I had submitted previous versions of P2 Categories to the WordPress repos too, and you can still download version 1.5 there. However, since 2013 web standards have become more strict, and there’s no way my theme would pass modern tests the theme team are using for new submissions. Sadly I’m not a web developer and it’ll be very difficult for me to update aspects of the theme I don’t fully understand.

    Having said that, if you know how to pass modern web standard tests, feel free to send me a pull request on GitHub.





     
  • Jay Versluis 10:04 am on May 17, 2018 Permalink | Reply
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    Categories: Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    How to display categories in Automattic’s P2 Theme 

    By default, Automattic’s phenomenal P2 theme does not support posting into categories from the front page, it only supports tags. My fork of the theme called P2 Categories does that though and lets you conveniently select a category from a drop down menu right there on the front page.

    I wrote an update to it last week, and in so doing my article from 2013 came in handy that explains how to add this functionality to P2. Nothing much has changed in the source code, so it’s still relevant and accurate.

    What the above article did not explain however was how to show which category a post belongs to. And because it’s still fresh in my  memory how to do this, I thought I’d better write it down for next time (and anyone who’s interested in how to do it).

    (More …)





     
  • Jay Versluis 11:03 am on November 24, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Categories: Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    How to turn plain URLs into clickable links in WordPress 

    The marvellous P2 Theme has an interesting feature: write out a plain link, and it magically becomes clickable without explicitly adding the a href tag.

    This may not be a big deal if you’re writing posts in the visual WordPress editor rather than HTML, but for those of us who like to write in HTML, it’s just one less thing to worry about.

    I was investigating this feature recently, and it turns out WordPress has a built-in function that can do this: they call it make_clickable(), and it works with URIs, FTP, Email addresses and anything starting with www. The function is really easy to use too: it only takes one parameter (a string), and returns the clickable HTML code.

    $clickableText = make_clickable($plainText);
    

    Let’s see how to use it in context, using the TwentyThirteen theme.

    (More …)





     
  • Jay Versluis 12:23 pm on October 4, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    Categories: Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    How to move the sidebar to the right in TwentyFifteen 

    I’ve never liked themes with sidebars on the left – probably because we in the western world start reading on the left, and I’d like there to be as little clutter as possible. Or perhaps I’m used to navigation items on the right.

    I was looking around for solutions to move the sidebar in Automattic’s TwentyFifteen theme to the right, and several options can be found on the internet. Here are two that worked for me:

    Option 1: CSS Tweak

    Thanks to the Stack Exchange community, this CSS tweak works a treat (for left-to-right languages):

    body:before {
        right: 0;
        left: auto;
    	direction: ltr;
    }
    .sidebar {
        float: right;
        margin-right: auto;
        margin-left: -100%;
    	direction: ltr;
    }
    .site-content {
        float: right;
        margin-right: 29.4118%;
        margin-left: auto;
    	direction: ltr;
    }
    .site-footer {
        float: right;
        margin: 0 35.2941% 0 0;
    	direction: ltr;
    }
    

    Add these declarations to your own TwentyFifteen Child Theme and you’re good to go. If added via a CSS widget or to the bottom of the original theme (which is a really bad idea), additional “!important” statements may be necessary.

    Kudos to toschero and Anteru for the combined solution to this puzzle. Check out the full discussion here:

    Option 2: Pre-made Child Theme

    Ruhul Amin from Tips and Tricks HQ has built a ready-to-use child theme and solved this puzzle in PHP. You can check it out here:





     
  • Jay Versluis 8:45 am on July 28, 2014 Permalink | Reply
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    Categories: Screencast ( 87 ), Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    How to use the TwentyThirteen Theme by Automattic 

    In this screencast I’ll show you how to use TwentyThirteen, a simple yet powerful WordPress theme that looks gorgeous and is mobile friendly. I’ll explain Post Formats and their impact, how to show images in galleries and how to embed videos to your WordPress site too.

    I’ll finish it off by demonstrating how the site looks like on a desktop browser as well as the iOS Simulator on iPad and iPhone. I’m using WordPress 3.9 for this demo.

    I’m referencing some related articles in this video – here they are:





     
  • Jay Versluis 9:11 am on February 8, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    Categories: Themes   

    How to style block quotes in P2 

    I’ve just snazzed up the blockquotes styling on a couple of my P2 sites and thought I’d share the code that did it. Here’s an example of the final result in P2:

    This is a block quote. You can create one by adding blockquote tags to the beginning and end of a block of text you’d like to look a little different. It doesn’t always have to be a quote, just something you’d like to give a little emphasis to.

    This is a little plain in the original P2 and I thought it deserved a bit of styling. Here’s what creates the above:

    blockquote {
    	background: #fef;
    	padding: 20px;
    	font-size: 1.1em;
            border-style:dashed;
    	border-radius: 10px;
    	-webkit-border-radius: 10px;
    	-moz-border-radius: 10px;
    }
    

    The first line creates the background colour for the block. Any f/e variations work well as they give only a slight highlight. Try the following:

    • #eee for grey
    • #eef for yellow
    • #ffe for blue
    • you get the picture…

    Next we add a bit of breathing space all around the block of text by adding some padding, and we’ll increase the font size to something more readable.

    The border-style property adds the dotted outline to the blocks. Feel free to remove it if that’s too much emphasis, or try any of the following values as variations:

    • groove
    • double
    • ridge
    • dashed
    • dotted
    • inset
    • outset
    • solid
    • thin

    And finally we’ll add some rounded corners to those blocks with the last three lines (courtesy of that marvellous http://border-radius.com generator)

    Fell free to experiment with those values, and let me know if you find anything else that may look interesting. Add the above code to your child theme’s style.css file, or add it to a custom CSS field in your WordPress installation.

    Note that the effect of this styling will only be visible upon a browser refresh, as this is overriding styles provided by P2. So when you write a post, you’ll see the old (plain) version being inserted. Visitors will see the new styling right away.





     
  • Jay Versluis 2:41 pm on December 15, 2013 Permalink | Reply  
    Categories: Themes, WordPress ( 145 )   

    How to replace fonts in TwentyThirteen 

    I must admit that the new default font in TwentyFourteen looks damn sexy – but I’ve only just gotten used to the TwentyThirteen theme. Don’t get me wrong, if you’re after a magazine style theme then TwentyFourteen does a great job.

    Since I didn’t want to change themes again over at versluis.com, I thought perhaps I’ll just replace the default fonts in TwentyThirteen (Bitter and Source Sans Pro) with TwentyFourteen’s new font Lato.

    Here’s how:

    Screen Shot 2013-12-15 at 14.21.14

    Screen Shot 2013-12-15 at 14.28.15

    Lato is an open source font by Warsaw based designer Łukasz Dziedzic hosted on Google Fonts. Lucky for us we can link to it in our CSS stylesheet right away. Do this somewhere near the top, just below any other @import statements:

    @import url(http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Lato);
    

    Next, overwrite the existing TwentyThirteen declarations with this bit of CSS. If you’re using a child theme, add this right after the import statement. If you’re tweaking the original (which you shouldn’t) then you can add this to the very bottom of style.css. Alternatively you can declare this as additional CSS if you have the option (Jetpack does this for example):

    /* new font for 2014: Lato */
    html,
    button,
    input,
    select,
    textarea,
    h1.site-title,
    h1.entry-title,
    h2.site-description {
    	font-family: Lato, Helvetica, sans-serif;
    }
    

    This will style the following elements, overriding existing TwentyThirteen declarations:

    • site title and description
    • all post/page headlines
    • input text areas
    • drop down menus
    • button text

    Remove items as appropriate (for example the site title). If you don’t fancy Lato and would like to use another font instead, just link to it with an @import statement, then replace “Lato” in the font-family declaration with your own font. Here’s an article I’ve written that shows you howto do this:

    This tweak may also work on WordPress.com with the CSS extension subscription, but since I haven’t got that I couldn’t test it.

    Hope it helps!





     
  • Jay Versluis 9:17 pm on October 15, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    Categories: Themes   

    How to use your own random header images in TwentyThirteen 

    I really wanted to use the new WordPress TwentyThirteen theme over on my other site http://www.versluis.com. But I didn’t like the idea of using the default header images.

    Since my previous theme had random header images, I thought it would be great to tap into the now built-in function and prepare a child theme that overrides those existing header images with my own. Here’s how I did it:

    • first we’ll create a child theme
    • then we’ll remove the existing header images
    • and add our own images

    As a final touch I’ve tweaked the site title font and gave it a Photoshop-like outer glow, all in CSS. Let me talk you through it step by step.

    (More …)





     
    • Gavin 4:45 pm on October 25, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      In WordPress 3.7, I noticed the default images were still appearing even after adding the new action to unregister_default_headers.

      This is because the parent theme was setting the headers on an add_action with a priority of ’11’ and the child theme was removing the headers with an equal priority of ’11’.

      Setting the child theme to use a priority of 12 solved the issue by ensuring it was always called second:
      add_action (‘after_setup_theme’, ‘versluis2013_remove_default_headers’, 12);

    • Paul Wilkinson 8:23 am on November 6, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Jay,

      I’m in the process of trying this mod but the part where you remove the default images doesn’t work.

      The 3 existing banners are still there?

    • Paul Wilkinson 8:42 am on November 6, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      By the way, I tried Gavin’s edit there and still have the same result.

      • Jay Versluis 6:15 pm on November 6, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        Bizarre indeed! I only got a chance to look into this today, and here’s what I found:

        As soon as I updated TwentyThirteen to Version 1.1 the default header images came back to the list of my headers (under Appearance – Header). But when I’ve changed the code priority from 11 to 12 (as described by Gavin) they were gone again and everything worked fine. I’ve updated the article to reflect this.

        Did you create a child theme as discussed? And without adding your own header images, do the default ones not disappear when you add this to your child theme’s functions.php? Comment everything else out and see if that works:

        // let's remove the default header images - works with TwentyThirteen 1.1
        function versluis2013_remove_default_headers () {
        	// remove_theme_support ('custom-header');
        	unregister_default_headers (array('circle', 'diamond', 'star'));
        }
        add_action ('after_setup_theme', 'versluis2013_remove_default_headers', 12);
        
    • paulopitz137 2:50 pm on December 2, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      What happens to me is that the text of the functions.php file appear at the top of the screen with all line breaks and spaces removed. The function itself does not run.

    • paulopitz137 3:05 pm on December 2, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Found the problem. functions.php must have the following as the first line of the file:
      <?php

    • mattg 6:18 pm on December 9, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Jay, thanks for your post – it all worked superbly, but for one thing: could you suggest any reasons you could think why, whilst I can see the new header options showing (header 1, header 2 etc etc in ‘Default Images’), they have no thumbnails alongside them and, if I select these new default headers (individually or random), I get a blank (white) header image.
      I thought it may be permissions, but they *seem* to be OK.

      • Jay Versluis 10:53 pm on December 9, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        Hi Matt, glad the code worked out. Images that aren’t showing up usually mean that the path to those isn’t right, perhaps it’s just one too many slashes. I’d try to look at the source code of the displayed page and examine the path to an image that isn’t showing properly. Post a link to the site if it’s life, I’m happy to take a look.

        • mattg 5:22 am on December 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply

          many thanks Jay, I was simply missing ‘/images’ before ‘/headers’; I’d assumed that %2$s was in some way recursive, so I just needed to explicitly specify the file location within the theme.

    • Mike 1:35 am on December 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the tutorial, this is exactly what I wanted to do and it worked perfectly. Thanks to Gavin and paulopitz137, they had the two errors I did, and their fixes worked great.

      The fuzzy glow and no underline were nice bonuses also! Interestingly, they do not show up on the preview screen. How would one make those effects show on the preview?

      I am new to WordPress and will definitely be checking back here.

      • Jay Versluis 5:42 pm on December 19, 2013 Permalink | Reply

        Hi Mike, glad it was useful. Yes I’m wondering why the preview is only an “almost” preview – I’m not sure why it doesn’t show the glow. It works fine once the theme is activated.

  • Jay Versluis 9:47 am on October 8, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags:   

    Categories: Themes   

    How to add drop down categories to Automattic’s P2 Theme 

    You know I love P2. I always have, and I always will. It’s the perfect theme that turns my WordPress installation into a notebook site.

    Many users – me included – have often wished for the addition of categories to P2, so that when you write a post, you can add it to the category from the front page, perhaps via a convenient drop down menu.

    Here’s how to do it with P2 Version 1.5.1.

    And if you don’t want to hack the code yourself, I’ve got a full working project on GitHub that’s ready to rock.

    (More …)





     
    • Jay Versluis 5:54 pm on November 22, 2013 Permalink | Reply

      I forgot to mention:
      To make those categories show up inside posts (like tags to by default), examine the entry.php file in my project. This is where we display those categories.

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