As the English poet, satirist, lawyer (and obviously annoying know-it-all polymath), John Donne so aptly and epigrammatically put, “No man is an Iland”. Thankfully, the English language evolves and the seemingly misspelt witticism has since become, “No man is an Island”.
If my own Elizabethan long-windedness will allow me to get to the point, I must make clear for what purpose I bring up the sweetly misspelt and lengthily titled Elizabethan devotional work of the aforementioned author, “Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions, and severall steps in my Sicknes”.
I bring it up because his pithy 17th Century saw so roundly summarizes the WordPress community and by extension, the entire open source movement:
No man is an island.
To that end, there are several people I should thank and appreciate:
You, the Reader.
Hopefully you’ve learned a lot by reading this book. If not, hopefully you’ve at least gained several insights that’ll help you streamline your theme-making process. If you’ve already come across the functions presented, then hopefully now you’ll be more conscious of making your code more DRY and declaring things once in functions.php.
Whether you have or have not, please email me directly to let me know. Above all, thank you for purchasing this book!
Say what you will about the GPL license, its still impossible to ignore the innovation it affords the burgeoning industry that surrounds WordPress. Thanks to that license, I’m able to dig into WordPress-related PHP code, learn from it, appropriate and implement as needed, credit as deserved, all with the knowledge and understanding that whomever’s desk my code lands on will likewise appropriate, hopefully learn and inevitably share. In other words, you—dear reader—are welcome to do whatever you please with the PHP/WordPress code presented in this book. That’s the beauty of WordPress and to a degree, the GPL license. I love it!
I’d be remise if I didn’t credit the various sources from which I’ve learned so, so much!
Either way, underscores is a starter theme brought to you by the same fine folks that brought—and relentlessly continue to bring—you WordPress itself.
To that end I must acknowledge the _s theme and by extension, obviously, Automattic itself. _s (and Automattic) not withstanding, I still get a full chub thinking about the infinite awesomeness of open source.
To be honest, I don’t fully understand the high-mindedness of it all (open source, that is). I’m a bit of a brute; a capitalist. As a lesser being, I find that I’m more vulturous in my undertakings; straight predatory! I put to use (for profit, no less) what others have labored over and offered up for free. So I must offer my thanks to the _s theme but obviously the designers and developers behind it.
I’m only now slowly starting to understand open source as a concept but so far—from what I can tell, anyway—the idea is to put it out there; to put it “ALL” out there. Wrong or right. Put it out there! Naturally, a wiser person than yourself is won’t to come along, appreciate your effort, clean it up a bit and ultimately serve it up to the rest of the world. Usually, in the case of WordPress, everyone is all the better for it. That’s my ignorantly simplified version of it but its obviously more than that.
Among other things, I definitely have to thank the _s theme for inspiring me to offer up what knowledge I’ve learned along the way. wpnom’s version of the _s is the Butter starter theme!
WordPress Default Theme(s)
I offer infinite gratitude to the Twenty Fourteen theme and the team behind it. In reality, I should thank every single default WordPress theme and the teams behind them. I’ve learned volumes from each single release.
One way for the theme designer to keep updated on what’s new, what’s changed and what’s improved is to crack open the latest default WordPress theme. From the simple structuring of files to the actual function definitions, the default theme is quite the handy resource.
WordPress Codex and Forums
To be honest, the journey to the official codex and forums usually goes via Google and occassional through Stack Overflow. I do a general search and somewhere in the results, a compelling title leads me either to the codex or the forums. There usually, my wants and needs are met.
When an obscure problem presents itself, as most do, I fire up my Google machine. If the problem is obscure enough, the available solutions are wont to be antiquated and, given how fast WordPress moves, deprecated. Nonetheless, when I do find that blog post that walks me through my problem, sometimes the more pragmatic solution is not actually in the post itself but in the comments.
For the Make your way to the Exif chapter, for instance, I found that most solutions on the entire internet machine that cover formatting of shutter speeds originated from this post. Andrew, the post’s author, was gracious enough to credit his likewise beneficent predecessor, Sarah, for her trail blazing post about how she handles Exif and IPTC data.
However, the best approach to the Exif & IPTC problem—as presented in this book—came from an otherwise anonymous comment on Andrew’s post. That’s the nature of the WordPress community and I love it!
I must therefore thank all that write the actual posts and also to those that take the time to comment on them. Every bit helps.