CSS, WordPress as a CMS

Ever tried learning something but got frustrated and quit, and then revisit it and get frustrated and quit a few times over? Well that was me and CSS layers for the last 3 or 4 years. This weekend I decided to tackle CSS layers head on. Why CSS layers? Well traditionally web designers, for years, have been using tables to control positioning on websites, the downside of tables is that they use too much code and become a pain to maintain. Your formatting becomes tied in with the content, not good when you want to do a redesign.

I have been a dab hand at CSS, broadly speaking, I pretty much understood the formatting side of it quite well, I just could not get my head around layouts. So this weekend I sat down with my favourite CSS book “Advanced Web Standards Solutions” by Andy Budd with the sole intention of getting to grips with CSS layers. I can’t believe how easy it actually was! I am not sure what my brain was processing before but it just was not sinking in. This weekend something clicked and everything fell into place and I managed to create my first CSS Layers based website for a local company called: Aylesbury Autocare (I didn’t make the flash header).

The second part of this story is about using WordPress, that well known blogging engine, as a simple Content Management System (CMS), the aforementioned website is a WordPress site and every element of text on the site is editable (almost). WordPress is just an amazing piece of software that can be extended through hundreds of plugins, custom and conditional tags such as galleries, e-commerce, backups, random quotes and many many more.

The following tutorial helped me to understand the steps needed to make a custom design a WordPress theme: http://www.codescheme.net/2007/04/29/simple-design-a-first-wordpress-theme-1/

Happy CSS’ing!

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3 thoughts on “CSS, WordPress as a CMS”

  1. As-Salaamu ‘alaikum,

    I do hope that’s not the finished product (I suspect not, since the old page is still active).

    Three criticisms:

    (a) the site logo should be a plain image (a GIF or PNG), not a Flash animation. There’s no point in having a Flash animation which just displays a logo and does nothing else, and some users won’t have access to Flash. Linux, for example, usually comes without a Flash plugin, which has to be downloaded and installed.

    (b) there is still Latin filler text in the right side-bar

    (c) perhaps you’ll fix this before the site goes live, but I think the site shouldn’t appear in the root URL of the site. It looks a bit unprofessional. Before the site goes live, I recommend moving everything up a directory into public_html (or htdocs or whatever), rather than keeping it in a subdirectory; I recommend copying all the files in the wordpress directory into the root web directory, rather than deleting them, and preserving the wordpress directory itself, for admin purposes and to make the switch easier (because if you just move them and then change the URLs in the WordPress admin screen, it will fail). WordPress is associated with amateur blogs even if it’s a very powerful CMS; it ought to be hidden from view.

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