A bugfix release for Arras Theme is now available in the WordPress themes directory.
- Fixed shortcodes being exposed in the featured slideshow
- Fixed custom background color not working
- Fixed qTranslate not working with the theme
- Removed post content preview option (excerpts limited to 20 words is the only option now)
- Added functions to check whether the cache directory is writable and GD library is installed
- Fixed default background color displaying the wrong color
- Fixed widgets not working well in WordPress 2.8 Beta
- Added a quick guide on how to post thumbnails and other tips
- Top-level navigation for theme options and quick guide
- Fixed main navigation not displaying properly in Internet Explorer 6 & 7
- Upgraded thumbnail generator script
- Added new filter hooks for plugin/theme hackers
- Added a new option to display categories, pages or from a link category in the main navigation
When I submitted Arras Theme to the WordPress themes directory for approval, the reviewer sent me a reply requesting that some of the changes need to be made before it can be approved. Here are some of the interesting points they requested for me to fix:
Using an image as the blog title / logo
The blog title and the blog description taken from the blog settings has to be shown in the header, which means you have to dynamically generate the title and the slogan. Using static images as a logo is not allowed. One possible solution is to use sIFR or Cufon, but it may not be a good idea because of the licensing issues with fonts.
All categories must be shown in the single post template
Displaying only one category (probably like the one in Gizmodo) in the single post template is not allowed. You will need to display all categories that belong to the post.
the word ‘premium’ is not allowed
This is quite an interesting one. I had initially placed the word premium in the description and the default text widget, but was requested to remove both of it. Maybe he just doesn’t like the word premium, or my theme wasn’t premium enough .
Anyway, I’m really thankful for the reviewer for taking his time to review my theme (he found some bugs too, it’s quite embarrassing). I had a feeling he checked it really thoroughly, kudos to him!
It is truly my pleasure to announce the Arras Theme has been approved and is now available in the WordPress themes directory! Many thanks for those who have helped in the testing of this release, including the guy in charge of mantaining the directory and approving it.
While we wait for Arras Theme 1.3.0 to get approved and posted up into the WordPress themes directory, let’s shift the focus back to the Buffet Framework.
I have been actively developing the framework, pushing in new ideas and finding simple approaches to make theme development much easier. If you have actually explored the repository up at Google Code, you would have noticed some additions into the framework.
One of the main features that I have been trying is to add support for Minify, which allows you to combine, minify and cache your CSS and JS files. WordPress actually has an internal caching feature for their CSS and JS files that will be implemented in 2.8, but it will only be used in admin. So to provide support for this app, the theme developer would probably have to do the following things:
- Define the path Minify is installed, with their own configuration.
wp_enqueue_scriptto add their own JS files instead of echoing out the HTML tags like you would normally do.
- Use a special framework function
bf_add_stylesheetto include your stylesheet instead of using
As long as the path to the installation path is defined, the framework will kick in and add an option into the admin to allow theme users to enable or disable the feature. An additional option will also appear to allow the users to delete the cache should they change anything in their CSS and JS files.
This feature should appear in the 0.6 stable release of the framework.
For the past few weeks I have been thinking about the future for Arras Theme, my first WordPress premium theme. As I might not be able to provide any support for the theme towards the end of July, I have been thinking of solutions on how to keep the theme available and updated.
Let’s just be honest, the theme does not make as much revenue compared to other premium theme forerunners such as WooThemes and StudioPress. So hiring someone to do the job for support, in my opinion, might not be feasible (when I mean hiring someone he/she must know what he is doing).
Another thing is that I have joined the WPSynergy (formerly WPGorilla) team, where we aim to create great free premium themes for everyone to use. The GPL, and the idea of free software really influenced me a lot into making a decision for this theme.
Hence, I have decided to end commercial support for this theme. If you have purchased any theme packages offered either here or the official website, commerical support will end at June 31, 2009. That leaves you about a month and a half to spam all your support requests to me.
Wait! Does that Mean it’s the End?
Nope, this does not mean that it is the end of the theme. I will still provide updates and support whenever I can via forums, email or IM (you can try spamming me every night like most customers do, it might work ).
When I am writing this post, the major update 1.3.0 is completed and ready for release. I will try to upload the theme to the WordPress themes directory, which means getting updates will be way easier now.
What it also means, is that Arras Theme is going to be a free-mium WordPress theme. IMO, this works better. More bugs will be found, more ideas can be thrown around, it would greatly benefit the theme.
What’s Going to Happen in the Next Few Days?
Just to summarize what I have been crapping about:
- Commerical Support will end at June 31, 2009
- Support Forums will be revamped and opened up to everyone (into Community Forums)
- Arras Theme 1.3.0 will be available via WordPress themes directory (needs approval)
- I get no income via Arras Theme (that means if you like it, start donating!)
I hope I did not drop a bombshell here…