WordPress is a free, Web-based software program that anyone can use to build and maintain a website or blog. It was originally intended as an easy way to set up a blog. But, thanks to the efforts of a large “open source” community of WordPress programmers working to extend and improve its capabilities, WordPress has become much more than just a tool for bloggers. Today’s WordPress is really a “content management system” (CMS), which means that it can be used to run full-sized, social media-rich business websites.
Wordpress.org VS Wordpress.com If you’re entirely new to WordPress, the difference between wordpress.org and wordpress.com and might be a bit confusing at first. The first site, wordpress.org, is the home of the free and open source WordPress software platform. If your intention is to develop custom themes and host the CMS on your own server, wordpress.org is the only option. WordPress.com, meanwhile, is a commercial entity operated by Automattic, which provides hosted blogging using the WordPress platform. It’s free to use, though there area number of premium features available for a fee Wordpress.org is the one relevant to us
Wordpress.org Pro’s access to thousands of custom themes use of custom widgets and plugins retention of 100% control over the markup access to the MySQL database, should you need to make revisions or create new tables Con’s responsible for acquiring your own hosting, at a cost manual installation of software required download required of necessary plugins to prevent spam (typically Automattic’s popular Akismetplugin)
Wordpress.com Pros hosted and managed by Automattic for free hosted on hundreds of servers, resulting in virtually 99% uptime set up, comment spam, and database back ups performed automatically for free Cons limited access to themes (around 100), and custom themes not permitted unable to modify underlying PHP code custom plugins can’t be implemented initial listing as a subdomain of wordpress.com, such as mysite.wordpress.com, though it’s possible to map your own domain address to this URL
Wordpress and Themes Don’t confuse the content—the pages and posts—with the theme; they’re unrelated. In fact, this separation is what makes WordPress and theming so powerful! WordPressis a framework that provides all of the functionality for RSS, commenting, searching, querying the database, displaying posts, creating pages, and the like. The theme, on the other hand, is the skin: how it looks, the layout of the design, the CSS, added functionality, and images. Because each theme hooks into WordPress’s core functions and filters in the same way, you can switch between themes with a click of a button. Any WordPress-powered site can instantly change theme and rock a whole new look. Each theme resides within a subdirectory of your WordPress installation called themes. If some new theme is called “blue,” it can be found within wp-content/themes/blue. This separation of the presentation from the system files is incredibly helpful; it makes future updates to the WordPress framework easy, since you can update the core WordPress files without changing the theme.
Lets look at some self hosted wordpress sites Obviously this one www.urshula.com/wordpress This “site” has a very traditional bloggy look www.urshula.com/golfball I don’t think this “site” looks like a blog at all www.stevenheremaia.com Traditional website looking www.buyersagentsgoldcoast.com.au www.smashingmagazine.com
More about themes Themes are essentially divided into 3 “concepts” Presentation A file called style.css contains all the style rules that will be applied to your theme. Content Template files describe what content should be output on each of WordPress’s pages: lists of posts, single posts, search results, and so on. Logic A file called functions.php contains any additional logic your theme needs in order to, well, function. As we’ll see in later chapters, this is where you’d include plugin-like functionality in your theme: new custom widgets, or a theme-specific admin panel for customizing the color scheme and layout. WE WONT BE TOUCHING THE BOTTOM 2
Conclusion There’s a reason why over 20 million people have installed WordPress: it’s easy, free, extensible, themeable. As a web designer/developer , you already have many of the skills required to build your own WordPress themes but the most important one we need to master at the moment is CSS so we can modify a theme o create our own custom one.