Options WordPress Theme Version 1.1

I finally finished this thing.

I could probably work on it another week or two and never be fully satisfied. It seems that every moment longer I work on it, I learn something new. I figured I’d better just go ahead and release this version, or I’ll be working for the next half year and many of you would not be very happy.

The title of this release is New Groove.

Note: The official page for this theme is still at the original download page.

The new demos

An entirely new style ready to take the Options theme into the future

A new and improved version of the Light stylesheet
The popular original Dark stylesheet for the Options theme

I would like to thank Barbara for naming the newest style, Blue Danube. The Blue Danube, according Answers.com:

A river of south-central Europe rising in southwest Germany and flowing about 2,848 km (1,770 mi) southeast through Austria, Hungary, Serbia, and Romania to the Black Sea. It has been a major trade route since the Middle Ages.

There are actually some nice photos of the river if you do a little searching. Once again, thanks Barbara, not only for naming the style, but expanding our knowledge also.

Some new features

There are plenty of new features and fixes in this release.

  • Config file Look for the config.php file in your app folder. It'll give you a few options to play around with. It'll also be the first bit of theme documentation that I update.
  • Upload new stylesheets You can now upload new stylesheets (following the naming convention of the others). So, users can share their styles with each other. This requires no editing. Just drop the folder into your "styles" folder and choose it on the theme settings page.
  • Gravatars WordPress 2.5 users get the added benefit of post page and author bio gravatars. Users with versions below 2.5 only get to use comment gravatars though.
  • Advanced widget control The ability to add multiple widgets with many of the widgets and many have their own control panels. (I haven't tested the widget controls on WordPress versions below 2.5).
  • New sidebar tabs I've updated the sidebar tabs with many more options.
  • Much more There's much more hidden away in this release that we'll have to explore together.

Future features

From this point on, I’d like to continue developing the theme. First and foremost, the plan is to continue cutting back on code and database queries as much as possible as I continue learning better ways to do things with PHP.

The next goal is to add plenty of new goodies for the users.

  • Revamped author archives This is especially useful for multi-author blogs. I want to let each author showcase his or her best work and other things.
  • Category and archive styles Since many users want to use this as a CMS, I'd like to give them a few more options with how their archives are displayed.
  • Sticky posts These will be posts that have a longer lifetime than features. Mostly, they'll be used for category and/or author pages for our CMS-type users.
  • Image and video galleries I'm still toying with the idea of these features for this theme, so I'd like some feedback on this.
  • Image attachments Image uploading just got a whole lot easier with WordPress 2.5, so I'm currently working out ways that we can better take advantage of post attachments. This may be a better/easier option to use than custom fields. Any ideas in this area are much appreciated.

Cleaning up

As with any new release, there are bugs, and I’m sure this release has no shortage of them. I usually run a bug-squashing week after all new releases, so I’m sure there’ll be a small update for those of you that help find bugs within the next week or so. Please report any you notice in the forums.

I’ll start updating the theme documentation in the coming days. For now, you’ll have to play around with it.

Play around with it. Break it. Ask questions. Blame me for ruining your WP experience.

Whatever you do, enjoy the theme and please be gentle with it.