New Theme Installed

As you may have noticed, I installed a new theme for my blog. What do you think about it? Scott over at plaintxt.org has a bunch of really nice minimalistic themes for WordPress, one of which I am now using (Simplr). I made a couple of slight modifications to the theme, such as adjusting the number of recent posts and comments that are displayed.

By default, this theme lists all the pages across the top, including any sub-pages, so I simply hid the Before I Die, Style Changer (only applies to my previous theme), and the To Do List pages. I have not decided how to make use of the pages feature in WordPress. I have been creating posts for virtually everything, including very long posts, paginated into several pages such as the Basement Project. The main reason I have been avoiding using pages is because there is no easy way to organize them. With posts, I can simply assign multiple categories to them. This isn't possible with pages.

The other little modification I made was to the CSS file for Simplr. I really liked having the hierarchical list of categories, where sub-categories were indented below their parents. The Simplr theme did not come with support for this, even if the option was enabled using wp_list_cats, as I mentioned doing in this post. Using CSS, there are two methods of making this happen. You can either use text-indent: 25px or you can use margin-left: 25px.

I would prefer to use text-indent so that the background of each category stays the same width throughout the list. However, using text-indent means if you have any categories that are more than 2 levels deep (for example, General->Writing->Health) the text indent will stop after the first sub category; all sub-sub-categories will look as if they are just sub categories of the parent. The only way around this (that I know of) is to use margin-left. This keeps the list looking nice, however it changes the size of the background of each sub category as well, which doesn't look too pretty. I finally decided that if I only use a 10px indent, the resizing of the background's doesn't look quite as bad. Here's what I finally used:

[css]
div.sidebar ul.children li {
margin-left: 10px;
}
[/css]

Let me know what you think of this theme. By default only the newest post is shown on the front page. This can be changed, however if the list of posts is very long the categories list would appear way at the bottom, requiring you to scroll all the way down to view the categories, links, recent posts, and recent comments.

I also installed WP-Cache. It's supposed to speed up the browsing of my blog by caching static copies of each page once it has been viewed and serving the cached version to new visitors instead of querying the database. Let me know if you notice any speed increases.

Lastly, I installed Search Pages, a WordPress plugin that enables searching not only the titles of posts, but also the post content. This is very useful if you're looking for a previous post you read and only remember something from within the post and not the post title. I think this should be the default for searches in WordPress, but I guess it's not.

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