WordPress Page Templates

A couple of weeks ago I was trying to get a design out so a client could review it and let us know if they wanted us to keep working on the design. Fortunately they did! I was struggling to try and figure out how I could have pages with a different template design. I wanted to have a sidebar on one section of the website with a list of subpages. I knew there was a way to do it. I had heard of it before but I couldn’t quite figure it out. I then looked through the WordPress documentation and learned about WordPress page templates and how to create them! I was relieved because I was then able to quickly get a different template for a few pages put together.

It’s really easy to do. At the top of a PHP file in your theme’s root directly, place the following code:

  1. <?php
  2. /*
  3. Template Name: Facts
  4. */
  5. ?>

Then of course you’ll pull your header, sidebar, footer and other div elements just like you normally would. After you have gotten it put together upload the file into your theme directory. Go into your WordPress administration area and edit or create a new page. On the side click on the plus sign beside page template, use the drop down to choose your newly created page template. If you were already on the page before you uploaded you may have to refresh.

Flash, A Little Dab Will Do Ya'!

I wish people would stop using Flash for their entire website design. First of all, Flash slows my computer down to the point where I have to force my browser to close just so I can start browsing the Internet again. I lose the tabs I had open and that doesn’t make me a happy camper! Not all sites do this, I realize that. But there are a lot that do. Secondly, Flash is still not very usable to blind people. I have blind friends, they tell me these things. Third, if you’ve got several layers to go through to get to a certain point in your website, everytime someone visits your website they have to go through the entire thing from the beginning. You can’t simply bookmark the page.

The other aggravation that I’ve got is that sites that use Flash for their entire presentation tend to force you to open a pop up window to view the site. Not only do most browsers block pop ups by default, most people, at least I, don’t think to look for a button that says “click here to open.” Also, stop using splash screens! That is seriously old and annoying. With fast Internet connections people do not want to wait on your stupid splash screen to load and transfer the user to your real homepage. It’s not good for search engine optimization. It also annoys me! So stop it!

I am not completely against Flash. For streaming video across the Internet, Flash is the best solution. You can play flash content on Windows, Mac and Linux. For advertisements (THAT AREN’T ANNOYING) flash can be very good at getting your message across because you are not confined to just text and images. My point to this rant is to use Flash sparingly. I think it’s a great tool but I seriously think people are overusing it.