WordPress Theme Woes

This is a bit about the boring, somewhat technical side behind being a webmaster. If this kind of thing bores you, feel free to skip down to the end, where there’s a very pretty picture.

I have to say, I’m loving being on Draknet hosting – it’s nice knowing that the owner of the hosting company feels invested in the site enough to really help with things behind the scenes. When she began moving databases for me, however, she noticed that our current WordPress theme was doing some very odd things to a database behind the scenes.

With this in mind, and the fact that news is coming almost faster than we can publish it, we wanted to revamp the site so that it would really manage the news better. I envision something with a layout similar to HuffPo or CNN.com, but with All Stephen, All the Time. I’d like a new design in a “Magazine” style blog, but powered by WordPress. We even got a nifty new “Web 2.0″ version of our logo courtesy of our resident graphic artist, Kinaesthesia. So man, this weekend we were ready to GO!

We tried a few different themes – Mimbo seemed very promising, but there was an annoying quirk that made the theme simply drop out for no reason, and I didn’t want to have to worry about the site being a big white screen on a regular basis. Even after working with the developer, and doing some research about the bug on WordPress, I couldn’t figure out what the problem was, so we scrapped what we had, and moved on. We also tried The Morning After, which had some great potential, but had quite a few bugs as it wasn’t compatable with the newest version of WordPress. I really love the look and functionality of Revolution, and I wouldn’t even have to change the color scheme, but the theme template costs money, and I do my best to make this a cheap hobby so I’d rather have something lower costing if possible.

So here’s my question, kids: Is there anyone out there that is really good with PHP, or graphics, or web design and very familiar with WordPress themes who’s willing to help take this site to the next level? I’d love a new look for the site that is more than a typical blog layout, and I want it to be something that’s going to last a long time for the site. Send me an e-mail (db (at@) nofactzone.net) telling me about your experience and potential for helping with the site, and we’ll see what we can work out.

Thank you for putting up with my rambling, please accept this picture as thanks for putting up with me.

ColbertVF02

Comments

  1. There’s nothing about the Mimbo theme itself that would cause the template-switching problem — there are already about 500 sites using it without issues. Have you tried exporting your blog data to an XML file, starting with a fresh install of WP 2.3, and re-importing your data?

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  2. @Darren:

    I was going to try starting with a fresh install of Mimbo tonight, and then working from there. Maybe I blew up something in the code when I started making modifications. I’m not sure how to do a fresh install of 2.3.1. in the way you’re describing – I could work with my Draknet buddy to see if she can walk me through a fresh install as you’ve mentioned here.

    I feel fairly certain the bug was not from your theme directly – it’s a quirk in WordPress. I’m not sure where the quirk is coming from, though. I read a lot about it yesterday, and I’ve heard a dozen causes and a half-dozen cures for the problem, but none that would seem to help NFZ’s execution of the issue.

    I would *love* to use Mimbo, as I found it to be a perfect fit for the site’s content. And I even got the colors where I was happy with them.

    If there’s any PHP gurus that want to help me debug the theme in relation to how it works with my site, that would be fantastic.

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  3. The trouble ticket says:

    “There is still no fix addressed to the problem on heavily accessed systems where the theme can revert back to default.”

    Is he saying the problem only happens on very highly-trafficked sites? Oy.

    Folks in the WordPress support forums should have some insights.

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  4. Oh DB, I so wish I could help you! I so fail at tech stuff…

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  5. please please PLEASE keep this layout.

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  6. @M:

    I might end up keeping it in a Blog-style layout, but unfortunately the template has to go. It’s a security issue and doing some really odd things in the background that are very unsavory.

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  7. Huh? …Did you say something? …sorry, I got carried away with looking at the pretty picture….

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  8. I’m only invested in the site because I’m hoping I can turn this into a cabinet position when Stephen’s elected.

    Or, um, something.

    Ok, that, and it pissed me off when I couldn’t read the news and I knew I could keep the site up. I mean, you just have to keep the server running. How hard is that?

    [smells smoke]

    S’cuse me. Gotta go. [smirk]

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  9. 3rd Coast Chick says:

    Good luck with this. Love the job y’all are doing with the site!

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