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Must I know php to design a theme?


  • eclipsenow
    Member

    @eclipsenow

    I thought I only needed to use CSS to STYLE a theme, but just found out SMF require a fair bit of php just to style a theme! I wasn’t wanting to PROGRAM the thing, just style a pre-existing template.

    Can I just ask, and I could be totally mad here, if there’s a way to create a basic html bbpress template “thingy” that could sit in Dreamweaver and let me do all the CSS in DW, and then just copy & paste that CSS into the right spots in bbpress?

Viewing 5 replies - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
  • Yes and no.

    You need to know css, you should know HTML. PHP will help if you want to do some detailed customizing, but at the very least you should know what NOT to delete. So … no, you don’t need to for the basics, but once you start munging up the layout of the site, it sure helps!


    eclipsenow
    Member

    @eclipsenow

    So can I move certain “modules” or “plug-ins” around without php? EG: Can I move the log-in bar to the top or the bottom or the side of the page by a “point and click” interface a bit like Joomla, or do I have to know php to just move something around?

    Are there any “core” enhancements coming in the new bbpress that will enable easier customisation?

    Lastly, if I have a stunning new wordpress theme that I’ve styled up in Dreamweaver, how do I make bbpress “sit” inside the header-wrapper of WordPress?

    I’m almost on the brink of making a big commitment here. This could help me decide to shift not only to bbpress, but to WordPress. (I’m leaning away from Joomla and towards WordPress because of the Dreamweaver compatibility as well!) So while in some ways I’m a newbie, please understand that I’ve finally caught the “web-design” bug (although am kind of doing it part time), have upgraded to Adobe CS4, my wife and I work in a design studio, I’ve spent about 20 hours so far running through Lynda.com tutorials on XHTML and CSS and now I’m working through Dreamweaver, and I just need to make a choice about which CMS and forum to “get into” for clients.


    chrishajer
    Participant

    @chrishajer

    > So can I move certain “modules” or “plug-ins” around without php?

    > EG: Can I move the log-in bar to the top or the bottom or the side

    > of the page by a “point and click” interface a bit like Joomla,

    > or do I have to know php to just move something around?

    No, it does not work like Joomla in this regard. It’s also unlike widgetized themes in WordPress. You don’t need to know PHP to move these thigns around, but you *do* need to know enough *about* PHP to know how it works, and you need to edit the theme files to move those blocks around manually.

    > Are there any “core” enhancements coming in the new bbpress that

    > will enable easier customisation?

    I can’t speak for bbPress, but there’s nothing like that that I am aware of.

    > Lastly, if I have a stunning new wordpress theme that I’ve styled up

    > in Dreamweaver, how do I make bbpress “sit” inside the header-wrapper

    > of WordPress?

    bbPress does not become a part of WordPress. If you have the design in Dreamweaver, you are going to create two themes: one for WordPress and one for bbPress. They are going to look similar, but they are not going to be identical.

    For the big commitment, that’s up to you. bbPress is a very immature package right now without a lot of resources being applied to it. WordPress on the other hand has a very vibrant development community, a good group of core employees programming for it, a regular release schedule, etc. I think it’s a mistake to lump bbPress and WordPress together. I would not hesitate to use WordPress as a CMS for nearly any website I were doing. For forums though, I think you have to consider all the possibilities. There are lots of forums available. The determining factor should be the strengths and weaknesses of each forum, and how they fit with your strengths and weaknesses. It’s a personal decision for you.

    Luckily, I’ve only had two customers request forum functionality, out of about forty websites (1 Joomla, the rest WordPress). So, I made the decision to use bbPress in both cases, but depending on the situation, I might choose something different in the future.


    eclipsenow
    Member

    @eclipsenow

    I don’t know php, or plan to learn it in the foreseeable future.

    I’m trying to learn XHTML, CSS, Dreamweaver, and WordPress and finally bbpress.

    Is there ANY way to make this whole thing easier? Even just an easy way to change the header image and a few colours?

    I seriously thought I could just use SMF for my forum. It has all the features already built in, it looks easy enough to manage. I’m at the end of my rope here… I just need a quick solution and to get on with using it. If I find the right “overall” theme, is it easy enough to just change the header say?

    I just need a quick solution and to get on with using it. If I find the right “overall” theme, is it easy enough to just change the header say?

    Yes, you probably just need to edit the CSS file and change the image.

    You don’t need to learn the entire PHP language. You can learn things as you go. Just read a good beginners tutorial to learn the basics of PHP and you’re good to go.

Viewing 5 replies - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)

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