Tag Archives: mass customization

Change your email address

Why must my E-mail address be unique? « WordPress.com

I like this new ‘press this’ link (in the blue wp.com bar, top right), despite its odd name.

Apparently the reason we can’t have new features is because the staff didn’t anticipate people using the same email address for more than one account.  I’m not sure the addition of an FAQ page is really going to grab people’s attention, so i’m reblogging this.  (i bet you can count on your 2 hands the number of people subscribe to the feed (or who’ve added faq.wordpress.com to their friend surfer).

tell your friends:  only you can fix the wp.com database structure!

Custom CSS on wordpress.com

UPDATE: it seems that this trick doesn’t actually work all that well.  however, the pinklillies style has been painstakingly converted to a sandbox skin.  The instructions below will help you use skins that were not intended for wordpress.com, though.

Customizing CSS is a new trick on wordpress.com, but hosted wordpress users have been doing it for a while.

Alex King has hosted a competition or two based on styling the ‘classic’ theme.

Here’s how to use those great old styles:

1. download and unzip the style of your choice.
2. Go to your wordpress dashboard, and under Presentation, choose the WordPress Classic theme, by Dave Shea.
3. Start Writing a new post. Using the uploader, upload all of the images from the style you downloaded.
3a. for each image, click on it, and make sure the popup says ‘using original’ at the top. click on ‘using thumbnail’ if it doesn’t. once it says ‘using original’, click ‘close’
4. Open TextEdit on your computer
5. drag style.css from the downloaded style onto textedit
6. click Go > Find (or press cmd+F)
7. search for the name of the first image in the style folder (ex. top.gif)
8. in your new post (on wordpress.com), in the uploader, control+click on the same image, and click “copy image address”
9. switch back to textedit, and paste that address into the ‘replace’ field.

10. click ‘replace and find’. this will highlight the name of the image.
11. click ‘replace’ and the highlighted text will be replaced with the address of the image you’ve uploaded.
12. repeat steps 6-11 for all the images in the style.
13. click File > Save
14. click Edit > Select All, then Edit > Copy
15. go to the Custom CSS page in your wordpress dashboard, and paste.
16. click preview to see it in action, and click ‘save stylesheet’ if it looks good!

FULL DISCLOSURE: i don’t have a paid account. i can’t test this out.

UPDATE: wank points out that this won’t work perfectly, since classic styles are meant to replace classic, not overwrite it. example

theme designers are idiots

No really, we are. Most of us couldn’t handle setting up an SVN repository if it killed us. Let alone version update notifications. So the kids with a copy of kubrick and two crayons to rub together go and pester the repository admins every 5 minutes because there’s yet another bug in their theme. (guilty). The tools of making ugly are in the hands of some very irresponsible people.

I suppose shutting down automatic (that word is starting to look wrong without the extra ‘t’) theme uploading is better than arbitrarily deleting themes depending on the politeness of the designer.  Seriously, though: half an hour in 6 days?  I spend more time deleting spam than that.  I mean, i can’t quite hear Shadows laughing all the way across the pond.  Now I’m starting to wonder how much effort can really be spared out of such a busy schedule to run a theme competition.

guidelines for the feed icon

grayscale feed icon for archGFX

i've been working on my redesign (yes, my aspirations are loftier than just this header). i checked in on matt brett's feedicons.com to see if it had rebooted (to see if anyone else had made a minimal version), and found out that Frank Hecker had only just now come to a decision on the licensing of the feed icon. first, he wrote this:

"the feed icon is closer in spirit to a "community mark" than a traditional trademark. Our goal is that the icon be adopted universally by the entire community of people producing and using innovative products and services based on open web syndication formats, and be conceived of as belonging to that community rather than to any one organization."

Sounds good, right? The goal is just to assist the icon in transformation to something as genericized as a stop sign. Except not:

The guidelines state that you can't use the icon with a proprietary format, or change the colors of the icon, or any of a bunch of other nefarious deeds. Like orange is some sort of holy manna handed down from Dave Winer, and I'm already an apostate deviant for using an aqua feed icon. So Mozilla are now the guardians of this semi-proprietary mark, and they're going to protect us all from those evil closed source bastards? I guess that's why they had to go and write their own license, this free beer stuff is still kind of confusing.

Let's talk semiology and color theory for a second. Orange is a color for alerts and notifications. It never blends in. That's one of the reasons i like it so much. and I admit: it's absolutely perfect for browsers and auto-detection. It signifies an available action. On a web-page, that action is tertiary. The primary action of the feed icon is a link. Thusly, i've colored my feed icon to match my links (and removed the mime type so clickers have access to the web service buttons in feedburner's excellent XSL Template.

My punishment? they'll be "boycotting the violator's products and services, and so on". I certainly fucking hope so. Anyone who misunderstands roland barthes so badly that they think it's possible to give an icon real meaning, without absolutely surrendering control of the icon, shouldn't be reading my blog anyway.