WordPress: Category Archive (Page 2)

Posts about developing with WordPress

Sunday, November 25, 2007
  Adding Tags to a WordPress Theme

WordPress 2.3 introduced tags, but unless you're using the default theme, your theme (like mine) probably didn't support them. Nowhere did I find a good example of how to add tags to your theme. Then, I was playing around with the theme switcher on my personal blog, and discovered that the default theme had tag support. I looked at it, and it was amazingly simple.

There is a new template tag called ...drumroll… the_tags. It takes three parameters: how to begin the list, how to separate each tag, and how to end the list. The tag does not do any output if a post hasn't been tagged, so it can safely sit in your theme until you need it to be active.

Here's how I did it in my personal blog.

<?php the_tags('<div class="tags">Tags » ', ' • ', '</div>'); ?>

Of course, you could also do it using an unordered list…

<?php the_tags('Tags<ul class="tags"><li>', '</li><li>', '</li></ul>'); ?>

Drop some styling for the “tags” class in your theme's CSS, and you're good to go!

(Well, not quite. You'll want to make sure to make the same change in your main index template, single post template, and archive template, so that the tags appear no matter how the user got to the post.)

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Tuesday, October 2, 2007
  Daniel’s DropDowns 1.0 - WordPress Plug-In

I've created a plug-in that I'm now using on my personal site to provide the category and archive drop-down lists. It's called “Daniel's DropDowns”, and it will create drop-downs with either a link or a button to go to the selection in the drop-down, and a CSS class can be specified for the button and the drop-down box.

daniels_dropdowns.txt - Daniel's DropDowns 1.0 (UPDATE: This functionality is now part of WordPress core.)

To install it, download the file, rename it “daniels_dropdowns.php”, and upload it to your /wp-content/plugins directory. Then, enable it, and add the template tags to your theme. (The documentation at the top of the file lists all the template tags provided, and the options that can be passed to them.)

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Tuesday, September 25, 2007
  HCSB Verse of the Day 1.0 - WordPress Plug-In

I have used a hack in the theme of my personal site for a while to obtain the “Verse of the Day” in the Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) version. With things that I've learned about plug-ins, I decided to take a stab at creating a plug-in to do this work. That way, if I changed themes, I wouldn't have to hack the new one they way I've hacked the current one.

The fruits of my labor is the new HCSB Verse of the Day plug-in for WordPress. It uses the reference from BibleGateway.com, then gets the text from their regular website. (They do not provide the service, citing copyright restrictions.) How to use the plug-in, along with my justification on copyright grounds, is in the top of the file's comments. If they're not clear, certainly post comments here and I'll address them. (I do plan to submit the plug-in to WordPress.org - but, they require a specific README file format that it will take me a bit to put together.)

votd_hcsb.txt - HCSB Verse of the Day 1.0 (UPDATE: It is in the plugin directory now.)

To install it, download the file, rename it “votd_hcsb.php”, and upload it to your /wp-content/plugins directory. Then, enable it, and add the template tags to your theme - that's it!

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Monday, August 6, 2007
  Incorporating an Akismet Counter into a WordPress Theme

Akismet is, by far, the most popular anti-spam plug-in for WordPress. (It comes bundled with the download, so that gets it market share. But, it's also very, very good.) It comes with a counter that can be put into a WordPress theme. It's attractive, but its light blue color may not integrate well into a given theme.

I went digging around in the source code, and found the line that actually pulls the count from the database. Using this parameter, I was able to integrate a spam count into the sidebar that has a look consistent with the rest of the site.

Here's the code that's in use on the theme on this site.

<li id="spamstats">
  <h2><?php _e('Akismet-Eaten Spam:'); ?></h2>
    <li><a href="//akismet.com"><?php
      echo(number_format(get_option("akismet_spam_count"))); ?>
      and counting...</a></li>

Of course, line 5 is the important one - that's how to get the number, formatted for whatever locale the server is set up for. (On my personal blog, the number is up over 1,400!)

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007
  Posting Source Code in WordPress, Take 2

In my searching, I have found another WordPress source code plugin, called wp-syntax. This one uses GeSHi, the Generic Syntax Highlighter. It features many languages, and is extensible to even more. (If I ever post a COBOL snippet, I'll probably add COBOL support to it, and contribute it to the codebase.)

To use it, you simply put a pre tag, followed by lang=[language]. It will also do line numbering. Of course, with a single “language” parameter, the embedded language will not be highlighted as well. In this case, the previous plug-in works better; although the syntax highlighting has to be done manually, it can handle multiple languages.

(NOTE: The samples have been removed, as this blog is not running under WordPress. However, since the source code from another post was moved here, it is presented below using myWebLog's code highlighting.)

 * This creates a list of category links that can be used with a category dropdown
$aCategories = get_all_category_ids();
$iMaxCat = 0;
foreach($aCategories as $iThisCat) {
    if ($iMaxCat < $iThisCat) {
        $iMaxCat = $iThisCat;
<div style="text-align:center;">
<form name="categoryform" action="" style="text-align:center;">
    <script type="text/javascript">
        var aLink = new Array(<?php echo($iMaxCat); ?>);
foreach($aCategories as $iThisCat) {
    echo("aLink[$iThisCat] = \"" . get_category_link($iThisCat) . "\";\n");
} ?>
        function goCat() {
            window.location =
    <?php wp_dropdown_categories('class=sidebardropdown&orderby=name&show_count=1&hierarchical=1'); ?>
    <br /><br />
    <button class="sidebarbutton" type="button" style="margin-top:5px;" onclick="goCat();">View Category</button>

This is another option, and is probably what I'll use for single-language posts, or posts where the embedded language may not be crucial.

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Wednesday, May 30, 2007
  Posting Source Code in WordPress

Traditionally, posting source code in a WordPress blog, especially if it were HTML or PHP, was problematic. There are a few reasons for this…

  • WordPress is very good about ensuring that it outputs valid XHTML, so it strips mis-matched and invalid tags. This is usually desirable, but it wreaks havoc with HTML and XML code posts.
  • Since WordPress is coded in PHP, blocks of PHP will attempt to execute.
  • White space is collapsed, which can kill any readability that the user has set out; the “visual editor” (TinyMCE) does its best to create efficient HTML. This can actually break spacing-oriented languages such as Python.

So how do you do it? It's actually pretty easy, using the Code Markup WordPress plugin. You can download the plugin from that link, and upload it to ./wp-content/plugins. The instructions on the website are critical - the “visual” editor will not allow the code to come through unscathed. However, the visual editor only corrupts the code if you actually save it; what I have done is write the post using the visual editor, then disable it and put the code in. It's the best of both worlds! (Make sure that, once you have the code in, you don't edit the post using the visual editor - unless you have a good backup…)

The post below this one (about category lists in WordPress) was done using this plugin. (This isn't running in WordPress any more.) In addition, you can use the span tag to do the color-coding. I created a few CSS classes (“key” for keywords, “func” for functions, “attr” for attributes, “embed” for embedded language), and used them to accomplish the color coding. It seems that it would be pretty easy to write another plugin that used a list of keywords to do this syntax highlighting; maybe that's a challenge for another day.

A big “atta boy” to Bennet McElwee for a fantastic plugin!

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