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Permission to break the blog?

In a thread below, Deborah HH opined that she missed the “recent comments” blurb in the sidebar. I do too. Without it, you can’t tell if somebody has revisited an old post with a new comment.

So I roused my lazy ass and had a look at the innards and, sure enough, a plugin I was relying on for the function has died. There are other ways to do it, but my blog is so old and eccentric that I can’t use them.

The layout of WordPress blogs relies on Themes, which set everything from column width to header graphics. There are thousands of them. If you have an orthodox website, you can swap themes all day and everything will fall into place. If you’ve done a bunch of weird, ignorant things to your Theme, it won’t.

I went looking for a WordPress Theme that was anything like the current three-column layout I have to use as a starting point for a clean new Theme and discovered something scary: about half the Themes out there won’t work with my outdated version of PHP (a scripting language for the Web). And my version of PHP is old because…you guessed it. My Theme is too eccentric for a newer one.

Meaning, I gotta modernize or, sooner or later, I’ll be forced to update PHP “for security reasons” and everything goes boom.

All of this to say I’ll be breaking the blog at some point. I can do a lot of tinkering without switching entirely, but I have to jump eventually. Things may look weird. Color might sneak in. A sidebar might disappear for a while. But I should be able to replicate everything eventually.


May 28, 2024 — 6:55 pm
Comments: 7