Upgrades to WordPress and the Thesis theme

A new version of WordPress was released last week and I’ve upgraded this blog to that version, 2.8.5. As always, I followed my 6 tips to upgrading WordPress to ensure a smooth and trouble-free upgrade.

The WordPress developers say that 2.8.5 is a hardening release as it tightens up on some security areas. As with all such security-related releases, you ought to upgrade if you run WordPress.

If you’re a regular visitor here, you might notice some differences in how the site looks. Nothing radical – no new design – just some tweaking that I’ve had in mind for a while but couldn’t figure out how to do until now.

I’ve been using the Thesis theme for WordPress on all my blogs for over a year. It’s a premium theme and you have to purchase a license. I have the developer license which lets me use Thesis on multiple sites.

The latest version 1.6 was released last week, which I’ve upgraded to here – and it rocks. I like developer Chris Pearson’s elevator pitch description of this new version:

Thesis is unique because it solves a wide array of problems that affect everyone who runs a website. In addition to conquering mission-critical tasks like SEO, site speed, and layout flexibility, version 1.6 now offers design controls that allow you to change the look of your site—think colors, borders, and backgrounds—without touching a bit of code (not even copying and pasting CSS!).

So finally, it’s easier to do things like change the width of the page area, add another sidebar, change fonts and sizes, and lots more, all without knowing anything about PHP or CSS – just choose options from the Thesis admin pages within the WordPress dashboard. Of course, if you do know CSS and coding in particular, then you have even richer opportunities to customize your Thesis to the maximum extent.

The new feature that attracted my interest most is the drop-down menus you can enable in the primary navigation system you see at the top of each page, above the header image. I’ll be re-doing that nav system soon.

So a bit more tweaking to come as I get to know Thesis better.

(By the way, none of the links above to Thesis contains affiliate or hidden codes of any type: if you click and go, it’s a standard web page link. I get no referrer fee if you click. Just wanted to be transparent and clear about that.)

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Neville Hobson

Social Strategist, Communicator, Writer, and Podcaster with a curiosity for tech and how people use it. Believer in an Internet for everyone. Early adopter (and leaver) and experimenter with social media. Occasional test pilot of shiny new objects. Avid tea drinker.

  1. David Dwight

    Hi Neville,

    The Thesis theme looks amazing, the thing I don't like is the lack of pre-sales support. I am “very” interested in the software however need some questions answered before purchase. If you can answer them I would be happy to purchase through and affiliate link if you have one…

    My main concern is this, my business partner and I own a load of sites and we split the domain registration 50/50… I have been unable to ask the developer if he will accept both our names in this case.

    Secondly..

    Can I create a theme on a dormant domain whilst developing it and then simply copy the theme files to my target domain? I need this because I would be upgrading sites that cannot be dissrupted…

    Kindest regards David

  2. neville

    David, I think developer Chris Pearson's philosophy for Thesis and no pre-sales support is – go ahead and buy it; if you then decide you don't like it, you can get a refund.

    Thesis is a pretty heavyweight WordPress theme. Definitely not for casual blog admins (like me, although I persevere).

    To do what you want to do, I think you'd need a developer license at least. That's what I have. It enables you to install Thesis on more than one WordPress blog.

    Details on different plans here: http://diythemes.com/plans/

    Give it a shot, David. A calculated risk, to be sure, but one worth taking imo.

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