On June 5, 2010 I spoke at WordCamp Chicago on Building Child Themes. Below are some resources on child themes that I thought might be useful if you are setting out to build a child theme.
If you have any questions about my slides, feel free to ask them here.
EDIT: I’ve switched to a Twenty Ten Child Theme
When I heard Ian Stewart’s announcement that he become an Automattician I figured it was a good idea to take a look at Thematic and see what it could do. I’ve mostly built my themes from scratch, but Thematic looked like it could streamline my work and hasten the development of sites. I figured if I’m going to try it out, I might as well give my site some love an a new theme. Thus Aaron.Jorb.In 3.0 was born.
I couldn’t believe how easy it was. Essentially Thematic makes theme development as easy as plugin development. Find the appropriate hook/filter and make the changes needed. For example, I wanted a slightly different loop for My Clients Category Page that also doubles as my Portfolio. By adding an action to wp_head, I am able to check if it is the My-Clients Category, and if so I can remove the default loop, add my own, and also add a notice to appear above the loop.
It’s also super easy to remove the sidebar. All I had to do was add an action to thematic_sidebar that returned false. Essentially Thematic has removed my need to make custom page templates when I want to keep 90% of the page the same.
Overall, redoing my site took about a third of the time that it took me to construct the last version. I would encourage anyone familiar with the plugin architecture of WordPress to take a look at Thematic. And the best part about it? It’s 100% gpl compatible and doesn’t cost a penny.
If you have any question how I added or did anything on here, please comment below.