I have a project that consists of one main portal site, and then several sub-sites, which are all run off of WordPress Multisite. There is the main portal page, and then the sub-sites are ran out of directories like "www.domain.com/subsite1" etc etc.
The portal site is set up like a magazine theme, with a custom layout and loop to pull posts from the main blog. But I'd also like to pull posts from the sub-sites as well, since this is all an interconnected network.
I tried using RSS feeds from the sub-sites, but it was very slow and not very customizable.
Ideally, I'd like to be able to set up some sort of query that can be set similar to a loop, and have it pull the post data the same way a magazine theme does on a per-category basis, only this would do it on a per-site basis.
I have considered making php that will manually query the DB and pull the latest post and it's data, and then format it into the page, but I don't have the mySQL knowledge to do that.
Right now, I have it set up as an iframe, where each sub-site has a custom page template that shows nothing but one post title and its excerpt. I pull those into iframes on the portal homepage, and it gives the effect I want (dynamically updated from the sub-sites), but the iframe hack isn't SEO friendly, and it's just sloppy overall.
I know I can't be the first person to want to do this, but I am having a hard time finding any good info. Essentially, I want to make a "magazine" style page, with post from Multisite sub-sites.
Example layout concept
Main site Blog post 1 and excerpt
- Main site blog post 2 title only
- Main site blog post 3 title only
Sub site 1 Blog post 1 and excerpt
- Sub site 1 blog post 2 title only
Sub Site 2 Blog post 1 and excerpt
- Sub site 2 post 2 and excerpt
Sub site 3 post 1 title
Sub site 4 post 1 title
Does that make sense? An RSS feed almost pulls this off, but it's not nearly flexible enough, and waiting for the RSS http request really slows things down, even though all the sites are on the same domain and server.
Has anything like this every been demonstrated to be possible? Or is this something where I'm going to have to have the PHP written to pull the database row for each blog table independently, and output it on the page outside of the WordPress codebase?