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  • I am a total newbie to WordPress, altough I have done a fair amount of HTML, database and other programming. I uploaded WordPress to start a blog site but am totally frustrated with the themes. In essence I cannot find a single theme–and I have spent two days looking at every one–that does what I want it to do. So I don’t make people angry, I thought all the themes were very nice, but did not have the features I was looking for–3 columns, use of logo picture, import of special background for sidebars, typeface alteration, etc. To edit all the code of existing themes to do what I want it to do seems a lot of work and right now beyond me. Perhaps I am in over my head?

    In some ways the themes strike me as making the task of designing a blog over complex unless you want to one exactly like a theme or close to it. It would seem just as easy to start from scratch like with a blank web page. I have a design in mind that I have built in HTML, but adding all the blog stuff baffles me. Wny doesn’t Word Press have a basic start page that one could then add what is needed?

    Thanks for listening

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  • YES!!! Thanks much to both of you. I also apologize to the WordPress folks for somehow missing the codex section on theme development. Your documentation is impressive. By the way, out of frustration I tried of couple of other blog programs (neither to be defamed) and found they were even MORE rigid or wanted more $$. Noted a post by someone–I forgot to save it–about the need to develop more different themes. I think much of my problem is many of the themes have been done by some very good graphic designers. Anyone who knows me would take one look at a blog with one of those designs and wonder if it was being ghostwritten.

    Now that I understand the code, my intent is to use the old code writer’s method of borrowing code that works for me, but to do that right it is a lot easier to start with a clean theme.

    Amazing how fast this reply came back.

    Take care.

    I sepnt over 24 hours–most of a weekend–on the Urban Giraffe solution recommended above. My opinions is DON”T WASTE YOUR TIME! The Urban Giraffe site and instructions are obsolete and incomplete and unclear. I was never able to get WP running using his instructions–plus I paid for his book. A BIG mistake. If you wish to set up a site on your home computer that enables you to tinker with WP themes RUN, don’t walk to It took me a little less than an hour to get WP running on my computer (and that was because of some settings in XP Pro that Urban Giraffe did not even seem aware of) as well as transfer my online files and themes. The major difference between Urban Giraffe and tamba 2 is that Giraffe uses WAMP–a questionable program to integrate MySQL, WP and PHP. Tamba 2 uses XAMPP lite. XAMPP installs easier and has many more intuitive features plus foreign langauge support. There is no comparison between the two programs. By the way, XAMPP is the program recommended by the Word Press codex. Unfortunately I found that out only after my miserable experience with WAMP and Urban Giraffe.

    I have over 20 years experience in programming, computer hardware building and design and tech support and I think Urban Giraffe’s solution is frankly the most difficult and messed up installation instructions I have ever run into and that includes a beta test of a security backup program that required working with a complex chipset issue. I date back to the days when we used EDLIN as a word preocessor because there wasn’t wnything else, so we wrote improvised code for it. In other words I ain’t no newbie.

    In the end this is a great lesson about doing your homework and not relying on hearsay and a few posts. XAMPP is all over the net. For the curious tamba2 even has an installation that puts WP on a USB drove. Slick.

    GET XAMPP today and happy blogging!

Viewing 4 replies - 1 through 4 (of 4 total)
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