Support » Requests and Feedback » Why were Link Categories combined into Regular categories?

  • So… WHY were Link Categories blended into regular post Categories, in WP 2.1 or 2.2? What’s the advantage?

    This seems like it gives the user Less flexibility instead of more, and also it doesn’t make sense logically because links and posts just aren’t the same, at all. There is no crossover for me. The links are just 1-line pointers to other people’s websites. They’re a minor, low-down element of my sidebar. The posts are my own core content. The list-categories tag is my core navigation menu. Suddenly in WP 2.2, my core navigation menu started showing all my Link category names, which was terrible.

    Consequently, I figured out that WP 2.2 broke all the wp_list_cats in thousands of WordPress themes, namely all the default/Kubrick themes that we’ve been using for Years. You made it the Default for Years — and now you’re deprecating it?? Now I have to muck around in the template code of all my blogs, to fix this. Yuck. Very difficult for a guy who just wants to keep using my old default theme on several blogs, and upgrade without borking my theme. The reason I can’t simply upgrade to new-Kubrick (assuming they fixed the default) is obvious: I’ve added so many plugins, graphics, and hacks to my theme over the years, it would be very difficult to replicate and would take hours of work.

    What’s the logic?

Viewing 13 replies - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • Long, long story. and wp-hackers email list have numerous theads on the subject.

    Can you give me a summary? Make a long story short?

    I cannot read, thanks for the link, I am sorry. I have looked at that site, and I have no idea what the first page is even talking about. That’s way, waaaaay over my head — and I assume it’s over the head of 1,000,000 Kubrick users. So for their sake, can you justify the change?

    ALSO: Has any kind expert provided a step-by-step guide for fixing Old Kubrick to work with 2.2 template tags? I just stumbled across the Codex entry telling me wp-list-cats is deprecated, by accident. What else is broken that I haven’t noticed yet? I dislike having something broken deep in my sidebar that I didn’t even realize.

    Well if users can’t read what the developers say then my justification certainly won’t help.

    Here’s a ticket you might read

    Version 2.3 2.3 will see a Taxaonomy scheme that incorporates tags and categories.

    Yeah, ummmm, thanks for trying. I looked at those links and they are not written in plain English. It’s code-speak.

    I just want to know why WP thought it was a good idea to break 1000’s of themes, and secondly: I want to know the easiest, fastest, simplest way to fix it in my themes with minimal mucking-around in code. Since you mentioned WP 2.3, I’d also like to know if WP is going to break my theme again with each new release, and if so, is it necessary to upgrade? (All the dire security warnings made me upgrade, but I can’t think of any new feature in WP that I care about since 1.5, I’ve spent dozens of hours upgrading and it’s getting annoying.)

    The page you linked talks like this: “Let’s get rid of the linkcategories table, move the link category options into the options table and apply them uniformly to all links, and add a link2cat table for assocating links to categories.”

    What the ____ ?? It’s meaningless to me, and I have been messing with WP, CSS, and PHP for about 2 years now. It’s gobble-de-gook & it’s user-unfriendly. I mean, the Codex is complicated, but I can read the Codex and figure things out, but the trac site is nonsense to me.

    It’s just frustrating — I try to be a good upgrader, and my Default theme breaks, and there’s no explanation in plain english.

    Maybe someone else can write a 3-sentence explanation geared towards Kubrick n00bs. Please! Thank ya

    Well then the development blog is end-user announcements:

    Michael thanks for sticking with me and trying… I read the End-User announcement you just linked, and it does not mention Categories except this unrelated statement:

    “Links in your blogroll now support sub-categories and you can add categories on the fly.”

    There is no warning, explanation, or solution for the fact that WP 2.1, 2.2, will break your Category menu.

    If there is, please point it out or copy-paste because I don’t see it, and I did a “Find” for “category” and “categories” on that page.

    Why can’t something (End User Announcement, or the Codex, or the Forum, or the RSS feeds on the Dashboard) just say “If you use an old theme from 2.0 or 1.5, this release will break your Category menu. You have to go into the code and change wp-list-cats to wp-list-categories, and you have to write new arguments based on the options listed _Here_ in the codex. The easiest way to do this is ____________.”

    If you don’t read the wp-hackers, wp-testers, and trac it is difficult to know what is being done to the code.

    With that said, your Dashboard will usually have some information about changes in various updates. This article from Lorelle would have been in the Dashboard at some time

    The support forum has seen that discussion, for instance,

    But yeah, there probably is no one place, in simple language, where that discussion of combining the categories happened.

    Please note that the Extend link at the top of this page leads you to Ideas and Kvetch where you can submit your ideas (and complaints) about WordPress features (and failings).

    Please note that “kvetch” is slang for a nagging complaint that is generally ignored or written-off. I have never received a reply back from there. It appears as a black hole. Hence posting on the Forum, where a reply is possible. Thanks for your replies. I’m sure it is a complicated thing to explain, as you noted.

    I bet 95% of users don’t read beyond the headlines of most posts in the Dashboard (Planet WordPress) feed. It’s too much. I read it about twice a week, which feels like a lot, and I didn’t see the warning about this from Lorelle. I appreciate you linking me to that, and I appreciate her writing about the template tag changes. That is helpful & should be Linked in the Codex where it says that the old tags are deprecated. But her post barely touches on the WHY and HOW TO FIX QUICKLY & COMPLETELY, which are the essential questions for the majority of users.

    In my experience “Ordinary” WP users do not search through dev blogs and trac. WP isn’t marketed just to web developers, traditionally WP was a 5-minute install, default template, ready to blog for ordinary people. We read the “README” on the Upgrades every month or 2 or 4, we do not follow the daily twists-and-turns of the developers.

    But this thread was not supposed to be about HOW we get info. This thread was just supposed to ask how to deal with the template tag changes. Lorelle’s link BEGINS to address that, but her post says “this is a very rough draft”. It scratches the surface, but again, absolutely NO justification or reasoning behind why WP thought this change was important enough to bork 1000’s of Themes.

    In conclusion, it appears that WP 2.2 breaks the old default theme without easy instructions to repair it, for no comprehensible reason.

    If anyone else has an explanation please jump in!

    There is no spoon?

    I don’t know the meaning of your reply Diane, maybe a joke at me. But I like your website, it has useful info on there, thanks for that & cheers.

    In hindsight

    I wanted to emphasize that I am grateful for the innovations wrought by the WP developers. If they needed to change this code, I’m glad they did.

    I think more clarity and forewarning of what the new versions will do to old themes, would be appreciated (by me, and probably other users). For the sake of being user-friendly. In the future. Thank you very much. WP rocks.

    I don’t know the meaning of your reply Diane, maybe a joke at me. But I like your website, it has useful info on there, thanks for that & cheers.

    Sorry for the obtuse reference; it’s a line from The Matrix — and maybe it doesn’t exactly apply here.

    All I meant was that perhaps there’s no reason for having combined category and blogroll links; at least, no reason that would appeal to us. Personally, I’ve complained about this before, and asked the same question, because it’s entirely illogical to group on-site navigational links with recommended links to other sites. It would seem to be a usability no-no.

    (And thanks for the compliments!)

    I am browsing the support forums having recently upgraded from WP 1.5 to 2.5.1 due to Akismet no longer working and spam comments getting through.

    Of course, it broke various aspects of my site, most of which I’ve been able to fix.

    But the one issue I’m stuck with still is the categorisation of links, which is I think what Dgold refers to here. All my links are grouped together (blogroll links, other link exchanges, and certain other groups of links) when previously they were categorised. Any categorisation just seems to be ignored.

    I am using Perun’s Red Train theme. I know there is a later version of that theme avaialble. I’ve tried that and it just breaks all my adaptations and so gives me even more headaches. I just would like to get a simple answer as to how to get my links to categorise properly. My blog is at



    PS – Hello Diane… small world. You might remember me from the early days of Cre8asite (does Aaron the Aardvark ring any bells? anyway, I digress…)

Viewing 13 replies - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
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