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Archive for February, 2007

Amazing Grace

Published on February 27, 2007 in General

Rarely does this website wander away from its technology based focus. The following entry is one of those times. This past week I made a trip to the theater to see the movie Amazing Grace. The movie is about the life story of William Wilberforce, a gifted young legislator in Britain who dedicated his life to two purposes: the abolition of slavery in the British Empire and the raising of Britain’s moral tone. Besides the obvious message that all men deserve to be free, a few powerful messages resonated in the movie.

Site Redesign with WordPress – Themes and Inspiration

Published on February 16, 2007 in General, WordPress

Fundamentally there are a couple of ways to go about creating a WordPress theme. One way is to adapt another theme to meet your needs or alternatively to create a new theme from scratch. My initial thinking was that I was going to end up designing the theme from scratch but having no real previous experience with designing WordPress themes and being far from a PHP wizard I began looking for a WordPress theme that I could use as a basis for the site redesign. I took the approach of looking for a theme that matched the general layout I wanted for my site, colors and images were not that important as they could easily be changed later.

The first place I visited was the WordPress theme viewer. Thankfully, I could use the site’s filtering capabilities to look at only 2 column, liquid layout (most themes have a fixed width), widget-ready themes. Not finding a theme there that met all of my needs I decided to search Google using terms like “best wordpress themes” and came up with a few more potential candidates. Eventually I came up with the K2 theme (lot of code to learn from but not the type of layout I wanted) plus a list of seven other themes that could be considered potential candidates to use as a starting point. (more…)

Site Redesign with WordPress

Published on February 15, 2007 in General, WordPress

Recently I undertook the task of redesigning this site with the intention of using WordPress as a content management system (CMS) to not only manage my blog but to also manage the site’s static pages. My goal was to create a site that was clean, liquid, and uncluttered while adding a little bit more of color and spice than existed in this site’s previous incarnation. Additionally, I wanted a design that was not your traditional two-column fixed width blog like theme. I decided to continue using WordPress as it can easily be tweaked to meet my requirements and a large amount of WordPress documentation is available that I could utilize when needed.

Before beginning the design and development of my new theme I set up a local WordPress installation using the latest version of WordPress. This would allow me to easily test the new site design and layout. There are a multitude of different ways to do this but one of the easiest ways to I have found is to download and run XAMPP Lite from either your hard drive or a jump drive (instructions on how to do this can be found here).


Site Redesign

Published on February 7, 2007 in General

This site has finally gotten a makeover that I’ve been thinking about doing for quite some time. The intention of the new design is to keep the site clean and uncluttered while adding a little bit more of color and spice than existed before. Things have been tweaked here and there, everything from headlines to page layouts. Let me know in the comments or by email if you find any bugs. I have attempted to map any old URLs to new URLs, but I am bound to have missed one. The two paintings you see at the top of the page are the ‘The Son of Man’ (in the foreground) and ‘Man in the Bowler Hat’ (in the background) by the Belgian surrealist painter René Magritte.

Who Am I?

Leslie Franke Profile

Leslie Franke:[les-lee fran-key]; 1. Husband and proud dogowner; 2. Seventh-day Adventist; 3. Web Designer; 4. Atlanta Braves Fan; 5. Northeast Ohio Native; 6. Bottle Caps Lover; 7. Certified 'Freakonomic';