Mar 222011
 

Pontification, philosophizing and detours are normally left for my personal blog, however let me do a bit of it all here.

My favourite sport by a distance is Cricket. Like every other sport cricket defines its own set of landmarks that players can get to. For the uninitiated the two main categories in which you achieve landmarks are batting and bowling (think batters and pitchers in baseball). And certain landmarks are the benchmarks of great players. For example, you can score centuries in matches by batting and making 100 runs or more (I won’t go into the technicalities for the sake of brevity).

My favourite player Sachin Tendulkar holds the records for the highest number of centuries in the 2 major forms of cricket – the 5-day variant (Test cricket) and the 1-day variant (One-Day Internationals). He also holds the records for the maximum number of runs scored in each of these forms. Another great player of this era, Jacques Kallis was often criticized, though, for not having scored a single double-century (200 runs or more) in Tests. It was so because a test double-century is the basic adornment in the repertoire of any great cricketer. Tendulkar has a handful (including the only double-century in men’s ODIs) and Brian Lara has a good few (he also has a triple-century and the only quadruple-century in Tests), so Kallis’ achievements looked rather empty without one. Then, in the recently concluded Test series between South Africa and India Kallis did manage to get his elusive double, thereby confirming his place in the pantheon of greats.

The reason for this diversionary discourse was to tell all of you that today Suffusion became only the third theme distributed through WordPress.org to reach the milestone of 200 ratings. The two themes to have achieved more, albeit in much longer life spans are Atahualpa and INove. As I have mentioned earlier, for the free code and support that I offer, this is quite simply the greatest reward I can get from you. So a big THANK YOU goes out to all of you!!

As is customary, at each milestone I chart the course for the next few months, so let me do the same here:

  1. Most changes from this point on are going to be evolutionary as opposed to revolutionary. In this context the fiascos of 3.6.8 and 3.7.5/3.7.7 were necessary though not necessarily inevitable. From this point on I will not release anything so big that it changes the entire architecture of the theme. The changes in 3.7.5/3.7.7 had to be made, otherwise I would have even bigger hurdles to cross with every new release of WP and increasingly restrictive theme approval guidelines.
  2. The photo-blogging layout is coming soon! I will probably keep the functionality good, but not ultra-rich in the first release. It will be good enough for things like Flickr and Picasa integration though, which very few themes or plugins do a good job of apparently. I will soon post a sample of what I have been working on for you to try out. I will also give the magazine layout a shot in the arm.
  3. I have been working on a few theme skins. While I am by no means an avant-garde designer, I don’t consider myself aesthetically challenged and I do manage a decent job with Photoshop when aided by tutorials. However the demands and challenges of a complex theme leave little in stock for me to devote to Photoshop. As a result I have sacrificed beauty for functionality quite heavily. But not any more. With photo-blogging out of the gates I will be able to pay a little more attention to how Suffusion looks. So expect a few nicer skins.
  4. The last focus area for Suffusion is some revolutionary sidebars. As alluded to earlier, I have some outrageous ideas for what can be done with sidebars and I definitely intend to deliver on those.
  5. Wrap up. Yup – as I mentioned a couple of posts back, having done the activities listed above I will have wrapped up all major development on Suffusion. Subsequent releases will only patch bugs and make minor improvements in terms of support for newer versions of WP.

Have fun!

  13 Responses to “200 and Counting”

Comments (13)
  1. Tanks for the reminder 😉 I just gave you the 201st rating!

     
  2. Good to hear you are going to be working on a few more themes, i hope some of them will be darker coloured themes as well as light.

    I wonder if you can work on more optimization of the javascripts and css, perhaps with combining it, i score poorly on this area within the webpage test.

    http://www.webpagetest.org/result/110323_4D_7H0V/1/performance_optimization/

    Now some of that is down to NextGen gallery and if your photo options can be used by my blog to produce better results then i will redo the 56 odd posts ( over the course of a week or two ) that use Nextgen gallery.

    For me i do love a lot of the features of Suffusion but i find myself constantly juggling between switching them on and off to optimize load times for potential visitors to my site, at the moment i have switched many features off to get the load time down.

    I suppose in ten years time it might be that many people can use content rich features without sacrificing website speed but at the moment there are still too many people who hate waiting for a webpage to load, shame really as i would like to switch more things on in the theme.

    Is there a possible way to switch off some javascript functions within the theme and not use them or does the theme need them switched on all the time. ?

    Anyway, not much of a cricket fan, here in Scotland i don’t think we have a good cricket team, i prefer soccer or NBA basketball, i love basketball more though.

     
    • Optimization is a tricky beast. The whole trouble begins and ends with the Theme Review team clamping down on the use of fopen and other file operation functions in PHP. If you try to explain to them that this is essential for things like optimization, their reaction is, That is for plugins to do, not themes. This isn’t meant to slam them because in a lot of cases their suggestions help improve the quality of code, but in the stray case what they say comes off as didactic. So, short of physically combining all permutations of files (an impractical exercise at the least) at my end I don’t see a way out. But I thought you were using a caching plugin, weren’t you?

       
  3. I love the cricket analogy (particularly relevant during the World Cup). I have worked with many WordPress Themes and, in my opinion, Suffusion is by FAR the most stable and versatile Theme out there. Congratulations on your 200 … it is thoroughly deserved!

     
  4. I love your theme! I started with it and love the clean, customizable features. The theme has gotten easier and better every release. You’re doing great work!! Thank you!!

     
  5. I have switched back to W3 Total Cache and i think my site loads pretty fast on second views but i’m always trying to speed up the first time viewing experience.

    There are some things though which the above plugin doesn’t seem able to cache or minify within Suffusion and indeed NextGen gallery.

    I already gave the theme 5 stars at the WordPress site, despite my minor gripes above further optimization it’s still the best theme out there.

     
  6. Thanks a lot for your theme.
    I wanna know that how can I change the style of comments floor ?such as 1#, 1F…
    Thanks.

     
  7. I just cannot believe how intuitive you are. No sooner than I think of something (photo and magazine) you have already initiated the project. Not only is this the greatest and most bulletproof theme out there it is also developed by the most sincere and honest developer, you. Besides being a genius you are also a great person. I thank you for all your hard work and consideration.

    Go Sachin! Go Sayontan!

     
  8. This is my suffusión page
    http://www.gcanaria.net,
    few CSS

     

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