genericons

The Genericons Icon Font Story

Icon fonts are a truly great hack. They’re lightweight, scalable, and a clever way to use vector-based images on the web at a time when SVG just doesn’t have enough popular browser support to be practical. Despite starting out life as a hack, icon fonts are like the sprites of vector graphics, and I think they’re here to stay.

Enter Genericons, a new icon font made especially for blogs by Joen Asmussen with contributions from Sheri Bigelow and Takashi Irie. They were designed with simplicity in mind to keep a minimal, “generic” aesthetic so they can be used in a wide range of projects. They look sharp at small sizes because each icon has been aligned to on a 16×16 pixel grid.

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Getting Excited About Edge Code

Last night Adobe’s Create The Web Tour rolled into Portland, Oregon and I attended. The night consisted of two presentations highlighting the new tools that Adobe has developed for creating the web. Of the many tools demonstrated, Edge Code really made an impression. It looks a bit like this:

edge-code

In the past, I’ve used a grip of opensource text editors. My favorite has always been Notepad++. While I am free to modify and redistribute the code under the GPL license, I never have for one very important reason: I have no idea how to. Notepad++, like many other text editors, is written in a language I do not understand. This is where Edge Code is a bit different.

Edge Code is a distribution of Brackets which is available under the MIT license and is written in html, css, and javascript. Three technolgies that I can read and write. This is pretty exciting; I’ve always wanted to be able to edit my editor and now I can!

This is only one of the many neat features of Edge Code. It also syncs with your browser so you can see your changes in real time. It understands the relationships between html and css, allowing you to edit your stylesheet directly from an html document. It’s great to see inovations like these being developed for those of use who build the web.

I’m going to install Edge Code today with the hope that I can introduce it into my daily work flow. Have you tried it yet? If so, please leave a comment and let us know what you think about it.

Developer plugin v1.1: Optimize Your Theme Development Environment

The amazing Code Wranglers at Automattic recently released version 1.1.1 of the Developer Plugin, which helps you optimize your WordPress development environment (plus saves you time) by making sure you have all of the essential development plugins installed. This new version targets the people who design and develop themes — you! Read on to learn more.

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Introducing the Monster Widget

An important part of the theme development process is testing. As a member of the Theme Team at Automattic I can say that we like to test everything we can! One thing that we have observed is that widget testing can take up a lot of time. WordPress provides 13 widgets, many of which contain a form enabling us to customize each instance. Populating a sidebar with widgets can be rather time consuming especially if you have to tweak each widget’s settings.

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Better WordPress Theme Internationalization with Pig Latin!

During the process of creating my first public WordPress theme one thing was very important to me – I wanted the theme to be useful to as many people as possible. To reach this goal, I knew that I would need to make sure that my theme could be used in any language. Luckily, WordPress core provides a few different functions that makes this pretty easy to do. If this is a new topic for you, please read more about Internationalization for WordPress Developers in the codex.

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Jot Down Your Thoughts with a Note-Taking Application

Ever since I started digging into themes at Automattic, I have found that I’ve been keeping way more notes than ever before — I jot down everything: common procedures, code snippets, tidbits from discussions, links, and random ideas.

At first I was just using a text file. However, after several months, my “everything.txt” file was growing massively out of control. I decided that a dedicated notes application would be a more efficient way to keep track of things, plus offer much more functionality.

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