What WordPress Themes are really about (and WordPress 4.1)

I’ll be committing code to WordPress again with version 4.1! I made my last big contribution with Twenty Ten and Twenty Eleven where I had a hand in both design and coding. (It was with Twenty Eleven where I was actively contributing code). This time I won’t be working on a theme I designed. Instead, I’ll be helping to bring a design from my friend and colleague Takashi Irie to millions and millions of people. As cool as it is to work on the core WordPress project — it’s the software behind 1 in 4 of the websites you visit! — I think I’m just as excited, if not more excited, to work with Takashi on it.

Yes, he’s a great designer and a great person to work with but more than that he understands what themes are about.

  • How people use them as the foundation for personal expression on the web with a blog.
  • How web developers use them as the foundation for quickly producing websites.
  • How motivated tinkerers use them to build up a small business site — probably their first on the web
  • And he understands how a theme is not just for one particular user or site owner but instead is for the vastly greater majority, the millions of people who see it as just another web site and want an easy to get to and pleasurable reading experience.

It sometimes seems to me that WordPress theme developers forget that last part. Takashi understands all these things and thinks about them deeply. Getting a chance to help make his vision for a first WordPress design experience in 2015 come true is an honour and I’m super-excited for the people who will start publishing with WordPress and Twenty Fifteen.

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5 thoughts on “What WordPress Themes are really about (and WordPress 4.1)

  1. Thank you very much for the kind words. I’m so flattered and feel honoured to hear this from you — the hand waving avatar I was looking at on themeshaper.com where I learned theming before I joined Automattic 🙂

    I’ve learned a lot and I’m still learning from you. I wouldn’t be here otherwise.

    It’s going to be really exciting to work on the theme with you.

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