It’s been just over six months since the last major release of the Hybrid theme. Sure, we had a minor release in between, but we haven’t had any significant feature updates in a long while. A large part of this was because the 0.7 branch was extremely stable.
Hybrid 0.8 was made to work with WordPress 3.0, so a few extra days were needed to get everything perfect.
Let’s take a look at what version 0.8 has to offer. Skip to the end if you just want to get the download link for the new version.
The feature most of you are probably thinking about is the ability to use the new nav menu system in WordPress 3.0. Hybrid definitely supports this feature.
Here’s a couple of tutorials on using nav menus:
Each widget packaged with Hybrid has been carefully re-crafted to offer a better user experience. You no longer have to figure out page/category IDs and such and type them in. The new widgets will offer a point-and-click experience.
Just take a look at this screenshot of the new widgets to get an idea of what I mean.
Also, you’ll get a brand new widget — Navigation Menu, which will allow you to add a custom menu in any widget area.
Just a small note: After upgrading, make sure to check your widget settings to make sure they’re in order. Some things may need to be saved again.
No longer do you have to put your translations in the Hybrid folder only to have them overwritten when updating. You can add them to your child theme now.
Just create a
/languages folder and drop in your translation files. Be sure to prefix them with
hybrid-. For example, U.S. English would be
There’s a new
24px.css file. So, for those of you creating new child themes, you can now have 24px margins and line-heights.
drop-downs.css file is now more generic. You can create any number drop-down menus by just wrapping them in
This is a new feature that must be supported by the child theme. Currently, no child themes support it, so you must be using Hybrid to see it in action.
The post layouts feature allows you to select a layout on a post-by-post (or any post type) basis. You can choose from various layouts, including (but not limited to) 2 columns with right-aligned content or 3 columns with centered content.
I’ll be writing a tutorial on using this feature soon for child theme authors.
Custom post types
If you’re using custom post types, you’re covered. Hybrid already handles custom CSS classes, hooks, and a lot more. You can even create custom templates (like page templates) for use with any post type.
Believe me, custom post types are my favorite feature in WordPress 3.0. There’s no chance this theme wouldn’t handle them beautifully.
I’ve added two new shortcodes for your use:
[nav-menu] allows you to insert any menu you create from the menus screen in the admin into a shortcode-aware area.
[entry-shortlink] allows you to output a shortlink to a specific blog post. This link can also be overwritten by plugins that integrate with URL-shortening services.
New comment form
WordPress 3.0 introduced a new comment form function. This shouldn’t change much for most people. But, if you’ve been overwriting
comment-form.php in your child theme, you’ll want to stop by the support forums so we can integrate any changes you need.
Mostly, just know that this is a good thing. It will allow for some cool comment plugins in the future. Heck, I’ve already written a tutorial on adding twitter to your comment form for this.
Caching with Get the Image
The Get the Image script (gets those thumbnails for you) now uses the built-in WordPress Cache API. For those of you that don’t use caching plugins, this won’t mean much to you.
If you use a persistent caching plugin, this will add a little more speed to your site. This can be especially helpful if you don’t use the custom field option and allow the script to locate an image for you.
Hybrid 0.8 makes your site ready for shortcodes all over the place. You can now use shortcodes in three new areas:
- Text widgets.
- User profile bio.
- Category (and other taxonomy term) descriptions.
I completely changed how the breadcrumbs handled specific scenarios. Most of this is stuff that goes on behind the scenes. But, there’s support for all kinds of page structures. I can’t explain it all here without going into a lot of technical details that’ll bore you. Just know that it’s a much-needed improvement.
The 0.7 branch didn’t have too many bugs, which is why we only saw a single minor release (0.7.1). There weren’t any big bugs to catch, which is definitely a good thing.
But, 0.8 fixes the kinds of bugs I like to fix. For example, the cleanup of functions by making them smarter and more efficient. Or, more tightly integrating Hybrid functions with the APIs in WordPress.
Enough with the features, download the theme!
You must be using WordPress 3.0 to upgrade to Hybrid 0.8. If you’re running an older version of WordPress, your site will break horribly.
Please enjoy this new version and be sure to stop by the support forums if you have any questions.