When I originally created the Hybrid theme, I had done so with the thought that I’d only use it for my personal projects. It was not meant to be a publicly-released theme. A couple of months later, that changed. I released it into the wild.
Now, roughly a year after I first started working on it, I can honestly say that it was a good decision.
I’ve seen some great websites built with only a
style.css file and other great child themes with just a few extra lines of code. The community we’ve built here has not only helped shape what Hybrid is today but also made me a better developer.
If you’re a fan of diving into Hybrid’s code, you might not even recognize this as the same theme. Much of what went into this was not on the schedule until version 0.7, but you can thank the long wait for WordPress 2.8 for that.
One of the most common complaints I’ve gotten is how bulky the theme is. While Hybrid has never had much code bloat, it has contained many unneccessary files. The original public release (0.3) was
504kb (zipped). Version 0.6 is now down to a lean
The focus of this release was to make Hybrid as much as a framework as possible. I wanted to strip it down. To make it simply a foundation. Make it easier to build from.
I’ve taken a much more modular approach with this release, breaking much of the theme down to its most basic parts. The biggest improvement with 0.6 is that I’ve taken out all of the junk.
WordPress 2.8 compatible
Unfortunately, with so many new features in WordPress 2.8, I couldn’t make the theme backwards compatible. It’s something I wanted to do, but it wasn’t a viable option.
Everything has been recoded from the ground up. Widgets. Functions. You name it.
Since I was only worried about 2.8 compatibility, Hybrid is using all of the latest code from WordPress. There was no use in hanging on to old code.
Templates. Templates. Templates.
Many of you may be a bit overwhelmed by the number of template files in the theme. There’s somewhere in the range of 55 – 60 templates. Eighteen of these are custom page templates. Yes, that’s a lot compared to the average theme.
I want things to be easier to overwrite with custom modifications. I want people to be able to take my ideas and branch from these ideas with new, cooler things.
The new templates are:
Most of these deal with different types of archives and may not be used by everyone. But, I wanted them available for those people that do need to use them.
And, you can also create custom author archives with
author-2.php, and so on.
I’m counting three major bug fixes from Hybrid version 0.5.2, which was a solid release. Bug fixes get counted as features, right?
Honestly, there’s more features and changes than I could possibly show you here, but here’s a list of some of the major stuff:
- Better default design to aid in child theme development.
- New theme settings (be sure to review these when you upgrade).
- New layout stylesheets for designers.
- A few extra
- Better handling of custom taxonomies.
- Extra settings for some of the widgets.
- Drop-down menus built in by default.
- Ability to separate trackbacks and pingbacks from regular comments.
- More filter hooks for fine-tuned control.
- More action hooks to add extra content pretty much anywhere.
- User-selected date/time formats now used.
Of course, there’s much more.
Important things to note
Most of your widgets will probably be off. This is an unfortunate side-effect of the new widgets code for WordPress 2.8 and the changes within the theme. Fortunately, all you need to do is drag your widgets into WordPress 2.8’s new “Inactive Widgets” area if you have vital information you need to save. Once your theme is updated, you can drag them back easily.
If you’ve styled anything within the
<body> class or the post
<div> class with the
.tag- prefix in your CSS, you need to change it to use
.post_tag-. This is because of how the theme handles custom taxonomies.
Download Hybrid 0.6
Remember, this release is for WordPress 2.8+ only. Your site will break if using an older version of WordPress.
I hope y’all enjoy this release. I’m going to take a break tomorrow and play a little golf.