Theme switching in WordPress- window dressing or a valuable tool?
It takes time to customize a WordPress theme to make it â€œyour own.â€ From simple color changes and replacing the header image- to massive rewrites of the CSS file, you can pretty much do what you want.
The theme switching plugin was built out of necessity for the theme review pages- so the host could upload all the themes into the theme folder- and then let the viewer switch from one to another to see what they liked.
Theme review sites:
and this site which dissects the themes
Quickly, people started putting the code on their sites- allowing the user to chose how to view the site- here is an example: http://www.cafe789.com/kyles_eyes/
One note- make sure you install the switcher in every themeâ€™s sidebar- or people will switch and get stuck.
I generally wrote off theme switchers- until the massive rewrite of one of my favorite news sites- www.macnn.com. The designer who rebuilt the interface is one of the most talented coders Iâ€™ve seen. His use of the themes switcher is what prompted me to rethink the value of this tool. He has provided a user â€œtoolboxâ€ to choose how to present the site- as a portal, news articles or headlines only- with your choice of type sizes.
The theme switcher seems to be built into the 2.0 interface so adding the plug-in will no longer be needed- but, the way you use it is up to you.