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4 Basic Criteria for Evaluating a WordPress Theme Framework

I will soon be writing reviews for some of the main WordPress plugins and theme frameworks that I use in my client projects. But before I do that, I wanted to write a post explaining the basic criteria I use to evaluate a theme because they are not necessarily the same you’ll read about in most other reviews out there that focus on workflow features alone. I’ve read many theme framework reviews in the last 3 years and I found most of them to be lacking in substance. That’s not because they were bad reviews or because the people writing them were doing a bad job, they were just aimed at a specific kind of user (non-coders, beginners or casual users) and limited themselves to what I consider “surface” criteria that become far less relevant when you build Web sites with WordPress for a living. When your business and reputation depend on the quality of the themes and other products you install on client sites, “features” like drag and drop and especially “no coding required” quickly take a second or third seat to more important matters like performance, stability and flexibility.

So here I’ll explain 4 of the basic criteria I use to evaluate a theme framework’s suitability for inclusion in my workflow to be used on specific projects. I’m concentrating on issues I rarely if ever see mentioned in theme reviews so I won’t talk about things like ease of use or flexibility of any workflow related features here. Those things will be included in my specific theme framework reviews. I hope this article will help you make more informed decisions if you are looking for a theme framework to use on a client site and are not sure which one would be the best fit for your workflow and your client’s needs.

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I Will be at WordCamp Montreal 2011

WordCamp Montreal 2011

WordCamp Montreal 2011 is coming in July and I will be attending this great event for the second time. When I was there last year, I was just starting to get serious about WordPress and had done a couple of test projects including Isabelle’s site and this one of course. Now I’ve been working with WordPress on pretty much all my client projects for the last 14 months and it has become the cornerstone of my process.

There are a lot of in-depth talks at WordCamp Montreal this year and it looks like I’ll probably be learning more than last time. If you are in the area during the weekend of July 9 and 10 and you are interested or already working with WordPress, you owe it to yourself to be there. The Montreal WordPress community is truly awesome!

See you there!

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The Real Pixelyzed 3.0 is Live (and Back with Headway)

Sometime last week I finally finished the “real” pixelyzed 3.0 redesign and switched the theme of the site back to Headway. I’m very happy to be back to Headway and will talk about it more in future posts as I truly think it’s the best WordPress theme framework for professionals doing client sites on WordPress.

The 3.0 design will probably be tweaked and evolve with time but I do not consider it transitional as I’d done with all the versions between it and the original pixelyzed 1.0 design (the one with the “pixels” grid). It is purposefully simple and I will help me concentrate on creating content.Continue Reading

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Any Interest in eBooks on Adobe Fireworks (and other subjects)?

To this day, my tutorial on removing image backgrounds non-destructively using Adobe Fireworks is still by far the most visited page on this site. I still receive email about it and questions from people requesting help with how to deal with their own images or more complex images than the ones the tutorial covered.

So, I’m throwing an idea out there : Would anyone be interested in a reasonably priced eBook on the subject that would go much deeper into the issue and even include some video where I show some of the techniques live? If so, what would you consider a reasonable price?

Furthermore, if you’ve had images that gave you trouble and would be willing to share them with me (an anyone who will read the eBook), feel free to contact me and you can then send me the images and I will choose some to use as examples. Any other feedback on this idea you want to provide is very welcome.

Other Subjects

If there’s anything else related to Web design, WordPress or any of the things I usually discuss here that you would like help with then share it in a comment or send a message directly to me. eBooks can cover a lot more ground easier than a blog post or online tutorial so, anything that might benefit from an eBook treatment is something I could write about.

Thanks!

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Coming Up On pixelyzed.com In 2011

To say that I have been busy in the latter half of 2010 would be an understatement… my lack of posting here or on my company blog is a testament to it. But I’ve been learning a lot and plan to share my best finds as usual. So, here are a few things that are coming up here soon…

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