I switched this site to the latest theme from WordPress. As you can see, it’s a minimalist theme. I’ve been disappointed with many of the themes in the last few years. I like the minimalist approach, though this theme is a bit too minimalistic. Yet, I’m wondering about its capacity as a starting place for further customization.
For years, I used the _S theme as a starter theme for my developing my own theme. But that project seems abandoned and is no longer a good place to start.
I have mixed feelings about WP overall. I’ve used it almost since 2005 but I’ve never liked the idea of storing documents in MySQL. But the overall simplicity of getting a site up and running and the simplicity of editing content is too much to ignore. The tooling to get started on static site generators is a bit of a pain. Of course, for many static site aficionados, they would say the same thing about the need for hosting and all that comes with a web server, PHP, and MySQL.
What we get with 2023
The 2023 theme is positioned as a starter theme. It’s great that WP has gone back to providing a starter theme.
Here are some relevant links discussing the 2023 WP theme:
- A long overview of the 2023 theme.
- Issues/Problems with this theme on the WP Core Trac
Things I want to adjust
The column width is too narrow. Taking a while to figure out how to adjust that.
Just from the start of using this theme, I feel like there are things missing, things that I need to learn how to adjust, things for which I don’t see an obvious solution for at a glance.
I like the theme. I like the possibilities. But part of my difficulty is my lack of familiarity with full site editing. I’m old school. I’m way old school.
Okay, I found the styles browser over in the right-hand side of the theme editor. That made a big difference. I really like that it offers a set of minimalistic default styles with each a nice variation. There are 11 style variations. Marigold is intriguing.
Wow, okay, there are a lot more options here than it first appears.
A checklist for setting up a new site with this theme
I’m starting to use this theme as the default when I setup a new WP site. Eventually, I’ll get around to using this theme as a starter for my own custom theme development. But there are so many options that work out-of-the-box that you can adjust as you like.
Actually, the first thing I do when setting up a new WP site is to obfuscate my admin username to a random string of characters. I also setup a security tool like WordFence. There are too many hackers attempting to login to sites with the default admin user ID, the domain name, and your public display name. Put a stop to that by changing your WP admin name and setting up security. Plus, turn on 2FA. For a new site under active development but not yet ready for prime time, then I add a password protection plugin until I’m ready to release the site. I also delete any unnecessary plugins that might be on the site. I also enable auto updates on plugins.
- Remove the default heading “Mindblown …”
- Remove the default book recommendations
- Remove the get in touch button
- Remove proudly powered by wordpress in the footer
- Set home page layout, depending upon the type of site
- Set single post layout as desired