Have you ever wished to have a unique, one-of-a-kind design for a personal WordPress blog? A touch of magazine block elements showing popular posts in the front page while having other posts remain as usual blog date-ordered lists? Along with automatically generated fancy thumbnails that are displayed at a pretty sidebar to show your latest posts?
What is Plaftormate?
I designed this theme to fill the spare times while doing an internship in Pertamina UP II Dumai Indonesia. I work as a process engineer intern in a crude oil refinery which is located in Dumai in the Riau Province, Indonesia. Platformate is an abbreviation of platforming reformate, the reformate product of a platforming process. Platforming itself is a part of oil refining process which is designed to increase the gasoline octane number by reforming paraffins and naphtenes into aromatics using platinum as a catalyst. Do you get the keywords? Platinum, reforming, reformate, and there you go: platformate. OK, cut the crap.
Platformate is a magazine-style theme that keeps your blog personal. Magazine-styled themes, which usually intended for business blogs and online newspapers, are sometimes lack of personality. With Platformate, you can imagine increasing personal interactions in your blog by having the ability to show your Flickr photos and Twitter tweets as comment-able posts.
Automatic Thumbnail Generation and Assignment
The theme uses timthumb.php script to generate resized thumbnails automatically. You only have to upload a properly-sized image and thumbnails will be generated in all pages. Anyway, since this thumbnail image assignment become a very complicated problem to many Arthemia users, I added an optional automatic thumbnail image assignment feature so that you don’t have to even care about post custom fields, like in Arthemia theme. You may blog normally, add pictures to your posts just like usual add-media/add-image WordPress feature, forget the complicated custom-field thing, and the first picture in your post will be automatically assigned as the image for thumbnail generation. This feature is optional, based on request, whichever way you like.
The upper part of the theme shows a list of most commented posts, titled here as “Hot Discussions”, and a list of most popular posts that are generated by the Popularity Contest plugin. Why putting these lists on the top? Don’t these lists usually displayed in the sidebar or at the bottom of a blog? Well, why not? Imagine if there is someone who accidentally bumped into your blog and they have no idea what your blog is all about. Isn’t it a good idea to deliver them the most popular post? Isn’t it an effective way to show them the best that your blog has and hope them to become one of your loyal readers?
The Date-Based Post List
This is where you can call your blog personal. Your blog is a playground of yours, a place where you write your thoughts in blog posts, where you mumbles about anything in Twitter tweets, and where you have your memorable moments in Flickr photos. Tweets are automatically pulled from your Twitter account and displayed in a different layout so that the readers will notice your tweets. A follow-me-on-Twitter link is provided and readers can give comments to your tweets. The theme uses the Twitter Tools plugin to pull tweets. And if you are a photoblog guy, you can smile happily because the theme support the Flickr Blog-this function so that you can blog Flickr photos along with a post directly from Flickr. Flickr thumbnails will be shown in the front page and 500 pixel Flickr photo will be shown in the single post view. These feature is configured from your own Flickr account.
This side notes section will show your Gravatar, along with some information about author name, posting name, post category, and any other information you like. This section only displayed in single post views.
The Single Post/Page
The content is positioned at the centre of the theme in a width that will give your visitor a good content readability. It is not too wide nor too narrow; yet giving you enough space to post a medium-sized (500 pixels-wide) pictures. The paragraph spacing is enough and the font typeface is Arial, the every browser’s favorite. Breadcrumbs are located above the post title, giving the readers the information about where they actually are; post meta data is located under the post title. Comment and trackbacks are displayed separately to give the readers more focus on the current discussion and the comment list is Gravatar-ready.
About Me Section
This is where you describe yourself, your blog, and maybe put some inspirational quote of yours. It is fully customizable and can be easily configured in the WordPress administration panel.
This is the left sidebar, a usual sidebar that a blog usually has. This sidebar is widget-ready and configurable through WordPress administration panel. As you can see, this sidebar expands vertically to match the height of the content. No matter how long is your post – or how many comments you have – this light blue sidebar will fill the left side of your blog, balancing the emptiness with a fresh-colored box.
The Archive/Search Page
Archive pages can be displayed based on category, tags, and time. Post excerpts will be displayed along with the post title and 150-pixels squared thumbnails; and needless to say, the thumbnails are also automatically generated.
Platformate uses the WP-Pagenavi plugin to show pagination. A nice blue page navigation bar is located at the bottom of every paged pages, including the front page, the archive page, and the search result page.
The footer is located at the bottom of the page with a bit Apple Mac grey color touch. Pages from your blog will be displayed here. There is also a login/site admin/logout link available for you so you can get rid of the WP Meta sidebar widget.
The theme is tested in Firefox 2, IE 7, Safari 3, and Opera 9.5. The theme may not support IE 5.5 forever and I am still working on making this theme fully functioning in IE 6.
The Full Screenshot
Anyway, if you want to trackback this post, you can use these picture below as a reference. Here is the full screenshot of the Platformate theme. Click the image the get the high resolution version of the screenshot.