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Just heard about this pretty cool release by Stefan Vervoort of WP Toy. The WordPress Theme Development Checklist is a free-to-download PDF file that goes over several elements of a WordPress theme you should probably take a look at before going live with a new theme.
It’s broken up into eight parts, which will be gone over below:
- General: Has the basics of WordPress theme creation, including information in the comments of the theme stylesheet, widget-readiness, backwards compatibilty, and screenshot.
- Stylesheets: Every WordPress theme needs a stylesheet called style.css, but also goes over a few common types of optional stylesheets such as a reset.
- Browser Compatibility: Gotta make sure your themes don’t screw up in Internet Explorer.
- Pages: Goes over the theme files used in the Template Hierarchy including the main index, single posts, and archives.
- Styles: Makes sure the most common elements are styled, such as headings, tables, and lists.
- Standard CSS Classes: Goes over a number of CSS classes used by WordPress such as the various image classes.
- Validate: A reminder of the different pages you should check to see if they are validated, both CSS and HTML.
- WordPress Code: Goes over some of the commonly used WordPress code, such as The Loop.
- Blog Elements: Goes over a number of elements your theme probably should have in place. Things like the title, navigation, and a copyright message.
I realize some people might have no clue what some of the things mean on the checklist (despite my best efforts to explain them), however keep in mind, I think this was intended for theme developers who are likely already familiar with things like the WordPress CSS classes.
To the WP theme developers out there: is there anything you can think to add to this checklist? Would you consider, or do you already use something like this to aide in your theme development? I’m not sure I’d frame this and hang it up on my wall, but I’d definitely print it out and keep it for future reference.
About Leland Fiegel
Leland Fiegel was the original founder of ThemeLab. He is a web developer who loves WordPress and blogging.