[wp-hackers] Page Templates vs Category Templates

Haluk Karamete halukkaramete at gmail.com
Thu Dec 2 03:18:42 UTC 2010

I see your points. But I still do not get why have "that convenient
functionality" in one ( that is Add New Page UI ) but not in the other
( that is Add New Category UI).

You are saying "The template-file functionality is exactly the same
for Categories; the difference is only in the UI." I'm asking Why the
UIs are different...

You may ask who cares...  new comers may. me for sure. I'm sure most
users go thru this kind of cycle.

step 1:  install WP
step 2: create a post ( which goes automatically into "uncategorized ")
step 3: create a category
step 4: create a few more and then get a sense of how this thing really kicks...
and then soon after discover the wonderful world of themes...  which
show cases various page layouts..  ( but no category layouts! )

soon you bring a few themes home, & you see, the page layouts, ( the
SideBar on the left, sidebar on the right stuff ) and you get to
choose them when you are creating pages, but the cats got no luck! As
a new comer, you definitely go thru this.

Then you look back into your categories and wonder why on earth this
functionality why the lack of those various page layouts options DO
NOT EXIST for categories even though it is EQUALLY & EASILY achievable
by WP. And interestingly, cats are the 1st group where you need this
kind of flexibility, I think more than the pages...  Why should not I
have a no sidebar ( just content layout ) for some of my category
pages...  but you look at the themes world, majority provide a
no-sidebar layout only for the pages but cats are totally left alone.
I think this end-result may be trickling down from the out-of-the-box
WP UI which exposes Page layoutsbut not the cat layouts.

I'm sure Jane must have thought about this and decided the way it is
now. I'm only curious to understand the wisdom behind it.

I amy be wrong, but it just appears to me that if the next version
were to expose this functionality, it would not only make it
convenient to the end user to select a category template from the drop
down but also encourage the theme designers to bundle their themes
with as many category layouts as the page layouts they provide.

On Wed, Dec 1, 2010 at 4:48 PM, Chip Bennett <chip at chipbennett.net> wrote:
> On Wed, Dec 1, 2010 at 5:06 PM, Haluk Karamete <halukkaramete at gmail.com>wrote:
>> When you create a Page, you may choose a Page template, right out of
>> the box installation of a WordPress. All you need is a few Page
>> Templates to exist in the theme folder.
> If it's trivial to have "a few Page Templates to exist in the theme folder",
> why is not equally trivial to have "category-id.php" and/or
> "category-slug.php" templates also in the theme folder?
>> Example:
>>        SideBar SideBar Content
>>        Content SideBar
>>        Content SideBar SideBar
>>        etc...
>> But when you create a category on the admin page, you do not have that
>> functionality. That always confused me. Why the lack of that
>> functionality from the cat's side?
> You don't "have that functionality" for Pages, either, unless the specified
> Page templates have already been created. The template-file functionality is
> exactly the same for Categories; the difference is only in the UI. With
> Pages, a template is selected; with Posts, a Category is selected. In both
> cases, the desired template file must already exist in order to be used.
>> It is very natural to think that you may have one category to have a
>> different look and feel than another one, video stuff for example...
>> Of course, one can have the functionality of using a different cat.
>> template using the  category-Whatever.php trick.
> That's not a "trick"; that's the proper way to define different styles
> and/or layouts for different Categories. Why would you call it a "trick"?
> It's no more (or less) of a "trick" than creating different Page templates.
>> But then, when you
>> think about it, "that very way" is also very possible for the pages,
>> thanks to the  as Page_Whatever.php trick. But yet, Pages Admin area
>> do have the capabilities to select a page template thru a drop down
>> conveniently while Category Admin area do not.
> How is it less convenient to select a Post Category than it is to select a
> Page template? One is a drop-down; the other is a check-box. Both require
> one, simple user action.
>> I'm curious to find the design  criteria behind that difference...
> Pages are stand-alone. Blog Posts are part of a timeline. Pages are (or can
> be) hierarchical; Posts are sequential.
> Thus, it makes sense for Posts to have an "index", based on time (date
> archives) or taxonomy (Category and Tag archives), and for that "index" to
> define the style/layout for the Posts that fall into it. Pages, on the other
> hand, stand alone entirely, and even their hierarchical relationship only
> impacts site navigation. Thus, it makes perfect sense that Pages should be
> able to specify their style/layout templates individually.
> Chip
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