[wp-hackers] dynamic_content?

Anca Mosoiu anca at anca.tv
Mon Mar 21 21:01:30 UTC 2011

The whole language and management of sidebars is mystifying to the non-programmers that I teach how to use WordPress...  I would love to see some improvements in this area.  Semantically, I'm trying to teach people the term "Widget Areas" rather than "Sidebars".

As a "WordPress as a CMS"  user/developer, I'd really like to see some page-specific sidebar functionality getting added to core (stuff like what StudioPress does in SimpleSidebars, plus nice stuff from WidgetLogic).  Specifically:

1) Allow the creation of new, named widget areas from the dashboard (which correspond to "holes" (er... sidebars) in the theme, similar to how menus work).  This would allow users to switch themes without having to re-organize all of their widgets every time they do it.
2) Allow the assignment of specific sidebars/widget areas to individual pages (where the page template supports them)
3) Provide a quick way to navigate and edit the widgets that show up on a page, category page, tag, or author page.  Right now, one of my CMS sites has a stack of 20 "sidebars" listed on the widget page, which gets confusing for users - especially since 18 of them are specific widget areas that are used on 6 unique pages.
4) I also like Jeremy's 4th point, below.   It would help when people are trying to pick out a theme to use and have to spend a lot of time re-adding widgets.



On Mar 21, 2011, at 12:57:53 -0400, Jeremy Clarke <jer at simianuprising.com>  wrote:

> FWIW I'm with Nacin in thinking that the renaming should also come with some
> new features so that it's not JUST a renaming but also a technical upgrade.
> This would help give the change meaning and motivate some people to switch
> to the new way just to get the new features.
> Here are some ideas for desirable upgrades to the Widget Area system that
> would make sense:
>   - Argument to make a registered sidebar display wigets in a random order.
>   - Argument to set a maximum number of widgets for a given sidebar, after
>   which none can be added.
>   - Argument to set a minimum number of widgets for a given sidebar, below
>   which the sidebar won't be saved.
>   - Argument to set default widgets to show in case none have been added
>   via the wp-admin UI.

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