[theme-reviewers] Per-Post Layout Options

Justin Tadlock justin at justintadlock.com
Tue Aug 9 17:36:19 UTC 2011

Don't use page templates.  Use post meta.

Suppose the default layout was "content|sidebar".  Further suppose you 
have an "Archives" page template.  Now, what happens if a user wants a 
"sidebar|content|sidebar" layout but also wants to use the "Archives" 
page template?  If layouts are controlled by template, they can't use 
both.  If layouts are controlled by meta, the two can be used together.

This doesn't cross any boundaries to me.  Does the data deal 
specifically with presentation/display?  Yes.  Therefore, it is theme 

I don't see this as being any different than using page templates in 
terms of appropriateness.  Themes can include custom page templates, 
which are also saved as post meta.

Anyway, I've been working on a standard for theme developers who want to 
incorporate this functionality into their themes if you're interested in 
checking it out.

On 8/8/2011 12:27 PM, Chip Bennett wrote:
> Good afternoon reviewers and developers!
> I want to get your input/opinions on something. The next version of 
> Oenology will incorporate layout options:
>  - Static Page default layout, via Theme Option
>  - Per-Page layouts, via Page Templates
>  - Single Blog Post default layout, via Theme Option
>  - Blog Posts Index layout, via Theme Option
> I am considering adding post meta to allow for per-post layout 
> selection. It is simple enough to implement; however, here's my 
> question: would this cross the content/presentation line? Or expressed 
> differently: would it be inappropriate to add Theme-specific custom 
> post meta in this manner, given that such metadata would be mostly 
> useless to the user after switching Themes?
> I'm leaning toward the opinion that it would be appropriate, but I am 
> concerned about the scalability of Themes filling up the post meta 
> table with data that are only useful when using a given Theme.
> Thoughts?
> Thanks in advance,
> Chip
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