[theme-reviewers] Question about ob_start and ob_get_clean (Vicky Arulsingam)

Darren Slatten darrenslatten at gmail.com
Sun Jul 3 11:41:33 UTC 2011

> *Look, if you can't even agree on the simple fact that a theme is
> supposed to be a *theme*, then this discussion is getting into the
> "pointless" territory pretty darned fast.
> *

Invalid and irrelevant.

*The only person I see being "pretentious" here is you. Nothing but long
> endless diatribes about how your code is right and everybody else who
> disagrees with you is wrong.
> *

I've cited sources where necessary and relied on simple principles of
logic to rebut invalid arguments. I believe I am right, but I do not
assume I am right, and I do not build my arguments on assumptions that I
am right. It is for these reasons that I am not pretentious.

My responses are only as long as is necessary to adequately explain my
views. This requires considerably more effort than, say, expressing
one's opinions as facts and providing no explanation or reasoning.

*I would point out that the people disagreeing with you are core
> developers, admins of the theme review system, design experts, and
> people like me who are just plain all-around-general-know-it-alls (thank
> you very much), but then you'd probably just take that as some kind of
> appeal to authority or something.
> *

Your argument is a textbook example of invalid reasoning based on a
logical fallacy that's been understood and documented for hundreds of
years. It's not like I'm making this stuff up. And don't forget: I'm not
saying "everyone is wrong"--I'm only saying *"Yes-huh...you can even go
ask Andrew Nacin!"* is not a valid argument.

*At some point, you're simply going to have to sit down and say to
> yourself "hey, why are all these people, who really do know things and
> are widely considered to be experts, disagreeing with me?"
> *

I disagree. Solving problems requires facts and logic. The people
involved are irrelevant.

*Maybe it's because you haven't explained your reasoning properly. That's
> a possibility, certainly. I would have to say that nothing you've stated
> makes sense to me, even though you continually state that you've
> explained something already.
> *

I don't want to waste everyone else's time recapping what's already been
said, but if you'd like, I can email you privately and try to get you up
to speed.

*On the other hand, perhaps you're just going to have to accept the fact
> that, you know what? You might just be wrong. I know, shocker there, but
> it is a possibility that you're going to have to face up to at some
> point.
> *

(Reducing this issue to terms of "I'm right and you're wrong" feels
selfish and primitive, but I'll humor you anyway.)

I don't mind being wrong. I actually appreciate being proven wrong,
which is why I constantly offer specific examples (easiest to disprove).
I went as far as to write example code--essentially handed everyone a
loaded gun--and yet all I got in return was a bunch of limp excuses,
invalid reasoning, and best practices straight from the "in a perfect
World" cookbook.

At this point, I'm not even sure what you're arguing
for or against. As far as I can tell, you're just butthurt that the new
guy spoke without paying his respects to your circle-jerk of
"collaborators" and you need to vent. But who knows, maybe you've got a
secret stash of valid arguments that you've been withholding. If
so, please use them to "prove me wrong."

Here's a reminder of what's (supposedly) being argued. You can add to
the discussion by providing information that supports the first set of
claims or refutes the second set of claims:

*Otto et al:*

   - Themes must not use output buffering.
   - There is no reason for a theme to use output buffering.
   - Themes should not allow users to modify the behavior of plugins.


   - Themes should be permitted to use output buffering.
   - There are some cases where output buffering is the only solution.
   - There are some cases where theme-implemented output buffering is the
   best solution.

*However, whenever I see a thread where Me, Nacin, Chip, Dion, scribu,
> Justin Tadlock, Simon, and Ryan Hellyer are all actually *agreeing*
> about something, then I'd have to say that that is pretty darned
> unusual. So, it's a point that you just might have to consider.
> *

That's not a point. That's an irrelevant observation. Unsupported
opinions, conceived under rare conditions, are still unsupported
opinions. Do you really expect me to intentionally remove functionality
from my theme, because 8 people (I don't personally know) share the same
unsupported opinion?

*Your solutions don't even solve the problem, as I see it, they only
> create new ones. Output buffering? I mean, come on. Do you really
> think it's better to delay sending content to the page so you can run
> a bunch of string manipulation code to modify it, as opposed to simply
> creating the content you want correctly in the first place?
> *

This has all been addressed already. Please stop polluting this thread
with more of the same invalid arguments I've already addressed. You're
making it difficult for others to follow the real issues.

*Look, running a website, and especially optimizing one, involves more
> than just changing the source code of the page. If you're going to
> serve things up to the public, there's more to it than *just*
> WordPress. Being a webmaster is a full time job for some people. There
> is arcane knowledge that you have to learn. And sometimes, that
> knowledge lies outside your sphere.
> *

Cool story, bro.

*If you don't know to set caching headers properly, then you should
> learn it instead of trying to do optimization in other places that
> won't even help you nearly as much.
> *


*This is kinda like all those CSS-compression things I continually see
> people trying to do. If you haven't even gotten the browsers looking
> at your website to cache the data properly, then compressing your CSS
> doesn't make a lick of difference if they're still downloading it
> every single time. You're optimizing the wrong things. Focus on the
> basics first. You only have to resort to the silly ideas like CSS
> compression once you've exhausted the traditional, and
> tried-tested-true, options.
> *

For a site like ottopress.com, which takes more than 10 seconds to

the benefits of minifying CSS may be difficult to see. For a site like
seomofo.com, which loads in under 2
the benefit would
be relatively more significant. Some webmasters just have higher standards
than others, and as a theme developer, I try to accommodate the needs of
both types.
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