On May 27th WordPress is officially 10 years old. The world’s greatest content management system started as a fork from the B2/Cafelog blogging software by Matt Mullenweg and Mike Little and has grown exponentially since to become a huge community and industry.
By way of celebration I thought I would share our part in that journey.
In the Beginning…
It all began back in 2004 when I decided that our church needed a web site and that, unlike others, wasn’t built offline by some geek; but rather was dynamic and told our story. I found WordPress was the answer and have been sharing the fact that WordPress beats any church CMS every time, ever since. Since then I have built hundreds of WordPress sites, published many themes and plugins, not all of which survived the changes of time.
So here is a quick history of WordPress in LIVINGOS themes and if you get to the end we have a special birthday present courtesy of the current incarnation of our theme weaving arm, the Theme Loom. There were other themes, but these were the ones that were made available publicly. They tell a story of web design over this period as well as WordPress. Many of these can still be downloaded from the Theme Loom.
It all began at the beginning, with:
A History of WordPress Told in Themes
Probably the first WordPress theme on the planet with a dropdown menu! Wow! ooo!
Ok so I decided that I’d go to the end of the Greek alphabet for this one.
Can our modern design sensitvie eyes cope with this historical journey? 3 columns!! Radical!
Enough said. Can’t say I’ve seen many using this one.
But plenty of people downloaded this one. Honest!
Something a little more tasteful perhaps. Still quite popular in some parts.
Well it may look the same to you, but this is one of the first themes to squeeze in a carousel/slider (Smooth Gallery), and without a theme options page in sight! Based on a theme that is still running Shine’s web site.
The lesson learnt here was that you shouldn’t release the theme you use for your own blog for public consomption. It doesn’t look cool.
I guess this was probably the first attempt to build a theme specifically aimed at non-blog sites, like churches. Notice the the now compulsary “upcoming events” widget.
Somebody discovered drop caps.
Tired of all those sidebars, so opted for something that is actually quite a popular layout today.
Probably our most downlaoded theme and still going strong on the church site I built it for: St Helens Baptist Church. The age of the CMS type theme now trully arrived.
When widgets were introduced in 2009 things really started to change. I realised though that widgets didn’t have to be restricted to the sidebar. They could be great tools for layout of the home page. Mu was born. My first so-called Premium theme.
With KAPPA I wanted to give users a whole bag of different designs in one theme. Maybe too many? Around this time we also moved our themes to their own theme store called the Theme Loom.
I do believe, this was one of the very first responsive WordPress themes. It was certainly the first BuddyPress compatible responsive theme. Built on a new framework which now powers all our themes for clients and those published on the Theme Loom.
Hot on the tails of Xi, responsive web design was becoming the standard. Time also to drop the silly Greek alphabet names.
Continuing to explore the possibilities in responsive design.
Currently our most popular theme and has been used to create a number of child themes for client projects.
2013 and beyond
So what of the future? Well, we have some exciting plans for new themes and plugins at the ThemeLoom in 2013 and last year we launched churchuna, because WordPress is now unquestionably the best way to build a church web site and we wanted to make it even easier.
But for now, as a special birthday treat, why not use the discount codes below to get a piece of the cake that is WordPress.