New WordPress Plugin Makes WordPress Theming Easy

New WordPress Plugin Makes WordPress Theming Easy

A new commercial plugin has just hit the WordPress scene, aimed specifically at people who want to make complex WordPress themes but just don’t have awesome PHP coding skillz. Actually, it’s two plugins WP Types & Views (one free, one commercial). Types is your usual Custom Post Type plugin that creates Custom Post Types (duh!). It’s also pretty nice for creating groups of custom fields and attaching them to content Types.

But Views is where the plugin comes into its own. You know all that envy you feel when you see themes that carry out complex database queries such as real estate themes, job rollers, auctions, review sites, etc? Views does all of that for you – and more. I’ve been spending some serious hands-on time with the plugin recently so I thought it’d be worth sharing with you what the it can do.

Create Templates

Single showcase page created with Views

Views creates templates which you can apply to any content type. They’re a bit like page templates but you can make them inthe WordPress dashboard. Use WordPress shortcodes to specify what content you want to display, apply some CSS and you have a template that can be applied to any content type (i.e. post, page, custom post type).

Query, Filter, Display

A showcase layout created without PHP coding!

Templates are just a little bit of what Views can do. Views carries out complex queries on the WordPress database. You create a filter (or two, or as many as you want) and Views displays the content that you filter for. So, for example, you could display a list of only content in a certain taxonomy, in a certain order, or you can add search functions, or filter by different custom fields such as product type. Once you’ve filtered your content you can display it by applying your own CSS and HTML.

Here are some demos that were created using the plugins:

Embed it In Your Theme

The most recent release of Types and Views has seen an embeddable version that can be used by Theme designers. Designers can download the plugin, use it to build a theme and then embed the functionality within their theme. This means that you can create functionality for end-users without letting them have access to the configuration.

WP Types is available now from the WordPress plugin repository, and you can get Views from the website for only $49. As it’s currently in the beta phase they are offering a lifetime of support and upgrades to buyers.

It’s definitely worth checking out the website (and you might see a little bit of Words for WP magic while you’re there ;) )