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SoCoder -> Article Home -> Website Information

Created : 04 August 2007
Edited : 04 August 2007

Creating Themes

How to create your own themes for the site.

There are a few ways to go about designing a theme for the site, but all of them will require you downloading the following file.

CSS 2 Buildset

Method 1 : Starting from scratch
Run "Make Me a Theme.bb"
Play with all the possible settings, tweak till you get a nice colour scheme going, then export it.
Once it's exported, you can go through it's various directories and neaten everything up.

Method 2 : Old to New
Grab the old CSSBuildSet, It's not as nice, but it's much easier to tweak it to the way you want it.
Make a copy of the "Theme Skeleton" directory in the New buildset, and copy all the files from your old-style theme into the new directory. That's the default.css, all the buttons, and any extra bits and pieces you've added.
Inside, run the "Recreate Default2 from Default.bb" file, and you should find a new default2.css, which should be a rough version of your old-style theme, but in the new style!
Still following! Sorry, this is all kind of a mess, but I did find it to be the easiest method, once I'd gotten used to it!!

Then, again, you'll have to go through all the directories and finish off all the rest of the bits.

Method 3 - Download a theme, and tweak it.
I've uploaded rars containing all the themes currently available.
Ingenium - White Ingenium
Jayenkai - Argh Red!
Jayenkai - Blueprint
Jayenkai - Citrus
Jayenkai - Dark and Blue
Jayenkai - Midnight Blue
Jayenkai - SoCPC
Krylar - BlitzCoder
MikeT - A Bit Blue
Shroom_Monk - ShroomCoder
StealthSPC - Mostly White
TNT - SoMatrixed

If you'd prefer, you can grab one of those, and tweak away until it's totally different!
If you want to make minor tweaks to a current theme, let me know what you've changed, and I'll consider uploading the changes, so long as nobody objects.

Whichever way you do your theme, you need to go through all the directories and finish off the various bits and pieces.

bbcode/ - Stores the icons used for the BBCode Javascript buttons. I typically just change the color of Back and Backlight, but if you're feeling adventurous, you might want to play with all the buttons.

buttons/ - The main forum buttons. Be careful if you're upgrading a CSS1 theme to a CSS2, as there's a couple of changes to the buttons.

clocks/ - The clocks by people's names in the member list.

forum_icons/ - The list of icons by the "Latest Posts" list. IF you have time, try to make a set of different icons, for each forum section. If not, use the same.bb file to make them all the same as same.gif instead!

forum_panels/ - The Forum Panels. I've included a .bb file in there to make things a little easier. Feel free to tweak the BB file to however you'd like, to make a nice set of panels.

gardenbar/ - The gardenbar!

misc/ - Odd little things that don't really fit anywhere else.

showcase/ - The descriptive icons used in showcases and other things, to display the language used, or the OS a showcase is aimed at.

Feel free to leave BBCode, Misc and Showcase alone. I've not really done much with them, so far. But for the rest of the things, try to blend them in with your site as much as you can.

Note that I'm no longer accepting "Bits and pieces" of themes..
You either send the whole lot, or nothing at all!!

Smilies are seperate though!

If there are any questions, ask away..