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October 21 2013

06:30

The 500 Dollar Blogger Bundle Giveaway: Noupe is Looking for 3 Winners


  

Dear readers of our lovely Noupe magazine. Today we teamed up with Envato to bring you the opportunity to win The Blogger Bundle. The Blogger Bundle consists of over 500 dollars worth of files. For a limited time, you can buy this bundle over at Codecanyon for just 20 dollars. But we encourage you to first try your luck and participate in our giveaway game. Three readers will be randomly drawn from all correct entries. Read on…

April 09 2013

17:13

Envato Moves to 100% GPL, and WooThemes Joins ThemeForest — What’s Next?


  
*Image Credit

It all started in late 2012 and the early part of 2013 -- WordPress Foundation requested that developers who are selling their WP-related works via Envato marketplaces should not speak at, volunteer for, sponsor or organize WordCamps. Obviously, things got heated (and personal) -- you don’t tell one of the biggest communities of WP developers to stay away from WordCamps and expect no reaction at all, do you? After a lot of furore and debates, Envato eventually announced a GPL-friendly policy for their marketplaces.

December 28 2010

17:27

WordPress Shortcodes: The Right Way


One of the primary reasons why WordPress is the most popular CMS platform available is the sheer level of customizability that it brings to the table. Today, we’ll review the process of integrating one of those popular features, shortcodes, in the most user friendly way possible, into our theme.


A Visual Crash-Course in Shortcodes


A Word From the Author

Even though there are a few trillion options to choose from, WordPress has comfortably taken the crown as the king of CMSs and blogging platforms with its incredible flexibility. A shortcode is one of those features that ratchet up the user friendliness of the system.

However, most implementations still require you to remember the shortcode itself. When you’ve created a masterpiece of a theme, the usability shouldn’t really lag behind. I’ll show you how to create shortcodes and then integrate it with the editor itself, so the user doesn’t have to go poring through your docs just to remember the correct syntax to embed a button. Intrigued? Let’s get started right away!


What Are These Shortco-whamathingies?

It’s called a shortcode and it has been part of the base WordPress installation since it hit version 2.5. Basically, these are similar to the bbcodes used on popular message board software: lightweight markup used to format content.

Here, you can define your own codes to use within your theme. Unlike BBCodes, though, shortcodes are primarily used to shield the user from tedious markup and possible errors. By using a shortcode, for say, a button, the user doesn’t have to remember the complicated markup that needs to be input to create the button. Overall, it’s quite a boost to a theme’s usability and possibly, noob friendliness.


ShortCode Variations

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of a BBCode, and by extension, shortcode, this is how the simplest version looks:

[my-gallery]

If you’ve ever embedded a gallery with WordPress, you’ve already used a shortcode!

There are two more variations you should also be familiar with.

 [button]Content[/button]

 [link to="www.net.tutsplus.com"]NetTuts+[link]

We’ll implement each of these variations first before moving onto other, busier things.

Each shortcode implementation requires a two-step process:

  • 1: Create the primary handler method
  • 2: Hook up the handler to WordPress

Regardless of the complexity of the shortcode, the core steps remain the same.


Take 1: Replacing Strings

We’ll first learn how to implement the simplest shortcode possible. As a use case, let’s say you end each post with some common signing off text. Copying and pasting might be a simple approach, but you may feel like a luddite doing so. Let’s fix this with some WP niftiness!

Unless otherwise noted, all of the code below goes into functions.php

Step 1: Create the Primary Function

The primary function takes care of the core logic of your shortcode. We’ll need to create this first before proceeding.

 function signOffText() {
    return 'Thank you so much for reading! And remember to subscribe to our RSS feed. ';
}

Step 2: Hook into WordPress

The next step, as you may assume, is to hook into the WordPress system to associate the shortcode with this text. This is done using the add_shortcode method.

add_shortcode('signoff', 'signOffText');

Yes, a single one-liner is all it takes. The first parameter defines the shortcode you’ll be using in the editor, while the the second points to the function we created a moment or so ago.

Note: The add_shortcode method always comes after the handler method.

That should do it. Just type [signoff] into your editor and WordPress will dynamically replace the text as needed.


Take 2: Wrapping Content

Next up, we’re going to take a look at another variation: wrapping some content with some markup. You’d have to use it like so:

[quote]Some text[/quote]

Step 1: Create the Primary Function

The primary function has to be modified a little here. We’re noting that our function receives two parameters: attributes through the atts variable and the content itself through the content variable.

The next step is simply to return the markup wrapped around the selected text.

function quote( $atts, $content = null ) {
	return '<div class="right text">"'.$content.'"</div>';
}

Step 2: Hook into WordPress

This step remains the same:

add_shortcode("quote", "quote");

I like to name my shortcodes exactly the same as the primary functions unless the naming gets unwieldy. You may have your own styles so feel free to change the naming scheme. There’s no accepted best practice.


Take 3: Adding Attributes

Finally, we’re going to take a look at adding attributes to the mix as well. You’d have to use it like so:

[link to="www.net.tutsplus.com"]NetTuts+[link]

Step 1: Create the Primary Function

The primary function needs to be refactored to handle all the new functionalities we’re bringing in. First up, we merge the attributes passed in with the shortcode and the attributes we’re expecting. You can read up more on the process here.

The final step, as always, is simply to return the markup we want after filling it up appropriately. Here, I’ve used the data sent with the shortcode to fill in the anchor’s href attribute as well as content.

function link($atts, $content = null) {
	extract(shortcode_atts(array(
		"to" => 'http://net.tutsplus.com'
	), $atts));
	return '<a href="'.$to.'">'.$content.'</a>';
}

Step 2: Hook into WordPress

This step remains unchanged, but essential. Remember, without this, WordPress has no what to do with the shortcode.

add_shortcode("link", "link");

Kicking Everything Up a Notch

This is where you’d expect this tutorial to end but no, you’ve guessed wrong. As I mentioned earlier, shortcodes take away a lot of pain, but there are few gotchas. For one, the user has to remember the shortcodes he has at his disposal to make meaningful use of them.

If you have just a couple, it’s all good, but with feature laden themes, remembering each one becomes a chore. To rectify this, we’re going to add buttons directly to the TinyMCE interface, so the user can simply click on the button to get it all done.

As an example, I’m going to teach you how to add the second variation to the editor. I’m hoping you can extrapolate this information for the specific functionality you have in mind.


Step 1: Hook into WordPress

The first step in the process is hooking into WordPress and adding our initialization code. The following snippet takes care of that. Remember, all of this needs to be in your functions.php file.

 add_action('init', 'add_button');

We’re asking WordPress to run the function called add_button when the page is initially loaded. add_action is our hook into WordPress’ internals.


Step 2: Create Our Initialization Function

function add_button() {
   if ( current_user_can('edit_posts') &&  current_user_can('edit_pages') )
   {
     add_filter('mce_external_plugins', 'add_plugin');
     add_filter('mce_buttons', 'register_button');
   }
}

This tiny snippet of code will be executed when the page loads. Above, we’re checking whether the user has the necessary authorization to edit a page or a post before proceeding.

Once that’s done, we hook up two of our [to be written] functions to specific filters. Both of these actually hook into TinyMCE’s front end architecture through WordPress. The first is executed when the editor loads the plugins while the second is run when the buttons are about to be loaded.

In the example above, we proceed regardless of which mode the editor is in. If you want to display it only when the editor is in, say, visual mode, you’ll need to perform a quick check. If get_user_option('rich_editing') evaluates to true, you’re in visual mode. Otherwise, HTML mode. I typically tend to add these buttons only under visual mode but feel free to mix and match here.


Step 3: Register Our Button

function register_button($buttons) {
   array_push($buttons, "quote");
   return $buttons;
}

The function merely adds our shortcode to the array of buttons. You can also add a divider between your new button and the previous buttons by passing in a | before.


Step 4: Register Our TinyMCE Plugin

function add_plugin($plugin_array) {
   $plugin_array['quote'] = get_bloginfo('template_url').'/js/customcodes.js';
   return $plugin_array;
}

The snippet above lets TinyMCE, and WordPress, know how to handle this button. Here, we map our quote shortcode to a specific JavaScript file. We use the get_bloginfo method to get the path to the current template. For the sake of organization, I’m keeping my tinyMCE plugin along with my other JS files.


Step 5: Write the TinyMCE Plugin

Now onto the final portion of our endeavour. Remember, the following code goes into a file called customcodes.js placed in the JS directory of your theme. If you thought it went into functions.php like all the code above, no cookie for you!

(function() {
    tinymce.create('tinymce.plugins.quote', {
        init : function(ed, url) {
            ed.addButton('quote', {
                title : 'Add a Quote',
                image : url+'/image.png',
                onclick : function() {
                     ed.selection.setContent('[quote]' + ed.selection.getContent() + '[/quote]');

                }
            });
        },
        createControl : function(n, cm) {
            return null;
        },
    });
    tinymce.PluginManager.add('quote', tinymce.plugins.quote);
})();

Looks a little complex but I assure you, it’s anything but. Let’s break it down into smaller section to make it easier for us to parse.

First order of the day is a quick closure to keep from polluting the global namespace. Inside, we call the create method to create a new plugin passing in the name and other assorted attributes. For the sake of brevity, I’m just going to call my plugin quote.

Once inside, we define the init function that’s executed upon initialization. ed points to the instance of the editor while url points to the URL of the plugin code.

Most of the attributes should be fairly self explanatory. Note that the image you pass in is relative to the parent folder of the JS file that holds the code. Here it’d be theme directory/js.

Next up, we create the event handler for this button through the onclick function. The one-liner it contains essentially gets the selected text, if any, and wraps it with out shortcode. setContent and getContent are helper methods provided by tinyMCE to manipulate the selected text.

Finally, in the last line, we add the freshly created plugin to tinyMCE’s plugin manager. Pay attention to the names you’re using in each step. It’s error prone if you’re not paying attention. And that’s about it! We’re done! Load up the editor and make sure your spiffy new button is working.

Tutorial Image

Conclusion

And there you have it. We’ve successfully integrated shortcodes into a WordPress theme in a very user friendly manner. Hopefully you’ve found this tutorial to be of help. Feel free to reuse this code elsewhere in your projects and chime in within the comments if you need any assistance.

Questions? Nice things to say? Criticisms? Hit the comments section and leave me a comment. Happy coding and thank you so much for reading!

November 15 2010

13:00

30 Kick-Ass Premium WordPress Plugins and Themes


The WordPress platform is an integral part of the Envato™ ecosystem. Regardless of whether you need a hand with design or development, the Envato™ marketplaces have you covered! You can purchase premium WordPress plugins and templates to hit the ground running with each new project.

Today, we’ll review only a handful of the newest and most popular templates and plugins on sale at CodeCanyon and ThemeForest.


1. FLER – Your Modern, Simple & Elegant All-use Theme


FLER combines what’s best in usability with its modern and elegant design and its administrator panel features.


2. Synergie Premium WordPress Theme


Synergie is a powerful WordPress theme that can be use for everything. With a really innovative system, the home page can be modified to really fit your need. You can turn on/off any of the 5 modules and stack the the way you want in 10 seconds. Give it a try!


3. WP Pro Real Estate 2 WordPress Theme


Hundreds of hours in development, WP Pro Real Estate 2 is the most advanced real estate theme for WordPress on ThemeForest if not in the industry.


4. Prestige – Ultimate Dark WordPress Theme vol.1


Prestige is an unique and advanced WordPress theme. It comes with a big pack of various skins, shortcode
s, widgets and fonts. Thanks to massive CMS options panel you can fully customize this theme to your needs. Prestige is the ultimate package with functional and powerful features.


5. Jing – Portfolio, Business, Photography template


Jing is the flexible portfolio, business or photography template (WordPress version). With 12 possible style variations, built-in slider inside portfolio page, 2 blog styles and more


6. Alchemist Portfolio and Corporate WordPress Theme


Alchemist is a powerful wordPress solution for you Portfolio or Blog. Various content objects as well as interesting ways to showcase your portfolio are integrated into the theme. You can use shortcode
s to generate a slideshow or thumbnail galleries through the content editor using shortcode
s The theme is designed to showcase your products focusing on a front page that can easily act as selling point and lead to various product showcases.


7. Striking Premium Corporate & Portfolio WP Theme


Striking is a Powerful Professional Premium WordPress theme made for your Blog, Portfolio, Business or almost any other kind of website. It is incredibly easy to use with the admin panel, and give you full control over every major design element throughout your site. With the color and font options page, you can customize you website more than you could ever imagine.


8. Screen, the Next Generation WordPress Theme!


As you may expect from a premium WordPress theme, Screen delivers an extensive package of features with which you can design your website quick and easy. Most features and options are built directly into the Edit page, for great ease of use. Screen offers lots of possibilities to present your business or brand. Screen also includes SEO options on the Edit page, where you can enter a title, description and keywords for each Page or Post, without needing to install an additional plug-in.


9. PowerPhoto


PowerPhoto – A clean, powerful WordPress theme for photographers and other creative professionals looking to showcase their portfolio.


10. KIN – Minimalist Photography WordPress Template


KIN is a minimalist magazine style photography template (WordPress version). With 2 style variations and support both image gallery and videos


11. PhotonWP – The Ultimate Photography Showcase Theme


PhotonWP features everything that Photon already offered but now with the option to be managed with WordPress


12. Stuff

Stuff


Stuff is a horizontal-oriented WordPress theme created mostly for portfolios and blogs.


13. Xero Portfolio & Business WordPress Theme

Xero Portfolio & Business WordPress Theme


“Xero WordPress theme is one of the most powerful WordPress themes on Themeforest.”


14. Pushed WP

XPushed WP


Pushed is a highly functional WordPress theme that has a custom homepage with a featured area powered by jQuery, and lovely homepage design as well as many other page templates.


15. Dandelion

Dandelion


Dandelion is a Powerful Premium WordPress Theme. This theme provides all the main functionality you will need to present your products, work and yourself in an elegant and professional style.


Premium Plugins


16. Events Calendar Pro – WordPress Premium Plugin


The Events Calendar Premium plugin for WordPress enables you to rapidly create and manage events using the post editor. Features include Google Maps integration as well as default templates such as a calendar grid and event list for streamlined one click installation.


17. DDSliderWP – 11 Transitions – Slide Manager Panel


DDSliderWP features EVERYTHING that the jQuery plugin already offered PLUS a custom admin panel, with total management of slides.


18. Lightbox Evolution for WordPress


Lightbox Evolution is a tool for displaying images, html content, maps, and videos in a “lightbox” style that floats overtop of web page. Using Lightbox Evolution, website authors can showcase a wide assortment of media in all major browsers without navigating users away from the linking page.


19. uBillboard – Premium Slider for WordPress


uBillboard is a slider for WordPress We have been developing sliders for our WordPress themes for over a year now, and all that experience has been distilled into this one slider plugin. It is a premium quality jQuery-based slider with a nicely polished WordPress admin.


20. Custom Backgrounds for WordPress


With WordPress 3.0 a new feature was introduced called custom backgrounds for WordPress themes. This feature gives you the ability to add custom backgrounds on your site, which will your site a unique touch.


21. Custom Widget Areas for WordPress


Have you ever wanted to show different Widgets on Pages or Posts or even inside your content?

The plugin lets you create your own widget areas, configure them by adding widgets, and then place them directly inside the content of Pages and Posts by simply using shortcode
s


22. Avia Feedback Box – Feature Request System


The Avia Feedback Box is a feature request system for visitors and customers. They can suggest new ideas, vote on existing ones, and track your work progress.


23. Dynamic Step Process Panels for WordPress


Dynamic Step Process Panels is a lightweight plugin for WordPress. It allows that any content can be represented in any number of tabs / steps. Can be used to:

  • presentation of bulleted content,
  • multisteps forms,
  • provide a description of products,
  • viewing photos,
  • loading content from files via AJAX ,
  • anything that comes to your mind.

24. Relevant Search WordPress Plugin


If you’ve always fantasized that WordPress would fix their search results and return something actually relevant (not ordered by date), but are let down on every new release. You’ve found the plugin to make that dream come true.


25. Simple WordPress Gallery


The Simple WordPress Gallery plugin overrides the standard WordPress gallery with a film-strip style one. Our goal here is to finally present a version of the WordPress gallery that’s useful and not a pain in the butt. This plugin installs in a minute and is a breeze to use; it’s as simple as it it awesome!


26. WordPress Premium Content

WordPress Premium Content


Jigowatt’s WordPress Premium Content plugin allows you to easily set up a web site with content which is only accessible to users registered with an active PayPal subscription. You can easily manage your subscribers, change subscription prices and set up custom membership renewal options (annual, bi-annual or just month by month).


27. User Locations

user Locations


A WordPress Plugin which enables you to show your registered users locations on a frontend map from Google Maps.


28. WP Geo Tagger (Currently 50% Off)

WP Geo Tagger


The WP Geo Tagger plugin can be used to add your current location to posts or to add an event location, so your readers can get directions in a snap. It even integrates Google Maps right on your posts!


29. jGallery

jGallery


This WordPress Gallery Plugin gives you a simple and extremely customizable way to create a gallery on any post or page. You have the option to use widgets or shortcodes to insert your custom gallery into your web site. As well, the look of your gallery is fully customizable through the WordPress admin interface.


30. AJAX Contact Forms

AJAX Contact Forms


This is a jQuery based AJAX powered HTML / PHP contact form with Twitter Direct Messaging, easily integrated into WordPress via shortcodes and functions.


If that still doesn’t quench your awesomeness thirst, be sure to check out our sister-site, Web.Appstorm for fifty-eight more killer themes.

May 19 2010

05:32

Top 50 Web Graphics, Admin Skins and Scripts to Accelerate Development


As the Beatles so elegantly wrote, we could all use a little help from our friends to get by. And when it comes to design and development who couldn’t use a friend to speed things up? Thanks to our sister sites ThemeForest, GraphicRiver and CodeCanyon, there are plenty of web graphics, admin skins and scripts to drop in to your work. Best of all they are all made by our massive community of authors. Today across Tuts+ we’re celebrating and showcasing the quality of marketplace goods to bring over the Tuts+ masses to browse the plethora of super work on sale. So without further ado, here they are!

1. Admin Skins


Complete Liquid Admin Control Panel

Complex Liquid Admin template contains a login page as well as a modular content page that includes all the elements you could possibly need in your admin. From these elements you should be able to generate pretty much any required page!


Flexy

Advanced and easy to use administration theme which comes in 7 different colour variations. The theme is liquid, which means the width of the content area adapts to your browsers window size.


Admintasia

Admintasia is a complete backend administration user interface that has the flexibility to house any kind of application. It loads last, it’s intuitive and easy to use, it uses only three small images and it also looks good.


Simpla Admin

Simpla Admin is a professional template with a beautiful and user friendly interface. With various smart and intuitive jQuery functions, navigating the interface is a breeze.


Profi Admin

Profi Admin is a clean and simple style template but it’s complexity and expandability goes beyond expectations. The big visual menu creates the intuitive navigation while the tabbed and the hidden submenu expands the structure to 3 menu levels. Inspired by the WordPress Administration layout.


Cleanity Complete Admin

This professional looking and highly flourished skin is suitable for almost any kind purpose. Cleanity is a compilation of all features you might need on an administration theme.


Boxie Admin

Simple, stylish and modern template for your website’s administration


Wide Admin

Wide admin is a powerful lightweight backend interface application, ready to use for any software / CMS you want.


Quik v1 Admin Skin

Quik is a simple skin for use on little back end applications. It’s just a clean way of presenting say a CMS or some other little app to a client. The general admin template, includes a table style, error and alert styles, a sidebar, tabs, form fields and some general text styles.


Meta Admin

Advanced yet easy to use administration panel template. It includes 4 color schemes (blue, green, grey, red) and is divided in a login page and a content page that includes all the the elements you could possibly need in your admin. From these elements you can generate any required page.


2. Web Graphics


Web Ribbons & Corner Graphics

These ribbons are specially designed for the websites which are indeed of High Quality corner graphics and Featuring ribbons on the websites or products highlighting and need of some cool graphics like seal icons ribbons on featured products or some highlight banners and money back guarantee ribbons etc


Clean Web Navigation Menu

Cool, clean and contemporary Web navigation menu using Arial font. I have used Arial because it is freely available across all operating systems, but you can change the to whatever you want! Menu comes in three flavors! File includes a fully layered Photoshop PSD version and a fully editable Fireworks vector PNG file.


Shoppify Buttons

Set includes 5 buttons with icons: – Buy now (with price tag) – Download – FREE Trial – Take a Tour – Live Demo


Badges and Sale Tags for Online Shop

Attractive Online Shop Badges and Tags for your Online Shop, Make your Products/Promos Speak More


Light Arrow Buttons

This is a pack of arrow buttons for web sliders, scroll boxes, or anything that needs arrows!


Stylish Menu For CSS Sprites

This is a very Stylish menu including a fully layerd PSD file, it could be used for a CSS Sprite menu or whatever type of menu.


Great Web boxes

2 Different designs 3 different color scheme (you can create many more)


Web Pricing Tables & Premium Buttons

These boxes are specially designed for the websites which are indeed of web 2.0 styled pricing tables boxes or featuring any tables or comparision tables on the websites and need of some cool graphics like download now or register now buttons, banners and signup buttons etc.


Clean Navigation Menu

Fully-editable, fully-layered Photoshop file. You can very easily change the gradient of the menu.


Web Elements – Volume 1

A detailed, large collection of layered, grouped and named web elements that can be easily edited.


Shadows Pack for Web Boxes

Spice up your plain html container with a simple but stylish web2.0 style shadow!


Tags Stickers and Labels

This set of tags, stickers and labels features 100% photoshop paths, NO raster layer at all. ensures easy scalability and editing.


10 Styles of Login/Signup

These Login/Signup screen elements are designed in Adobe Photoshop CS4 , and to be used for your projects of web application and or website. You can modify or can change their colors according to your project theme. Each Login/Sign-up design is layered and categorized in layer groups.


We’re on a Break

Unique style of under maintenance screen, a full layered Photoshop file, very easy to edit text.


Clean Web Menus

This is a fully-editable, fully-layered Photoshop file for clean, stylish web menus.


Premium Gold and Platinum Seals

Gold and Platinum Seals for everyone, maybe used for web and for graphics too, as it’s dimension is 2267 by 1442, now that’s large baby! -Includes the item preview and 2 ready-made PNG file, that was created using the save for web feature of photoshop at 15% of actual size.


User Interface Elements – Simple White

Easily customizable web design / application / user interface elements in one consistent, clear style.


Web Photo Frames

Give the smaller photos on your site a Polaroid look with a sexy spin. This set of web photo frames gives the photos on your website a clean border with the option of a title.


Delicious Buttons

Fully editable .psd vector buttons with 2 stylish colours (green and gray).


Web 2.0 Buttons, Social icons & Product Showcase

Website and internet Web 2.0 Buttons, both normal and rollover are included(except small button – no rollover state). buttons contains texts and icons.


3. 404 Pages


AK – 404 Error Pages

These template pages can use for 404 errors on your web site. It comes by 8 different themes.


404 Idea Style

Beautiful 404 Error Page inspired by Idea Template. Site links included for better user experience.


Sleek Server Error Pages

This is a clean, web 2.0 design for website / server error pages. It is flexible and very easy to customize. It comes with 5 of the most common error pages (404, 403, 401, 500 and 503) but it’s very easy to add more if needed. All


404 Pingu

Funky Pingu 404 page. Suitable for every website. Give it a try!


Oops…404 Page Template

This is a nice, clean modern and solid template for your 404 page. It is designed to go straight to the point.


Modern Error Page Template

These template pages can be user for any HTTP errors on your website. It comes in 5 color variations (purple, blue, red, green and orange) and 5 error codes (401, 403, 404, 500 and 503).


Smart 404 Page

A Simple 404 Error Page in 6 Different Color Variations with there respective psd’s.


Fancy Jquery 404 Error Popup

This is a JQUERY script that is simple, unobtrusive, no need extra markup and is used to display 404 error in fancy popup box on the current page instead of redirecting to 404 page.


Powerful Errors – PHP/Ajax error template

This is a very useful and adaptable error template which features jQuery animation and effects as well as an Ajax Error Report form in PHP.


Creative 404 Error Page

Error pages are often overlooked by many designers. No more ugly 404/503/500 pages! Produce the wow effect.


3. Scripts


Twitter Reactions

Twitter Reactions is a quick and easy method of displaying Tweets on a website that mention that particular page. It is a simple script that can be easily integrated on any website as long as your have access to the source code.


Sexy Slider

SexySlider is a JQuery plugin that lets you easily create powerful javascript Sliders with very nice transition effects. Enhance your website by adding a unique and attractive slider.


jSocial

With jSocial you can easily place social share buttons under your articles and pages on your website. This script uses the jQuery framework and works completely client side. So you can use it on static and dynamic webpages.


Sticky Nav Menu

If you’ve ever seen those neat little bars that stick to the bottom of a website – like the one at Envato.com – this mimics that functionality.


FeaturedBox

With this script you can make a nice interactive slide gallery like you find on every big site these days. Because the script is highly customizable you can use this script for lots of purposes.


Put Me On The Map

Put Me On The Map is simple JavaScript component that marks a location on The Google Maps based on its street address. This is a useful component for any “Contact Us” page on your website to mark exactly where you are located.


Smart Menu

Smart Menu is simple JavaScript driven menu, which is written on top of jQuery framework.


My Video Channel

My Video Channel is a jQuery based script which makes it possible to display a list of YouTube videos from a specific user and play them in your own website.


Flickr Import

Flickr Import is an extremely lightweight, quick and robust tool to display photos from Flickr onto your website.


tweetGrab

tweetGrab is an unobtrusive jQuery plugin and a jQuery-ed Wordpress plugin that simplifies and enhances the process of embedding and referencing individual Tweets, @user feeds, #hashtag feeds, $ticker feeds, and general search results.


Got something to sell? Become an Author!

Authors on the Envato Marketplaces earn literally thousands of dollars a month. The absolute highest selling author makes over $25,000 every month. Of course he’s got more talent in his left thumb than most of us can dream of, but even so regular authors can still earn a good income on the side. Best of all it just keeps trickling in, no matter what you are doing, no matter where you are. So if you think you have the skills and know-how to make files like the ones showcased here, head over and become an author!

April 20 2010

15:17

10 Kick-Ass Magento Templates

I’m proud to announce that ThemeForest is now selling Magento eCommerce templates at cheap prices that any business or individual can afford. We’ve launched with thirty-five awesome Magento templates, but we’re just scratching the surface. By the end of the year, ThemeForest will be the premier location for buying and selling Magento templates! Here are some of the best that we’ve launched with.


1. Woodrow

Woodrow

2. Organic

Organic

3. Acumen

Acumen

4. Boho

Boho

5. Media Store

Media Store

6. Contemporary Design

Contemporary Design

7. Tribeca

Tribeca

8. Tecknica

Tecknica

9. Gnarly

Gnarly

10. Guise

Guise

So if you have a spare moment, and are in the market for an incredible Magento template, I hope you’ll stop by your neighborhood ThemeForest and take a look around! And don’t forget, if you’re a developer of eCommerce themes, now might be the perfect time to look into signing up for a free author account, and earning 40-70% of every sale you make!


January 27 2010

23:19

5 Examples of Beautiful Resume/CV Web Templates

Did you know that we recently launched a new sub-category on ThemeForest, specifically for resumes/CVs optimized for the web? It’s becoming more and more common for potential employers to simply request a link to your website, rather than a sheet of paper. Though the category only launched a few weeks ago, we’ve already received a handful of beautiful designs.

1. Clean CV / Resume Html Template + 4 Bonuses

2. Awesome Online Resume/CV

3. Smart CV – Resume Theme

4. Resume (CV) Perfecto

5. Major – Resume Template

Think you can do Better?

If so, why not head over to ThemeForest and submit your own design? There’s a lot of money to be made, but you have to submit something first!!


January 01 2010

18:16

An Interview with Brandon Jones

Brandon Jones is an extraordinary web designer from California. He first appeared on ThemeForest in February of this year, and immediately soared to being one of our top selling authors, amassing over 5,000 sales.

His work is impeccable, and, more importantly, his work ethic is even more impressive. Today, we’ll talk with him about his work-flow, strategies for selling templates, and what makes him stand out among the rest.

“From sunny Southern California, Brandon Jones has been designing, drawing, photographing, and coding the world around him for the past several years. Not content to pick one media and stick with it has left Brandon with a broad range of talents that have allowed him to work on projects ranging from grungy digital art kits to Fortune 500 software prototyping.”

#1 – How long have you been in the web design business?

Over 7 years and counting. I’ve been designing as a freelancer working from my home in Southern California since 2002. I began by working on websites for local bands and musicians, then moved up to working with local businesses and small agencies in the Los Angeles area. In 2007, I jumped from working with Jetpack Studio (Los Angeles) to working with Shane&Peter Inc. (Santa Cruz) as my primary freelance team.

Shane&Peter Inc. is owned by two guys (named Shane and Peter, go figure), but the team is composed of over 50 designers, developers, projects managers, and other specialists from all around the world. I’m actually the designer with the most tenure at the moment, but we’ve got a number of great contractors that have been teaming up with us for years. We’re all freelance contractors, so there are no employees here – we all work when we want to and where we want to, which is a huge perk. We call it “remote team contracting”, which means that we more or less act as a team, but we’re all working as individual contractors rather than as hired employees.

In 2007 we won a Webby award for work on Blip.tv, and since then we’ve worked on countless projects for everyone from surf magazines to tech startups to Fortune 500 companies. Aside from working on several large scale websites (that I can’t mention because of non-disclosure agreements), I’ve also had the privilege to design a bunch of well known iPhone apps, software prototypes, and high intensity internal projects for some of the biggest companies in the world.

In 2009, I began contributing to Graphic River and Theme Forest as an adventurous little side project. 7 months later, I still freelance about 70% of the time, but I’m slowly allotting more and more time into ThemeForest. Right now I’m working on several major freelance projects in addition to planning on a few awesome new releases for ThemeForest over the next couple months.

#2 – When/How id you first come across the Envato marketplaces – specifically ThemeForest?

I first came across the Envato marketplaces in early 2009. I’d been a longtime fan of all of the Envato sites, but never really dug into the marketplaces until early this year when I started becoming more interested in using micro-stock and other stock templates in my own freelance work to save time. At the time, there were a number of sites out there releasing similar content, but none with the diversity and quality that Envato authors were publishing – the price points on the products were also ridiculously affordable to use on most of my freelance projects.

I released a few of my own web-related products to GraphicRiver in Feburary to test the waters and see what kind of reception I would get. Next, I released my first PSD template to ThemeForest in March, which is what really motivated me to begin releasing full website templates using the skills that I’d been honing over the past 7 years.

#3 – You have been particularly successful when it comes to WordPress theme sales. When developing a new item, do you try to plan for PSD, Site Template, and WordPress submissions? Or do you prefer to focus only on one category per design?

Yes and no. I definitely don’t allow the traditional understanding of a WordPress theme to limit my goals for any design. That said, starting in 2007 I began producing most of my website designs with WordPress in mind because my clients loved the backend and there weren’t many limitations on what you could in terms of design… so it only seemed natural to keep this mentality when I began releasing stock templates at ThemeForest.

That said, it usually takes more time to release a product to WordPress as it does to code into HTML. As you can see from my portfolio, most of my designs start as HTML, then move up to WordPress when I’ve had the time to code them properly.

There’s a huge difference between releasing a WordPress theme to ThemeForest and building a WordPress theme for a client though. Because of the nature of an individual client, most solutions that you come up with only have to work for them specifically. When I release a theme at ThemeForest, I have to account for countless possible usage scenarios. One buyer might want to take my theme and create a photography portfolio, another might want to use it as a site for a charitable organization. This kind of diverse usage really forces me to think through as many different types of users as possible because I actually hit the submit button.

Lately, I’ve been trying to push the envelope for WordPress themes. This means incorporating more and more design elements that you normally wouldn’t consider for a traditional blog theme. With the broad range of resources available for WordPress right now on the web, it’s easy to get inspired and want to try out some of the new tricks that are out there. Having these resources available also means that I can really let loose during the design phase and trust that there’ll be some way of making it work in WordPress.

#4 – Though encouraged, we do not require that authors provide support for their items. Do you? Considering how well your items sell, how do you manage to provide quality support to so many different buyers? Any tricks/short-cuts?

Yes, absolutely! Answering custom support emails is the easiest way to learn how to release better products and documentation in the future. Hearing what roadblocks users run into, what requests they have for customizations, and what they like best about my themes gives me an inside track to understanding how buyers are putting my products to use. This kind of information is like gold if you ask me, as it grants you a continuing education on the do’s and don’ts of stock templates.

As far as the practicality of responding to every user question goes: I used to answer all emails within 24 hours like clockwork… lately though, I’ve been doing my best to answer everyone within a week at the most simply because my current freelance work keeps me busy during most days of the week. It takes time to give every email a genuine response, but it ultimately pays off with happy buyers and lessons learned. Without tapping into the kind of feedback that comes from buyer-questions, I’d have a difficult time improving the quality of work as I’ve been doing over the past 6 months.

As far as shortcuts go – there’s no magic formula. However, proper documenting your product will significantly cut down on the number of questions that buyers have. After that, maintaining a FAQ page on your products that answers the most commonly asked questions will help out a lot as well.

#5 – Do you, or have you considered selling on the different Envato marketplaces as well?

Yep – I’ve worked in Flash for several years as well, and I’m hoping to begin releasing Flash templates in early 2010. I also release products now and then at GraphicRiver.

#6 – Many successful authors have noted that the biggest advantage to selling their designs through us is that it takes the client completely out of the design process, and, instead, allows the author full control. Would you agree? Any other advantages?

I totally agree! Not having to cater a design concept to one particular customer is incredibly liberating. If a user doesn’t like what I’ve done with a design, they can keep browsing until they find what’s right for them… but for those users who do like what I’m doing – they get an entire website for under $30! That’s not bad for either side of the transaction if you ask me.

The other major advantage that I’ve seen with releasing work at ThemeForest is the lack of deadlines. I live and die by deadlines in my freelance work. At ThemeForest, you can take as long as you want to get a product “just right”, and there’s no client breathing down your neck waiting to see the final product. I have a number of people that follow my work now and always want to see the latest work that I’m releasing, but it’s a totally different phenomena from “needing” to hit a deadline or risk getting into trouble with a client.

#7 – Do you take advantage of our referral program, or promote your items in any additional ways to increase sales?

I use as many ways to promote my products and I can think of. I release blog posts whenever I release a new product. I try to write for Envato as often as I can. I make twitter posts. I let people know on Facebook (politely, I hate spammers). I also join contests on other sites to garner extra exposure. I don’t really focus on getting a referral cut for any of those links, but it definitely doesn’t hurt when it happens.

#8 – Without giving away any of your key techniques, if you could only make one choice, what would be the most important thing to keep in mind when selling with us?

Think of the end-user! This is my mantra. It doesn’t matter how gorgeous your design is if a buyer can’t use the final product. Organize your files and coding as if your grandmother were going to have to use it. Document it as thoroughly and simply as you possibly can. Include images, instructions, links, FAQ’s, and any other sort of resource that might help out a buyer in the end. Good design is only one piece of a complex mechanism that creates a truly great stock product. Keep this in mind and you’ll do just fine.

I usually have my fiance’ read my documentation and instructions before I release a file. She has almost no experience at all with coding or web design, so it gives me a totally different response than when I read it. Things that make sense to me won’t to her – so it allows me the unique opportunity to re-write certain aspects of my documentation to help the most users possible. It helps that she has a degree in publicity and marketing though ;)

#9 – A new member signs up with ThemeForest, and is hoping to upload his or her first item. Any advice?

Do your homework! Look around to see what’s selling the best. Follow your favorite authors to see what they do and how they work. Read the forums and product threads to see how authors and buyers interact. Read the blogs to see what’s new at the marketplace. All of these are crucial to really diving in and understanding what it takes to become successful at ThemeForest.

#10 – Final question. What’s next for you? Any special items planned before the end of the year?

I actually have a batch of new products coming out in November and December, including at least 4 new WordPress themes, a handful of new HTML templates, even more PSD templates, and a few other surprises up my sleeve.

Here’s a sneak peek of my upcoming Reverb theme:

Thanks for reading!

If you Enjoyed this Interview…

…and would like to sty up to date on the latest from Brandon:

Write a Plus Tutorial

Did you know that you can earn up to $600 for writing a PLUS tutorial and/or screencast for us? We’re looking for in depth and well-written tutorials on HTML, CSS, PHP, and JavaScript. If you’re of the ability, please contact Jeffrey at nettuts@tutsplus.com.

Please note that actual compensation will be dependent upon the quality of the final tutorial and screencast.

Write a PLUS tutorial


November 27 2009

10:30

10 Templates that Solve Problems for Web Developers

We live in a web centric world right now, and if you haven’t already, you’ll most likely be facing website related dilemma(s). For example, maybe you need an email template to send out your company newsletter(s) but you don’t have the first clue as to how to create one let alone create one that works with all major clients, looks outstanding and is easy to customize and reuse.

Or maybe you need a stylish but functional admin panel for a client whom you’ve just built a complex CMS for, but you aren’t a designer. There are an infinite number of possible problems you could be facing and fortunately, there are solutions.

1. Airmail! – Customizable Email Template

Airmail

“Airmail is a professionally built and designed custom HTML email template! Perfect for just about anyone – usable for everything from newsletters to eFlyers to whitepapers.”

Airmail

2. Simpla Admin – Flexible & User Friendly Admin skin

Simpla Admin

“Simpla Admin is a professional template with a beautiful and user friendly interface. With various smart and intuitive jQuery functions, navigating the interface is a breeze.”

Simpla Admin

3. CleanMail – Email Template Package – 5 Colors!

CleanMail

“CleanMail is a simple yet sexy email template package with 5 different color schemes!”

CleanMail

4. WordPress Wiki Theme

WordPress Wiki

“If you’re looking for a Knowledge Base or Wiki for your company but don’t want or need a full blown Wiki Application. This is the theme for you. Built with a custom Frequently Asked Questions plugin to help extend the functionality of your web site. The plugin acts as a custom write panel that displays in essence short FAQs below posts in their respective categories. The FAQs are searchable and paginate and are not required.”

WordPressWiki

5. Marketplace Community WordPress Theme

Marketplace Community

“Marketplace is a both clean and stylish WordPress theme with the intent and focus on creating a community site for industry news, tutorials, etc. This theme includes many popular built in features seen in today’s industry leading community sites. This themes comes with 5 different color options to choose from.”

Marketplace Community

6. vCard Professional Portfolio

vCard Professional Portfolio

“This is a professional and clean vCard based on Tim Van Damme’s website. With this design you can use almost any background.”

vCard Professional Portfolio

7. Sleek Server Error Pages

Sleek Server Error Pages

“This is a clean, web 2.0 design for website / server error pages. It is flexible and very easy to customize. It comes with 5 of the most common error pages (404, 403, 401, 500 and 503) but it’s very easy to add more if needed. All text is real text so adding more pages is a breeze, no image editing required.”

Sleek Server Error Pages

8. NEOTERIC—The Ultimate Under Construction Page!

Neoteric

“NEOTERIC is a clean single page ‘Under Construction/Coming Soon’ template in 10 SKINS designed to keep your users up to date on your site’s progress.”

Neoteric

9. Under Construction Page with Twitter & Pie Graph!

Under Construction

“Make sure your visitors know whats going on with this Under construction site template that features a feed of your latest tweets (which can be easily removed if you dont use twitter) and a pie chart that is easy to change to reflect your progress!”

Under Construction

10. Minimo – A minimal one page portfolio theme

Minimo

“Minimo is a simple and attractive one page portfolio showcase theme. This theme is built using the 960.gs grid system framework, giving it a structured and professional look and features custom designed icons. Included is a form mail script, so the entire site works out of the box, simply add your destination email address.”

Minimo

Conclusion

When working on projects for your clients, what kinds of templates do you find yourself most in need of? Thanks for reading!



November 13 2009

02:10

Easy Website Updates with PageLime

PageLime makes the process of editing static websites laughably easy. There are times when a full CMS like WordPress is far too complicated when only simple edits are required – not to mention the fact that a static template must first be modified accordingly to work with WordPress. Wouldn’t it be easier if your current static website could instantly be integrated with a service, without requiring hours of conversion time? This is where PageLime comes in.

In today’s video tutorial, we’ll go through the process of purchasing a site template on ThemeForest, and then integrating that specific template with PageLime, resulting in a website which is super easy to update…even for your mom.

PageLime is a remote Content Management System that allows you to update the content, images, and documents on your web site without installing any software.

The Screecast

Other Viewing Options

What’s in Store for PageLime?

In the CEO’s own words…

  • Repeating Regions – You/Your clients will be able to have regions that you define as repeatable. This will let you dynamically create new buttons in navigation, blog like article additions, etc. This is in testing now, and will roll out across all sites in the next week!
  • Multipage Dynamic Content – You will be able to define areas that show up on other places in the website. So when you update them, they update in other places.
  • Blog – Drop in simple PageLime managed blog.
  • Client Invoicing – We’re building an invoicing feature from withing PageLime that will let you manage your PageLime clients with auto recurring invoices that link to your PageLime account. This basically allows you to setup a subscription model for you clients, and pass the cost of PageLime directly to them. OR charge them more, and make money off of PageLime! This will be a feature in the Business Account Level.
  • iPhone App – Manage websites from an iPhone application. This is already designed, just need to go about building it soon. I can send you screenshots if you would like.
  • eCommerce – Either a partnership with another team, or build one ourselves that can be dropped in, like the blog.


November 05 2009

12:33

Inside the Mind of ThemeForest’s Top Selling Author

Kriesi is ThemeForest’s top selling author; he, last month, broke the record of most sales in a single month, across all of the Envato marketplaces! It’s even more shocking when we consider the fact that he’s only 27 years old!

In this interview, we’ll dive into his work process, and hopefully steal some tips and inspiration!

How long have you been in the web design business?

About five years ago, I started the Multimedia and Web Design Course at SAE Vienna in my home country, Austria. Back then, I did mostly Flash stuff (almost every piece of work was REALLY horrible to tell the truth) and I also had some interest in html coding (I loved table design back then :P ). With every course I took, I lost a little interest in Flash and got more curious about HTML and CSS. When they handed me my Bachelor Degree a few years later, I was pretty decent with HTML and CSS whereas my Flash skills were lousy at best.

I did some small projects for an event agency during that time and as soon as I finished College, they offered me a full time Job as a Front-end Developer, which I gladly accepted. I’m still working at this Agency :)

When/How did you first come across the Envato marketplaces – specifically ThemeForest?

I was a regular reader of the TUTS-PLUS Websites and therefore was aware that there is a marketplace called ActiveDen, where people sell all this neat Flash stuff; but since I was only a Front-end Developer with HTML, CSS, and some PHP Skills at that time, I didn’t really bother.

When Envato announced the opening of ThemeForest, I thought I could give it a try, and uploaded my first WordPress theme. The theme flopped really hard and only earned me 30 Bucks during the first month. Out of pure boredom, I created a second theme. :)

The second one did a little better, really just a little, but it was enough that I became curious if I could do better with each theme. =)

You’ve been particularly successful when it comes to WordPress theme sales. When developing a new item, do you try to plan for PSD, Site Template, and WordPress submissions? Or do you prefer to focus only on one category per design?

When I started creating templates, I almost always only planned for the WordPress version. I was thinking that the HTML Templates are far to cheap to earn a good amount of money, which is actually not true.

I did this until I invested countless hours into a Wordpress theme which underperformed to a point where I had worked for about 3$/hour for a whole week. Since then, I usually create a HTML template as well, to test if customers like what I have designed.

I still usually don‘t do a PSD version. Unlike other people, I only design to a certain point in Photoshop; many of the small improvements and details that customers see in the final HTML version are added while I code the HTML and CSS.

Though encouraged, we do not require that authors provide support for their items. Do you? Considering how well your items sell, how do you manage to provide quality support to so many different buyers? Any tricks/short-cuts?

It is indeed really hard sometimes to support all customers, especially those not familiar with WordPress, but I try to answer all questions. I think it’s crucial if you want customers to return and buy your themes again. The big problem I guess is providing “Quality Support”. I simply don‘t have the time to do more than 90 minutes of theme support each day, so if I see tons of requests on my Author Dashboard, answers usually (and unfortunately) get a little more generic :/

There are several “tricks” that worked out pretty good for me:

  • I am trying to encourage all customers to use the item dashboard and not the mail contact form. That way, other customers benefit from the answers as well and I only have to check one place for requests.
  • Updating the documentation file that comes with the download regularly helps a lot as well. I also save answers that I have given more than 2 or 3 times into a text document for copy/pasting on demand.
  • Overall I can only suggest to find your own method of streamlining support; the best way to cut down support time of course is to create themes and documentation that are so easy to use, that support requests drop to a minimum.

Do you or have you considered selling on the different Envato marketplaces as well?

Yes. I have tried to upload a flash file once last Christmas, since I had a pretty neat Santa animation. Those who have checked my portfolio might have already guessed it… it seems it wasn’t that neat. ;D

Many successful authors have noted that the biggest advantage to selling their designs through us is that it takes the client completely out of the design process, and instead allows the author full control. Would you agree? Any other advantages?

I agree, it is indeed great to be in full control of all decisions. I have worked with too many clients over the past years who thought just because they can use MS Paint they are great designers But you should never underestimate the positive impact of a second opinion when creating your themes. Therefore I almost always ask some of my colleagues at the agency to make suggestions on my designs before I release them.

I also love the fact that I don’t have any deadlines here and can try new stuff with every theme I release :)

Do you take advantage of our referral program, or promote your items in any additional ways to increase sales?

Only a little; I promote my themes on my blog and on Twitter when I release them. But since I make postings rarely on my blog, the impact on my sales ain’t that big. ;D I will try to post more often in the future when my sites redesign is finally done, but to tell the truth I am not a very persistent writer.

Without giving away any of your key techniques, if you could only make one choice, what would be the most important thing to keep in mind when selling on ThemeForest?

Study and improve. There are very few authors here that did a great job from the beginning. Almost everyone who is selling a lot nowadays has heavily improved over previous months. I am no exception, I can’t believe how much I have learned about web design and coding during the last year, and I think that’s the best weapon we have. Learn from your mistakes, listen to reviewers and customers and improve with every file you release.

A new member signs up with ThemeForest and is hoping to upload his or her first item. Any advice?

Use the help of the community to get your items uploaded and to improve yourself. Authors, customers, reviewers, almost everyone here is very helpful; so don‘t hesitate and ask :) Don‘t give up if an item gets rejected several times, it happened to almost all of us!

Final question. What’s next for you? Any special items planned before the end of the year?

I will try to invest more time into my themes, which basically means more themes, hopefully better themes, more updates and better support. I am already in the process of designing the next two items, but it’s been a very busy month at the agency so I haven’t been able to release anything new for a while now.

Last but not least, I wanted to take the chance and thank everyone who purchased one of my themes! I appreciate it more than you probably can imagine. Earning money here is great of course, but its equally amazing to be part of such a great community!



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