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Reasonable in-depth look at Wordpress themes but sloppy presentation of code
on 4 February 2012
I am in the process of modifying a Wordpress theme (Classipress) for one of my businesses. I am grappling with learning (or re-learning in some cases) java, php, ajax, sql programming to hack'n'slash this theme into something I need. As such, I am reading a lot of coding books at the moment.... :-)
Wordpress Themes is a useful book in that it goes into some depth on themes, what they are, and how to customise them. Great... just what I need. It is well written and in a lively style that's quite engaging for what can potentially be a very dry subject.
However, I do feel that more thought should have been given to how the code examples are handled. For example, when explaining certain concepts about Wordpress or illustrating how a certain theme works, it really is not good enough to simply 'copy and paste' a .php file into the book itself which then takes up over six pages(!) and expect the reader to be able to find that a useful experience.
There is no interjection of comments by the author to break up the code a bit (for example, after each function, or after each important process has been completed). No - instead we are left with 6-7 pages of code which we then have to wade through (I didn't bother in the end).
What is worse is that the code itself isn't even formatted in a book-friendly way. Instead the code is heavily indented just like a normal piece of code would look like but, c'mon, this is a book!!!! For example, in a section discussing one the loop.php script (this is one of those 6 page long sections of code) there is one page where, I jest not, that most of the page is white space because the code is on the right side of the page because of all of the tabbed indents!!!!!! It's hard to explain but basically there has been NO ATTEMPT AT ALL to re-format code to be presented in the book and instead a whole chunk of operational code has been copied and dropped into the book whilst they were editing. Why not just refer the reader to the software itself? Or give them extracts or snippets???
Very poor, sloppy, and lazy.
I'm disappointed and I'll be returning this for a full refund.