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tommusrhodus says

Do you think the theme customizer should be used for options that are non display related?

Yes, the WordPress customisation API offers opportunity to easily modify every aspect of a theme, and can be extended to offer inputs of every type you need, all that without having to add any extra weight (apart from the actual options fields) to your theme, or any extra security flaws.

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cosmincotor says

After spending a couple of hours with the “Customization API”, I can say I’m happy with the results, it can do everything my custom options panel used to do :)

Sure, it lacks a lot of bells and whistles by default, but it can be extended with ease.

So, thanks guys for bringing it up.

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OriginalEXE says


Do you think the theme customizer should be used for options that are non display related?
Yes, the WordPress customisation API offers opportunity to easily modify every aspect of a theme, and can be extended to offer inputs of every type you need, all that without having to add any extra weight (apart from the actual options fields) to your theme, or any extra security flaws.
I don’t agree that customizer should totally replace theme options panels.

It’s great for some things but it can quickly become cluttered in case of a more complicated theme, and some options really make no sense in it.

Besides, “extra weight” argument makes no sense because options panel is only utilized in admin and only in case it’s actually visited, so there is no extra weight on actual theme performance.

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greenshady says

I just wish there was a convention for option panels.

There already is a convention for this. It’s called the WordPress Settings API. It’s stupid simple to use and allows you to input any type of form field you want. http://codex.wordpress.org/Settings_API


Do you think the theme customizer should be used for options that are non display related? It’s my opinion that it should not be used for options that update content, and only for style options.

Agreed. The customizer should only be used for settings related to display.

Now, the question becomes, “What are themes adding that are not related to display?” I have a few things in mind, but for the most part, anything unrelated to display doesn’t belong in a theme in the first place. I’m hoping the new submission requirements does away with this sort of stuff anyway.

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ThemeBeans says

I’m hoping the new submission requirements does away with this sort of stuff anyway.

Agreed, me too. Though I’m pretty sure it wont be – there’s too many authors/buyers who perceive powerful custom options panel, with 300+ options built in as an added “value”.

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2winFactor says

Here’s a great resource I found for the Theme Customizer:

https://github.com/slobodan/WordPress-Theme-Customizer-Boilerplate

It’s a boilerplate for the Theme Customizer to help rapidly add and extend the customizer functionality. I haven’t used it, but it looks interesting. I believe it’s GPL too.

Cheers,

Andre

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tommusrhodus says

Besides, “extra weight” argument makes no sense because options panel is only utilized in admin and only in case it’s actually visited, so there is no extra weight on actual theme performance.

Sorry, I don’t agree here, there was an author that recently said he couldn’t even get his theme to run through theme check properly because with hit option panel included it took 57 seconds, and without it took 14 seconds.

Speed in WP-Admin is just as important as speed on the front end, in the case of managing a large site and not just a simple blog, it’s extremely important :)

Though yes, you are correct, on the front-end there should be no detrimental effect to speed apart from more PHP for the server to parse, since it’s parsing the customisation API anyway regardless of whether you make use of it or not.

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OriginalEXE says


Besides, “extra weight” argument makes no sense because options panel is only utilized in admin and only in case it’s actually visited, so there is no extra weight on actual theme performance.

Sorry, I don’t agree here, there was an author that recently said he couldn’t even get his theme to run through theme check properly because with hit option panel included it took 57 seconds, and without it took 14 seconds.

Speed in WP-Admin is just as important as speed on the front end, in the case of managing a large site and not just a simple blog, it’s extremely important :)

Though yes, you are correct, on the front-end there should be no detrimental effect to speed apart from more PHP for the server to parse, since it’s parsing the customisation API anyway regardless of whether you make use of it or not.

That makes no sense. I run Theme Check on a theme that definitely has larger code base than that of an author in question, and it’s finished in less that 10 seconds.

Speed in frontend is in no way affected (admin files are not even parsed, though parsing is not something you should be worried about considering the amount of code WP itself has, its ignorable).

Backend speed is also not affected, if things are done correctly. As stated previously, parsing practically does not affect the speed, and theme options panel is only generated on the panel page itself, which in my case executes as fast as standard wp settings page.

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tommusrhodus says

parsing is not something you should be worried about considering the amount of code WP itself has, its ignorable).

You know what, fair enough, I was giving a pretty thinly spread point for that :)

But I stick to my point, the WordPress customise API is there, it’s quick and easy and can be massively extended, I’m not sure why everyone isn’t using it, nor why it isn’t a requirement.

As Justin pointed out, the question of whether is should be used for non display items is moot as a theme itself should not be handling that, but as a display item option panel, the customise API is awesome.

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bravewhale says

Just to keep things on track, my comment was regarding the horrible array of custom option panels. Whether they should or shouldn’t be used isn’t the point here. And I agree any content related input should be added as a plugin, but that also means a dev could just include their crappy custom options panel as a plugin.

I’m hoping to explore the need for more standard tools we all use. In this case a standard options panel (plugin). And yes it should be used only to update theme content. All theme styles and displays should be done in the customizer.

Hypothetically, if we could standardize the use of an options panel plugin, what would be the most suitable and widely agreeable panel be to use or to convert into a plugin for use in themes we develop?

Thanks everyone!

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