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In separate previous lessons, we covered WordPress Pages and WordPress Categories. In this lesson, I will show you how much more you can do with them when you combine their power. Let's get started. So the first step is to create an index page for a specific category. The easiest way to handle that chore is to duplicate the index.php page that's found in our Roux theme folder, and I can easily do that in Dreamweaver's File panel. Let me expand it so we can see what's going on here, and we are in the blog folder, I am going to expand wp-content and then drill down into themes, and once more I have roux already open.
So I am going to go ahead and just create a duplicate of this, and you can do it with a Command+D or if you are not familiar with the keyboard shortcuts, right-click, choose Edit and then Duplicate, and Dreamweaver will make an index or whatever the file name is -copy. So I am going to rename that now to conference.php, and we will use this page template eventually for all of our conference postings. Okay, I am going to go ahead and open that up and reduce the Files panel.
Now let me switch into Code view, and I need to add some code to the top to tell WordPress that this is actually a template, and what template it is, and that's going to be done within the PHP code block, and just as with the style.css we will use a /* comment, and within that we will put the key phrase template name and then a colon and the name of the template, which is going to be Conference.
Let me save that page. Let's add some content specific to this page, so it distinguishes it as well as some code so that only posts in a particular category are displayed on the page. So the content is easy. We will just change Blog to Conference, and now I'll have to set up the loop in WordPress a little bit differently, so I am going to need to add in a line right above the if (have_posts()), again we will just use a PHP code block, and in that code block we will establish a new variable called cat_posts, and we are going to make that equal to a new WP_Query.
So this is setting up a new object using WP_Query, and there it is in code hint, and we will follow that with an open and closed parenthesis and a closing out semicolon there, and within the parentheses we name the category. So we will put in quotes: category_name=conference. Now what is this category name that I am referring to? Well, remember when we established the category we had to give it a slug name? The conference value that I have here is that slug name.
So if I wanted to do video production instead of category, I would put in video-production. Okay, we have a few more changes to make, mostly to apply this variable here, so let's go ahead and just copy cat_posts. Make sure you get the Dollar sign as well, and instead of a general if you have_posts, we want to check and see if there are any posts within this specific query that we've set up. So I am just going to paste in cat_posts, and this is for checking an array, put in a hyphen and a greater-than sign, so it looks a little bit like an arrow, and now that we have that let's copy that whole construct and add it to our while (have_posts()) as well as the post.
Let me shrink this down just for a moment so you can see the entire line more easily. So again what we are doing is we set up a variable cat_posts and then we append that to have_posts and while have_posts, and finally if we do have those posts, then add that to the post. Okay, we are done on the Dreamweaver side of the operation once I saved the page, which I've just done. Let's head back over to the Dashboard to create a new page so that we can use our just created template. So I will go to Pages > Add New, so I am going to name my new page Conference, press Tab to create a Permalink.
I am not going to add any body content here, I am, however, going to go over to template and choose from the list my newly added conference option. Once that's done, I'll click Publish, and let's see how things are shaping up now. So will click view page, and you can see my new Roux Academy Conference H1 tag there, but it also shows up another problem that here I have my text, and it's stretching all the way across, and it's pushing down the Sidebar. Now this is likely because in the custom theme that we based Roux theme on, the parent theme, there is a rule that governs what the content should look like when the body has a class named page which represents a single page.
So to solve this, let's go back to Dreamweaver, and now I'll go to index.php and click my style.css stylesheet. Make sure that's the one for the Roux folder. It is. And I am going to scroll down until I find the content rule which should be near the top, there it is, so now I am just going to add another selector to this so that we will handle that case when there is a page class added to the body tag automatically by WordPress and the other selector content.
All right, so that should handle this situation. Let's go ahead and save the style.css sheet, head back to our Browser, and Refresh the page. Well, there it is looking really good now. All right, now that we have a Conference template, let's take advantage of it with our existing content. I am going to head to the Dashboard, and you will remember that we do have a page called Conference Schedule At-A-Glance. Rather than set the At-A-Glance page to the Conference template, the better approach is to convert it to a post and then apply the conference category.
So I am going to open up my Conference Schedule At-A-Glance, I can remember the title, so I don't need to copy that, but I want to get all of this body copy, so I am just going to put my cursor in there and do a Command+A to select everything and then a Command+C to copy it. Now before I leave here, I am just going to change the Publish Status here from Published to Draft. That will take it off the board but keep it in our WordPress system in case we need to access it later. So I will click Update, and now let's go to Posts > Add New, we will put it in our title Conference Schedule At-A-Glance, and we will paste it in our content.
Now next, we want to set the Category to Conference, and if I publish this right now, what's going to happen is this Conference Schedule At-A-Glance would become the first post because if you recall we have our posts set up to show in descending order, so the newest post will show up first. One way to work around that is to change the publication date, and you can do that right over here on the right where it says Publish immediately, and there is an Edit link, click that Edit link and here we have the option for changing the date. I am just going to go ahead and change it, let's move it back a whole month, and then click OK, now I will click Publish.
Now before we check out how that's looking, we have one more thing I want to take care of, and that's the Sidebar menu. You may remember that when we first created the Sidebar, we used WordPress' built-in menu tool to create one with our only page at the time, which was Conference At-A-Glance. That was the sole entry. Now that we've moved that content to a post, let's adjust the menu and add another entry. So I am going to go down to Appearance > Menus, and here is my Sidebar menu, and as I said I do have Conference At-A-Glance here, let me extend that, and we are just going to go ahead and remove the existing one.
Now let's add in our Conference page. I'll add that to the menu, save the menu. Now to add in the Conference At-A-Glance, which is a post, I am going to need to pull up its Permalink. So let's head back over to Posts for just a quick second, and we will do Conference At-A-Glance, I am going to click the Edit button and then copy the Permalink which you see here. With that copied we can go back to our menu, and we're going to add this in as a custom link, and we will give it the label of Conference Schedule At-A-Glance.
Okay, click Add to menu, and I should have those two items now. Let's go ahead and click Save menu, now let's head back to Dreamweaver, and I will go into Design view, click Refresh, and here you can see my menu. Under Hot Links I now have Conference and Conference Schedule At-A-Glance. Let me enable under Live view options Follow Links Continuously, and let's see what do we have under Conference, and this will pull up the Roux Academy Conference with whatever posts that we have there.
There is the first post that we assign the Conference category to and then below it is
Conference Schedule At-A-Glance, and it looks like there is still a little bit of CSS work
that we will need to do to take care of that unordered list.
So you know what to do to handle this? You turn on Inspect mode--let me open up my CSS
Styles panel--and then let's take a look at what it is that we have to work with here.
I will hover over the list items and then go off the DOM a little bit.
I should have a
entry here. Let's go into the stylesheet, scroll down to just under
the content area, so I'll put in my content selector, add a ul and a comma so we can
do .page #content ul, and we will set the margin left to 20 pixels.
All right, I will click over here to refresh the page, and everything is lined up again. Excellent. So let me save style.css, so I want to make sure that my Live view options are set to Follow Links Continuously, and then we can click on Conference Schedule At-A-Glance, and there is that solo post all by itself, looking okay. All right, we are in pretty good shape, but there is more that we can do to make a Category page really stand out, and we will tackle that chore in the next lesson.
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