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Posts generally appear on a site's homepage or in a separate blog page, and are all stored separately, and can be displayed chronologically or categorically. Pages, on the other hand, can have a custom design, but there generally is only one entry, which can be easily updated. But what if your client requires a hybrid of these two types of user-contributed content? A page with a custom look and feel that can display multiple posts. I call this the post-driven page, and I'll show you how to build them in Dreamweaver and WordPress with the help of a free plug-in called List Category Posts.
So let's flip over to WordPress and install that plug-in. I'll go to Plugin > Add New, and search for lists category posts that you see there. Click Search Plugins and it comes up at the top of the list. I'll click Install Now. I do indeed, so I'll click OK. And let's activate the plug-in. Now this plug-in was developed by Fernando Briano, and you can see his work at his site picandocodigo.net.
It's a very flexible plug-in with a good number of parameters. As the name implies, with it you can easily create lists of posts by categories. But you can also expand those lists to show excerpts or even full post content. Here's how it works. We'll go to Posts > Categories to create a new category. I'm going to call this Working the future. Now the slug, as it explains here, is the URL-friendly version of the name, and you need to put hyphens or underscores in it; I'm going to use hyphens.
That's the standard way that WordPress handles separate words. So working-the-future. We have no parent here, so let's scroll down a little bit and click Add New Category. And now you see my category in addition to the default category of Uncategorized. Now my category is defined, but before I leave this page, I need one more bit of information, and that's the ID that WordPress has assigned to that specific category. So the way you find that ID is to just hover over the name of the category and then look down in the Status Bar where you'll see the path to the file that will give you that category. And one of the URL arguments is tag_IDm and you can see that that is set to 4.
So that's our ID for the category Working the future. Okay, with that in mind, we can now go in and create a new page. I'll choose Pages > Add New, and we'll enter in a future working title. And I'm going to set my template to a new template that I had created that's part of the theme called Working-the-Future. Now we're ready to bring the plug-in we installed, List Category Posts, into play. Instead of entering the standard text into the editor for this page, we'll use the plug-in's shortcode.
And that is a square bracket, catlist. That's the keyword for the shortcode, short for category list of course, and then an argument of id=4, which you'll recall is the ID for the Working-the-future category. So we close this off with another square bracket and we're ready to publish this page. And let's take a look at it. And there's Working the Future; however, it's just presented as a list item.
So let's head back to the Dashboard and amend our shortcode to add another argument, and that is space, content=yes. You can find all of these parameters in the documentation for this plug-in. So now I'll click on Update and View page, and there is the full list. All right! It looks pretty good. Let's head back. Let's take one more step to make my custom page easily accessible, by adding it to the menus.
So I'll go down to Appearance > menus. Now I've already created a main menu here, but I'm going to select that one and then add it to the menu. And rather than have the full Working the Future title, let's go ahead and just shorten that somewhat to Working with an ellipsis. Click Save menu and now let's take a look at the site. There's Planets and there's our Working menu. All right! It's looking pretty good. You'll find that WordPress is a very flexible system, that through its core extensibility, has become even more adaptable, so that you can work with posts, pages, and even hybrids of the two.
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