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Showing one recent post

From: WordPress 3: Creating and Editing Custom Themes

Video: Showing one recent post

One of the things we want to do in our sidebar is display our most recent blog post. So that's what you see right here. It's looking just how we want it. Only this is just static stuff. this is just a copy and paste of HTML from our HTML and CSS template. We want to do this dynamically. Get it to pull from the database the most recent blog post. So, I have opened our project in TextMate. We're working with the sidebar.php file, and here is the code right here that's dealing with this area.

Showing one recent post

One of the things we want to do in our sidebar is display our most recent blog post. So that's what you see right here. It's looking just how we want it. Only this is just static stuff. this is just a copy and paste of HTML from our HTML and CSS template. We want to do this dynamically. Get it to pull from the database the most recent blog post. So, I have opened our project in TextMate. We're working with the sidebar.php file, and here is the code right here that's dealing with this area.

It says Latest Post and it just has a static date in here, a static title, and some Lorem Ipsum text. We want to replace that with dynamic WordPress stuff to make this pull. So, in order to pull that kind of content from the WordPress database, we're going to using special function called query_posts. It's a really powerful cool function that allows us to adjust what WordPress gives back to us.

We're going to pass it some parameters, which make those adjustments. This is really easy one. We just want one thing back and we want the most recent post back. So, we're going top pass it just one single parameter called posts_per_page and we will say equals 1. Just give us one thing back. A lot of times you'll see this query_ posts function used before a WordPress loop. Now, the whole concept of the loop is that it loops. It goes again and again. So, if there is multiple posts you want to return, like if we said posts_per_page 5, that loop would run five times and we would output five chunks of HTML that is appropriate for that.

Since we only have one, we don't really need to write the code for the opening of the loop. We're just going to use this little part of it that says that's called the_post, which sets up the ability to use some other functions that we're going to need here. So, what are those other things? Well, instead of using the static date right here, we're going to get rid of that and we're going to use a special function called the_date. So that's that and no more static date, now a dynamic date. We're going to want to be able to click this title. So, we're going to have an anchor tag for the title.

So, what's the actual title? Well, it's just the_title. So, php the_title. What is the anchor link to? Well, the_permalink. So, another special PHP function, the_permalink. Now, these things, the_date, the_ permalink, the_title, are enabled by the post. That sets these things up. So, if that wasn't there, that will be a problem, but of course we're going to leave that there. Now, instead of this Lorem Ipsum text, one last thing we're going to use. the_excerpt.

So, if we save this, in our sidebar, now instead of the static content it's going to be this, because this is our most recent blog post right now. It's the one that just came in when we installed WordPress, this HELLO WORLD! So, let's refresh, and instead of the static content that was there we have the date this article was published, the title, and you can see it's linked now. If I click on it, I'll go to that post. We're not quite ready for that yet though, and an excerpt. So this is dynamic now, pulling in the most recent post. The last thing that we want to touch on here is whenever you manipulate the query, like we're doing here, we're changing the query for this page, we want to reset that query, just in case someone else were to use it later.

It's just kind of the courteous thing to do and we can do that real quick with wp_reset_query. That way if we're going to use query_ posts again perhaps later in the sidebar it's okay and it won't be affected by this. It'll just be back to the default query. We'll hit Save and it's not going to change anything over here. It's just the right thing to do. So, that's how you can pull the latest post from your WordPress database and display it in your sidebar.

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This video is part of

Image for WordPress 3: Creating and Editing Custom Themes
WordPress 3: Creating and Editing Custom Themes

40 video lessons · 50536 viewers

Chris Coyier
Author

 
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  1. 6m 44s
    1. Welcome
      1m 19s
    2. Using the exercise files
      5m 25s
  2. 40m 42s
    1. Reviewing the client spec and deciding on WordPress
      6m 50s
    2. Reviewing assets and resources and creating a mood board
      8m 41s
    3. Building a home page mockup
      11m 26s
    4. Finishing the home page
      12m 27s
    5. Planning the rest of the site
      1m 18s
  3. 1h 8m
    1. Starting with a base project
      3m 6s
    2. Writing HTML code for the home page
      12m 7s
    3. Starting the CSS: Creating the header and basic style structure
      11m 28s
    4. Styling the Navigation panel
      10m 59s
    5. Styling the sidebar
      7m 55s
    6. Styling the home page, pt. 1
      8m 20s
    7. Styling the home page, pt. 2
      8m 17s
    8. Finishing the CSS
      3m 14s
    9. Moving on: One page is enough
      2m 43s
  4. 1h 56m
    1. Setting up WordPress and MAMP on a Mac
      6m 7s
    2. Setting up WordPress and WAMP on a Windows computer
      5m 38s
    3. Modifying important settings
      6m 26s
    4. Starting with a blank theme template
      4m 35s
    5. Introducing template file structure
      4m 55s
    6. Breaking up the HTML
      9m 53s
    7. Building the sidebar
      3m 54s
    8. Building the navigation
      7m 20s
    9. Showing one recent post
      4m 1s
    10. Fetching external content
      8m 23s
    11. Creating a custom home page
      3m 30s
    12. Introducing custom fields
      5m 23s
    13. Creating custom product pages
      9m 52s
    14. Creating custom category pages
      15m 39s
    15. Creating the blog home page
      5m 39s
    16. Creating a single blog entry page
      4m 15s
    17. Implementing comments
      5m 57s
    18. Finishing the home page
      4m 45s
  5. 34m 17s
    1. Will this work with WordPress?
      3m 10s
    2. Using JavaScript in themes the right way
      8m 35s
    3. Implementing something fun with JavaScript
      7m 53s
    4. Introducing plug-ins
      6m 31s
    5. Setting up security
      8m 8s
  6. 2m 7s
    1. Goodbye
      2m 7s

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