It was a couple of years in the making, but at the beginning of October 2012, Thesis v2.0 was finally released to an eager public.
While the response has been mixed, I think it’s going to be superb platform for building flexible, high quality websites, as soon as some of the quirks are teased out of the system with future updates.
What I particularly like are Thesis Boxes, though they’re a little clunky to start working with and there’s practically no documentation (yet).
What are Boxes in the Thesis Framework 2.0?
You can think of Boxes as plugins to Thesis 2.0, blocks of code if you will, that perform a specific function, and that can be used and re-used as often as you like.
I have my own library of code that I use with all my Thesis sites, but using them with Thesis 1 can be a proper pain because I need to manage all the files and selectively include the code I need each time.
Since every website has different needs, it can be a challenge keeping all my code consistent across all my sites.
Thesis Boxes will be, once they become fully realised, a superb way of managing your library of code for use throughout your Thesis sites.
How do Thesis Boxes actually work?
There is currently no clear documentation yet for Thesis Boxes, or for much of Thesis 2.0 for that matter, but I’ve been able to piece it together with the help of some code already out there.
You basically create a function, a block of code, that will be called when added to a page/template in Thesis 2.0. Typically this will be in the form of HTML output on the web page.
You upload this piece of code to your Thesis Boxes Admin section. Thesis examines the code and if it’s how it expects, adds it to your library. You then need to check the checkbox beside the new addition and ‘Save’ so that it will appear in your Thesis Skin Editor.
I’ve created a Thesis Box that will print out the HTML necessary for a simple Mailchimp Sign-up Form.
There is much more that could be added to this Box in the future, but it’s available for download now and it’s already quite flexible.
- unlimited Mailchimp merge fields (must all be text – no support yet for checkboxes/selects etc.)
- additional CSS classes and IDs
- option to include my ultra-basic CSS styles or not
- option to include labels or not
This is a simplified version of my personal Mailchimp sign-up form code, but I’m hoping that if I can get this code out now, it will help more people get started with Thesis Boxes.
In time I’ll modify it to include more options.
I will also make available a ‘template’ so that you can make your own Thesis Box with your own PHP code.
Download Mailchimp Signup Form Thesis 2.0 Box for free
To get hold of the Thesis 2.0 Box: Mailchimp Signup Form , you can grab it from the downloads area in the Developer Channel (free signup).
How to use the Mailchimp Signup Form Box for Thesis 2.0
The most important pieces of information for your Mailchimp signup forms you’ll need to get from your Mailchimp account.
The two images below highlight how to find the information you need.
You’re basically extracting the normal sign-up form information so that you can quickly use the signup form through your site.
The next step is finding and extracting that information. You take the 3 pieces of information and place them into the plugin options.
The rest of the options are down to your design and styling. You can add your own CSS classes and ID and then create a package to design them. You can also remove the labels so they’re not printed on the form.
This is only version 1, but I would hope to build it out a bit more in future revisions.
Feedback of course is always welcome below.