. . . . The fact of the matter is that people are turning away from WordPress because of the default template. There are basically three types of people: those who are never going to change the default, those who will tweak it as long as they don’t have to learn anything, and those that will change everything. We want to give something as usable and aesthetically pleasing to those first two groups.
Matt, you left out what I hope is a large fourth group: Those who know nothing about HTML, CSS or design and who have enough disposable income to hire a designer to create a new design. And if the client is restless and not content with one design, all the better for the skilled designer. Just offer them up a platter of skins (uh, that didn’t really sound nice, did it!), er, designs — the more the merrier. You get to charge a premium for your work, and the client walks away with a veritable album of designs to choose from — keeps him and his readers happy. Now all he has to worry about is coming up with exciting new content. Sorry, can’t help you there!
Which brings me to what I really wanted to talk about. I’ve been working quietly, behind the scenes, on a WordPress test bed and have created several new designs that work with WP 1.2, with a slight modification. This modification is common to ALL the designs I offer so you need only download the modified index.php file once; and of course, you can use all my designs and Alex King’s style switcher to create a skinned site. Visit my web design site for more details.
WordPress 1.3 is on the verge of being formally released, so I understand. I hope it gets here by Christmas! That would be a lovely present. Meanwhile, the speculation continues in the WordPress forums about what styles and themes will or will not be included in the release. I’m not sure that really matters. If people don’t like what’s offered up by default, then they certainly know how to find the free templates and blog designers out there willing to rework and redesign their blog for them. Don’t they?