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  • Jane Wells 2:53 pm on August 12, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic   

    Beau did a demo of Elastic last night at… 

    Beau did a demo of Elastic last night at the SF WordPress Meetup, and it was awesome. Daryl, very impressive. Looking forward to seeing the continued evolution of this project.

    • Daryl Koopersmith 11:55 pm on August 16, 2009 Permalink

      Thanks Jane!

      • Dixie Teo 12:15 pm on October 29, 2009 Permalink

        I just came to find out about this plugin, I am sure it was covered somewhere however the list is pretty long that I am not able to find it.

        I would like to ask if this plugin would be able to to edit/customise a theme with CSS? Thanks

        • Beau 5:14 pm on October 29, 2009 Permalink

          Part of the editor’s functionality is in manipulating the CSS of a theme, but you wouldn’t be able to just load any old theme up and start editing it. If i theme was built using this editor though, then the CSS is part of what the editor manipulates to get the desired output.

      • Michiel van Dijk 9:59 am on December 21, 2009 Permalink

        Hi Daryl, Post it here cause i couldn’t find the “add comment” button..:
        I find it a great idear to create a plugin that lets you create a theme online!! I would realy like to get this working but it doesn’t. The canvas doesn’t show up like in the video when i click “new theme”. I can drag an instance to the proportions i want but once i let it go it slips back to the default (tiny) size, it just doesn’t stick to the canvas (cause there is no canvas i think). I tryed if there where conflicting plugins but there don’t seem to be cause i’ve shut them all off. I work with wp 2.9 and have just upgraded the plugin today…
        Can you help me? I think this plugin is the future of theme develloping!!

        Thanks, Michiel

        • Daryl Koopersmith 8:09 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink

          Hi Michiel,

          I believe you’ve run into a bug similar to the one Linda found. I’ll look into it as soon as possible.


          • Michiel van Dijk 1:02 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink

            Hi Daryl,

            I tryed the same thing in firefox and there the plugin has no problems I can find. It looks like IE8 is the problem.

            • RonBme 1:38 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink


              I always use FireFox. I tried out the plugin today in IE8 and it was throwing errors with WordPress’ code.

              You’re right. IE8 is just buggy software. Always has been.


          • Michiel van Dijk 6:58 pm on January 2, 2010 Permalink

            Hi Daryl, Just want to say I realy like the plugin and the Clean (plain) looking theme I created with it. I now use Firefox and have no issues with it (only at the beginning a lot of admin div’s got rounded corners). I think this is a great idea and I think in the future it could even replace desktop editors and the like. Thanks.

          • Michiel van Dijk 7:27 pm on January 2, 2010 Permalink

            Hi Daryl,

            Just one other (IE related) bug: my nexgen-gallery on this page http://www.woodcurl.com/lang/nl/about is all cropped up into one little space. In Firefox as well as with other themes it looks normal.

      • RonBme 3:47 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink


        Here are my results with the Elastic Editor plugin.

        1. Works fine on WAMP local server using PHP 5.3 and Apache server. That’s on WP 2.86 and WP 2.9. NOTE: I had to make some changes to class-elastic-editor.php because the get_folder function wasn’t working. Now it reads directories correctly.

        2. The plugin also works on my Windows server MS IIS 6.0 after the above modification mentioned. It also saves correctly.

        3. The plugin does not save on my Linux server running Apache. Everything works except the save function. I haven’t been able to track down that error.

        Hope that helps you and others. It’s a good plugin and I hope to see further development.

        On the Linux server, “working” shows up when I try to save but nothing is happening. I’ve got memory and execution time set high enough, but still no go. If I find the reason it’s not saving, I’ll post a message on here.


        • Michiel van Dijk 7:38 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink

          Hi RonBme, could you tell me (and others) what wasn’t working about the get_folder function and how you fixed it? Would be great to fix it too!!

          • RonBme 10:23 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink


            I sent Daryl the code I used to fix it. Basically what was happening is that the program was malfunctioning because it couldn’t find the proper directories. I just used a quick fix to test it and it worked.

            Daryl might want to implement a more elegant fix. This might fix your problem, but it sounds like your problem could be a little different.


        • Daryl Koopersmith 8:05 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink


          Thanks for finding that bug! Several people with windows servers have had issues, and that bug was at the top of my list. Could you contact me with the fix you implemented? (daryl [] elastictheme.org, or @drylk).

          As for your Linux server, it shouldn’t be a memory issue. There have been a lot of issues with the current saving system, and I plan on moving to a more stable method asap. Was the bug occurring with the unedited class-elastic-editor.php file?

          Thanks again,

          • RonBme 10:18 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink


            Just sent you an email with the changes I implemented.

            I think the problem with the Linux and Windows servers was the same thing. I mentioned it to you in my email. I’m working on a solution for it. I believe the problem was with the Suhosin extension.


    • Nile 5:21 am on December 3, 2009 Permalink

      I heard about this and I am going to try it out this weekend. Will blog about it on WP Addict when I am done.

      BTW Jane, I need to email you soon.

    • marikamitsos 2:42 am on December 9, 2009 Permalink

      Hi all. As every1 else I tried the elastic as well and watched the video presentation as well and all I get is a blank page. I guess not as well. I mean reaaaaaaly blank. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. I use wordpress 2.85 and 2.86

      • Linda 3:27 am on December 21, 2009 Permalink

        I set up a test site using WordPress 2.9 and the Elastic I also get a blank page. At the bottom of my screen it says it is done loading but with errors. Here is the error it generated:
        Webpage error details

        Message: Expected identifier, string or number
        Line: 200
        Char: 2
        Code: 0
        URI: wp-content/plugins/elastic-theme-editor/lib.js?ver=

        • Daryl Koopersmith 7:59 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink

          Hi Linda,

          Thanks for including the error log—I’ll see if I can figure out what’s going wrong. Are you running a windows server? The error that RonBme found may be the issue.

          • Linda 12:47 am on December 22, 2009 Permalink

            The system is running on an Apache server with php and mysql. I can give you those versions if you need them.
            This is a new install of WordPress 2.9 without any other plugins or extensions installed. I installed this specifically to test the Elastic Theme Editor.
            I don’t get any canvas at all. I can email you a screen shot if you need me to do that. The web site address included with this post is specifically for this test site.

          • Linda 1:52 am on December 22, 2009 Permalink

            Daryl, once I switched to Opera browser, instead of using IE, I was able to use the theme editor. I didn’t see any color options, but will go back and view your video again just to make sure I didn’t miss anything.

            • Daryl Koopersmith 9:10 pm on December 22, 2009 Permalink

              Thanks for all of the details! Color options are limited to hex codes for now (no color picker yet), so you’re not missing anything.

              A screenshot of the error in IE would be fantastic—I have a feeling I know which screen you’re getting, but confirmation would be great. You can reach me at daryl [] elastictheme.org, or @drylk.


            • Jeff 9:51 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink

              I also have the blank page problem with a clean WP 2.9 install trying to get to the Elastic Editor. Blank in all browsers on my Mac — Safari, Firefox, Opera… On a personal LAMP server, PHP 5.1.6, Apache 2.2.3.

              What got it working for you?

              • Jeff 10:00 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink

                Forgot to mention… plugin version

        • RonBme 10:50 pm on December 21, 2009 Permalink


          I didn’t get an error when I installed it. The bug I found will help if your editor is having a problem finding the right directories.

          The error you posted is a closing brace in one of the routines.

          Did you get the error after trying to save an Elastic theme? Do you have the Suhosin extension installed on your site? (You can find out by using phpinfo or something similar.)


          • Linda 12:52 am on December 22, 2009 Permalink

            Ron, I did not receive the error installing the plugin. I get the error when I try to go to the Elastic Theme Editor in WordPress. When I click on Elastic Editor, I am presented with a blank screen. At the top of the screen are three links (which do nothing): Save Theme | Instructions | Canvas Settings
            Under those links is just a white screen with nothing. If I click on Save Theme, Instructions, or Canvas Settings – nothing happens.

            • RonBme 1:35 pm on December 22, 2009 Permalink


              Thanks for clearing that up. I thought you meant it happened on installation.

              The changes I sent Daryl may clear up your problem. I assume you are not getting a floating box in the middle of the screen, right?


              • Linda 2:20 am on December 23, 2009 Permalink

                Not in Internet Explorer. When I switched to the Opera browser, I was able to create a very basic theme. You can see screen shots on the web site where I am experimenting with this. Just click on my username and it will take you to that site.

              • RonBme 12:53 pm on December 23, 2009 Permalink


                What you see in Opera is the way it is supposed to look. The problem you’re having in IE looks like a javascript problem. The error message you posted helps to identify the area where the error occurred.

                The only colors are the ones you see, i.e. blue, black and gray.
                Those just identify the header, content, sidebars and footer.

                I haven’t actually looked at this in IE since I use FireFox, but I will check it out today.

                BTW, when you click on “Save” in Opera, does it save the theme correctly?


    • Linda 7:30 pm on December 24, 2009 Permalink

      Ron, I have uploaded a zipped file with the sample theme files it created. Go to the test web site and there is a link for you to download the files so you can check them out. It looks like they are saved correctly.

  • Daryl Koopersmith 11:07 pm on August 8, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   


    Hey everyone. The past week has seen quite a few improvements to both the framework and the editor. Both are now relatively stable and working together, which is pretty exciting. A big thanks to everyone who tuned in to the dev chat—it was great to talk to you guys and answer your questions.

    elastic- can be downloaded here: http://code.google.com/p/elastictheme/downloads/list
    For those of you that downloaded the editor during the dev chat, this should fix the issue in 0.0.2 where the UI wouldn’t load properly.

    I’m going to try and pack in a bunch of new features/improvements before Monday, which is where you guys come in. Let me know what you’d like to see! I’d love to know what you feel would make Elastic most effective.

    Here are some of the features I’m planning on adding. All of them probably won’t make it into the editor by Monday, but hopefully a few will. 🙂

    [Editor] Typography: Let the user select fonts for the headers and body. This is in progress.

    [Editor] Backgrounds: Let the user select background colors (for the body and modules). Background images will eventually be supported (with potential integration with the media uploader), but not by Monday.

    [Editor] Fix Whitespace Rendering: Currently, the editor does not render whitespace between modules correctly. Whitespace will basically serve as the editor’s implementation of margins. This is not a simple addition, and will come with a slew of other improvements.

    [Framework] Customized Headers: The headers in the framework are very sparse. This will improve by Monday.

    [Framework] Better Defaults: Most of the framework’s default views (html and css) are derived from Ian Stewart’s Shape theme (Thematic’s leaner cousin). I’d like to have some more customized defaults, but now may not be the time.

    It’s crunch time! Good luck everyone.

    • Rudolf Lai 6:02 am on August 9, 2009 Permalink

      Daryl, Great plugin. You might like to elaborate the installation process a bit more, since it took me awhile to figure out what’s what and how to set it up. Cheers.

    • damon 2:06 pm on October 27, 2009 Permalink

      I saw that you have a session at WordCamp NYC. I’ll be there! This made me look into Elastic and I love it. I can see it an extremely valuable resource for educational WPMU sites. However, it seems not to work with WPMU. Perhaps this could be easily adjusted? It probably has something to do with where the theme is being saved to. Thanks for executing such a grand idea! Can’t wait for the session.

      • Daryl Koopersmith 7:16 am on November 17, 2009 Permalink

        I’m not sure if you made it to my session, but to answer your question, while Elastic is not currently WPMU compatible, the plan is to support WPMU. While the adjustment is likely not trivial (as it would likely involve from saving to the filesystem to saving to the database), it is necessary for other reasons as well. If you made it, I hope you enjoyed the session!

  • Daryl Koopersmith 2:55 pm on July 31, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey all. This past week centered around … 

    Hey all. This past week centered around developing and building a UI for the editor. The UI is focused on being consistent and extensible, so that when features are added they will pop in smoothly. Save and load are both up and running, so the editor (which is currently running with an older, stable version of the framework) can now be used from start to finish.

    For the beginning of the week, I’m shifting gears to focus on the framework. The plan is to develop it until it is stable, and then bring the editor up to speed. From there on out, most of my work will be focused on cleaning and optimizing some of the editor core, and adding features to both the editor and the framework.

  • Daryl Koopersmith 10:03 pm on July 24, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey everyone, This week has seen some m… 

    Hey everyone,

    This week has seen some major progress: I’ve considerably extended the framework’s capabilities, and have completely overhauled the editor’s backend. Customized files are now formatted to be easily readable, and the backend has been separated into three main components: the plugin page, theme customization, and theme install/upgrade. The editor’s theme installer/upgrader is working properly, so installing both the editor and the framework is now unnecessary.

    For the coming week, I’m going to focus on improving the editor’s UI / workflow, including integrating the save/load frontend. In addition, I’ll continue to expand the framework—I’ll be working on page defaults and adding missing features, such as context-sensitive headers and dynamic classes.

    Fun stuff. Hope everyone’s projects are going well.

  • Daryl Koopersmith 1:09 pm on July 18, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey everyone, This week I began to rewo… 

    Hey everyone,

    This week I began to rework the UI, and added support for named blocks. Beau and I mapped out the features/improvements I’ll add to the editor by the end of the SoC, and spoke at length about different approaches for creating the core of the framework. For the coming week, I’ll be focusing primarily on properly implementing save/load, and building out the framework core.

    Happy coding!

  • Daryl Koopersmith 5:01 am on July 11, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    A Prototype 

    Hey everyone,

    The past week has seen a huge amount of progress—there is now a working prototype. Beau and I have settled on the name Elastic, and things are moving forward at a steady pace.

    Elastic is separated into two major components: the editor, and the framework. If you decide to download the prototype, the rest of this post should help you see the context behind what you’re using.

    The Editor:

    The editor is currently the more mature of the two pieces. At this point, its purpose is to allow you to rapidly lay out the structure of your theme.

    Key: (implemented/not implemented).

    • Grid-based: The editor currently runs on a customized grid system based off of the Blueprint CSS framework. Grids are fixed-width only, but I plan on allowing fluid and potentially grid-less layouts in the future.
    • Types of Elements: Choose which elements will be your sidebar, content, etc. Currently, types are indicated by background color: header (dark blue), sidebar (gray), content (light blue), footer (dark gray). Eventually, headers and footers will be limited to one per page.
    • Not-quite WYSIWYG: The editor is not-quite WYSIWYG. Since content in WordPress can have an arbitrary height, the layout you draw is optimized to stretch vertically. Elements are grouped into columns wherever possible to prevent an extra-tall element from disrupting your layout. The one downside to this is that sometimes you want to group elements that are next to each other. At this point, there is no way to manually group elements. However, Beau and I have recently decided to tweak the grouping algorithm, so this should become much less of an issue in future releases.
    • Saving/loading themes: Currently, the editor will only modify and load themes in the “/themes/elastic/” directory. Users will eventually be able to save new themes and load any Elastic-editor based theme.
    • Named sidebars: At this point, the editor does not support user-named sidebars, and will name your sidebars for you. This is somewhat frustrating, but will be improved in the near future.
    • Whitespace between elements: Currently, the editor does not render whitespace between elements properly. In the future, users will be able to place elements in the layout with gaps between them and have those gaps preserved in the final layout.
    • The UI: It’s a work in progress. I’ll soon be removing all of the jQuery UI dialog boxes in favor of a more flexible system that requires fewer clicks. Element types and names will become much clearer. The core functions—dragging, resizing, and adding elements—will likely remain the same. However, I do plan on letting the user resize an element on the same click that it is added to the canvas.

    The Framework:

    The framework is still taking its baby steps. It is currently very basic, and only renders index.php. It’s heavily inspired by Thematic, Sandbox, and Carrington, but will hopefully be its own animal. The framework is being designed to be used with or without the editor—it will hopefully be useful as a standalone product.

    • Object Oriented: Since the editor requires a framework that can create elements in any configuration, I’m taking an object oriented approach to building the framework. The object based layout is defined in layout.php, which is currently not very reader friendly. Don’t get too comfy with the OO classes though—I’m in the process of rewriting the classes to provide tighter integration with javascript and more legible generated files.
    • structure.css: This is output from the editor that defines the structure of the layout.
    • style.css: This is predominantly styles from Thematic (for the time being). When the time comes, everything will be properly enqueued and a bit cleaner.

    If you have any questions or suggestions, let me know. Happy coding!


    • DD32 10:25 am on July 11, 2009 Permalink

      I think you’ve forgotten to update the plugin.. “Description: A theme editor for the Elastic framework. Please note that the Elastic framework MUST BE INSTALLED in themes/elastic-editor/ for the plugin to work properly.” – dont you mean them

      Other than getting the editor included in the theme directory.. Sounds great and i’m going to go run off and play with it.

      What browsers are you currently testing it under? (And which is the primary dev. browser?)

      • DD32 10:26 am on July 11, 2009 Permalink

        Eugh, Ok that comment got mashed a bit. “Dont you mean it needs to be in /themes/elastic/ :)”

        • Daryl Koopersmith 7:14 pm on July 11, 2009 Permalink

          You’re right—the framework should be in themes/elastic/ and the editor should be in plugins/elastic_editor/.

          Once I have loading/saving up and running, you won’t be forced to include the theme, so that’ll clear up.

          For now I’ve been primarily developing in FF and also testing in safari. The framework will use a css reset and is based on blueprint’s grid system so it should hypothetically be cross-browser, but I’ll run it through the browser gauntlet at some point anyway.

  • Daryl Koopersmith 2:07 am on July 3, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey all, This week has seen a bunch of … 

    Hey all,

    This week has seen a bunch of progress, a lot of bug squashing, and some brainstorming. The HTML output from the editor is functional, though a few bugs still exist. The editor is now a WP plugin, and I’ve started work on converting the HTML output to a theme, and saving that theme to the server. If all goes smoothly (and as I’m sure you all know, it always does…), I’ll have a very basic prototype (with theme output) for the coming week.

    Happy coding—

  • Daryl Koopersmith 9:17 pm on June 26, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey everyone, Sorry for the late update… 

    Hey everyone,

    Sorry for the late update—I’ve been working nonstop for the past few days on ironing out a particularly nasty problem (which I’m happy to say is fixed). The basic UI for the editor is complete, and I’ve begun structuring the HTML output of the UI. When that’s done, I’m going to implement the editor as a plugin in the admin panel, and work on developing the output into a full WP theme. Hopefully I’ll have a demo of the editor up sometime soon (and maybe once people see it, they can help me think of a name!).

    Happy coding!

  • Daryl Koopersmith 2:29 am on June 19, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey all, This week I’ve written the bu… 

    Hey all,

    This week I’ve written the bulk of the UI for the editor. I’ve successfully added grid-based collision detection to the jQueryUI resizable module and am working out the kinks in the jQueryUI draggable module. Aside from that, I need to add a labeling function to the UI, and then a basic working version of the editor’s UI/output will be complete (though there’s always polishing to do, but that can wait—I’d drop the “premature optimization” saying here, but César seems to have that covered). This coming week I need to clean the editor up and implement it as a WP plugin, and then begin converting the output to a WP theme.

  • Daryl Koopersmith 10:21 pm on June 12, 2009 Permalink
    Tags: Elastic,   

    Hey all, Sorry for the late update—I spe… 

    Hey all,
    Sorry for the late update—I spent the majority of the day yesterday over the Atlantic, and am now back in the US. Over the past week I’ve somewhat solidified how I plan to translate a layout into an actual WP theme, and have worked on the UI and implementation of the live editor, which is currently in a semi-stable state. The coming week will involve putting all of this together and beginning to work on generating the editor’s output. Next week will hopefully bring a more substantial update (and less jetlag!).

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