Tag Archives | responsive

Meta Slider Plugin

meta sliderMeta Slider plugin is simple to use and lets you choose between four different “types” of sliders – Flex, Nivo, Coin, and Responsive.  Each type is responsive, and gracefully changes sizes for different types of devices, and offers various features for layering and transitions.  You can easily swap between the four types to find the one that suits you.

If your theme does not include functionality for a slider, you have some other choices:

  • Rotating Post Gallery – this is the plugin the Commons uses on its Home page.  It has many great features, but it has several drawbacks: it is not responsive, and it is a widget-only plugin – you need a widgetized area to display it.  It also only allows one slideshow per site.
  • Revolution Slider – This plugin is great on a single site, but it is written in such a way that its powerful layering functionality doesn’t work on the Commons.  You can create great slides, but you can’t layer them with captions.  It allows multiple slideshows per site, using convenient shortcodes, and offers many different types of sliders and effects.
  • EasyRotator for WordPress – this is also a great plugin, but it requires that maintain your slides using an external Adobe Air application, which you need to install on your computer. It also allows multiple slideshows per site, using convenient shortcodes.

The Meta Slider addresses the shortcomings highlighted above.  It allows multiple slideshows per site, using convenient shortcodes.  It doesn’t require any external application, and you can layer your slides with rich text formatted with HTML.  It’s simple to quickly set up an attractive slideshow on any page or post, or on a text widget in one of your sidebars.

meta slider tabGetting Started

  • First, decide on the dimensions of your slider for non-mobile devices.
  • Add the images to your media library that correspond to these dimensions. Meta Slider does a good job scaling up and down – but to avoid distortions and loss of sharpness, it’s best to get your image sizes close to your full size.
  • Click on the Meta Slider tab to create a slideshow.
  • Click on the “Add Slide” button to see the images in your media library. (You can also upload more images at this stage as well.)  Choose the ones you want to include.  Hold down the shift key and select multiple images.  You will see them checked.  Save and preview.  (You can always add or remove more slides later.)
  • Choose a slide type (i.e. Flex, Nivo, Coin, and Responsive) – each has a list “Advanced Settings” for further configurations.
  • meta slider settingsEnter the slide dimension you’ve decided upon. (this should be the largest size you expect to display on your page – it will scale down on different devices)
  • Optionally, add some caption heading and body with links – certain slider types are better for this (Nivo, Flex).  Some HTML is parsed, so you format as needed.
  • To create another slideshow, simply click on the “+” sign in the Slideshow tab.
  • Each slide will have a automatically generated shortcode.  Simply copy and paste into your post or page.

Tutorial

This five minute tutorial should get you up and running quickly:

Hope you enjoy this plugin!

Responsive Themes on the Commons

What’s a Responsive Theme?

Responsive themes use fluid layouts, flexible images and media queries to make your site look and act great on a variety of devices.  Sidebars and navigation menus collapse gracefully, and retain functionality.  Approach designs vary, and you should check out how each theme handles display when real estate becomes narrow.  Many themes provide live demos that show how a site would look if the width was very narrow.  On a desktop, you can experiment by narrowing the browser window for these themes to see how they respond.

See more about Responsive Design.

oxygen

What Responsive Themes are Available on the Common?

To find all our responsive themes, go to Appearances >> Themes on your blog dashboard and search our installed themes for “responsive.”  Here are some options:

  • Twenty Twelve is the old default theme released with WordPress 3.5.  Minimalistic, easy to use, this theme is a great basis for a child theme. Few bells and whistles, but a solid, attractive theme.  Check out demo.
  • Twenty Thirteen is the new default theme released with WordPress 3.6.
  • Oxygen is also written by Automattic, provides a sleek, magazine look to your site.  Check out its live demo.
  • Clean is a premium theme by Theme Trust.  As advertised, it is “extremely stylish theme that looks amazing across multiple devices and screen resolutions. This versatile theme can be used as a blog or a portfolio to show off your work. It features infinite scrolling and a touch swipe slideshow.”  Check out its Live Demo.
  • Luna is a premium theme by ThemeForest and lets provides two homepage types – blog or portfolio.  It’s a neat theme with lots of configurations.  Check out its Live Demo.
  • Presswork is a free WordPress theme and has an array of features, including some drag and drop admin design functionality.  It’s a beautiful theme (it’s actually a framework), but sadly the authors have decided not to support it any more, which could prove problematic.
  • Simplex is a minimalistic WordPress theme that provides great responsive design.

I’m sure that we’ll be adding more responsive themes. Stay tuned!

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