WordPress Tips for the Bewildered
Before we begin, let me recommend Jupiter Jim’s valuable compendium of WordPress tips, a clearly written series of WP tutorials, many with videos.
I started this page when I had just started to use WordPress, knowing that once you learn something “obvious,” it becomes more difficult to explain. Most of my math teachers had this problem.
So I am setting out to spell out my most simpleminded, most obvious, most idiotically simple discoveries in the use of WordPress.
First you need to install WordPress from your WebHost (I use Blue Host (which supports WordPress with one click installation) and have been extremely happy with them — I’m not saying they like idiots, but their support staff have been very patient , 24/7). For those of you following along, I am using the default WordPress Theme “Twenty Ten,” but it shouldn’t be too critical which Theme you pick.
WordPress Tip #1: Very Basic Widget Manipulation
WordPress Tip #1 for the complete ignoramus: Learn how Widgets work. Widgets are one of the most powerful tools in WordPress, even though they seem buried halfway down the menu on the left side of your Dashboard screen.
Once you have selected a WordPress Theme and have your blog running, open Dashboard and go to Appearance and then to Widgets. Click the down arrow on one of your “Widget Areas” on the right side Doesn’t matter which one, but make it “Primary Widget Area.” Now click and drag one of the widgets displayed in the center of the screen — doesn’t matter which one, but for now grab “Text” — drag it to the Primary Widget Area. A rectangle outlined with a dotted line will magically appear. Drop the Widget in the Widget Area. Now type something in it, either in the title or the text box.
Now look at the change in your blog’s appearance by clicking on the very top of the page, your web site name. Do you see the text you typed? You have just fooled with a widget. Remember: widgets are good, widgets are dear.
Now Go Back to Dashboard -> Appearance -> Widgets (you can’t change widgets from anywhere else as far as I know, which is not much). To see the widget you made, click on the arrow on the Primary Widget Area, then grab your Text widget and drop it in the Inactive Widgets area. Experiment like this with other widgets. Nothing can go wrong unless you delete or remove a useful widget from your theme.
Are you an experienced WordPress user, and have I insulted your intelligence? Good.
Are you an inexperienced WordPress user who has read something you don’t understand? Bad. Send me a comment. I’m not asking for questions. I’m asking if you read something you didn’t understand.
Now click on page 2 to see the next WordPress Tip.