✺ alternative categories navigation

Use this special star symbol (✺) before each page, to identify them as a  3-column vertical layout of category display.     ✺  ✺  ✺ 

We are not forced to change themes yet, but being prepared just in case. If this preparation goes well, we just might WANT to change! This post content can be viewed also as a post.

We experiment with the various ways of displaying and selecting posts within the post categories.

1. Our current “theme” which is called “Visual” has a really nice way of presenting the categories, one of the major reasons for choosing this theme. However the theme in the meantime has been declared ‘retired’, neither supported nor available (except, we hope remaining available, for existing sites using it).

2. So we try to emulate the ‘Visual’ display of posts and categories as close as possible, using the new block widgets in case we want or need to change themes in the future.  And nice surprise, we are able to closely approximate (but not to achieve) that goal.

3. We can always try out a new theme, but now our theme is no longer available, we understand that once we change we can no longer change back again. Which means if we make the change and then decide it is not working for us, it is too  late!  So hence the insistence to create, on our current theme, the pages and projects which can come close. These are now available on our ‘navigation’ tab.

Note that we find no way of displaying the post count within this creation.

So we must use the original site post list for that — or the single pull-down “category” widget.

These displays are also available on a test site where we are testing a possible alternative – but we have not yet found any theme which provides a clean and neat solution. That is so amazing, and we wonder why the “visual” theme was ‘retired’.


The new block editor has made a complete mess of the now legacy widgets – so difficult to view and control – but the new widgets which we have tried out on pages rather than on traditional widget areas, are very good (some not yet 100% working). So, here we offer a screen shot of the Visual theme’s display (in case we change and are unable to return) and links to the various options we test now on this site and on our private test site of a possible move. Those entries scroll up and down over the fixed background — cool because there is a space around each one which emphasizes the effect.Screenshot 2021-11-29 at 21.36.28

Closest we get in a ‘simulated’ page is here as a link, or below as a screenshot.  Note that the images are ‘photo’, not 16×9, despite that selection of ‘horizontal’ is made and not ‘square’ or ‘vertical’ in the widget settings. Scrolling takes place, but as a complete solid block. Not bad, but . . .

Screenshot 2021-11-29 at 21.40.44

As an alternative to using pages, we used portfolio ‘projects’ which are a kind of post – not being used for anything else in our site, but not available as a full screen, so limited to two columns of post entries.

Using projects in this way means that we don’t swamp out the page list which is already VERY long on our site. However, we back-dated all the pages we used for this test to the year 2000 which means they all fall to the end of the page list, out of the way when searching to edit other pages. The portfolio project version is now available for all ‘by year’ listings and for all categories (no (✺) sign against them). Here is a screenshot example and a link to the real thing.

Screenshot 2021-11-29 at 22.03.32

ALTERNATIVE THEME – for if ever needed, link . . . .