Earlier this week Matthias Pfefferle released an update of the Sempress theme I use as a basis for this site. I clicked install in my WordPress dashboard, and then my site became unreachable. I mentioned it in the IndieWeb IRC/Slack channel for WordPress and Matthias kindly offered help in figuring out the issue. He found a small mistake on his side, which he quickly corrected and updated, and he spotted a few differences between my child theme and his original. But it didn’t solve the issue. So I left my child theme turned off, and ran Sempress proper, with the idea I would make time to compare my child theme alterations with the original later in the week. Then I slept on it and the next morning I woke up with the notion that I had changed some function in the original Sempress theme, for my child theme to work.

That turned out to be the issue. I copied and tweaked a function, that then in the original Sempress file should be wrapped in a conditional statement that checks if that function isn’t already loaded (as the child theme gets loaded first, then the theme). When a function gets loaded twice it causes a clash. Precisely that function isn’t wrapped by default in a check if it already exists. So I added if (!function_exists(sempress_customize_css)): and all was well again.

Unlike last time, this time I documented that I need to do this after an update of the Sempress theme. (Or suggest a change to the original.)

Task 1 now complete. My blog declared 16 h-cards, one for each time my name was mentioned as author under the 15 blogposts on my front page, and 1 in the side bar. That last one is the only one I want to have, so I wanted to remove those underneath blogposts.

To do that, I had to create a child theme of the theme I use, Sempress. I created it on my hosting server directly, not through WordPress.

In the original theme I then hunted down the function used to show the author information for each posting, the sempress_posted_on function. This by viewing the various Sempress files in the WordPress internal Themes Editor. Then I copied that over to my child theme, and changed it. I simply removed the bits that turned my name into a link and all the h-card elements declared as classes around it. There’s no need to link to my author page here. I’m the only author, don’t have a profile page, and if you look at the ‘author archive’ it is a list of all the postings on this site.

I also cleaned up my single remaining h-card, adding a “p-note” class so that the blurb becomes part of the h-card, and making sure it lists the e-mail addresses correctly now.

The child theme I created will be useful for changing the way webmentions are presented on my blog as well.