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Lesson 11 – Part 2 – Configure the Thesis Feature Box

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The next thing we’re going to do is to add this element to our Page. This element is inserted in the Page via the Thesis Feature Box. So, what is the Feature Box? The Feature Box is an element that can be added to a Page, that you can locate in a variety of places and that you can put content in. I’ve written a plugin that makes putting content in that Feature Box easy.

Feature Box Settings

You will configure your Feature Box by first going to Thesis Design Options and the Feature Box settings are right here. The Feature Box Design Options start off with just a placement and it looks as if you have really 4 choices here of where to place it. You can choose not to use the feature box which is the way it’s set up by default, you can use it “In your content column”, you can use it Full-width above your header area and Full-width above your content and sidebars area.

Full Width Above Header

Here is the position Full-width above your header area. If the normal site ends right here, then the Feature Box would go to the width of the page and sit above the header. In this page, the Feature Box would sit up here if we have the full-width above the header chosen.

Something to note, this is not a very good language because Thesis Theme also uses the term Full-Width to mean something that will span from browser edge to browser edge as we’ve talked about in earlier lessons, that’s not what this means. The Full Width Above Header means it’s the full width of the page so it fills the width of the page but it’s above the header.

Full Width Above Content and Sidebars

Your next choice is Full Width Above Content and Sidebars. This is the choice we’re going to choose. So you would have your content area, your sidebars area, your header, your footer and then you’ve got this Feature Box that would sit full-width from edge of page to edge of page above the content and the sidebars.

In Your Content Column

Then your third choice is In Your Content Column. This is an example of it sitting inside of the content column. The content column sits beside the sidebars column and if you have it in your content column, then the sidebars sit beside the Feature Box. The Feature Box is only as wide as your content column is. The other ones being called full width are referred to as full width because they span the full page whereas the one in the content column only spans the width of the content.

If you select In your Content Column, you get one other set of position choices here. This is something that’s very specific to Blogs. You can put it above all your posts which is where they  show it up if you imagine that there are posts here or you can show it below Post 1, or below Post 2.

Some people will use this as a place to put advertising for example and that’s why you’ve got these 2 below post choices. But this in particular is something that’s very specific to Blogs and chances are, you probably are not going to be dealing with unless you are not building a regular business website and instead you’re building a Blog site and you have something special you want to do. That’s placement in the Feature Box.

Display of Feature Box in Pages

We also have a choice for which page is going to display the Feature Box. You can choose to display the Feature Box on the Front Page Only, on the Blog Page Only, on the Front Page and the Blog Page, it can be Site wide and shown on every single page. Those are the only four choices you have.

We are going to choose, on the Front Page and we are going to choose Full Width Above Content and Sidebars. Once you’ve made that choice, there is one other option here and that is display options. This display options for the Feature Box is almost like a prehensile tail I think. It’s a note to tell you that at some point in the future, you’ll be able to do something there, that there will be some cool function that will allow you to add stuff to the Feature Box.

Use of Plugin to Add Content to the Feature Box

Well, I’ve known this now for two and a half years and never seen that change here. However, I’ve written a couple of plugins that will add content to the Feature Box and that’s one of the things we’re going to be talking about tonight. That will make it simple for you to add content to this Feature Box. Without this, you have to write custom code.

If you aren’t using my plugins, there’s no way to add anything to the Feature Box without writing a custom code. This class is not about custom codes so we’re going to use our plugin instead.

Anyway, Full Width Above the Content, on the Front Page Only, hit Save and refresh. There’s nothing there that’s because we haven’t added anything to it yet. As soon as we add something to it, we’re going to see that something added below the menu and above the title here, that says Home.

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