Re: Theme and plugin requests
We’ve got two themes going on in bp. The ‘blog’ theme and the member theme. bp ships with a home theme that is a widget framework. It serves as the theme that many activate as their ‘blog’ theme to run on the wpmu root blog. You’ll also see lots of standard WP themes being used and adapted to serving as the root blog theme. Lots of wonderful examples of what is possible are available.
Developing new member themes seem to be the challenging area that needs attention. Since the gurus are asking, I suggest you folks do some heavy lifting in that area.
Standard WP themes could also use a touch of bp flavor. Integration of some bp features into a WP theme might be nice. bp flavors such as:
– Profile and avatar support in blog posts, comments. When viewing an author or comment stream many times I’d like to leave a quick private note to somebody. Within the avatar/name/vcard block perhaps a link to send them a bp private message.
– Use of bp’s Groups for blog orientation. By orientation I mean that the blog theme should be constructed with multiple users in mind. As a given and not an afterthought. That the blog is a cooperative endeavor and should reflect that fact.
– Integration of the wire component as an ‘aside’ tool. General, quick comment area for members not tied to specific posts.
– A blog is also an individual’s way of expressing themselves yes. However in bp people have friends, belong to groups and have a personal activity stream. Perhaps some way of including that without launching the entire member profile for somebody would be nice.
I guess all my suggestions have to do with integrating useful bp features into standard WP themes so that the theme reflects to visitors they are just not in WP’s version of Kansas anymore. Which they aren’t. We don’t have to hit people over the head with social networking features, just include them in a natural and appropriate manner.