Off and on over the past few weeks I’ve been working on a Thematic child theme. I’ve always had a hesitation with child themes in that you need the parent theme in order for the child theme to work. Duh. While it may be pretty obvious to anyone who is familiar with WordPress, it isn’t so for the casual user.
When I was working with Sandbox I figured out a way to essentially build a child theme while ensuring that the parent theme dependency wasn’t an issue by including all of the Sandbox code using a SVN external reference to Sandbox and some other tricks to include the code. It worked well and I was able to distribute my themes without concern as to whether or not Sandbox was installed. It simply didn’t matter.
I was not planning to do that with the Thematic child theme I am working on right now but am having second thoughts. It turns out that the version of Thematic that I need (0.9.8) is not the version which is in the WordPress Theme Repository and I have no idea when this will change.
If I got the SVN external route again I can ensure that my child theme will work with a known revision of Thematic. However, it is a fundamental shift in my approach and I don’t know if it will work the same way I did it with Sandbox. Decisions, decisions.
It looks like there have been some recent commits to the Thematic SVN repository so maybe it will be updated and released soon. That would help address my dilemma.