Using the Extreme Updates theme for Drupal

If you've visited CMS Report lately, you likely noticed that we're sporting a new look and feel. Over the years, I've used various Drupal themes and many of those themes were made available for free at Drupal.org. For the past couple years, I used RoopleTheme's LiteJazz. LiteJazz spoiled me. The theme was so well designed that I don't recall having to do the usual hacks to the templates or CSS styles to make it a good fit for CMSReport.com. Thanks RoopleTheme!

Today, I'm using the Extreme Updates. The free theme is designed by Template World and ported to Drupal by 3rdWorld. In my opinion, the Extreme Updates theme has a few flaws in its design that I'm needing to fix. You'll have to be patient with me because I'm not much of a designer. Luckily, the theme utilizes the impressive Genesis package, a start theme for Drupal 6. This is the very first time I've used a Genesis theme but I'm just as impressed with Genesis as I was when I first used Zen, another starter theme for Drupal.

This time around when considering a new theme, I also did something I've never done before. I considered spending money for a theme. In the past, CMSReport.com has never generated the revenue I needed to justify hiring a Drupal service company to design a theme for my site. However, something interesting has happened in the Drupal community, a number of design companies have started to design and sell themes geared toward the smaller Drupal sites like mine.

The availability of quality themes by such companies as community favorite TopNotchThemes shows just how much the Drupal ecosystem has matured over the years. Doesn't it seem just like yesterday when the biggest complaint about Drupal was that there were no good themes available? The future for Drupal theme development looks very bright. My understanding is that there are a number of changes in Drupal 7 that will make the web designers very happy. Honestly, I wouldn't be surprised to see in 2010 the quantity of available Drupal themes reach toward the same numbers that we've seen for Wordpress and Joomla!.

Changing to a new theme also marks the beginning of my desire to move CMSReport.com into some new directions. I want this site to have a more professional and community feel to it. I'm personally tired of reading mostly my own posts here and I think it's time to get a lot more author's involved. These changes will be progressive over the coming months, but won't be settled until the arrival of Drupal 7. As has been since Drupal 4.6, I've always geared the features in my sites to allow for a quick upgrade to the latest version of Drupal. Similar to the past, you just might see this site running a beta or release candidate of Drupal 7 by the end of the year.

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