At this point of domain kit building you have learned how to set up a basic empty WordPress site and also how to build a WordPress based Calling Card site. More than a blogging platform, WordPress offers many different ways to create multipurpose web sites.

Enter the world of SPLOTs, which might mean Smallest Possible Learning Online Tool (or something else). To learn more see, or better yet, explore a SPLOT that tries to explain SPLOTs:

These are all sites that run in WordPress to do relatively small, focused tasks, and more importantly, they can use the affordances of WordPress to allow people to create/contribute content to your site without them needing to create accounts, give away personal information, or see the inside of the WordPress Dashboard. As a matter of fact, this very Domain Kit site was created using a SPLOT WordPress Theme.

You can install a new, blank WordPress site and turn it into a SPLOT. Start by deciding where in your domain you want the site (subdomain, directory, directory in a subdomain0 installing a new empty wordpress site, downloading the ZIP file for the theme from the Github sites where they are shared, and following some instructions for setting up, and setting options for your SPLOTs.

For those with domains/sites hosted at Reclaim Hosting (including the trial domains at the TRU Writer SPLOT has a one-click installers that installs WordPress, activates the themes, adds plugins, and even loads it with starter content for you (these themes also automatically updated).

It’s time to introduce the TRU Writer SPLOT.

TRU Writer

TRU Writer offers a simple but elegant web publishing platform that lets visitors quickly publish full formatted and media rich articles, essays, papers — without requiring any logins or tracking of personal information. It has been used for creative writing assignments, as a class website, to publish online journals, as a conference registration system, and as a resource builder.

EduHack participants have seen this in theme in the EduHack Wall sites (English, Italian, Spanish). Some ways it has been used include:

Installing in One Click From Reclaim Hosting/StateU (and automatic updates!)

For domains hosted at Reclaim Hosting you cam install a fully functioning site with this TRu Writer (a copy of the demo site) including recommended plugins, configured settings and sample content, all done in one click. But wait, there is more!  Future updates to the theme are automatically added to your site.

In your cpanel, under Applications go to All Applications. This theme is available listed under Featured Applications; just install from there.

Note that unlike other WordPress installs, this one will not preserve your username/password, so be sure to save that information. When it’s done, log into your new site and start making it your own.

Installing TRU Writer From Scratch

Start by creating a new blank WordPress site (see this kit), The TRU Writer is a child theme based on the free and elegant Radcliffe theme by Anders Noren. Install this theme first from within the WordPress Dashboard under Appearance — Themes and then click Add New. Search  on Radcliffe to find and install the theme. It does not need to be activated.

Next, download the TRU Writer theme as a ZIP file.

This zip can be uploaded directly to your site with the same steps as installing the Radcliffe them.  Go to Appearance — Themes and then click Add New, But this time click Upload Theme and use the TRU Writer theme saved as a .zip file. When the upload is done, click Activate.

For reference see the instructions from the theme home to install TRU Writer.

Customizing and Managing a TRU Writer Site

You will want to review the options for this theme, available from the WordPress admin menu under TRU Writer Options (in this interface you will find a copy of all of the documentation). You will also want to create/edit menus and perhaps add WordPress footer widgets,

See the documentation for theme options as well as tips for using the WordPress Customizer to modify the writing submission form.

Example for "TRU Writer SPLOT":

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  • TRU Writer (GitHub)
    shared by Alan Levine

    The source of the TRU Writer Theme and support documentation.

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This work by Alan Levine as part of the EduHack project is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.