A theme in the IPS Community Suite allows for almost limitless visual customization of the software. They are primarily used to match the branding of your community to your main website, but communities will also commonly offer a selection of themes for users to choose from.
A theme is made up of the following:
Templates render the HTML for the views. They are a mixture of normal HTML, HTML logic, PHP variables and some special plugin tags.
Standard CSS files that style the page
Normally images, although other resource types can also be used
Special pre-defined settings you can create for your theme, allowing users of the theme (i.e. site owners) to customize it easily
The IPS Community Suite allows themes to customize all of these items, and provides tools for doing so.
There's two primary ways of editing a theme, and we'll cover both in-depth.
The AdminCP provides interfaces for editing each type of theme resource
A special mode that exports a theme to files on disk, allowing for editing by traditional IDEs.