Once you have mastered the management of entries, comments, and the other topics discussed in Chapter 5, you are ready to move on to the more advanced customization options of Movable Type. You may find that you would like to change the look and feel of your blog; make use of Movable Type’s powerful archiving features; personalize your blog by modifying its configuration to suit the way you use the tool; display a random entry from your blog somewhere on your site; or one of many other advanced topics described in this chapter.
Movable Type is a template-based tool. To change the look and feel of your blog, you edit templates. These templates give you complete control over the look and feel of your blog; the system will never produce output where you have not explicitly instructed it do so.
Templates are composed of special Movable Type tags embedded within standard chunks of plain text (or HTML, or XML, or any other markup language you wish to use — see Section 8.1.3 for more details). When you rebuild your pages, the application processes your templates, fills in the tags with data, and generates static pages on your web server.
When you install Movable Type and create your first blog, the blog will be initialized with a set of default templates. These templates are laid out using CSS, because with CSS, changing the design of all your templates is as simple as editing one stylesheet ...