A few days ago I received an email from someone who was apparently surprised to learn that in the course of creating a template, various aspects of the default AOM design are by necessity, removed or shut off. Their feeling was that removing features makes the theme unusable for their purposes (as they put it). I’m not sure how removing bullets from a side column box makes a theme ‘unusable’, however.
As mentioned in a previous post on this site, I don’t like the general tab style, so often I may remove the code, especially if it interferes with other design elements. If I don’t have to, I might leave it in, just in case the end user decides they would like to try it.
Other things that may be affected are color choices for sideboxes, various layout parameters (such as overall width, or spacing between elements), and custom box placements. These are things that done in order to make a given design unique unto itself, or to deal with a functionality issue. Also, as more experience is gained with working with the code, sometimes it becomes easier to incorporate changes without having to disable some features completely. It will also depend on the design in question, of course.
I may also experiment with using existing features in new ways. For example, with some themes (such as Linear), the custom box located in the PT1 (Page Top) position will appear opposite the logo if the Logo Alignment is set to left or right. Only in the center position will the box appear above the logo.
Every template available includes a README file that details which features are disabled or altered from their normal function. In addition, some features are spelled out on this site in the description for each theme. And the attached thumbnails can also provide some clues (i.e., no bullets, etc.).
Anyone with questions about what features are disabled on any given template is welcome to use the contact form and ask. I’m happy to provide information before you decide to purchase.