31 March 2015

Why I Dig Bootstrap

Bootstrap is one of the most significant web development improvements in recent years because it standardizes on class names for common css (cascading style sheets) for html layout and html page elements (buttons, select options, etc.).

Bootstrap enables you to develop
display-size-independent web & mobile browser interfaces. 
By following simple conventions, your layout will respond to display-sizes without heavy lifting.

Bootstrap's open source community is actively pushing updates to this GitHub repo. It's a vibrant, continuously-improving styling and layout option you'd need a compelling reason to ignore.
Why burn up cycles hand-rolling spaghetti-fied css?
I've found Bootstrap helps a green-field development team leap-frog much of the front-end set up jicky-jack. Bootstrap conventions also help with UI unit-testing and functional testing because the html elements have standard class names. When it comes time to grab a handle to an element to exercise an event and assert against the result, you know which class names to reference.

Bootstrap has widespread adoption and continues to grow in usage.

Every developer knows it (uh...or at least the people I work with), so it's easy to plug in a new person with the confidence she won't be baffled by Bootstrap class names, layout, and conventions.
Bootstrap layout uses html div tags for rows and columns. All you have to remember is that 12 is the magic number.
Bootstrap enables heads-down developers to do rapid software prototyping for a startup product without the interface looking like shit. Your product simply looks like the zillion other Bootstrap applications → clean and consistent.

Bootstrap supports a collection of glyphicons that let's you select icons for common functions like edits, deletes, and event notifications. I use this cheatsheet to find the most communicative icon for the function I'm implementing.

Complete glyphicons collection here

Over time if your product gains traction in the market, you can hire a designer to improve the look of your product without changing css class names.