In order to survive the computer science industry (regardless of the sector you are in) you need to learn quickly and become flexible. Today there are many resources out there that are meant to make your job easier in, especially in areas you should not have to worry about. One of these is CSS frameworks. CSS frameworks are primarily there to get the basics all down in a simple pre-prepared set of files. As a community we use these frameworks to allow for easier, more standards-compliant web design using the Cascading Style Sheets language. In every framework now a days, they at least contain a grid, and your basic body elements
In my search for web development jobs I have noticed a pattern. There are always certain frameworks, and pre-processors that every company favors. They tend to ask in the skills section that you have a basic understanding, and can easily learn as you go of XYZ framework. So to help you jump ahead of the competition, I have listed off the top 5 CSS frameworks I have noticed the most in job postings.
- HTML 5 BoilerPlate – Used to build both sites and web apps HTML5 Boilerplate is described as a bundle to help designers to get started with the new standard by offering a professional front-end template that allows you to create a fast, robust and adaptable site with a set of HTML5-ready features and elements. It is an open source product. They have instructions but if you do not need the documentation there is a completely stripped down version. The best part, you can choose what you need, and not have extra bulk you do not need.
- Skeleton – Defined by the website as, “A dead simple, responsive boilerplate”. It truly says it all. It is literally the bare bones of it all. It is perfect for those people who are embarking on smaller project, and do not need the whole fancy package of frameworks like Foundation or Bootstrap. It has less than 200 lines of CSS, and is basically your grid, with a few bare styled elements.
- Semantic UI – An ongoing project to make websites more semantic. It utilizes natural language principles. This makes the code more readable and understandable. The overall structure of this framework’s logic and classes surpasses other in the industry.
- Mueller – If you love to build media queries and having basically complete control than Mueller is right for you. It is a modular grid system for responsive/adaptive and non–responsive layouts, based on Compass. You have full control over column width, gutter width, baseline grid and media–queries.
Another really popular one I talked about in a previous article is Bootstrap. However it is basically completely pre made, and can be considered bulky by many. If you understand however how to overwrite some of the CSS, and how their grid system works, you will be comfortable in almost all of the CSS frameworks I have listed.
So to my fellow web designers & developers, which framework is your favourite, which one do you hear most of, and which one does your workplace use? I would love to hear in the comments below!