Rapid prototyping is awesome! Recently I created a website wireframe for my client using Bootstrap from Twitter. This wireframe is static HTML with no color, but allows me to show my client how the content would be structured and how users will interact with the website. Plus, I got to showoff how the site would look on mobile with the same wireframe. Needless to say my presentation went over really well and I was able to address many of their questions with this wireframe.
So why is this so great and why did I not
use a wireframe tool like Axure, Balsamiq, etc.?
So are wireframe tools dead?
Absolutely not. Building a wireframe the way I mention above does have some limitations. There will be cases when a unique problem cannot be shoehorned into this method. The site I mentioned above is basically a shopping cart and it needs a degree of familiarity that Bootstrap from Twitter certainly offers. But, for 80-90% of my projects, this approach will work just fine.
So with this in mind, here are 6 responsive bootstrap and theme starter tools that I am currently exploring. The starter tools are WordPress since that is what I use most, but I would be up for checking out others. Please let me know if you have a favorite so we can check it out.
Bootstrap from Twitter
Initializr is an HTML5 templates generator to help you getting started with a new project based on HTML5 Boilerplate. It generates for you a clean customizable template with just what you need to start!
Foundation is the most advanced front-end framework in the world. While the framework works all the way back to IE8, we’re taking advantage of new, awesome Web technology to help you build better and faster.
Built around the HTML5 Boilerplate, Bones is a rock solid foundation to start any WordPress project. Keep what you need, remove what you don’t. It’s totally up to you. Bones is bare and as minimalistic as possible. It’s meant to be used as a per-project template, this means no Child Themes. Hooray!
Hi. I’m a starter theme called
underscores, if you like. I’m a theme meant for hacking so don’t use me as a Parent Theme. Instead try turning me into the next, most awesome, WordPress theme out there. That’s what I’m here for.
My ultra-minimal CSS might make me look like theme tartare but that means less stuff to get in your way when you’re designing your awesome theme.
Skeleton is a small collection of CSS files that can help you rapidly develop sites that look beautiful at any size, be it a 17″ laptop screen or an iPhone. Skeleton is built on three core principles:
- Responsive Grid Down To Mobile
- Fast to Start
- Style Agnostic
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