Tag Archives: css

Skeleton – A lightweight CSS framework for your next side project

Skeleton is a lightweight CSS framework that provides a nice boilerplate to kickstart the development process. I like the minimal design approach. Plus, I can easily add more CSS on the top if required. The grid and some basic styles are more than enough to get started.

Simple Responsive grid

Simple, easy and human friendly grid-naming conventions. Just add a div element with class ‘row’ (with child columns) inside a container and you’re good to go (12 column grid – kind of similar to bootstrap and foundation).

Basic styles for Standard elements

Skeleton comes with basic styles for standard HTML elements such as Headings (h1/h2/h3 etc), basic form elements (input, buttons etc), tables and some utility classes (for left/right alignment, clearing floats etc). Here is how a simple ‘sign in’ form with Skeleton.

Lightweight, fast and easy to override

The Skeleton along with Normalize CSS is less than 10KB when minified. So, it’s a great choice for smaller web projects, side projects, mobile websites, landing pages for your mobile apps etc.

You can download the latest version from the official website : http://getskeleton.com (Current version : 2.0.4). Sass and LESS versions are also available to help you add Skeleton in your preferred development setup.

Also check out my last weekend project – Mobile Number Tracker (India) – I created using Skeleton.

Use CSS Frameworks to speed up the Web design process!

You know CSS but can’t get the work done on time or maybe you don’t want to write the same code(basic grids, buttons, form styles etc) again and again. Then you should try a CSS framework/toolkit as it helps in getting things done, much quickly. With a CSS framework, you can create prototypes/MVP very fast as compare to scratch work.

When you get a solid foundation to begin, just with few lines of code, you can create nice looking UI for your website/apps/whatever. You can customize it further for a unique look/feel (recommended because default is not enough in most cases).

Here are some of the best free and open source CSS frameworks/toolkits/grids you must give it a try.

grid is enough for me!


susy is an amazing grid for those who want complete control over the grid generation, mostly popular among compass/sass programmers. Susy is responsive (yeah! if you use susy your website will look cool on every devices), but you can get fixed structure if you want.


Installing Susy

susy depends on ruby, so you must have ruby installed. Then you can install susy –

gem install susy

If you want to try susy in rails project, then simply add gem "susy" to the Gemfile and run bundle install.

Finally, add susy using the sass import.

@import "susy";

Update! If you prefer Bourbon over Compass, then you should check out Neat.

2. 960 grid system

Another lightweight grid, with 960px width (with 12/16 columns by default, but you can easily customize it according to your need), a very popular rapid prototyping tool for designers.

Download 960 grid system

3. 1Kb grid

It’s a very simple and super-light (that’s why it’s called 1 Kb) grid system for designers. You can easily customize the number of columns, gutter width, column width before download (default is 12 columns, 60px wide, 20px gutter width; which leads to the total width of 960px).

Download 1Kb grid

grid + some cool stuffs

4. Blueprint CSS

blueprint is another popular css framework with fixed grid system and nice styles for buttons, forms, tables, tabs, sprites and more. It’s easily customizable.

Download Blueprint

grid + lot of cool stuffs


Foundation is an advanced and feature rich front end framework. it’s responsive, it has flexible grid system, with lots of styles for various components (like tables, buttons, tabs), icons, templates and more. So, you can rapidly create nice mockups , probably in minutes. It uses SASS, so customization is very easy, specifically for ruby/sass.

Download Foundation

6.Twitter Bootstrap

Twitter Bootstrap is the most popular front-end framework , Most of the features look very similar to Foundation but it uses LESS, so more popular among javascript programmers. Although, sass version is also available, for Ruby/Rails developers (as a gem). Customization is very simple due to the various free tools and themes available (I’ll write a post about it), like bootswatch, where you can find a lot of free and open source bootstrap templates to begin with.

Download Twitter Bootstrap

Update! You should also check out some lightweight CSS frameworks such as PureCSS (recently launched) or Skeleton (mature and well tested, under 10KB). Both are responsive (mobile friendly) and provide a nice boilerplate to begin with.


Getting Started with HTML5 and CSS3

If you want to develop websites or cool web applications, browser games etc HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) is the first thing you should learn, it’s the language of web. HTML5 has lot of new exciting features, so you can create awesome websites/apps in a much easier way.


CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is used for styling the html documents/pages. This way, the design and contents do not mix up. CSS3 is the latest version, with a lot of amazing features that allow you to create cool designs in much effective way.

For Learning HTML5/CSS3, these free tutorials/resources are great for beginners –

  1. Code Academy
  2. Mozilla Developer Network
  3. Web Platform
  4. HTML 5 rocks

But you can’t just learn html/css by reading those manuals, then how ? Create a website (may be for some real purpose or as a fun project), apply those skills (whatever you learned, may be just in a couple of hours). you don’t even need a server or something for learning html/css, design and test in your browser (locally).

gradiator - CSS3 Gradient Generator

CSS3 gradient Generator for Ubuntu/Linux

If you’re one of the web designers who uses Linux based operating system such as Ubuntu (Latest stable version  : 11.10) or Linux Mint (vs 12)or Fedora etc as the primary OS then here is a good news for you – A cool CSS3 gradient generator – called as Gradiator, is now available (only) for Linux based operating systems. Using Gradiator, you can easily apply ‘one of the coolest’ feature of CSS3, I mean gradient property, without much hassle, mostly in a couple of clicks.

Although there are already a lot of cool web apps (e.g ultimate CSS3 gradient generator) are available for this task but a cool desktop application is something different – and it will also work offline. So it’s a must have application for Linux users who design cool websites/or web apps.

gradiator - CSS3 Gradient Generator

So, you are ready to save a lot of time and effort during the designs, as you just need to select the desire gradient using the above controls and finally click on Get code button to get the CSS code, in fact the code will be automatically copied to clipboard so just paste it in your style sheets. If you want to exclude or include a specific vendor (browsers) then go to settings and change that too – but by default you will get prefixes for all popular web browsers –  so you don’t need to change that.


How to install Gradiator in Ubuntu/Linux

For Ubuntu or Linux Mint

If you’re using Ubuntu then the best way to install is to use PPA. You just need to execute some simple commands and you’re done!

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:cooperjona/gradiator
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install gradiator

Other Linux distro

Download the archive file and install it manually (installing tar.gz package).

Thanks to George Czabania & Jono Cooper