I have not used Foundation, but from what I can see, it offers a subset
of the features that you get with Bootstrap. I suppose that's what they
mean by "light" framework. The idea that it is designed to be
overridden is a bit of a strange claim as I don't see how it's any
different from overriding any other base stylesheet. I've been
overriding styles in Bootstrap simply by creating an override.css file
from the beginning.
We are currently in the last stages of the "prototype phase" for our
Finding Aids site and will be going into beta soon. It currently looks
like a "Bootstrap site", hence the "samification" that the List Apart
article mentions, and I will soon need to Princeton-ify it (aka "tiger
I think that the transition to a custom site that stands out from other
Bootstrap sites is not particularly easy if you've been using Bootstrap
out of the box and overriding it like I've been doing. This is because
there are standard/shared colors and styles that are set as variables in
Less. It's a lot more laborious to go through and override these
manually than simply change the variables in Less.
If you are interested in using Bootstrap, I would recommend designing a
style guide (or UI pattern library, as Matthew called it) for your own
institution and building it with Less, which is my next step. This
guide will provide me and my colleagues custom variations on components,
but I plan to maintain the architecture of the Bootstrap site. I just
love how organized it is, and how easy it is to simply copy code from
Furthermore, it will be easier to keep such a style guide in sync with
future Bootstrap versions. I'm currently putting off upgrading to
Bootstrap 2.0 because they changed the default grid and I didn't start
the project using Less. Finally, other developers at your institution
can use the same custom guide as easily as they would the Bootstrap site
for grabbing and quickly implementing their design conventions.
I don't regret not using Less out of the gate since it was pretty
foreign to me at the time, and I really just wanted to get going quickly
with prototyping the architecture.
On 5/11/12 9:27 AM, Joseph Gilbert wrote:
> Hi Jessie,
> I've used Bootstrap more than Foundation, but both are solid choices.
> There are some relatively minor differences: Bootstrap uses LESS while
> Foundation is CSS with an officially supported SASS version; Bootstrap
> has a few more JS widgets thrown in.
> One philosophical distinction seems to lie in the "itís designed to be
> overridden" line in the article Tom mentions. Bootstrap looks good
> right out of the box, but the underlying styles are also a bit more
> complex and therefore sometimes require a little more effort to tweak.
> Bootstrap out-of-the-box and without customizations--a bit like
> jQueryUI before it--is already starting to seem hackneyed, but
> assuming you all will be doing institutional customizations, either
> library, I think, will give you a good starting point.
> Joseph Gilbert
> User Experience Web Developer
> University of Virginia Library
> On Fri, May 11, 2012 at 7:01 AM, Tom Keays<[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> I read this awhile back. It's by someone associated with the
>> Foundation project.
>> Both look good. Like you, I looked hard at Bootstrap after the
>> conference, but haven't really done anything with it. I'd be
>> interested which framework you settle on.
>> On Thu, May 10, 2012 at 7:17 PM, Jessie Keck<[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>> Hi all,
>>> We are about to develop a set of style-guids and templates for our locally developed applications that will have a unified look and feel. One manifestation of this will be a ruby gem that we will use for all of our rails apps (including Blacklight and Hydra applications).
>>> As we were discussing the approaches we may take for this, the question of basing our designs on a library such as Bootstrap or Foundation came up. I have heard a lot about Bootstrap in the C4L community, but very little about Foundation. Does anybody here have extensive experience w/ both libraries and would recommend one over the other?
>>> We are already leaning towards Bootstrap as many in the Blacklight and Hydra communities have expressed interest or are using it already. Also, some folks locally who have used or investigated both libraries have had positive experiences in either case.
>>> Understanding that this may be boil down to a simple matter of taste, I wonder what opinions you all have.
>>> Thank you,
>>> - Jessie Keck
>>> Stanford University
Shaun D. Ellis
Digital Library Interface Developer
Firestone Library, Princeton University
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