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Getting to Grips with Foundation CSS Framework

A flexible framework designed for various mediums and devices, Foundation is a family of front-end frameworks which make it easier for developers to create friendly and responsive apps, websites, and emails.

Foundation is the original, and currently the most high-tech front-end framework every designed, intended to help creative professionals design and prototype solutions that work on any device. There's no specific back-end required to start your project, which makes Foundation one of the most flexible ways to build.

What Makes Foundation Different?

Foundation is a collection of front-end frameworks. Just as developers can access frameworks for building native app interfaces, Foundation is a solution that builds the client-facing part of a web application or website. Because it runs completely on your browser, it's easy for any UX specialist to start using without the help of the IT team. With Foundation, developers benefit from:

  • An easy-to-use system: Everything on Foundation is semantic. This means that developers and UX designers can create the cleanest, most straight-forward mark-up without sacrificing the speed and utility of the Foundation framework.
  • Advanced customisation: Web and application development is rarely a one-size-fits-all experience. Most of today's specialists are on the look-out for a tool that gives them the bespoke experience of a lifetime. Foundation gives you the freedom to include or remove different elements, define specific colours, font sizes, and columns for your apps, and a whole lot more.
  • Professional support: Because millions of developers and designers around the world rely on Foundation to create their apps and websites, the solution comes with a highly-supportive backend with training and consulting to help users thrive.

The Benefits of Foundation

Designed with CSS, HTML, and JavaScript, Foundation taps into all the core components of the web. Though this solution is a cutting-edge approach to development, it also uses some of the most tried-and-tested technology online, like HTML5 boilerplate and jQuery. This means that you can rest assured you'll always get a reliable experience.

Foundation is one of the most responsive and reliable front-end frameworks in the world. It's the only framework that's professionally supported by its own organisation (ZURB), who also consistently use the framework each day to serve their own customers. Some of the best features of Foundation you should be aware of include:

1. Mobile-First Design

The most important thing to know about Foundation is that it's entirely mobile-first. Foundation is built to prompt mobile-first designs. In other words, it helps you to create a website that's perfect for a smaller device first, before expanding outwards to include a range of displays and fully-featured devices. While you don't have to design this way, it's a simple and straight-forward approach in a world where most of your customers are likely to come to you from mobile devices.

2. Easy Collaboration

Sometimes, designing the perfect application or website means collaborating with a range of experts in your team. With Foundation, you can upload your responsive pages to the cloud to get feedback from other people in your enterprise. Collaborators and stakeholders can annotate and review the pages you share, making it easier to take your projects quickly from prototype to production.

3. Flexible Customisation Options

Every aspect of the Foundation framework is designed to make customisation simple. There's a menu system that's entirely modular, with plenty of different components to choose from so that you can design the application of your dreams. Additionally, Foundation even went out of the way to minimise the amount of code in their JS plugins so that you can keep your system as lightweight as possible. Because the libraries are available to the public, you can make your own plugins in no time!

4. Motion UI

Want to add something extra-special to your website or app design? Motion UI is the Foundation animation library that allows you to add meaningful aspects of motion to your website. The library includes over two-dozen transition and animation classes, and they're all super-customisable and easy to develop so that you can get the best results for your company.

5. ZURB Development Stack

Finally, as the only framework connected and supported by an organisation, Foundation stands out from the crowd. Clients can access the same templates that ZURB uses on all their client projects, so you can rest assured that you're getting that "professional" impact you've been looking for. The starter template comes packed with a custom static site generator to flatten files into HTML documents. Bringing the perfect project to life couldn't be easier.

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