Boilerplates and templates are becoming an essential component of website creation, providing developers with a headstart and a standards-compliant blank canvas. HTML5 Blank from Todd Motto is the latest entry in the field. The theme was primarily created to give Motto his own "perfect environment for instantly deploying new projects", but he then got the bug to help others.
Motto spoke to .net about the theme, how it might appeal to .net readers, and how it differs from other 'reset' WordPress themes.
.net: What is HTML5 Blank?
Motto: HTML5 Blank is a WordPress theme for professional WordPress developers. It's a preloaded shell to allow for rapid deployment, to get any developer coding within minutes. HTML5 Blank includes an extensive and impressive feature list, is entirely hand-built and is a perfect foundation for building your next project on.
.net: What in particular do you think will appeal to our readers about HTML5 Blank?
Motto: HTML5 Blank will appeal to any WordPress developer who loves building new sites from scratch, and also pros who love HTML5 Boilerplate, Modernizr and other industry-leading tools. It's also perfect for a beginner theme developer. Other reset themes are so bare that a beginner would be confused regarding where to start. HTML5 Blank offers annotated support in the code, basic and advanced functions, very minimal mark-up and extremely neat code.
.net: Is there time-saving functionality built in?
Motto: There are some small set-ups and demos built-in to get you adding and building on the content, as opposed to creating the ability to do so first. An example of this is Custom Post Types. They're fiddly and can be time-consuming, and so HTML5 Blank features a Custom Post Type in functions.php by default, to save the developer time.
A Custom Page Template is included, with the Template Name attribute at the top. This will mean something to pro WordPress developers, but might also help a beginner understand how creating Custom Page Templates really works. Dynamic sidebars can also be scary to deal with as a beginner, and so a simple dynamic sidebar is included, with the function inside sidebar.php.
.net: How does HTML5 Blank differ from other 'reset' WordPress themes?
Motto: Beyond a great blank slate to begin developing from, HTML5 Blank offers preloaded goodness, allowing the developer to fast-track their set-up and get coding instantly. The theme is also commented – even the HTML – which allows for easy amending, future development and readability.
Other blank themes don't include some WordPress basics, which can mean the developer has the WordPress Codex open quite a lot looking for functions to insert. The basics are all included here: author links, tags, categories. It's all thought about. The main goal was to provide the developer a theme which was minimal on folders and files but punched above its weight regarding functions and capability. Even the CSS features handy tools, from font-smoothing on body text through to snippets of @font-face and media queries.