A Look at Bootstrap 4

Approaching a year since its release, here we take a look at Bootstrap 4 Alpha and what it brought to the web design table for website developers and designers.

What is Bootstrap?
Bootstrap is a front-end web development software used for creating responsive website designs. Started by staff of Twitter and initially named as ‘Twitter Blueprint’, the first version was released back in 2011 and it has since grown to become the Bootstrap that we know and use today. It was created to work as a framework for web design with the goal of keeping all of the main necessary components under one roof so that they would work together and not conflict with separate software. Some look at Bootstrap simply as three files – a Javascript framework, a CSS framework and a set of fonts and icons.

What are the improvements from Bootstrap 3 to Bootstrap 4?
The main improvements are that Bootstrap has moved from Less to Sass and also that 4 does not support Internet Explorer 8. It is recommended by the developers themselves to stay using Bootstrap 3 if you intend to use Internet Explorer 8. Sass has become the more advanced CSS (cascading style sheets) used in website design and it is particularly friendly to frontend developers. It allows one to write their own logic statements and (re-usable) methods including the likes of data loops. It allows you to also use colour manipulation as you see fit. While Less still has its uses, it is often looked upon as the beginner’s introduction to CSS and a natural progression to work up from. The upgrade from 3 to 4 also brings with it graphical enhancements such as the use of gradients, shadows and transitions in your website design.

What functionality does this offer to web developers?
Users of Bootstrap 3 who decide to upgrade to Bootstrap 4 Alpha will appreciate the small learning curve and the power upgrade afforded to them by using Sass. As all web designers know, creating a website is a creative process. Therefore having access to more options in terms of CSS coding and frontend aesthetic features can only be seen as a bonus. The upgrade also coincided with a release of the official Bootstrap Themes to assist with your design escapades further. If this does not entice you to upgrade and you would prefer to stay comfortably using 3, fear not as 3 will still be supported and be in receipt of bug fixes etc. and remain compatible for use on Internet Explorer 8.

The team at Ireland Website Design are experts in web design for businesses of all shapes and sizes. Get in touch with us today to get a responsive, creative and dynamic website built for you that will drive sales to your business.

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