CSS Preprocessors – One of the Best Practices in UI Design

03 / Jun / 2016 by Anila Wadhera 0 comments

CSS is a stylesheet language that illustrates the presentation of HTML or XML documents. It specifies how elements must render on the screen in a web application or on a website. Earlier web applications were written in a consolidated form with CSS written in-line with html code with some CSS code present at the top of the HTML page and remaining on an external page called style.css. But latest development in CSS technologies allows developers to write CSS inline styles with HTML on the same page itself. For this they need to write CSS in an external stylesheet which is then mapped to the HTML page. This has simplified the coding process and made it more manageable. Developers now also have the liberty to break down CSS codes into multiple modules and include them in the application. This goes a long way in improving the whole structuring of the code and makes it more understandable and unambiguous. CSS preprocessors is undoubtedly one of the best practices in UI Design.

What is CSS Preprocessor?
The CSS Preprocessor is an advanced version of CSS technology, an extension of CSS that adds potential and grace to the basic CSS and makes websites more presentable. It is not merely a styling language using which web developers can define document styles, but also a great tool for them to eliminate tedious tasks like writing CSS selectors and color strings repeatedly. Preprocessors like LESS and SASS have made the life of developers much easier.

Key Features of CSS Pre-processor
CSS Preprocessors help to organise and maintain large stylesheets well so that you can run them quickly whenever needed. They work on DRY methodology that means “Don’t Repeat Yourself” as opposed to WET in CSS that means “Write Everything Twice”. Listed below are some of the key features of CSS Pre-processor:

  • It is fully compatible with CSS
  • Setting up pre-processor files is very easy. With Sass, a simple command line command is all you need to watch your Sass files
  • It offers the flexibility to break down the styling code into pieces so that the entire code         becomes more readable, concise, and easy to maintain
  • It offers various language extensions like variables, nesting, mixins, functions, etc., which are compiled just like a regular CSS file so that they are understandable by the Internet               browsers
  • It has the ability to perform various mathematical operations, inline imports, etc.
  • It provides many helpful functions to change colors, font size properties, etc.
  • It delivers well-formatted, customizable output

Conclusion
There are various reasons that will prompt you to switch to CSS Preprocessor. It is easy to set-up and maintain. It makes your code more organized as Less and Sass both use nested definitions and because of the DRY methodology, it saves a lot of time and effort by avoiding redundant and repetitive coding. Not just this, it is a lot of fun as well!

Best Practices UI Design

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