When i started komposta CMF two months ago i focused mainly on backend development and i gladly accepted twitter bootstrap benefits. It is so easy to capitalize on how complete it is and apparently i wasn't the only one who thought so. But there is a huge catch, designers are getting lazy, and so many sites look alike, it's like brainwash, hence the title of this post. 

With Joomla 3.0 and the new bootstrap facelift things are going to get worse. There are at least a couple more open source projects, as far as i know, undergoing the same UI surgery. Until B.B (before Boostrap) you could unmistakably guess what cms/blog sytem a site was using which is bad but the huge variety of apps out there balanced things out.  A.B (after Boostrap) things are looking grim for internet unique looks.

I had decided i would do something about boostrap as soon as komposta would reach a satisfying level of features. In the beginning as i was mesmerized by bootstrap awesomeness i decided to build on it. That unfortunately doesn't work, you end up with a bad camouflaged look which doesn't really give a unique look, and you still have to use html mark-up that you might not even like.

The solution for me was to pick the most important components of Bootstrap or any other CSS Framework you choose and start from there. Writing on top of the full package is impossible because firstly bootstrap is already huge. With all the components it's about 0.20MB with the custom css to camouflage it you will end up with 300Kb just for CSS not including images or other 3d party JavaScript libraries. Secondly you have to live with the suggested mark-up like it or not. The number one thing you must not use are the Buttons+Navigation components, it's the number one identity give away clue. The complete list of components i used from bootsrap:

  1. Normalize (not really bootstrap's)
  2. Typography (with 13px/18px font-size/line-height)
  3. Tooltips
  4. Breadcrumbs
  5. Alerts
  6. Form bits

It's not like i couldn't live without them but for me that's the minimum setup. For the form bits i used only the absolute necessary styling from BT and i changed the HTML Markup to Definition Lists (<dl>) which i think is more appropriate. 

Now some of the downfalls. You will probably end-up with quite a huge list of bugs and serious issues with older browsers for a less pleasing look at least in the beginning. But i promise you won't regret it and you will be able to use components and stuff from various sources, making your creation unique at least in the eyes of your none designers visitors ;p

 kompostaPhrasesAB.png kompostaOptionsAB.png kompostaLogsAB.png


What do you think ?

Btw i added a much needed contact form at the top if you need to reach me.

This was the first project i competed for the Greek Ministry of Education last year. Through bilateral agreements students from Greece can apply for scholarships to study abroad and the opposite. The selection is done by the students country and they are accepted by the univercity abroad whithout interviews and cv. The project had problems from the beggining. Part of the blame is on me because of my inexperience at the time, i though i had to work with people who actually understood the problems of transferring an application form from paper to web. It turned out they were bureaucrat apes and because of them the ministry missed the deadline to send the students information and hundreds of Greek students missed the opportunity to study abroad. As far as i know they didn't attempt to run the scholarships program this year.

Anyway enough of my badmouthing. Some application info and pictures.

  1. Powered by Joomla 1.61
  2. Work involved php/mysql/html/javascript
  3. Hosted at http://apps.gov.gr/minedu/scholarships (now dead)
  4. Full Administrative Application Management
  5. Completion Time: 2 Weeks + 3 Weeks tech support during the apps period

sc1app1.jpg sc1app2.jpg sc1admin1.png sc1admin2.png

Hello my name is Chris i am 26 years old, i am a web developer with almost ten years of experience in php and mysql. This site is my personal blog/portfolio. In the past i developed plugins, templates for applications like LDU/Seditio (R.I.P), wordpress, joomla, phpbb, vbulletin and Xbits, you might have stumbled upon me on T3-Design.com where everything used to happen. The last couple of years i was in an on-line hiatus because i was determined to finally take my degree in computer science from the Technological Educational Institute of Athens. This site is my come back to active duty if you will. For this endeavour to succeed i needed to start over from scratch

In the beginning, back in 2005, T3-Design.com was powered by ldu , seditio later and finally wordpress. For years i loathed to have my own base application that i will be able to use for my projects and ideas. For komposta.net i decided to go all out and did that. I started my own CMS or what i prefer to call it CMF,  content management framework. It's called Komposta CMF and as i write this post it's only 96 commits old and hopefully i will make it public later this year.

In the past year i worked a lot with Zend Framework. These were probably the most productive months in my career, so using a php framework was only natural. After research and a lot of consideration i picked Lithium to be the brute force behind komposta for reasons i will explain later...

More info about the Komposta is coming soon for now just have a look

 routes.png resources.png options.png mainSettings.png cron.png adminNavigation.png

I will slowly add all the content from T3-Design for those who miss it, for now just step in and leave a comment please!