The Fluxstate theme. A demonstration of BlockPress power and versatility.

in #utopian-io6 years ago (edited)

fluxstate-posts1.png

As BlockPress nears a release candidate for initial beta launch, it has become a powerful and versatile piece of software for potential theme creators. @dana-varahi has developed three great themes, and six varied palettes that work on them all.

  • metaverse is a good clean and simple theme, that uses default module templates for all module related content. This makes it good for module development and a good base for new theme designers to build upon.
  • amber is also fairly simple but a little more stylish, incorporating some customisation of steem templates, social menu icons and css transitions.
  • trollfell demonstrates the ability to create a different layout, by incorporating a collapsible sidebar.

My own theme fluxstate needed some love, and I decided to do something completely different with it. With this theme I wanted create, not so much a theme that people might use, but rather a theme showed off what BlockPress is capable of. A demonstration theme as it were.

Liquorice palette

Since the name of the theme comes from the cyberpunk rpg Shadowrun, I felt I wanted to create a theme inspired by old green screen computer terminals. So before I even began work on the theme, I built a palette for this kind of colour scheme that worked on the other three themes. I called this palette liquorice. One unique feature of the liquorice palette is the way it filters images in steem profiles and post previews to have a monochromatic green screen look.

liquorice-palette.png

The liquorice palette in metaverse, trollfell and amber layout themes

Fluxstate theme

Next I began reworking the fluxstate theme. I stripped all mention of colours from the css, and reorganised the template with the features I was looking for.

Material icons support

I wanted to use some of Google's material icons in my theme, and so added these as a library that themes could draw upon. I then added them to a fluxstate footer menu that allows the user to switch between the current view, the menu and the social menu.

material-icons.png

Material icons

Highly customised steem profile

I wanted to demonstrate a totally different look for the steem profile in this one. I went for a kind of retro looking 'data file'. Rectangular avatar in top left corner, basic data to the right, equal sized @steemitboard badges underneath.

I then added links to various reports on the steem user, as provided by @steemreports, @shuanmza and @roelandp. These quick links make it super easy to go from a comment, to the commenters profile, to a variety of reports about them with just a couple of mouse clicks. No more having to type in their names.

fluxstate-profile.png

Fluxstate steem profile with links to various reports

See the profile page in action on my live blockpress site.

Tiled steem posts

The steem post listing is also quite different from that in other themes. I opted for a grid of fixed width rectangular tiles. If the post has an image, it is displayed as the tile. If not the post title, author, date and a content preview is shown. The latter also displays whilst the images are loaded, and appear again, with transparency, on when the mouse hovers over a tile.

fluxstate-posts2.png

Tiled posts

See tiled posts in action on my live blockpress site.

Responsive design

All the other themes display well on small screens and devices, and we want all official themes to incorporate responsive design. For this reason I made some changes to fluxstate that kick in when the screen width gets smaller than 800px.

  • The material icons get bigger, since fingers on a touch screen are less precise than a mouse pointer.
  • The steem profile image becomes full width, and the steemitboard icons scale down.
  • The tiled posts become a vertical stack, and titles, author and dates display on posts with images, not just on hover. Because hover doesn't exist on touch screens, so its important to give an idea about the content other than the image.

fluxstate-responsive.png
Responsive design

Generic styles and Palette support

Next I had to ensure my new theme worked with existing palettes. This meant ensuring good use of our generic css classes suchenclosure1, enclosure2 and enclosure3, and fixing a few missing features in those palettes, such as social menu icon hover behaviour.

fluxstate-palettes.png

Fluxstate in several palettes

Commits

JavaScript/jQuery

HTML

CSS

Conclusion

This is all the themes and palettes we intend to produce for the initial beta release, which is to say four layout themes which each support seven palettes, creating 28 unique looks for any blockpress user out of the box! Not bad for a new CMS whose first line of code was written at the SteemFest2 hackathon in Lisbon last November!

Follow us

First of all, make sure you follow the @blockpress steem account. We are very near to our beta launch and we plan to run some contests with SBD prizes.

You can also follow the BlockPress.me CMS on various social media, which are good places to ask questions and get support.

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Thanks for the contribution!

The way you wrote and laid out your contribution made it a pleasure to me to read and review! What's the next step you guys are going to take (since you mentioned you are done producing themes and palettes)?

I wish I knew about Steemit last November, as I was actually living in Lisbon at the time. Hopefully I get an opportunity to go to SteemFest in the future!

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Whilst themes and palettes will no longer be our main focus, and we certainly have enough of each to make a beta release, we may still need to develop more from time to time. For example, the beta release requires that I write a tutorial on theme creation. To write this it is likely I will end up with a new theme.

@dana-varahi is finishing off the logo design and will be replacing the initial 'loading...' wording with a gif, adding the logo as favicons, and adding the logo to the default page that appears when you first install blockpress, but haven't configured it yet.

I will then minimise the code and create zip and tar.gz download files before we begin working on the next release.

Features currently slated for next release can be found in our 0.9.1 milestone on github.

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