Twitter released the latest version of their Bootstrap monster last week – Bootstrap 4 Alpha. It’s not the full release but there is enough here to show interested parties what direction they’re going in.
- Bye Bye Less, Hello Sass. Less has been left behind in favour of the faster and increasingly used Sass. Libsass allows Bootstrap to compile faster and is favourable for a lot of front-end developers.
- Better Grid System. The bootstrap grid has been a major reason for it’s success and it appears to have gotten better. The added benefits centres around the basing spacing on ‘rems’ instead of fixed ‘px’s. This helps adjust and scale grids for all devices, including faster 4k screen rendering.
- Flexbox is finally here. Because of annoying Internet Explorer 9 users, the use of Flexbox is still a manual opt-in process but at least it’s here. No longer will we have to worry about odd amounts of text ruining our formatting, flexbox allows us match column heights quickly and easily.
- Media Queries got Smarter. Bootstrap 3 media queries were functional without being polished, but now they have taken a few steps forward in making it better. And, with Sass you can pick your own breakpoints to provide an extra level of control.
- Bye Bye Wells & Panels, Hello Cards. Cards continue to be the new internet favourite, as they were heavily featured in Material bundles as well. Cards are essentially customisable content blocks with tons of features.
- Bye Bye Normalize.css, Hello Reboot.css. Reboot steps in where Normalize.css stopped, giving you more reset options like box-sizing: border-box, margin tweaks, and more all in a single Sass file.
- Bye Bye IE8 support, Hello rem and em units. Dropping support for IE8 means designers can take advantage of the best parts of CSS without being held back with CSS hacks or fallbacks. Pixels have been swapped for rems and ems where appropriate to make responsive typography and component sizing even easier.
There is much more to the whole update, but there were parts we found interesting and will surely be using in the future. If you know of any other parts we should have mentioned, we’d like to hear about them.