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Question about LESS

Enthusiast ,
Sep 29, 2017

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Dreamweaver has a LESS document file in which to choose from. Does this mean, instead of writing typical CSS, we need to learn this alternative language called LESS and now write in that format?

Realize the net is full of resources & tutorials - but why is LESS not available as a section for learning on w3schools? - Only CSS and other things like Bootstrap, Angular, etc...

Anyhow, wanted other people's thoughts on this, and to know if you are writing in this alternative language from the ground up. Leads me to my next question, if using Bootstrap, do we just immediately create a .LESS file and start calling up the styles from the default Bootstrap .CSS file "library" to re-style as needed? Is that the method/technique you are using?

Thanks.

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Question about LESS

Enthusiast ,
Sep 29, 2017

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Dreamweaver has a LESS document file in which to choose from. Does this mean, instead of writing typical CSS, we need to learn this alternative language called LESS and now write in that format?

Realize the net is full of resources & tutorials - but why is LESS not available as a section for learning on w3schools? - Only CSS and other things like Bootstrap, Angular, etc...

Anyhow, wanted other people's thoughts on this, and to know if you are writing in this alternative language from the ground up. Leads me to my next question, if using Bootstrap, do we just immediately create a .LESS file and start calling up the styles from the default Bootstrap .CSS file "library" to re-style as needed? Is that the method/technique you are using?

Thanks.

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Sep 29, 2017 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 29, 2017

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W3Schools.com, while helpful, is NOT complete when it comes to all of the options available for developers.

LESS still uses standard CSS, it's not an entirely new language, but essentially an add-on that allows you to do more with CSS. It's actually pretty simple once you've got a firm grasp on CSS itself and if you have a little experience with other scripting languages like .js or .php.

It's also, by no means, essential learning for all developers. Most can go about their day, blissfully unaware that it exists and never have it come up in their professional lives. Others, it may be a requirement of obtaining employment with a large development house where many people will be working on the same files.

http://lesscss.org/ has everything you need to get started if you want to learn how to work with it. Here's some DW-specific information on it: Using CSS preprocessors in Dreamweaver

Personally, I don't use it much at all. My stylesheets are kept simple enough, in the majority of situations, that the benefits of LESS are pretty minimal or non-existent. But for sites with vast amounts of CSS, it can definitely be a big time saver.

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Sep 29, 2017 1
LEGEND ,
Sep 29, 2017

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https://forums.adobe.com/people/Jon+Fritz+II  wrote

But for sites with vast amounts of CSS, it can definitely be a big time saver.

As someone who works on a site with vast amounts of css, and who regularily talks to others who also develop for very large corporate sites, i would say that the use of pre/post-processors such as sass and less is becoming less and less, (pun intended).

Many have said that the advantages one found in the early days of them, is now rapidly disappearing.

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Sep 29, 2017 2
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 29, 2017

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Let's say you're using Bootstrap layouts and the client is undecided about everything.  He wants to see a lot of changes made to the CSS.  You can pull your hair out making all the changes in multiple media queries or you can leverage your project with LESS or SASS variables & mixins.   Bootstrap 3 uses LESS.  Bootstrap 4 uses SASS. 

Bootstrap 3 Less Workflow Tutorial | Experience Design at Hello Erik

http://getbootstrap.com/docs/3.3/customize/#less-variables

Do you need to learn it?  That's a decision only you can make.

Nancy

Nancy O'Shea, ACP
Alt-Web Design & Publishing

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Sep 29, 2017 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 29, 2017

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I know i will cause disagreaments with this but -

https://forums.adobe.com/people/Nancy+OShea  wrote

Let's say you're using Bootstrap layouts and the client is undecided about everything.  He wants to see a lot of changes made to the CSS.  You can pull your hair out making all the changes in multiple media queries or you can leverage your project with LESS or SASS variables & mixins.   Bootstrap 3 uses LESS.  Bootstrap 4 uses SASS. 

Bootstrap 3 Less Workflow Tutorial | Experience Design at Hello Erik

http://getbootstrap.com/docs/3.3/customize/#less-variables

The use of css variables, css calc and Dw snippets, (called macros in many ide's) now mean that the majority of people who uses pre/post-processors no longer need to do so.

Yes, css variables are not supported in IE11 and below, but js polyfills do exist and writting fallback code is very simple.

https://blogs.windows.com/msedgedev/2017/03/24/css-custom-properties/

The big advantage of using the css properties is that they are all accessible in the browser via javascript, making it possible for the developer to allow the end users to easilly apply customise values just by changing any css variable, and not have to write a script to search through the entire css file as would be required when using sass/less.

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Sep 29, 2017 1
Enthusiast ,
Sep 29, 2017

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That's what I've been reading - that this can target mass areas, and what not, to make a change one time vs. using a find & replace to sweep through lines & lines of code.

Then I also just read that the final LESS file is not what is called in on the server as the 'final' file anyhow - that you use a compiler to convert it to a standard CSS file. So that indicates to me it is not a faster format for end-users when it loads into browsers; it is just a faster format for making controlled edits/speeds up your workflow.

With that said, then we are all in agreement we are happy to just minify our CSS and be done with it? (for small - med websites).

And perhaps those really skilled in javaScript will prefer utilizing the LESS (or SASS) so they can write their 'short-hand' variables?

Thank you. Good discussion.

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Sep 29, 2017 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Sep 29, 2017

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I have mine set to compile and minify CSS on Save.  It's instantaneous & automatic.  So no extra steps are involved if that's what you're worried about.   One streamlined & minified CSS file vs many CSS files definitely improves page load speed.  

Nancy

Nancy O'Shea, ACP
Alt-Web Design & Publishing

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Sep 29, 2017 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 29, 2017

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Just love it when these (well I can't really call them developers) yack on about Bootstrap and yet they don't even use it to produce their own site.

Practical Service Design

Still the post is 4 years old and judging by the poor coding on their current site they havent progressed much.

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Sep 29, 2017 0
LEGEND ,
Sep 29, 2017

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Dont bother with less or sass unless you are in a position where you are forced into using it/them. Why not use pug to write html?

Less and sass and pug and jade or whatever one likes to call these complete waste of time options are purely there to appease the web-developer and make them feel they are more skilled than what they really are.

If you're going to spend time learning anything then learn a server language and javascript or jquery - things which you will find are a necessity to enhance your possibilities of producing more complex work.

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Sep 29, 2017 2
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LEGEND ,
Sep 30, 2017

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What one must remember about anything in web development, is that it is much better to know how to do something without any 'helpers', that way you can make an informed decission on the helpers viability. That goes for the use of frameworks, sass/less, jQuery and templates, if you do not know how to build a web site using all the latest standards and methods without them, then one ends up stuck in the past, building sites without any originality, only including features other think of, and having no future beyond following the crowd.

Learning how to use the latest specs and methods, will always ensure a better future than something that hides the how and why of development.

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Sep 30, 2017 1