Independent Publisher 2 Is Here

The favored Independent Publisher design is a WordPress theme that has lengthy been beloved for its simplicity and legibility. So we’re completely happy to announce that it has been improved, ever so barely, with the design abilities of Caroline Moore and Kjell Reigstad.

Introducing Independent Publisher 2:

Unbiased Writer was first designed, developed, and launched 4 years in the past by Raam Dev in his introductory post to the Unbiased Writer Undertaking:

“I’ve been utilizing WordPress for the previous eight years and in that point my website has all the time had a modified model of another person’s theme. I all the time discovered it simpler to start out with a theme created by another person and easily modifying it till I had it the best way I needed.” —Raam Dev, 2013

I not too long ago caught up with Raam to be taught concerning the origins of Unbiased Writer.

JM: How did Unbiased Writer come to be?

RD: I had that design swimming round in my head for years—it’s the end result 7 years of hacking away at a constantly-evolving WordPress theme for my private website, tweaking and updating it each few months to use my newest understanding of what ‘good design’ meant. Through the years I had gotten so many requests from individuals who needed to make use of the theme that I used to be utilizing, however the present theme was all the time so hacked-together that I wasn’t capable of simply share it. Lastly in 2013 I made a decision to place all the pieces that I’d discovered into constructing a theme that could possibly be shared and that’s the place the Unbiased Writer theme was born. I’ve been amazed by how many individuals use it—it’s such a bizarre feeling to go to the location of a stranger on the web solely to find they’re utilizing the theme that I helped construct!

JM: Are you a designer or a developer? I imply, your final identify is … “Dev.”

RD: I’m undoubtedly a little bit of each. I really like constructing issues however I additionally love eager about the final word function of what will get constructed, the ‘why’ behind the ‘what.’

About my final identify, it hadn’t even occurred to me how applicable my final identify was for the kind of work that I do till my developer buddies began asking if it was actually my final identify.

JM: What recommendation do you give for budding designer/devs like your self when beginning off in making a theme?

RD: Begin with the top in thoughts. Once I constructed the Unbiased Writer theme, I saved revisiting the identical set of questions at each step alongside the best way: What’s the final word function of this theme? What’s it attempting to do? What’s its final goal?

JM: How have cell gadgets modified how we eat content material today?

RD: If there was ever a great instance of the significance of contemplating the design affect of what we construct, cell can be it. With cell gadgets, customers don’t get to decide on the dimensions of their internet browser. They’ve little alternative concerning the constraints imposed on them by the gadgets of their arms. Meaning it’s as much as us builders and designers to make sure that content material may be consumed as simply as attainable on cell.

In case you might be questioning, “What’s a theme?” I can inform you that in accordance with Automattic founder and CEO Matt Mullenweg, “themes” began from WordPress model 1.5 means again in 2005. A theme is an encapsulation of code and design data — it permits you to customise the appear and feel of a WordPress website to be precisely the best way that you really want. If you’re a designer that’s new to themes, I recommend that you just learn this brief essay by Mel Choyce on “three Causes Why Each Designer Ought to Create A WordPress Theme.”

As a result of Unbiased Writer got here out in 2013, it deserved a tiny set of enhancements. We thought the perfect two folks to guide the design problem wanted to be our theming veteran Caroline Moore and our typography expert Kjell Reigstad.

JM: What makes a great theme?

CM: A rock-solid code basis like Components and a design that looks like house. My favorites are daring, colourful themes with plenty of persona; Scratchpad by my colleague Laurel Fulford involves thoughts.

JM: What makes for good typography?

KR: Good typography doesn’t get in the best way. It’s balanced, legible, and delicate.

JM: Are there any features of Unbiased Writer that caught your consideration when it was first launched on

CM: Utilizing a Gravatar as a website emblem wasn’t widespread across the time Unbiased Writer was launched, in order that stood out to me as a neat solution to make the theme extra personalised proper out of the field.

JM: What makes one paragraph extra legible than the opposite?

KR: There are a selection of variables that have an effect on the readability of paragraphs. Apart from the extra apparent ones like typeface and font measurement, I discover main and column width to be crucial.

Main (also called “line-spacing”) is the house between strains of textual content. If the house is simply too extensive, your eyes should work laborious to leap from one line of textual content to the following. If it’s too slim, your eyes should work laborious at differentiating every line as you’re studying. Main changes may be very delicate, however the precise steadiness makes a huge impact.

Column width is a bit more self-explanatory. If a paragraph of textual content is simply too extensive, your eyes must take a big horizontal bounce every time you progress onto a brand new line. If the paragraph is simply too slim, your eyes must make the bounce extra usually. Each of those circumstances could cause eye fatigue. A great column width is someplace within the center.

JM: What about this Unbiased Writer refresh advantages the reader?

KR: For my part, the perfect replace is the change to utilizing system fonts by default. As a rule these days, web sites load in customized font recordsdata to show all their textual content. That is nice visually, nevertheless it does result in barely longer web page load occasions.

System fonts are are included together with your system by default. These are fairly normal fonts, and are usually very broadly out there. You’ve in all probability heard of a lot of them: Helvetica, Occasions, and Georgia as an example. Switching to make use of these fonts means we don’t should load in further font recordsdata each time your website masses. This protects time, and is particularly useful when guests are on a gradual or unstable cell connection.

Better of all, the system fonts we used are stunning! Headlines are set in your laptop’s default sans serif font Apple’s San Francisco font, and Android’s Roboto for instance, and physique textual content is ready in Georgia by the beloved Matthew Carter.

JM: The place do you see the world of themes heading, Caroline?

CM: I wish to see themes condensed right into a single CSS file, utilized over completely different elements you could combine and match to construct any type of website you possibly can think about.

JM: If I’m a newbie to design and wish to be taught extra about typography, how do I begin, Kjell?

KR: It is a fast, 6-minute video that I made final 12 months to share the enjoyment of typography:

JM: Thanks Raam, Caroline, and Kjell!

So there you will have it — get pleasure from the brand new energy of Independent Publisher 2, and set your self free to jot down with enhanced legibility, particular tweaks for cell, and an general quicker expertise on your readers.

Learn extra about Raam Dev, Caroline Moore, and Kjell Reigstad on their respective web sites:

Raam Dev Caroline Moore Kjell Reigstad

Filed beneath: Better Blogging, Design, Themes