Welcome to the Treehouse Community

The Treehouse Community is a meeting place for developers, designers, and programmers of all backgrounds and skill levels to get support. Collaborate here on code errors or bugs that you need feedback on, or asking for an extra set of eyes on your latest project. Join thousands of Treehouse students and alumni in the community today. (Note: Only Treehouse students can comment or ask questions, but non-students are welcome to browse our conversations.)

Looking to learn something new?

Treehouse offers a seven day free trial for new students. Get access to thousands of hours of content and a supportive community. Start your free trial today.

CSS Bootstrap Basics Responsive Layouts With the Bootstrap Grid Reordering and Offsetting Columns

bootstrap or on my own?

Do most programmers use Bootstrap? I view Bootstrap as an easy way to style a web page, but can relying on Bootstrap be a mistake? Should I use my knowledge gained in the front end web developer course (in the beginning), or should I use bootstrap.

Would one way make me lazy and forget the hard work over the other?

1 Answer

Hey jas0n, I think you are asking a pretty valid question for a lot of people starting out or starting new projects. I've been a Front-End Developer for 10 years or so and guess what my answer is...it depends!

I've worked for companies that didn't have any other Front-End Devs and all the Back-End Devs used Bootstrap because they didn't know the ins and outs of HTML/CSS so they used Bootstrap as a way to make things function. All they had to do was copy/pasta some code snippets from the Bootstrap documentation and things worked (mostly...). I've also seen people go down the rabbit hole of trying to do every single thing themselves because they can and it can take a lot of time and effort to re-create some of the functionality you get from Bootstrap.

I wouldn't look at it as being "lazy", it's a framework to help you quickly build a website and you can customize it as you wish so your site doesn't look like you made it using generic Bootstrap. It can help with working with other developers if they understand Bootstrap to some degree and keeps them from having to write it all from scratch OR learn some custom CSS/HTML scheme you made up. It really depends on who is working on the project, what the project is for, how fast you need to get it done and whether you think it makes sense to use Bootstrap in this situation.

Coming from experience Bootstrap can take a while to actually FULLY understand what their special sauce is and how each component actually works responsively and accessibly. It's real easy to break functionality once you start customizing it.

If you want to use Bootstrap, then use Bootstrap. If you don't, then don't. Just make sure you understand why you want to use it and if it's a solid reason, go for it. Lastly, take the time to understand what Bootstrap is actually doing so that it's not just auto-Magic and you can feel good in knowing you actually understand what it's doing to make those components function.