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Agency for RapidWeaver

Agency. That's the name of the latest Foundation/Total CMS project from Rapidpages.de, otherwise known as Jochen Abitz. Agency is a four-page project, plus six Admin pages.
Is it worth taking a look at? Let's see…

As we have come to expect from Abitz projects, Agency displays a clean design – a contemporary, but timeless layout; straightforward with no bells or whistles.
Full-page background image on every page (loaded via Total CMS tags). Dynamically generated content that's kept up-to-date via the Total CMS blog plugin and an About page that the client can easily edit. Instead of a cookie popup Agency includes a disclaimer page that is popular in the EU. The disclaimer page not only informs you that certain data (cookies) is being stored on the server, but also explains how personal date is handled – important with the upcoming EU Personal Data stipulations.

The homepage is in fact – as with the previous project 'PagePro' – a summary from the Post page; a sortable list of blog posts that deliver the latest information about your company. Oops, did I write 'company'? I mean, of course, agencies, designers, photographers, fashion designers, foundations, shops...
… In short: Anyone who has something to display or communicate.

So once more – is Agency worth taking a look at?

Absolutely! You may be an experienced designer pressed for time, but looking for a versatile, modern design for a client project.
Perhaps you're a newbie, just setting out with Total CMS and want the above.
Agency is modern, but timeless. It has automatically generated menu and background images. Just about everything within the project is client-editable. And Agency has an attention-grabbing look and feel about it.

Agency – Rapidpages.de

If you are either of the above, I'd grab Agency now while it's on special offer (code: AGENCY30) and profit from a versatile, professional design that incorporates CMS.

NOTE: Apart from a Total CMS license and the Foundation stacks, you will also need to download a number of BWD stacks (Donationware) two paid stacks and one other free stack to take full advantage of the project.


PagePro – A new Foundation Project

It's been quite some time since a new theme or project landed on my desk. The new Rapidpages project PagePro from Jochen Abitz flattered into my mailbox last night and I was compelled to take a look at it.

Because I never got around to taking a look at Total CMS before the demo expired, Jochen was kind enough to let me take a closer look inside his online demo page and I'm very glad that he did because
1 – The project is rather neat and; 2 – Now I finally know how Total CMS works.

ProPage, as you will have gathered by now, is a Total CMS-based Foundation project.
Jochen has kept the design simple with a BWD Button Plus menu, a hero image and page content that's loaded via the blog. The navigation allows you to move between the pages (of course!) and also allows you to sort the blog posts by category. Oh, and the site has a sidebar that's been added with BWD's Blueprint Sidebar. ProPage takes advantage of partials, so that if you wish to duplicate a page, or parts of a page, doing so is simple.

ProPage comes with six pages in total – The main homepage, an About Us page, a Contact page and the Admin page with subpages for the main page (the blog content) and the About page. The whole project is schlicht (unostentatious), after the motto "Less is More". The homepage displays two columns with a large image for each of the blog entries and a summary. When clicked the blog post opens as a full page. The About page has the same header and hero image layout as the homepage and displays a large text with headers. The Contact page also shares the same header layout and includes a Foundation contact form.

The ProPage Admin pages have also been kept simple and are easy to use. Your clients will have no problems adding or altering their content.

PagePro – Jochen Abitz – Rapidpages

ProPage – as Jochen writes himself –

is not only a very clean and modern site for personal websites. PagePro is the most versatile project for your customer work. You can use this project as a basis for doctors, tradesmen, service providers, coaches and other professionals.
The basis is a very simple structure that makes editing the content fun. A post gets a category and then automatically appears in the menu. All contributions can be listed by category and searched for words.

I couldn't agree more.


Departing Friends

Two old friends are retiring from the RapidWeaver scene. Henk Vrieselaar and Joost Spijker, two Dutch colleagues that often worked hand in hand, have both posted notices to the effect that, of immediately, they are leaving for other fields. Both will be missed.

Henk Vrieselaar


Over the years Henk supplied many eye-catching themes, gave us useful code snippets and addons. Joost specialised in the production of useful stacks.
With their parting, we lose two innovative contributors to the RW community. But have no fear — their names may disappear, but their products will live on…
… The very capable Will Woodgate hasn't officially announced it yet, but the Tsooj and Vrieselaar products will be integrated into the Woodgate stables.

So if you've been wondering why there's been so little news around Will for some time, it's because he has been hard at work updating the products ready for their release under a new banner. I may be wrong, but I'm speculating that the stacks will be integrated into the Stacks4Stacks and the themes into the Themeflood collections. Henk implies as much in his parting announcement and Tsooj Media is already advertising website construction.

As for working hand in hand, the parting messages on both sites are almost identically worded, implying that the two gentleman will continue to work together.
I, for one, would like to thank Henk and Joost for the invaluable service they've provided over the years and wish them all the very best for their future undertakings. They can rest assured that their products are in the very best hands.


Kube For RapidWeaver

It's been a long time since I reviewed a theme, so when Christoph from Rapid Ideas announced that his Kube-based theme White Space has been updated to version 1.5 and now comes with ten stacks, I thought it was time change that.

Kube is a modern, minimalistic framework that – according to the Kube's own blurb – is easy to use.

Starting up with Kube is ridiculously fast — you can start in under a minute.

White Space, then, is a minimalistic theme that is easy to use – and it is the minimalism that makes the theme attractive.
There are three things to note about the White Space theme:
• The stacks that are delivered with White Space are built specifically for the Kube framework and will not work without the theme.
• Most, of the stacks from your stacks library will work well with White Space.
• Kube will only render correctly with modern browsers.

White Space Theme / Kube
The stacks
As I said above, White Space is now accompanied by ten Kube based stacks.
Kube Auto Columns is a nifty little stack that will allow you to define up to four columns. You just need to drop a paragraph stack into it and your text automatically flows into equal length columns.
Kube Button in its default form is a rounded ghost button. The rounding can be deactivated, as can the ghost setting (Outline). It has settings for Size, plus active and hover states. The button's width is set in percent.
Kube Message is a message box that is displayed when the page is opened. When the message box is closed, the page content slides up to fill the space it took.
Kube Modal has a standard rectangular button (the colour is set in the theme settings) that triggers a modal lightbox. The lightbox will house text, images, video and other stacks. However, tests showed that the video continues to play when the modal is closed.
Kube Offcanvas is an off canvas stack that pushes the page content to the side when it is triggered. It can be triggered by a button or a text link. You will need to follow the instructions very carefully to link the trigger.
Kube Quotes is, well, a quote stack. Add your quote in the upper container and its origin in the lower container. The quote is displayed with a grey bar at its left edge.
Kube Simple Grid is an interesting grid stack that may contain up to eight columns. The width of each column may be set individually using the 12 column framework that Kube is based on. The Grid stack allows a complicated page structure to be built very easily.
Kube Tabs is, as the name states, a minimalistic Tab stack. New tabs are added by adding a child stack. The tab container height is flexible (i.e. it adjusts to the height of the content) and the tabs will also accept text, images, video and other stacks. The tabs morph into an accordion style on mobile.
Kube Toggle is a toggle box that is also triggered by its own, standard Kube button. Once again, you can drop just about anything into it.
Kube Video Container is a responsive iFrame container for video playback. It may be set to autoplay in the theme settings.

It's been a while since I used a prefabricated theme, but I took a look at both the standard RW Blog Page that White Space puts together and the Contact Form. Both look appealing and the demo pages that Christoph has placed online all look very good.
It would be great if some of the stacks could be adapted for global usage.

If you are looking for a minimalistic theme for a modern browser, it's well worth taking a look at White Space.
And for a short while it still costs the same as version 1.0.


Take Control Of HTML In RapidWeaver

Many professional web designers have tried the RapidWeaver demo version and rejected it for its lack of HTML support. Stacks adds an HTML box to your arsenal, we've all seen it; we've all used it, but no-one in their right mind would try to build a complete website using HTML boxes.
Now dedicated coders have no excuse for not using RapidWeaver; HTML Body Stack from 1LD even makes it easier!

So you're a hardcore coder and you want to build your website using RW. You will need Stacks 3 and a copy of the HTML Body Stack which comes with a dedicated blank theme.

You may, of course use any theme you like, but hey, you're hardcore and you want full access to the <head> and <body>, right? These are preconfigured when you use themes. Not the case with 1LD's Blank Theme – it's blank and just begging for an HTML Body stack.

Let's start a new project.
Open a new Stacks project, choose the HTML Body Blank theme and then check your Stacks' library for HTML Body. Drag this stack onto your page and hey! It looks like Stacks, but it works like HTML. It has three themes for the editing mode – the Standard Stacks' theme, Light and dark.
You added it to your page already? You now have a <head> and Before <body> elements on your page, but both have the 'Add Child' + button!
Go on – click the + button in the <head> area. Now you can link your CSS and meta tags, etc. or, may the heavens forbid, a stack.

Same thing with the <body>. Click the + button and add your HTML content, non-wrapped HTML, or a stack.
I know some people who are going to love this.
Imagine – we're halfway down our new HTML page and it's looking great. But we need an image slider. So off we go to make coffee – that always helps us concentrate when browsing that code that we need. But wait – time is tight. We need the slider now, this instant.
What is easier than dragging one in from the stacks library? So what, if you didn't code it yourself (i.e. borrow the code from the web), forget vanity; time is tight – remember?


But now, watch this – I'm working on a Foundation project and just discovered the source code for a cool calendar. I drag an HTML Element stack into my project and add the code to it. It is already surrounded by <divs> and I can add as many child stacks to it as I need.

1LD created HTML Body as a way to give themselves the control they wanted to have in order to create HTML templates for their own web development projects.

Using a hybrid Stacks/HTML editor gives RapidWeaver users the ability to really mold projects into whatever they need them to be, whether they need to include simple to use RapidWeaver Stacks or import advanced external libraries.
To get you started 1LD has thoughtfully included a free project file that they created with Bootstrap. The project contains 5 sections that you can save as partials for use in other projects. Perhaps we might even see a Foundation project soon?

If you have little, or no HTML/CSS experience or suffer from code phobia, this is not the stack for you — 1LD can only support the stacks and theme, but not our inability (and yes, I include myself) to understand what all those <div>s, </p>s and <span>s are about.

If you're a coder and use RapidWeaver for the obvious ease of use that it offers, HTML Body is exactly the stack that you've wished for all these years.


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