If my memory serves correctly, I purchased this domain in April 2014. I know I heavily relied on “ready-made” customizable themes powered by a core framework because they were easy and quick to build. In web development standards, this is not “cheating.” This is for the sake of convenience and stress-free ease, especially for those who are under deadlines. Because if using a framework-powered premade theme or any type of framework is considered “cheating,” then frameworks wouldn’t be invented by the pros and experts in the first place anyway. All that talk about “cheating” by using a tool are those coming from old fogies, traditionalists, and self-centered snobs who think that web development is “exclusive” to the real deal nerds. Well, guess what, anybody can be a nerd.
Next, I would like to emphasize that you can’t create or build anything without first learning how. You learn from all sorts of places, from a master builder teaching others what he/she knows to finding inspirations of others’ pieces of work. But keep in mind one thing. Current experts share their knowledge to those who are interested, not to become just like them, but for them to discover new things that can enhance the craft even further, just like how it’s always been throughout the centuries. Like with art, for example. Some people can’t handle a pen or a paintbrush, but they can handle something else that can also achieve the same finished product. Thus, digital art from computers was established. And also, the evolution of a pen from using a quill to a dip fountain pen to gel pens today. It’s the same with building sites: you could build a site using just plain HTML and CSS to yourself— or you could use a ready-made framework that you can use its pre-built powers to build your base and then enhance it with your own magical touches and still have the same result— only faster and more efficient. Which one would you choose?
The reason why I’m writing this here instead of in my creatives journal is because I know that there are more people who read this blog than my creativity journey blog. I’m currently writing an entry that’s somewhat related to this one, but I’m still looking for my sources1 for me to complete them. I just find it annoying where there are some people complaining and ranting about stuff and sourcing them from other sites and such without exactly even understanding what they mean, and that article’s purpose is to debunk their complaints and, well, you know, shut up. What is it about? You’ll just have to wait and see.
As artists and builders, we all have the right to create anything we want for any purpose, but more importantly, we can be proud and happy that we have created something that can solely be ours. If we’re so worried about getting ripped off by others, for example, then don’t share them in public in the first place. There will be plagiarizers and copycats, but we should all take it as a form of flattery, not as an insult.2 I learned from my former web development teachers that it is normal for a would-be web developer to learn from other people’s source codes, as long as they are used for learning and understanding and be able to apply them to their own projects with their own personal flair. Most web development experts learn and discover their own tips and tricks that way anyway. Learning from published books and from following the teachers building their examples isn’t enough. You have to discover your own “signature” on your own, and then apply them to the basics. Use all the necessary tools available out there, and make your own trials and see which ones work for you.
Using frameworks of any kind work very well for me, from building WordPress (child) themes to building static websites. In my Ruby on Rails course program, there is one thing to note on: Ruby is the programming language. Rails is the framework that would make Ruby coding a whole lot easier and faster, and of course, giving the ability to make a Ruby program into a web application. When there are tools available, use them when you can. There’s always going to be better tools that will eventually come out. Take advantage of them. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, telling you you’re “cheating”3 or that you’re “not a real web designer/developer” and all that crap. Time is precious, which is why there’s so little of them. We have deadlines to follow. Doing things “manually” won’t get things done on time when you are given a deadline.
Somewhat unrelated, but my membership subscription to Themify is almost nearing its expiration date4 and I don’t think I would be able to afford it anymore. Thanks to my success in building my brother’s wedding site, I now plan on using the same framework5 and then create a brand-new theme for this blog, my collective, and even my writing site. I already started developing my child theme for my portfolio, as I plan on using WordPress again.
On the sidenote...
- old college textbooks… you’ll find out. [↩]
- as long as they credit their original sources… then again, not everyone is familiar about copyright issues, so instead of bitching and ranting about them, it’s best we just educate them. [↩]
- again, there’s no “cheating” in building or creating something original, unless if you’re building/creating something for a class and you want to get an A on it… [↩]
- in November [↩]
- Divi Framework from Elegant Themes – I’m a lifetime member, so everything from ET is free for me now. [↩]