Gantry 5: A Next-Generation Framework

g5, dev
May 6, 2015, 16:01

Gantry 5 is set to change the way the industry thinks about theme management and how we interact with content management systems (CMS). The RocketTheme development team has been hard at work creating Gantry 5 with the idea in mind of not only building something that will work for its users today, but for several years down the line. So, what makes Gantry 5 so different? Here just a few examples of how Gantry 5 is like no other version of Gantry you have tried before.

Community-Driven Development

Gantry 5 is by far the most ambitious undertaking the development team has taken on to date. It features dozens of new top-level features under the hood, and we are doing it with the help of the Gantry community.

This is possible not only because it takes a dramatically different approach to theming thanks in large part to feedback from its growing community. Gantry 5 is community driven, not just community inspired.

For the first time, a major Gantry release is being developed in step with the community. From the earliest beta builds well beyond the first full 1.0.0 release, Gantry’s users have and will have a very real impact in how the framework works and evolves.

A live chat room connects users to the development team, documentation is available from day one and receives regular updates as development continues, and the entire project is made available on Github where users can download the latest development build of Gantry, as well as submit issues and even contribute to the project by submitting pull requests.

Completely Rewritten From the Ground Up

Gantry 5 is not just an evolutionary step forward for Gantry, it is the Gantry concept reborn through a complete ground-up rewrite.

After about five years of gradually updating Gantry, it became clear that if we were going to build something that took advantage of the next generation of Web technologies, it had to be done from scratch, eliminating a lot of the bulk and clutter backward compatibility requires.

The result: A clean, modern framework built on human-readable Twig templating with YAML configuration files. Support for SCSS, LESS, and pure CSS are included, making it possible for developers to theme their sites using a code base that is easiest for them.

The administrative interface alone has been dramatically changed, adding drag-and-drop functionality and native support for touch screens and trackpads. Want to manage your theme on the go? You can enjoy the same, powerful interface on your tablet as you do on your desktop. It is all possible because this functionality was built in from day one.

A True Cross-Platform Framework

Until now, frameworks have largely been a way to quickly develop flexible templates and themes for a specific CMS. You would build a theme for WordPress, which would then need to be practically rebuilt from scratch if you wanted to recreate that theme in Joomla, phpBB, Magento, etc.

Gantry 5 takes an entirely different approach. You can develop themes for Gantry independent of the CMS. Using a stand-alone development solution called Prime, you can develop your theme using Gantry 5 and test it before you have even connected it to a CMS. This makes a huge difference in the development time and effort related to creating themes for multiple CMS platforms.

This enables Gantry 5 to go beyond Joomla and WordPress and eventually work with other content management systems, such as phpBB and Magento, or even a flat-file CMS like Grav.

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