[wp-hackers] Mobile Site - WordPress

Lynne Pope lynne.pope at gmail.com
Thu Jan 27 13:25:14 UTC 2011

I tend to take the "progressive enhancement" approach and design the site
the other way around to you.
I design from the get-go for mobile, then use CSS media queries to add
additional images & styling to suit larger screens.
When designing themes, if you think about it, we have to cater for varying
screen sizes anyway - we don't deliver the same experience to someone who
uses an 800x600 browser as to someone using 1920x1080. By the time we take
notebook & netbook screen sizes into consideration we are already designing
for multiple, variable screen sizes. So, throwing tablets, smartphones and
more traditional mobile devices into the mix shouldn't have us thinking of
plugins really.

Some people are calling this approach "responsive design". I'm not convinced
it needed a new name because the only real difference to how we have
designed sites for years is that the variation in screen sizes is greater.
Adding touch screen functionality is a must (for PC screens as well as
mobile) and keeping the theme lean is also important.

To me, the biggest issue people face when making their site mobile-friendly
is the content itself. A 1000-word blog post might be okay on a large screen
but its hell to read through on a small device, so splitting content might
be wise for some sites. I prefer to send comments to a separate page for
smaller screens. For many people, bandwidth is an issue.

One gotcha about this kind of approach is that some people use CSS selectors
(such as display:none) to hide content from mobile devices. This isn't a
good idea at all because, although the content will be hidden, the data is
still transmitted. Again, thats an issue for bandwidth.

However you choose to do it, make sure you do a LOT of testing. There are so
many mobile devices and screen sizes now that its no longer feasible to test
with just a couple of emulators.


On Fri, Jan 28, 2011 at 1:14 AM, Robert Lusby <nanogwp at gmail.com> wrote:

> We've been working recently on a plugin to create a very mobile friendly
> version of the WordPress front-end - and would be keen to hear your own
> views/experiences on creating a mobile site.
> Anyone had any experience doing this? Any tips / tricks / gotchas along the
>  way?

More information about the wp-hackers mailing list