18 Essential Plugins to Get More Out Of SublimeText

Posted by Harshad

18 Essential Plugins to Get More Out Of SublimeText

18 Essential Plugins to Get More Out Of SublimeText

Posted: 31 Jan 2014 07:01 AM PST

Even though SublimeText comes with a bunch of great features that help our work as web developers, like any other tool, there will always be a room for enhancements. This is when plugins can be real useful (and we are huge fans of plugins).

Before we proceed, maybe you’d like to check out our previous posts on SublimeText to see what it can do in its native state:

Moving on, in this post, we have put together a few plugins that you may need to install to fill the functionalities that are missing from SublimeText.

1. Package Control

Package Control is the first thing that you have to install right away after installing SublimeText. With it, you can install, upgrade, remove, and view with ease the list of packages or plugins that you have installed in SublimeText.

2. Emmet

In a nutshell, Emmet allows us to write HTML and CSS faster with abbreviations/shortcuts, then expand them in valid HTML tags. This is one of my most frequently used shortcut, which is a time-saver:

((h4>a[rel=external])+p>img[width=500 height=320])*12

It creates 12 lists of Headings followed with an image. I can then fill in my content without worrying about messing up the format.

3. SublimeLinter

SublimeLinter has recently been rebuilt and polished for SublimeText 3. The new version certainly comes with a set of new features. Rather than putting all linters in one package, the developer allows you to select and install only the ones that you regularly use.

4. SublimeEnhancements

SidebarEnhancements has a few new things in the Sidebar menu including New File Creation in the current project folder, Moving File and Folder, Duplicating File and Folder, Open in Finder and Browser, Refresh, and a bunch more.

5. PackageResourceViewer

With PackageResourceViewer, you can view, and edit packages that come from SublimeText easily. You can also extract package, which will copy it to the User folder so you can safely edit it.

6. Git

This plugin integrates SublimeText with Git so you can run some Git commands from SublimeText such as Add and Committing Files, Viewing Log, and Annotating Files.

7. Terminal

This plugin lets you open your project folders in Terminal directly from SublimeText – with a hotkey. It is a very helpful plugin when you need to execute command lines at the given folder.

8. CSSComb

CSSComb is a plugin to sort CSS properties. If you need your codes to be tidy and in the right order, this plugin will let you customize the order of the properties. This is also helpful when you work with a team of developers, each with their own preferences of writing code.

9. CanIUse

With this plugin, you can check the browser support for CSS properties and HTML elements that you are using. To use it, highlight the CSS property or the HTML element, and it will bring you to the appropriate page in CanIUse.com.

10. Alignment

Alignment lets you align your codes including PHP, JavaScript, and CSS, thus making it neat and more readable. See the following screenshot for the before-and-after comparison.

11. Trimmer

This plugin helps you remove unnecessary spaces, as well as trailing spaces, which could cause some errors In JavaScript.

12. ColorPicker

With this plugin you can select and add colors to SublimeText with the native color wheel from your OS.

13. MarkDown Editing

Even though SublimeText is capable of viewing and editing Markdown files, it treats it as plain text with very poor formatting. This plugin is useful for giving better support with proper color highlighting for Markdown in SublimeText.

14. FileDiffs

FileDiffs allows you to see the differences between two files in SublimeText. You can compare files with copied data from Clipboard, a File in the Project, File that is currently open, and between saved and unsaved files.

15. DocBlockr

DocBlokr lets you create documentation or annotation for your codes with ease, by parsing the functions, parameters, variables, and automatically adding some possible documentation (see the screenshot below).

16. Custom Themes

Believe it or not, having a different theme can induce your creativity and ideas. Below are several great custom themes that gives SublimeText a different, possibly better look.




17. Snippets

Snippets can help you write code faster by reusing code pieces. While you can also create your own set of code snippets, there are several snippet packages ready for use right away. Here are just some of them:

  • Foundation – A collection of snippets to build Foundation 5 framework components such as the Buttons, Tabs, and Navigation.
  • Bootstrap 3 – If you prefer Bootstrap, try this.
  • Bootstrap 3 for Jade – This plugin combines Bootstrap 3 with Jade syntax.
  • jQuery Mobile – A collection of snippets to build jQuery Mobile components and layouts.
  • HTML5 Boilerplate – this snippet lets you create HTML5 Boilerplate documents in a snap.

18. Additional Syntax Support

Languages that are not supported in SublimeText may not display with proper syntax highlighting. They include LESS, Sass, SCSS, Styls, and Jade, so if you are working with those languages, here are the plugins to install, for syntax support.


20 Deliciously Designed Food & Drink Menus

Posted: 31 Jan 2014 05:01 AM PST

Menus are like the business card of a cafe, restaurant or bistro. Apart from the atmosphere, the menu provides the sort of lasting impression that parks itself in our sensory cores and determines our choice of food for days, months or years to come. The menu also reflects the unique personality of the place, the cuisine it is serving and the mood it wants its customers to take back with them once they leave.

Then of course there are the tantalizing pictures of the food and refreshing drinks that are up for offer, camouflaged by the wonders of colors, great-looking font, perfect use of white space and typography, and you have yourself a winning, scrumptious, delicious-looking menu.

But why describe it when we can show it to you? Here are 20 fantastic food and drink menu designs that will make your mouth water. Some of them are even good enough to double as their restaurant website designs (2-in-1, time for a fiesta!).

RAGU Cafe Menu by various artists

Carluccio’s Menus by Irving & Co

Restaurant by Mike | Creative Mints

Autumn Menu | PEOPLE’S bar by various artists

PizzaLista – 2013 by DotHaus

Menu Work by Lynae Hilton

Menu Guafres by Sabrina Ariza


Burger Bar Menu by Robin Wells

Menu Exterior for Bistro Creep by Nick Sirotich

Discover Bookstore – Patras by addo2design

Love Garden 2013 Menu Design by Gamze Güzelhan

Path Restaurant by Daria Popovskaia

Carta 24 Foodmart Trailer by Letrapegada Diseño

Menu Pour Restaurant Havana by JLASSI Mohamed Marwen

Smokehouse BBQ by Jessica Larsen-Hossain

Bill's Fried Chicken Menu

l’Usine gourmande by Chany Lagueux


Mama Joy's by No Entry Design


Stop Debating Design Minutia And Start Making The Big Decisions

Posted: 31 Jan 2014 02:01 AM PST

So many designers waste their time contemplating things that, in the long run, are completely useless to their development as creative professionals, freelancers, or better designers in general.

(Image source: Montgomery County Planning)

They whittle away at meaningless details – what font size their name should be on their business card; whether they should make that CTA button white or blue – then wonder why they seem rooted in their current situation. They spin their wheels, as the saying goes, without ever making any real progress.

We’re going to look at some of the most common types of minutiae that seem to trap freelance designers in a never-ending cycle of indecision, and explore some simple ways to break out of them.

Tiny Technicalities

Stop worrying about tiny changes like button size or shape, unless your client’s company is big enough that those types of changes matter. Any website smaller than eBay or Amazon is probably not worth the stress, because the target customer base will respond mostly the same way to a variety of different UI configurations or CTAs.

Tiny differences in color, placement, etc. are irrelevant, and if they hinder your progress on a project, they can actually be damaging to your career as a freelancer.

Pick Your Battles

Some elements of a design project have speed or budget as the number one priority, like foundational deliverables on a tight deadline. Other elements need to be done as perfectly and accurately as possible. Designers sometimes think that the latter is the most important, but it’s usually the opposite.

If you really analyze any design project you happen to be working on, you’ll most likely find that the 80/20 principle applies to the ratio of quality needed versus quantity.

What Takes Priority?

The elements of a project that absolutely require the most attention to detail are often not what you think they are. Usually, they’re things like copy, where a single spelling error can utterly destroy a brand’s reputation, or correct indexing of inventory or other offerings to customers. Rarely does the perfect font or color scheme seriously impact your client’s bottom line.

I’m not saying these things aren’t important, they’re just not as important as many designers believe. Unless you or your client have hard data that proves otherwise, it’s better to prioritize what really matters to users.

Stop Revising And Start Selling

You have to know how to sell a client on a solution you know is best, rather than allowing them to steamroll you into endless revisions. Salesmanship is an essential part of any business relationship. As the saying goes, every business is a sales business. Whether you’re convincing people to buy your new brand of table salt, or convincing a client that your solution is perfect for their problem, you’re always selling.

Nitpickers Never Prosper

It’s a hard truth in business that the people hired to polish and perfect a project are often the ones who are the most insignificant in terms of importance to the team. If you find yourself swamped with making tiny corrections, or always doing the design equivalent of janitorial work, it might be time to reevaluate the direction your career is headed.

Sure, clients might appreciate your efforts, but do they genuinely value you as a designer? Unless the true solution to your client’s problem is crossing T’s and nudging elements around a grid, I highly doubt it.

When It’s Done, It’s Done

There’s a quote generally attributed to Albert Einstein that goes something like this: make it as simple as possible, but not simpler. Design is all about providing the simplest, most elegant solution to a problem that one possibly can, but some designers actually reach that solution about 3 or 4 revisions earlier than they think.

If you’re baking cookies, and after 10 minutes they’re golden brown and perfect, you wouldn’t put them back in the over for an extra 10 minutes “just in case”. Quality is important, and clients certainly do care about it, but it’s never a good idea to belabor a solution that is already good enough.


Design as a profession tends to attract people who are highly analytical and who can see multiple solutions to problems. This is an excellent trait overall (in my not-so-humble opinion), because it gives designers the creativity and freshness that clients are looking for.

The challenge is knowing when your natural meticulousness stops being a help and starts becoming a hindrance. It’s important to keep a healthy balance and maintain perspective so that your freelance career will grow instead of stagnate.


Create, Control & Customize Better Modal Window For Your Site Using Vex

Posted: 30 Jan 2014 11:01 PM PST

A modal window is very useful when you want to make users interact with your site. Occasionally, a modal window is called a modal box as the window is used to display the dialog box. In a previous article we had guided you through a tutorial on how to make modal windows using Bootstrap Plugin.

In this post we will introduce you to another great helper for creating modal windows, using jQuery library namely Vex.

Vex is a complete and highly customizable Javascript library that helps you create modal windows with ease. This light jQuery plugin replaces the browser native dialog box.

Basic Setup

First, we need to prepare the Vex script. You can download it here. Then, include the latest jQuery into the header with the following script.

 <script src="http://code.jquery.com/jquery-latest.min.js"></script> 

To use Vex, you have to include the vex.js and vex.css files. Rather than using vex.js and vex.dialog.js, you can just include vex.combined.js or vex.combined.min.js.

Now, we’ll add those Vex libraries to the header like so.

 <script src="vex.combined.min.js"></script> <link rel="stylesheet" href="vex.css" /> <link rel="stylesheet" href="vex-theme-os.css" /> 

In the above script, I include vex-theme-os.css which is a different ready-to-use Vex theme. To use another theme, you can see the documentation included with the demo here.

Applying Vex

The most basic methods in Vex are vex.dialog.alert, vex.dialog.confirm and vex.dialog.prompt. And there is vex.dialog.open which is the combination of those methods for more advance usage e.g. to create form, login or multiple modal window.

And now, we’ll try to build a simple login modal window using vex.dialog.open method. Before we start on the method, we must first apply the theme we used with the defaultOptions.className option. To apply the theme, you can easily add the theme name as a value option like so.

 vex.defaultOptions.className = 'vex-theme-os'; 

As mentioned before, the vex.dialog.open method is basically the combination of 3 other methods. The following code is a more complex demo in which we call alert, confirm, and prompt internally to build a login dialog.

 <script> vex.defaultOptions.className = 'vex-theme-os'; vex.dialog.open({ message: 'Please enter your username and password:', input: "<input name=\"username\" type=\"text\" placeholder=\"Username\" required />\n<input name=\"password\" type=\"password\" placeholder=\"Password\" required />", buttons: [ $.extend({}, vex.dialog.buttons.YES, { text: 'Login' }), $.extend({}, vex.dialog.buttons.NO, { text: 'Back' }) ], }); </script> 

So, our login box will appear as follow.

Final Thought

There are many other tools to create modal window out there, but Vex is a rather complete and highly configurable one. You can add alerts, prompts, confirmation, forms or other input options to the box and even animate it. Other great features are multiple modal windows and dialog boxes inside modal boxes, it runs great and smoothly in mobile devices.

Vex also comes with ready-made themes to make the dialog meet your style, be it on CSS or SASS. It is also compatible with most modern browsers and very light – only under 7kb minified (2kb minified + gzipped).



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