StageDive, as its subtitle denotes, is a theme/suite of stacks aimed at building presentations. The advantage over building your presentation with Keynote© or its Micro$oft equivalent, is that you can build your presentation with the app that you use every day – RapidWeaver.
StageDive arrives with its own dedicated theme and a suite of five stacks. The theme automatically adds the default formatting and the navigation to your presentation. Everything else can be designed just as you please. StageDive will allow you to place almost any stack on the page, including 3rd party navigation, or galleries.
The default stacks are: StageDive – the base stack which automatically adds the first child slide, Fixed Position – allows you to place floating stacks such as buttons in the corners of your slide, MediaPlayer – integrates video and audio, Slide – standard child stack and VerticalContainer – arranges slides vertically.
The difference to a standard webpage is that a) Upcoming slides and speaker notes may be may easily be viewed and b) The next slide may be called via the space bar.
Theme – Choice of nine themes plus 'Theme Builder' (not yet available)
Transition Style – Six transition effects
Transition Speed – Default, Fast, Slow
Centre Vertically – Active by default
Navigation Controls – Active by default
Controls Area – Bottom Right, Edges
Progress Bar – Active by default
Bar Height – px
Page Number – Deactivated by default
Timing – In seconds
Image Border – Deactivated by default
Background – Theme Default, Custom Colour, Image, Video
Transition Style – Six transition options
Transition Speed – Default, Fast, Slow
Speaker Notes – Deactivated by default
StageDive is ideal for online presentations and if you're actually giving a keynote and have a second monitor, the possibility to view upcoming slides and slide notes is perfect.
If you take a look at the Journal demo pages – Photography, Travel and eJournal, you'll find that the Photography and the Travel Journal categories may be navigated via the large slider images (JW's Moving Box) at the top of the page, whilst the simpler eJournal demo displays a list of articles with the slider toggled to 'off'.
The About page displays an info panel with a single image and there is a Contact and a Disclaimer page. Each page has a search button above the menu bar with which the content can be explored.
As with previous Rapidpages projects, Journal's contemporary design is down-to-earth, focusing on content rather than flashy presentation, making the project ideal for displaying a portfolio, or a travel blog without distractions.
The blog content is divided into Categories, e.g. Paris, or Architecture and subcategories, e.g. Day One, Day Two; or Buildings, Interior. The admin pages (five in all) are clearly layed out and Jochen has thoughtfully provided explanations for their usage. Each admin page has a sidebar menu that allows you to move from one page to the next and the slider and images may be toggled on or off when not needed.
Journal is another great starting point for Total CMS newbies (setting up the blog can be confusing), but it's also an ideal solution, if you're looking to build a client site.
According to the website, each Modular theme comes with a specialized theme Stack. The first of these is Splash which arrives with one theme stack and three Modular stacks: Condition, Section and Slider.
Building a Modular site involves a Header page with theme stacks. One or more Splash Theme stacks are inserted into the Header page. If you have ten pages, you may have a single Splash stack which will then display on every page, or you can add ten Splash/Condition stacks; one for each page. The Condition stacks contain instructions for inserting each header from the header page into the appropriate content page.
In a similar fashion, you also need to add a Footer page. The content from the footer page is then automatically added to every page of your project.
The content pages may be either standard RW pages, or Stacks pages into which you can add any content of your choice, including the Section and Slider stacks that come with the theme. The Section stack is a full width stack by default. The content width and the content colours are defined within the stack settings.
The Slider stack is a nice slider in which the transition (29 options) for each image is set individually. The use of the Slider stack is not confined to the Modular themes, which is great news.
When you view your preview, you can click the button that appears at the foot of the page to load the partials – i.e. the header and the footer.
Splash itself is an interesting theme that many will like. It has an animated wave below the Header and a blue-black footer (editable in the Splash stack). The header can be set to any colour you please including gradients or images with, or without a colour overlay and stacks. The header will also display the Slider stack.
The Splash theme automatically adds two menus – a centred menu bar without dropdowns and a floating hamburger menu that displays all your project pages including submenus.
Splash is delivered with a demo project and with a starter project. It's advisable to duplicate the starter project and use it as a basis for your new webpages.
Splash – Contains all of the settings for your project page including all colours and fonts.
Condition – Show – only on specific pages (comma separated list), on all pages except (comma separated list).
Section – Content Width, Colours, Section ID, Section Class
Slider – Image Alignment, Slider Height (%), Slider Hang Time, Transition Time, Autoplay, Show Navigation only on Hover, Show Bar Timer, Slider Colours
The modular build of Splash is an interesting concept, especially for the less experienced Weaver. It doesn't have the steep learning curve that some frameworks have; it can be used with standard RW pages or with Stacks pages, but it is flexible enough to build even the most complicated page.
I look forward to seeing more modular themes from 1LD.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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