WP Rig: A primer

Before we get started, you might want to know a bit more about what WP Rig is, and where it came from. WP Rig is an open source WordPress community project [Morten Rand-Hendrikson] started in 2018 to make the process of building modern, progressive themes easier for everyone.

It now has a long list of contributors from the WordPress community and beyond, and is rapidly becoming the go-to starter theme and build process for beginners and advanced developers.

WP Rig started off as a simple idea: we wanted to build a tool to help you do what you do best, build accessible, feature-rich, and visually stunning WordPress themes for every person who uses the web. We also wanted to take some of the heavy lifting of staying up-to-date on coding and performance best practices off your shoulders and automate it in the process.

The result is a tool that helps you build advanced, progressive WordPress themes using the latest web and coding standards, performance best practices, and development tools. You write PHP, CSS, and JavaScript. WP Rig lints, optimizes, and minifies your code to make your theme and the site it runs on as fast and performant as possible.

Out of the box you get a fully-styled theme built for performance and maintainability. And as you work, WP Rig does all the heavy lifting of optimizing your code to meet and exceed modern best practices using a custom build process. And that’s not all. WP Rig helps you write better code by checking that you follow WordPress coding standards and letting you know how to fix your code when you make mistakes.

It provides current and upcoming performance best practices including in-body style sheets, conditional pre-loading of content, and code minification all out of the box. It ships with optional WordPress templates you can use to customize the appearance and behavior of your theme. It uses CSS Grid and Flexbox for modern layouts and dramatically simplified HTML markup. And it has full support for Gutenberg blocks, and full integration with the AMP plugin if the end user activates it.

That’s WP Rig in a nutshell. Now let’s dive in and see how we can make WP Rig work for you.

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