Maintaining Responsive Integrity in WordPress

Mastering RWD is difficult enough, doing it with a WordPress theme and no knowledge its intended use or future content is even harder. In this talk you’ll learn how to create WordPress themes that will maintain their responsive integrity over time.

You’ll also learn how to build tools and strategies that you can implement in WordPress to give your customers and clients greater control of content. User Admins can either glorify your site or compromise it to the point it becomes unusable. Help them become masters of their own “domain”.

Jesse Friedman will utilize specific coded examples to help you understand the tools and advantages of building Responsive sites with WordPress. On top of all that Jesse will show you how he used these techniques to create dynamic web environments, while taking advantage of the user’s device and landscape.


  • @professor Jesse Friedman, Dir of Web & Interface Dev (Astonish Results LLC)



62M+ wordpress sites. 14-16% of all websites (1 out of 6!). CNN News. Mashable. UPS. msnbc. Quartz. Minimal Monkey. This year, more people will be viewing the web on mobile screens than normal screens.

After you’ve put together the most amazing site and theme, the “user admins” get lost in bad content pretty quickly. We make the assumption that people know how to maintain the site after we’re gone, that they will make good choices. The first content choice that impacts your design is media.

The static dimensions WP adds cause problems for responsive designs. See this slide or this plugin.
How do you control menu bloat? Provide additional resources (menu areas) for other menu/nav methods, and educate your user admins about them. RWD gives us opportunities to use menus in different, collapsed ways.
Featured images
Identify an image related to this content that isn’t stuck inside the content. This lets you use it in any way you want without the user admins having to specify. Bates College uses featured posts a lot.


I like his attempt to create a more interactive presentation experience by asking people to comment directly on the presentation site during the presentation. Needs work, don’t make me scroll the slide to comment. Something akin to his slide about white space, which he mentioned that he hasn’t seen in any of the major responsive themes because there are industry patterns focused on touch instead of the experience you should be providing for users.

Dynamic web environments: real-time content modifications based on data to serve up a different experience to users. How is this not an identity-driven portal? Maybe because it’s breaking the mold about how we learn your identity: “i’m on a phone, i’m at this location” ends up resorting/reshuffling the content so stuff that is most relevant to you is prominent.