Posted in Moodle, Technical stuff, user interface design

Theme: Boost – settings & plugins

Let’s start playing with Boost’s settings and see if we can make things a little nicer [spoiler: you CAN]

Boost Theme Settings

You can access these Settings through the Site Administration Menu, Appearance tab, Themes section, and select Boost.

General Settings ‘Presets’

Boost - settings
Boost – General Settings ‘Presets’

Theme preset

There are only two available: default.scss, and plain.scss. If you switch this to plain.scss, this is what happens…

Boost Theme Preset
Boost Theme Preset “plain.scss”

I don’t know about you… but I find this just a different flavour of yuck. Everything being LARGER… it might actually be useful if your audience is vision impaired.

What further horrors are contained in these Presets? Look – there is a way to add more Presets from a repository on Moodle.net, or one of your own design!

Additional theme preset files

I was not hopeful as I clicked the link to the Moodle.net Boost Preset repository… but LOOK! Wow! They take Boost and make it nicer to look at! Maybe I should be thinking of Boost like Bootstrap… its a BASE THEME that you need to build on. Still don’t love the Site Admin menu – but that’s okay.

Download the Preset file of your choice, upload into Additional Theme Preset Files, and select it in Theme Preset. Easy Peasy!

General Settings ‘Brand Colour’

Boost - settings 2
Boost – General Settings ‘Brand Colour”

Hurrah! I can add a nice bit of secondary colour to Boost. Don’t use the colour picker palette, that’s for people who want to be yelled at by Marketing… get the HEX colour code from your Brand Guide and type that in.

You want a nice medium-toned colour so it can be seen on black (such as the links on the Footer in the above image), as well as work as a text colour on white and white reversed out on the button colour. You only get one choice… so pick well!

Advanced Settings

Boost - settings 3
Boost – Advanced Settings

Do you want to add to the stylesheet, and you know your CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) and SCSS (Sassy Cascading Style Sheets)?

  • Yes? Excellent! Have a play with putting code into here.
  • No? Click back over to the General Settings tab and forget this part ever existed. Seriously – its not for messing about with.

I am not confident with CSS, and didn’t even know that SCSS even existed until I clicked on this tab… so I’ll be skipping this.

Boost Theme Plugins

Boost - plugin fixes for theme
some of the plugins available to ‘fix’ Boost

I easily found Plugins designed to overcome some of the shortfalls of Boost. Personally, I’d be very tempted to try out Boost Navigation Fumbling plugin and the Custom Navigation plugin… sounds like they might fix some of my personal hates.

Go to Moodle.org’s Plugins repository, type Boost into the search and go wild!

While you are there… check out some Themes based on Boost… you might save yourself a lot of work customising Boost yourself.

 

Author:

-~Authenticity, Creativity, Community~- - eLearning Consultant & Trainer & Superhero - User Interface & Course specialist for Moodle & Totara LMS - I also enjoy researching into the Humanities - esp Cultural Studies, the Arts&Crafts Movement, and Medieval Guilds - warning: my hair colour changes a lot -

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