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Writing CSS In 2023: Is It Any Different Than A Few Years Ago?

11-01-2024 11:11 AM

CSS is evolving faster than ever. With all of the new features that are now available — and forthcoming — since we got Flexbox and Grid years ago, the way we write CSS is evolving, too. In this article, Geoff Graham shares which features have had the most influence on his current approaches to CSS, as well as those that have not (at least yet).

Is there anything in the front-end world that’s evolving faster than CSS these days? After what seemed like a long lull following blockbusters Flexbox and Grid, watching CSS release new features over the past few years has been more like watching a wild game of rugby on the telly. The pace is exciting, if not overwhelming at the same time.

But have all these bells and whistles actually changed the way you write CSS? New features have certainly influenced the way I write CSS today, but perhaps not quite as radically as I would have expected.
And while I’ve seen no shortage of blog posts with high-level examples and creative experiments of all these newfangled things that are available to us, I have yet to see practical applications make their way into production or everyday use. I remember when Sass started finding its way into CSS tutorials, often used as the go-to syntax for code examples and snippets. I’m not exactly seeing that same organic adoption happen with, say, logical properties, and we’ve had full browser support for them for about two years now.
This isn’t to rag on anyone or anything. I, for one, am stoked beyond all heck about how CSS is evolving. Many of the latest features are ones we have craved for many, many years. And indeed, there are several of them finding their way into my CSS. Again, not drastically, but enough that I’m enjoying writing CSS more now than ever.