This rocks pretty hard. I’ve got a ‘new site’ framework I use on each and every project consisting of the latest WordPress release and all of my favorite plugins. I maintain the framework on a consistent basis and it lets me get up and running with a customized WordPress install from the start. Also included is a custom, empty theme I base every website on.
Site frameworks are a very smart way to save time. If you’re not using one, you’re doing yourself a disservice by spending your time downloading and re-downloading the same set of files every time you start a project. Getting a development site up and running the way you like shouldn’t be a half day affair, it should be a half minute affair.
This whole HTML5 thing has caught on like wildfire, you should review the HTML5 Boilerplate by Paul Irish and Divya Manian because that smartness should not go un-recognized. If you don’t use the Boilerplate completely, I’m quite sure they’re doing a few things you should be.
I’ll be checking this out in detail as soon as possible and applying what’s appropriate to my New Site Framework.