I also think the number of situations in which an SPA architecture can be recommended is dwindling, chiefly due to how good the web platform has become (and how much better it’s getting every day). And because so much of the rest of the ‘struggle stack’ (transpilers, unique dialects, etc.) was built to get around gaps in the web platform that no longer exist, the use cases for these tools is dwindling in tandem.
This is good news: not only can we avoid piling up transient knowledge about a seemingly endless stream of dependencies, we can also eject from the routine stress of those dependencies changing or breaking under our feet and throwing wrenches into our workflows — all while delivering more robust and performant websites to end users.
Thursday, September 28th, 2023
Wednesday, September 27th, 2023
There are absolutely use-cases for SPAs (media sites, primarily). Most of the other things we use them for make the user experience notably worse or band-aid over the real underlying issues without addressing them.
I suspect most people on opposing sides of the Tailwind debate actually complete agree on Tailwind itself. I don’t think we disagree on atomic CSS, or utility classes; I think our contention comes from the valuations we made long before we ever chose our tools. Where one of us sees a selling point, the other sees a flaw.
This is very much in line with what I’ve been talking about in my presentation on declarative design.
As Jeremy Keith put it so well: where it comes to styling, Builders want imperative programming; they want to specify what they want, where they want, how they want it. No surprises.
Crafters instead want declarative programming; they understand how to wield the power of creating rules of governance within a complex system, and wish to use that power, rather than micromanaging the browser.
Tuesday, September 26th, 2023
Bruce raises an interesting question with media playing in popovers—shouldn’t the media pause when the popover is closed? I agree with Bruce that this is a common use case that should be covered declaratively.
Analytics serves as a proxy for understanding people, a crutch we lean into. Until eventually, instead of solving problems, we are just sitting at our computer counting ghosts.
This article is spot-on!
All accessibility overlays are bad. Except the ones by overlay vendors planning to sue me. Those ones are good and I highly recommend them, despite what I may say during the video. If someone is asking for an accessibility overlay, either send them here or to overlayfactsheet.com.
Saturday, September 23rd, 2023
Engineers who care about the open culture of the web should recognize that the threats to that culture come not only from Digital Enclosure by large, private companies of the most important pieces of the web.
They should also recognize the risks of Technical Enclosure, and the non-technical value of the #ViewSource affordance in perpetuating the open culture of web development.
Thursday, September 21st, 2023
I endorse this statement.
This free day-long online event all about accessibility and inclusive design is happening right now. You can join live, or catch up on the talks that have already happened, like the excellent talks from Russ Weakly and Manuel Matuzović.
Wednesday, September 20th, 2023
This advice works both ways:
Tuesday, September 19th, 2023
A solid update to Andy’s four-years old CSS reset. Best of all, every single line comes with an explanation. So if you don’t like the reasoning, don’t use that line.
I don’t run analytics on this website. I don’t care which articles you read, I don’t care if you read them. I don’t care about which post is the most read or the most clicked. I don’t A/B test, I don’t try to overthink my content.
CSS is better now. It’s not perfect, but it’s better than its ever been, and it’s better than tailwind. Give it another try. Don’t reach for big globs of libraries to paper over the issues you think it has.
This is why it’s so important to re-evaluate technology decisions.
I’ve seen people, lead and principal engineers, who refuse to learn modern JS, insisting that since it was bad in 2006 its bad today. Worse still is some of these people have used their leadership positions to prevent the use of modern JS.
Joanne McNeil on the retroactive pigeonholing of downright weird sci-fi writers like Philip K. Dick, JG Ballard and Octavia Butler:
The snobbery against science fiction in the past and today’s cartoon icons of some of its weirdest authors comes from the same root: an establishment that doesn’t know how to read or appreciate it.
And she absolutely nails the straitjacketed feeling I get from a lot of new sci-fi that’s laudable in its politics but lacking in other ways:
I suspect those authors are drawn to the genre for the thing that increasingly frustrates me about it: the way science fiction is mined for road maps and potential solutions in real situations of uncertainty and disaster. The way it’s “smart person” literature about systems with hyper-competent protagonists. I’m here for the losers. The losers are my people.
Monday, September 18th, 2023
Vitaly provides some sensible rebuttals.
Friday, September 15th, 2023
It looks like it will be a great tool for prototyping. A tool to help developers that don’t have experience with CSS and layout to have a starting point. As someone who spent some time building smoke and mirrors prototypes for UX research, I welcome tools like this.
What concerns me is the assertion that this is production-grade code when it simply is not.
Thursday, September 14th, 2023
This is quite mesmerising—click on an image that takes your fancy; see it surrounded by related images; repeat.
Tuesday, September 12th, 2023
Sunday, September 10th, 2023
The slides and transcript from a great talk by Maggie Appleton, including this perfect description of the vibes we get from large language models:
It feels like they’re either geniuses playing dumb or dumb machines playing genius, but we don’t know which.