Adult training represents a way into coding for millions of women who never learnt when they were younger. Meetups such as those run by organisations such as Women Who Code and Codebar can introduce women to the collaborative, problem-solving world of programming.
Jason breaks down the myths of inputs being tied to device form factors. Instead, given the inherent uncertainty around input, the only sensible approach is progressive enhancement.
Now is the time to experiment with new forms of web input. The key is to build a baseline input experience that works everywhere and then progressively enhance to take advantage of new capabilities of devices if they are available.
I really, really like this approach. I’ve used something similar in my responsive design workshops, where I get people to break things down into nouns and verbs (objects and actions). I think there’s a lot of crossover with good URL design here too—this is kind of like REST for UX designers.
Some good thoughts in here about writing scalable CSS …although the finger-pointing at sites (that are shipping at scale) reminds me a bit of that quote by copywriter Paul Butterworth: “Where the heck were you when the page was blank?”
Well, this is rather lovely!
I nodded along with host Jen Simmons and guest Jeremy Keith saying some very smart things about the web and its roots as the El train cut across Philadelphia. But at the 48-minute mark things got weird, because Jen and Jeremy basically started writing my column for me while I listened.
Read on for some great advice on conquering your inner critic.
I’m so proud of Charlotte right now: last week she gave a conference talk and today she has an article published in A List Apart. Superb work on both fronts!
She does a great job of talking through a collaborative exercise to help teams move from thinking in pages to thinking in patterns.
Very thoughtful and sensible thinking from Paul.
Alla has taken the ideas she presented in her superb talk at Responsive Day Out and published them as a great article in A List Apart.
Every single word that Lyza has written here speaks to me so, so much.
I have no idea what I’m doing and I’m nervous about messing up, but I keep doing this week after week because it feels important.
Get out of my head, Lyza!
More thoughts on the lack of a performance culture, prompted by the existence of Facebook Instant:
In my experience, the biggest barrier to a high-performance web is this: the means of production are far removed from the means of delivery. It’s hard to feel the performance impact of your decisions when you’re sitting on a T3 line in front of a 30 inch monitor. And even if you test on real devices (as you should), you’re probably doing it on a fast wifi network, not a spotty 3G connection. For most of us, even the ones I would describe as pro-performance, everything in the contemporary web design production pipeline works against the very focus required to keep the web fast.
Zeldman looks back at Stewart Butterfield’s brilliant 5K contest. We need more of that kind of thinking today:
As one group of web makers embraces performance budgets and the eternal principles of progressive enhancement, while another (the majority) worships at the altar of bigger, fatter, slower, the 5K contest reminds us that a byte saved is a follower earned.
On the fifteenth anniversary of A Dao Of Web Design people who make websites share their thoughts.
Paul Ford’s is a zinger:
I don’t know if the issues raised in “A Dao of Web Design” can ever be resolved, which is why the article seems so prescient. After all, the Tao Te Ching is 2500 years old and we’re still working out what it all means. What I do believe is that the web will remain the fastest path to experimenting with culture for people of any stripe. It will still be here, alive and kicking and deployed across billions of computing machines, in 2030, and people will still be using it to do weird, wholly unexpected things.
A superb piece by Ross Penman on the importance of being true to the spirit of the web.
Focus on what you want to learn; not what you think you should learn.
There is a lot of pressure out there: to learn new things, to spend all your time coding, to be the super developer. I now believe that to be impossible and unhealthy. It means you aren’t living a balanced life and it also means that you’re living under constant stress and pressure.
This is quite remarkable. Now that the Galaxy Zoo project from Zooniverse has successfully classified all its data (already a remarkable achievement), its volunteers are now collaborating on writing a scientific paper.
There’s something going on here. This isn’t just a “cool” or “cute” link—this is the first stirring of something entirely new that is made possible by network technology.
A gorgeous interactive visualisation of our local galactic neighbourhood.
Zooniverse have done it again. Now you can help in the hunt for sources of gravitational lensing.
It’s informative. It’s fun. It has genuine scientific value.
This issue of A List Apart is a great double-whammy. Lara Swanson has a ton of practical tips for front-end performance enhancements, and Brian dives deep into making your own icon fonts.
Chris takes a look at all the different ways you can use SVG today.
Excellent journalism combined with excellent art direction into something that feels just right for the medium of the web.
A peak behind the scenes at the responsive design and development workflow at Bearded. It makes a lot of sense.
The kickass articles just keep on comin’. This one from Dave is a great overview of options for dealing with images in responsive designs.
A really great article from Paul that simultaneously takes a high-level view of the web while also focusing on the details. A lot of work went into this.
Josh gives a blow-by-blow account of he created a custom icon font for an upcoming redesign of the Clearleft website: completely scalable and resolution-independent.
I truly believe it won’t be all that long until bitmap image formats will be the exception rather than the rule on the web.
A great article by Hannah, focusing on the Long Web—it isn’t about the quantity of data you’re publishing; it’s the quality. This builds nicely on the article I linked to recently about digital scarcity.
How about this for a trip down memory lane—a compendium of articles from over a decade of A List Apart, also available as a Readlist epub. It’s quite amazing just how good this free resource is.
The only thing to fault is that, due to some kind of clerical error, one of my articles has somehow found its way onto this list.
If this were Twitter, you’d be at-replying me with the hashtag “humblebrag”, wouldn’t you?
Samantha does an excellent job of explaining how useful style tiles can be for visual design and iteration.
A lovely piece of mainstream news reporting on Galaxy Zoo and the other Zooniverse projects, and the broader role of Citizen Science.
A great article from Sara Wachter-Boettcher on crafting future-friendly content. The content prioritisation described here mirrors what I’ve been doing in workshops.
I love these sketchnotes from my presentation at Webstock.
I can’t fave this picture enough. One moment of Webstock captured by Michael B. Johnson.
A terrific article from Wilto detailing the thinking that went into the Boston Globe’s responsive image techniques and how browser pre-caching is now throwing a spanner in the works.
Brighton hacker Jason Hotchkiss demos his music-generating lava lamps in this promo video for the Brighton Maker Faire taking place the day after dConstruct.
One of the more frightening things I've ever seen on the internet.
Superb article by Ethan on calculating percentages for liquid layouts. Read it. Do it.
New Zealand is enacting one of the most draconian unfair ISP policing policies in the Western world. "Section 92 of the Copyright Amendment Act assumes Guilt Upon Accusation and forces the termination of internet connections and websites without evidence, without a fair trial, and without punishment for any false accusations of copyright infringement."
This article is an oldie but a goodie. I find myself referring to it all the time: "Beating typographic correctness out of (X)HTML: more than you ever wanted to know about dashes, spaces, curly quotes, and other vagaries of online typography."
An experiment in human storytelling, using a photographic heartbeat of 3,214 images to document an Eskimo whale hunt in Barrow, Alaska.
This article by George Saunders had me giggling from start to finish.
Malarkey has launched his latest project: For A Beautiful Web is a series of web design master class training workshops covering topics including visual design for the web, best-practice XHTML mark-up and CSS, Microformats and practical web accessâ€¦
A holding page for Malarkey's upcoming series of workshops. Add you name if your interested.
Here's the in-depth lowdown on the CSS Eleven supergroup announced by Andy at Web Directions South last week.
Malarkey's got a brand new bag... if by "bag" you mean "website". And a very nice bag it is too.
An ingenious alarm clock that runs away if you don't turn it off quickly enough.
There's been a steady increase in talk around continuous partial attention (what with Twitter and all) so I here's the mother lode: Linda Stone waxing lyrical and expanding our vocabularies.
Jason Kottke on the still-ludicrous imbalance at most tech conferences. This issue isn't going to go away. Conference organisers need to stop being part of the problem and become part of the solution.
A great hands-on article on the benefits of playing with paper.
Mark has written a great article for ALA, focusing on one aspect of good typography: whitespace.
Andy showed me some pages from the book over video iChat today. It looks great.
Weep not, Ethan! SVG lives... possibly in Safari and Dashboard.
Andy is selling Jon's socks for charity. Bid early, bid often.