WPDS - Accessibility | Resources
I didn’t know the Washington Post had a design system or that the system has this good section on accessibility.
I didn’t know the Washington Post had a design system or that the system has this good section on accessibility.
Imagine a collaboratively developed, universal content style guide, based on usability evidence.
Stuart has written this fantastic concise practical guide to privacy for developers and designers. A must-read!
A very handy guide to considering privacy at all stages of digital product design:
This guidance is written for technology professionals such as product and UX designers, software engineers, QA testers, and product managers.
This is a great step-by-step guide to HTML by Estelle.
This is a superb explanation of flexbox—the interactive widgets sprinkled throughout are such a great aid to learning!
The Clearleft newsletter goes out every two weeks on a Thursday. You can peruse the archive to see past editions.
I think it’s a really good newsletter, but then again, I’m the one who writes it. It just kind of worked out that way. In theory, anyone at Clearleft could write an edition of the newsletter.
To make that prospect less intimidating, I put together a document for my colleagues describing how I go about creating a new edition of the newsletter. Then I thought it might be interesting for other people outside of Clearleft to get a peek at how the sausage is made.
So here’s what I wrote…
The description of the newsletter is:
A round-up of handpicked hyperlinks from Clearleft, covering design, technology, and culture.
It usually has three links (maybe four, tops) on a single topic.
The topic can be anything that’s interesting, especially if it’s related to design or technology. Every now and then the topic can be something that incorporates an item that’s specifically Clearleft-related (a case study, an event, a job opening). In general it’s not very salesy at all so people will tolerate the occasional plug.
You can use the “iiiinteresting” Slack channel to find potential topics of interest. I’ve gotten in the habit of popping potential newsletter fodder in there, and then adding related links in a thread.
Imagine you’re telling a friend about something cool you’ve just discovered. You can sound excited. Don’t worry about this looking unprofessional—it’s better to come across as enthusiastic than too robotic. You can put real feelings on display: anger, disappointment, happiness.
That said, you can also just stick to the facts and describe each link in turn, letting the content speak for itself.
If you’re expressing a feeling or an opinion, use the personal pronoun “I”. Don’t use “we” unless you’re specifically referring to Clearleft.
But most of the time, you won’t be using any pronouns at all:
So-and-so has written an article in such-and-such magazine on this-particular-topic.
You might find it useful to have connecting phrases as you move from link to link:
Speaking of some-specific-thing, this-other-person has a different viewpoint.
On the subject of this-particular-topic, so-and-so wrote something about this a while back.
The format of the newsletter is:
Take a look through the archive of previous newsletters to get a feel for it.
Currently the newsletter is called dConstruct from Clearleft. The subject line of every edition is in the format:
dConstruct from Clearleft — Title of the edition
(Note that’s an em dash with a space on either side of it separating the name of the newsletter and the title of the edition)
I often try to come up with a pun-based title (often a punny portmanteau) but that’s not necessary. It should be nice and short though: just one or two words.
Vitaly has rounded up a whole load of accessibility posts. I think I’ve linked to most of them at some point, but it’s great to have them all gathered together in one place.
It all started at Patterns Day…
(Note: you’ll probably need to use Reader mode to avoid taxing your eyes reading this—the colour contrast …doesn’t.)
Sara shares how she programmes with custom properties in CSS. It sounds like her sensible approach aligns quite nicely with Andy’s CUBE CSS methodology.
Oh, and she’s using Fractal to organise her components:
I’ve been using Fractal for a couple of years now. I chose it over other pattern library tools because it fit my needs perfectly — I wanted a tool that was unopinionated and flexible enough to allow me to set up and structure my project the way I wanted to. Fractal fit the description perfectly because it is agnostic as to the way I develop or the tools I use.
Chris has put together one of his indispensable deep dives, this time into responsive images. I can see myself referring back to this when I need to be reminded of the syntax of
…for old CSS problems.
Guidebooks to countries that no longer exist.
The first book will be on the Republic of Venice. There’ll be maps, infographics, and I suspect there’ll be an appearance by Aldus Manutius.
Our first guidebook tells the story of the Republic of Venice, la Serenissima, a 1000-year old state that disappeared in 1797.
If you missed out on Patterns Day this year, you can still get a pale imitation of the experience of being there by watching videos of the talks.
Here are the videos, and if you’re not that into visuals, here’s a podcast of the talks (you can subscribe to this RSS feed in your podcasting app of choice).
On Twitter, Chris mentioned that “It would be nice if the talks had their topic listed,” which is a fair point. So here goes:
It’s fascinating to see emergent themes (other than, y’know, the obvious theme of design systems) in different talks. In comparison to the first Patterns Day, it felt like there was a healthy degree of questioning and scepticism—there were plenty of reminders that design systems aren’t a silver bullet. And I very much appreciated Yaili’s point that when you see beautifully polished design systems that have been made public, it’s like seeing the edited Instagram version of someone’s life. That reminded me of Responsive Day Out when Sarah Parmenter, the first speaker at the very first event, opened everything by saying “most of us are winging it.”
I can see the value in coming to a conference to hear stories from people who solved hard problems, but I think there’s equal value in coming to a conference to hear stories from people who are still grappling with hard problems. It’s reassuring. I definitely got the vibe from people at Patterns Day that it was a real relief to hear that nobody’s got this figured out.
There was also a great appreciation for the “big picture” perspective on offer at Patterns Day. For myself, I know that I’ll be cogitating upon Danielle’s talk and Emil’s talk for some time to come—both are packed full of ineresting ideas.
Good thing we’ve got the videos and the podcast to revisit whenever we want.
And if you’re itching for another event dedicated to design systems, I highly recommend snagging a ticket for the Clarity conference in San Francisco next month.
What a lovely way to walk through the design system underpinning the Guardian website.
Bonus points for using the term “tweak points”!
Who says the sequels can’t be even better than the original? The second Patterns Day was The Empire Strikes Back, The Godfather Part II, and The Wrath of Khan all rolled into one …but, y’know, with design systems.
If you were there, then you know how good it was. If you weren’t, sorry. Audio of the talks should be available soon though, with video following on.
The talks were superb! I know I’m biased becuase I put the line-up together, but even so, I was blown away by the quality of the talks. There were some big-picture questioning talks, a sequence of nitty-gritty code talks in the middle, and galaxy-brain philosophical thoughts at the end. A perfect mix, in my opinion.
Words cannot express how grateful I am to Alla, Yaili, Amy, Danielle, Heydon, Varya, Una, and Emil. They really gave it their all! Some of them are seasoned speakers, and some of them are new to speaking on stage, but all of them delivered the goods above and beyond what I expected.
Big thanks to my Clearleft compadres for making everything run smoothly: Jason, Amy, Cassie, Chris, Trys, Hana, and especially Sophia for doing all the hard work behind the scenes. Trys took some remarkable photos too. He posted some on Twitter, and some on his site, but there are more to come.
And if you came to Patterns Day 2, thank you very, very much. I really appreciate you being there. I hope you enjoyed it even half as much as I did, because I had a ball!
Once again, thanks to buildit @ wipro digital for sponsoring the pastries and coffee, as well as running a fun giveaway on the day. Many thank to Bulb for sponsoring the forthcoming videos. Thanks again to Drew for recording the audio. And big thanks to Brighton’s own Holler Brewery for very kindly offering every attendee a free drink—the weather (and the beer) was perfect for post-conference discussion!
It was incredibly heartwarming to hear how much people enjoyed the event. I was especially pleased that people were enjoying one another’s company as much as the conference itself. I knew that quite a few people were coming in groups from work, while other people were coming by themselves. I hoped there’d be lots of interaction between attendees, and I’m so, so glad there was!
You’ve all made me very happy.
Thank you to @adactio and @clearleft for an excellent #PatternsDay. 🏆— dhuntrods (@dhuntrods) June 29, 2019
Had so many great conversations! Thanks as well to everyone that came and listened to us, you’re all the best.
Well done for yet another fantastic event. The calibre of speakers was so high, and it was reassuring to hear they have the same trials, questions and toil with their libraries. So insightful, so entertaining.— Barry Bloye (@barrybloye) June 29, 2019
Had the most amazing time at the #PatternsDay, catching up with old friends over slightly mad conversations. Huge thanks to @adactio and @clearleft for putting together such warm and welcoming event, and to all the attendees and speakers for making it so special ❤️— Alla Kholmatova (@craftui) June 29, 2019
Had such an amazing time at yesterday’s #PatternsDay. So many notes and thoughts to process Thank you to all the speakers and the folk at @clearleft for organising it. ♥️— Charlie Don’t Surf (@sonniesedge) June 29, 2019
Had an awesome time at #PatternsDay yesterday! Some amazing speakers and got to meet some awesome folk along the way! Big thanks to @adactio and @clearleft for organising such a great event!— Alice Boyd-Leslie (@aboydleslie) June 29, 2019
Absolutely amazing day at #PatternsDay. Well done @adactio and @clearleft. The speakers were great, attendees great and it was fantastic to finally meet some peers face to face. ❤— Dave (@daveymackintosh) June 28, 2019
Had a blast at #PatternsDay !!! Met so many cool ppl— trash bandicoot (@freezydorito) June 28, 2019
I’ve had a hell of a good time at #PatternsDay. It’s been nice to finally meet so many folks that I only get to speak to on here.— Andy Bell (@andybelldesign) June 28, 2019
As expected, the @clearleft folks all did a stellar job of running a great event for us.
Patterns Day is an excellent single-day conference packed full of valuable content about design systems and pattern libraries from experienced practicioners. Way to go @clearleft! 👏🎉 #PatternsDay— Kimberly Blessing (@obiwankimberly) June 28, 2019
Round of applause to @adactio and @clearleft for a great #patternsday today 👏👏👏— Dan Donald (@hereinthehive) June 28, 2019
Big thanks to @adactio and @clearleft for a fantastic #PatternsDay. Left with tons of ideas to take back to the shop. pic.twitter.com/GwEtWrxbK8— Alex 🇪🇺 (@alexandtheweb) June 28, 2019
@adactio thanks Jeremy for organising this fabulous day of inspiring talks in a such a humane format. I enjoyed every minute of it 😊 #patternsday— David Roessli 🏳️🌈 (@roessli) June 28, 2019
An amazing day was had at #PatternsDay. Caught up with friends I hadn’t seen for a while, made some new ones, and had my brain expand by an excellent set of talks. Big hugs to @adactio and the @clearleft team. Blog post to follow next week, once I’ve got my notes in order.— Garrett Coakley (@garrettc) June 28, 2019
Amy’s talk at Patterns Day was absolutely brilliant! Here’s an account of the day from her perspective.
The evident care Jeremy put into assembling the lineup meant an incredible mix of talks, covering the big picture stuff right down to the nitty gritty, and plenty in between.
Her observation about pre-talk nerves is spot-on:
I say all of this because it’s important for me and I think anyone who suffers with anxiety about public speaking, or in general, to recognise that having a sense of impending doom doesn’t mean that doom is actually impending.
Here’s a nice little round-up of Friday’s Patterns Day.
Just look at these fantastic pictures that Trys took (very unobstrusively) at Patterns Day—so rock’n’roll!
Stuart took copious notes during every single talk at Patterns Day—what a star!