Tag: big things and little things
I had intended these to be far more regular than this, must try harder. A mixture of tips/tools/reviews/articles that you’ll hopefully find useful, I did.
20 cheatsheets for designers and developers http://designshack.co.uk/articles/freebies/weekly-freebies-20-awesome-cheatsheets-for-designers-and-developers/
Review of cross-browser testing tools http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2011/08/07/a-dozen-cross-browser-testing-tools/
3 rules of thumb for web development http://my.opera.com/karlcow/blog/3-rules-of-thumb-for-web-development
How loading times affect your bottom line http://blog.kissmetrics.com/loading-time/
How to make users scroll down your page http://www.conversion-rate-experts.com/scrolling-tips/
50+ useful CSS tools and generators http://www.noupe.com/css/50-useful-css-tools-and-generators-for-developers.html
I have pulled this post out from the archives of my personal blog, I originally wrote it towards the end of 2009 (I think), I believe it still holds true:
“‘Content is king’, how many times have you heard that? Well when it comes to the web, in my experience, it is pretty much a universal truth. The worrying thing is how few businesses seem to realise this, and even if they claim to, how many of them act on it?
This follows on, in some respect, from my earlier post about “design for design’s sake“. There I mused about the appropriateness of design vs what the client/designer ‘thought was best’. The idea of having good, strong, useful and appropriate content follows on from that. Too many businesses seem to think that their web presence starts … Read More »
Someone sent me a link to the Royal Opera House’s app the other day (http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/royal-opera-house/id449056230?mt=8), interesting – does all the things an app should do i.e. presents content, listings, allows you to buy tickets (to a degree).
I then did a bit of research into the app developer, CloudTix, it would seem they have developed very similar (the same) app for a number of arts organisations. Further research confirmed my hunch that this is a white-label product, specifically for organisations using the Tessitura ticketing system – details here http://cloudtix.com/.
This chimed with a thought I had the other day (quite possibly whilst at the AMA Conference). Why can’t this approach by picked up more widely? Ultimately the requirements for many arts organisations are, when it comes to an app, whilst not identical, very similar in function at … Read More »
People in the UK seem to be getting more and more excited about QR codes. When I say ‘people’ I really mean ‘companies and brands’, I’m convinced that for ‘people’ the use of QR codes at present is either baffling, goes unnoticed or is mildly irritating.
If you do want to mess around with QR codes a really (REALLY) easy way to generate them for specific urls can be found by simply following this url: http://chart.apis.google.com/chart?chs=200×200&cht=qr&chl=XXXX where I’ve put the XXXX you simply need to type the url you want to create a QR code for.
Anyway, back to why I’m unconvinced by the way QR codes are currently used.
To start, here is a brief (probably inaccurate) history of the QR code, they were first used widely in Japan in the early 90′s where I’m lead to believe that they … Read More »
I realise this site is currently in a state of half-finished, basic, stripped back horribleness. It’s on my list of things to fix – I’ve wireframed a proper, new, ’finished’ version but haven’t found the time required to bring it to life. Hopefully in the next week or so this can change. Let’s say August will be the month of new things.
Right, I’ve realised that I spend a lot of time reading ‘interesting stuff’ and thought it might be useful if I share some of the best things here on a semi-regular basis.
To start off with are some useful CSS things;
Nth-child CSS selector: http://css-tricks.com/useful-nth-child-recipies/
Check to see if things like nth-child CSS selectors are supported in a particular browser: http://caniuse.com/
Provides feedback on your CSS code: http://csslint.net/
Wow, how’s that for a snappy blog title!
Ok, I realise it sounds slightly dull but utilising RSS feeds can be a useful and relatively straight-forward way to include dynamic information within a site.
I’ve searched far and wide for various RSS integration tools and my favourite is by far and away a RSS parsing class written in php called Simplepie (http://simplepie.org/). Although this hasn’t been developed since version 1.2 was released in 2009 it remains the most straightforward and robust solution I’ve found.
Once you’ve downloaded and included the simplepie.inc file it’s so simple (excuse the pun) to use (here is a very good tutorial on how to set up a simple page featuring one feed). If you want to include multiple feeds there is some helpful info here.
But this is the best solution … Read More »
I’ve recently been looking at all of the admin side of things, a boring but necessary task.
We have all had those jobs that have started to spiral out of control with new and completely ridiculous demands being placed on you left, right and centre or clients who have taken months and months to pay for work completed.
Good admin makes the fun parts of your job (designing and coding) far more straightforward and effective.
I’ve found a number of great articles that outline things far better than me:
http://stuffandnonsense.co.uk/blog/about/contract_killer_the_next_hit A great article with an example contract. I actually used this as the basis of my standard contract
http://sixrevisions.com/project-management/drawing-the-line-6-things-you-shouldnt-tolerate-in-projects/ outlines some things you may want to consider when putting together contracts and processes. Could save a lot of headaches!
http://www.leemunroe.com/freelance-document-templates/ A good list of document templates that you could adapt … Read More »
“There is more to life than simply increasing its speed” (Gandhi)
Last week I was doing some speed tests on what I was expecting to be a relatively slow-load site that I’m working on, the results, whilst not completely shocking, were still surprising. The site was taking up to 8 seconds to load fully over a decent speed connection (and would’ve been much much longer over dial-up). This had been an issue that had been nagging away at me more generally for a while now so I thought it was probably time to look into how to address it.
“Delays under half a second impact business metrics”
I have been reading up on the tests that Google had conducted to see how long the average user would wait for a site to load before giving up and moving on (Bing also conducted similar … Read More »
I have returned from my little driving trip across Europe following some cyclists (www.istanbultoleeds.co.uk).
And I’m straight back into things, working towards getting the final signoff on Will Soden and Pickles and Potter’s sites.
I’m also in the final phase of populating the new site for Run For All. The new site will see a complete redesign and markedly increased functionality, I’m very excited.
So, back to work, a more useful blog will follow in the next week or so.