[webdev] Web Design Update: August 28, 2009
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Fri Aug 28 06:37:25 CDT 2009
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 8, Issue 09, August 28, 2009.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web design
++ISSUE 09 CONTENTS.
SECTION ONE: New references.
What's new at the Web Design Reference site?
New links in these categories:
02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
03: EVALUATION & TESTING.
09: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
12: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Display Size and Resolution Accessibility
"...Various web sites provide statistics on the popularity of the
possible resolutions, some with stats for free, many for a fee. But be
aware: These stats are gathered from web sites that may very well have
completely different user demographics than the demographics for your
site. Again, you must identify your audience and try to ascertain the
type of computer systems they are most likely to have before you make
Using Title in Basic Form Elements
By Ken Nakata.
"For a long time, I've been an advocate of using <label> whenever
possible and generally shunning the use of title attributes whenever I
could use a label. I felt this way especially about forms buried in
HTML tables. In fact, back in 2001 when Doug Wakefield and I were
running through the testing that developed in the Access Board's
Guidance on HTML Forms, we told developers to always use explicit
labels when putting forms into tables..."
Disability Style Guide
By National Center on Disability and Journalism.
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
CSS 3: Progress
By Alex Russell.
"I've been in a pretty heated email conversation over the past couple
of days regarding how effective (or not) the CSS Working Group has
been. I've been pretty brutal in my critique in the past (and much of
it still stands), but there's reason to hope..."
CSS 3 Flexible Box Model
By Dion Almaer.
"Alex Russell has been having a really interesting discussion with some
standards folks about what is wrong on the Web right now, and it
narrowed down to discuss CSS variables as a case study..."
CSS Code Structure for HTML 5: Some Useful Guidelines
By Antonio Lupetti.
"In this post I want to illustrate some useful guidelines about how to
implement a well organized CSS code structure in view of introduction
of HTML 5 markup language. They are not general rules but simple
suggestions you can follow in order to improve the readability,
manageability, and general organization of CSS code. These suggestions
are especially useful if you have to work on complex CSS files that
otherwise can be difficult to manage..."
+03: EVALUATION & TESTING.
The Value of Web Site Usability Evaluations
By Krause Berg.
"Despite how much I rely on site audits, I'm well aware that some
companies don't put much stock in them. In fact, many gurus from the
usability industry don't like them at all. They have a point." (Kim
Volume is the Wrong Way to Measure Web Success
By Gerry McGovern.
"Are you measuring the right things? Could growth in your page views in
fact be a negative trend?"
How to Combine Multiple Research Methods: Practical Triangulation
By Patrick Kennedy.
"...triangulation is the act of combining several research methods to
study one thing. They overlap each other somewhat, being complimentary
at times, contrary at others. This has the effect of balancing each
method out and giving a richer and hopefully truer account."
Standards.Next - Cognition and Accessibility
September 19, 2009.
London, United Kingdom
September 22, 2009.
London, United Kingdom
Adobe Flash Accessibility: Best Practices for Design
By Erik Johnson.
"Norman Nielsen once said that "About 99% of the time, the presence of
Flash on a website constitutes a usability disease." However, this
statement was made in 2000 when Flash lacked many of the accessibility
functions that are available today..."
ARIA - A Brief Introduction
By Silvia Pfeiffer.
"...Getting straight to the point: ARIA mostly cares about giving
screen control to the keyboard (away from the mouse) and about exposing
semantic information, such that vision-impaired people have a way to
interact with Web content and screen readers can read out useful
By Chris Coyier.
Database is for content. HTML is for describing and displaying content.
Christopher's presentation slides.
What Developers Want from HTML5 (Bruce Lawson Interview)
"Lachy caught up with the world famous Blorsen (aka. Bruce Lawson), one
of Opera Software's developer relations guys, about what developers
want from HTML5. Bruce and Lachy also discuss recent happenings in the
W3C's HTML Working Group, such as new alternative drafts, and a few of
the open issues faced by the group..."
SpoolCast: The Web as a Conversation
By Jared Spool.
"Guest Ginny Redish speaks about writing on the web."
Take My Hand: Faceted/Guided Navigation
By Sarah Selser.
"There are times when the majority of users agree on how an item should
be classified, but when dealing with an extensive list of items, this
is rarely the case.* Faceted, or 'guided' navigation works well in
these situations because it allows the user to access the item via
multiple 'facets'. Here are a few good examples.."
+09: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
New Co-Chairs for HTML Working Group
By Tim Berners-Lee.
"As you may know by now, Chris Wilson (Microsoft) has stepped down
as co-Chair of the group..."
HTML 5 - What I'm Watching
By Wendy Chisholm.
"I have recently become glued to my computer monitor as the latest
reality show "HTML 5" unfolds. Since I was a participant in previous
W3C reality shows (both seasons of WCAG), I understand some of the
history and sympathize with many of the participants/actors. Here's my
take on where things are and where I hope they are going..."
HTML 5: What's Hot, What's Not
By Bruce Lawson.
"As HTML 5 hurtles towards Last Call (or 'first last call' as co-chair
Sam Ruby called it) there has been a lot of tidying up of the spec..."
Willful Violation of the Spec
By Sam Ruby.
"At the present time, the front page of my weblog does not validate.
>From what I can tell, I am using an extension point in a manner
totally consistent with the intent of that grammar, and in a way that
produces useful results, at least with Firefox. My only sin is that
I'm using that attribute in a way that was unanticipated by the authors
of the SVG..."
HTML5 RDFa Arguments
By Jeni Tennison.
"When I came back from holiday, I caught up with the recent discussions
around RDFa and HTML5. It's exhausting reading so many posts
repetitively reiterating the positions of people who all have the best
of intentions but fundamentally different priorities. And such a shame
that so much energy is spent on fruitless discussion when it could be
spent at the very least improving specifications, if not testing,
implementing, experimenting or otherwise in some very minor way
changing the world..."
Maxwell's Silver Hammer: RDFa and HTML5 's Microdata
"...Confusion. Confusion because the HTML5 specification is being
drafted specifically to counter several initiatives that the W3C has
been nurturing over the last decade: Microdata over RDF/RDFa; HTML
over XHTML; Reverse DNS identifiers over namespaces, and URIs; the
elimination of non-visual cues, not only for metadata, but also for the
visually challenged. And respect. There is no respect for the W3C among
many in the HTML Working Group. And I know I lose more respect for the
organization the closer we get to HTML5 Last Call...In fact, HTML
Working Group is a bit of a misnomer. We don't have HTML anymore, we
have a Web OS...Accessibility shouldn't be added begrudgingly,
woodenly, resentfully. It should be integrated into the HTML, not just
pasted on to quiet folks because LC is coming up..."
Real-World Usage Sometimes Includes Things You Don't Like
By Ben Adida.
"...In other words, at this point, If HTML5 fails to specify how to
include RDFa markup, then the HTML Working Group has failed to capture
What Improvements to Accessibility are Offered by HTML5?
By Austin Cheney.
"Some stuff that comes to mind - there's probably lots more..."
"The way HTML's align attribute interacts with CSS properties is only
really explained in the HTML5 spec. However, the explanation there is
quite opaque. Here there is a clearer version with more explanation..."
25+ Great HTML 5 Resources to Get You Started
"...In this article tripwire magazine provides you with the resources
you need to get overview of what HTML 5 is, to get started and to
understand how you can benefit from it at this early point in time..."
Why is HTML Suddenly Interesting?
By Simon St. Laurent.
"Web developers couldn't stop talking about HTML and its evolution
during the 1990s. New features were usually tempting, though not always
workable, and the Browser Wars meant that vendors competed by providing
and copying features. The HTML standardization process had its twists
and turns, moving from the IETF to the W3C, developing standards that
reflected immediate needs and tried to channel developer energy in more
Absent Elements and Validation
By Richard Clark.
"We received the below question from Guy Carberry who was wondering
what affect changing the doctype on your HTML or XHTML pages to the
HTML 5 doctype will have on those elements that are deprecated current
This Summer in HTML 5 - Episode 33
By Mark Pilgrim.
"...So what new and exciting stuff has been added to HTML 5 this
A Shared Encyclopedia of Typefaces
By Jason Santa Maria et al.
"In a nutshell, Typedia is a community website to classify typefaces
and educate people about them. Think of it like a mix between IMDb and
Wikipedia, but just for type. Anyone can join, add, and edit pages for
typefaces or for the people behind the type..."
Web form design guidelines: an eyetracking study
Chui Chui Tan.
"Forms can be found on almost every website; from contact or feedback
forms in small websites to bank details in commerce websites, from
registration to communication, from banking to searching."
Managing UI Complexity
By Brandon Walkin.
"Interface complexity is an issue every designer wrestles with when
designing a reasonably sophisticated application. A complex interface
can reduce user effectiveness, increase the learning curve of the
application, and cause users to feel intimidated and overwhelmed..."
20 Tips for Writing for the Web
By Eric Reiss.
"There are a lot of writing tips floating around cyberspace. Most deal
with general writing skills, which are actually less important than you
might think. The truth is, most online readers don't care much about
grammar, spelling, and punctuation as long as they get the information
they need. Here are some of the many tips I give our clients during my
popular 'Writing for the web' workshop..."
Top 10 UX Myths
By Keith Lang.
"...If the Design is a Good One, You Don't Need to Test It...People
Don't Change...Design to Avoid Clicks...UX Design Stops at the Edges of
the Product...If you Have Great Search, You Don't Need Great
Information Architecture...Can't Decide? Make it a Preference...Design
Always with Implementation in Mind...People Know What They
Like...People Read...The Design Has to be Original..."
The Dark Side Of Usability: When Business Goals & User Goals Collide
By Lance Loveday.
"We've all experienced it at some point; the sneaking suspicion that
those we've chosen to trust may not be entirely worthy..."
Twitter Postings: Iterative Design
By Jakob Nielsen.
"We made a timeline message more punchy, credible, and viral through 5
rounds of redesign."
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
+12: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
Cascading Style Sheets Information.
Evaluation & Testing Information.
Information Architecture Information.
Miscellaneous Web Information.
Sites & Blogs Listing.
Standards, Guidelines & Pattern Information.
[Section two ends.]
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+ SIGN OFF.
Until next time,
Laura L. Carlson
Information Technology Systems and Services
University of Minnesota Duluth
Duluth, MN U.S.A. 55812-3009
mailto:lcarlson at d.umn.edu
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