[webdev] Web Design Update: December 29, 2009
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Tue Dec 29 02:42:38 CST 2009
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 8, Issue 27, December 29, 2009.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web design
++ISSUE 27 CONTENTS.
SECTION ONE: New references.
What's new at the Web Design Reference site?
New links in these categories:
02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
05: EVALUATION & TESTING.
07: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
13: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Web Site Design Suggestions for People with Dyslexia
By John Rochford.
"Dyslexia is a learning disorder that affects reading, writing,
spelling and language. It is diagnosed in people of all levels of
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
CSS3 Borders, Backgrounds and Box-Shadows
By Zi Bin, Cheah, Vadim Makeev.
"In this article, we will showcase some examples made using the new
properties in the W3C's CSS3 Backgrounds and Borders specification. We
recommend using our Opera 10.5 pre-alpha release to view these examples
in their full glory..."
CSS3 Transitions and 2D Transforms
By David Storey, Molly E. Holzschlag.
"For richer user interfaces it is often desirable to include some
animation to make an effect smoother or more appealing, or effects such
as rotating elements and text. Traditionally in HTML pages the primary
property value over a given period of time. This works but can be
maintain. It has not been possible to apply effects such as text at an
angle without resorting to using images or SVG..."
Selectors Level 3
W3C Proposed Recommendation 15 December 2009
"...This document describes the selectors that already exist in CSS1
[CSS1] and CSS2 [CSS21], and further introduces new selectors for CSS3
and other languages that may need them..."
A Look at Some of the New Selectors Introduced in CSS3
By Tom Kenny.
"...Here is a run-down of just some of the things that is possible with
CSS3 selectors. Of course CSS3 isn't supported at all by any IE
browsers including IE8 but all latest versions of Safari, Firefox and
Opera support most, if not all of them..."
Ignorance Is Bliss
By Andy Clarke.
"In the real world, people using the Web don't find a Web site that
they like, then open up another browser to check that it looks they
same. They simply buy what they came to buy, read what they came to
read, do what they came to do, then get on with their lives in blissful
ignorance of what they might be seeing in another browser. Often when I
talk or write about using progressive CSS, people ask me, 'How do you
convince clients to let you work that way? What's your secret?' Secret?
I tell them what they need to know, on a need-to-know basis..."
Wharton Assitt's Pages on Colour Theory and Typeface Design
By Wharton Assitt.
"This website is the manifestation of my studies in the field of how
Getting StartED with CSS
By David Powers.
Three chapter excerpts (PDFs) from David Powers' book on styling
tables, backgrounds, and borders
+05: EVALUATION & TESTING.
Don Norman on Ethnography and Innovation
By James Kalbach.
"Overall, it seems other examinations of innovation have proven the
exact opposite of what Norman claims in his article. There is indeed a
wealth of evidence that people's needs can and should precede
technology. And frankly, Norman's 'examination' seems more of the
back-of-the-napkin type with several errors."
January 25, 2010.
February 5, 2010.
February 17, 2010.
March 3, 2010.
March 31, 2010.
Sunnyvale, California, U.S.A.
April 12, 2010.
Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.A.
Usability Week 2010 Conference, London
May 16-21, 2010.
London, United Kingdom.
+07: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
Is the Value of Information Architecture a Myth?
By Lou Storiale.
"For large sites, portals or company intranets Value BEGINS with the
information architecture. There is nothing else that matters as much as
Information Architecture in these instances. If people can't find the
information they are looking for, the application is useless. It does
not matter how great the design is, how fast the page loads, how cute
the menu drop-downs are - what matters is intuitively organized
information that is easily accessible."
Journal of Information Architecture: Current Issue
"The difference between usability and user experience (UX) design is
often explained as the latter trying to paint a richer picture and pay
attention to engaging users in the process of interaction1. This is
preferably accomplished by providing an engaging experience. In
particular informational applications are often supposed to be
entertaining. In many circumstances this is beneficial and highly
appropriate, particularly in the context of low-choice interaction
scenarios such as news and entertainment-related content or
applications. However, the important condition to remember is context.
In fact, context is the crucial aspect to consider when creating an
environment that allows playful and experimental emotions to emerge."
Make Your Mockup in Markup
By Meagan Fisher.
"...Recently, thanks in large part to the influence of design hero Dan
Cederholm, I've come to the conclusion that a website's design should
begin where it's going to live: in the browser..."
By WebAIM Thread.
"Quite a simple question - but I think I might get a rather verbose
By WebAIM Thread.
"Perhaps someone could help me, I've been criticized by someone that
the following site http://www.ccecnfb.org/ is missing headings, I'm
assuming they mean my navigation areas. Is this correct?..."
1,500 Lines of Code
By Terry Chay.
"Even the best of us can only write 1,500 lines of code a day, so we
need to make those lines count..."
By Brandon Savage.
"Call me crazy, but I love exceptions. I love exceptions to the rules.
I love exceptions to language syntax, both programming and natural. I
especially love programming exceptions. The incredible power of
programming exceptions - the ability to direct program flow based on a
particular set of unusual conditions - is the coolest thing in the
world. So, when I was asked to contribute to PHP Advent, I decided to
write about my favorite programming tool."
Real Fonts and Rendering - The New Elephant in the Room
By Jeffrey Zeldman.
"...There are ways around this ugly type ugliness, but they involve
complicated scripting and sniffing-the very nightmares from which web
standards and the simplicity of @font-face were supposed to save us. I
don't know that even mighty Typekit has figured out every needed
variation yet (although, working with foundries, they probably will).
For type foundries, the complexity and expense of rethinking classic
typefaces to survive in these hostile environments may further delay
widespread adoption of web fonts and the resolution of licensing and
formatting issues. The complexity may also force designers (even those
who prefer to own) to rely on a hosted rental model simply to outsource
and stay current with the detection and programming required. Forgive
my tears. I stand in a potter's field of ideas like 'Keep it simple,'
by a grave whose headstone reads 'Write once, publish everywhere'."
It's a Myth That All Capital Letters Are Inherently Harder to Read
By Susan Weinschenk.
"...You read by anticipating the letters that will be in words, and
then recognizing those letters. All capital (uppercase) letters are
slower for people to read, but only because they aren't used to them.
Mixed case text is only faster to read than uppercase letters because
of practice. Most of what you read is mixed case, and so you are used
to it. If people practice reading text that is in all capital letters
they can get to the point where they are reading that text as fast as
they usually read mixed case. This doesn't mean you should start using
uppercase or capital letters for all of your text. People are not used
to reading that way, so it will slow them down, and these days it's
perceived as 'shouting'. But now you know that uppercase letters are
not inherently harder to read..."
All Caps: A Dyslexics Plea
"...I have a severe form of dyslexia which fortunately was detected
when I was very young and I received special schooling. However it
still took me until I was ten to read properly so I developed quite a
good visual memory hence mathematics was no problem. However letters
mean little to me still I read by a form of pictogram system. Every
word has a shape therefore I read the word by its visual form and not
User-Friendly Error Messages: 7 Tips
"A lot of websites make usability mistakes on their form pages. And
that costs visitors. On a form page that's extra painful because if you
lose a visitor there, you loose a very valuable visitor. A visitor
who's willing to make the effort to get in touch with you or perhaps
even to order something. A visitor who fills out a form (or tries to)
is a visitor you should cherish. Here's a few tips..."
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
+13: 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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