[webdev] Web Design Update: October 23, 2010
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Sat Oct 23 03:15:11 CDT 2010
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 9, Issue 17, October 23, 2010.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web
design and development.
++ISSUE 17 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: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
We Haven't Forgotten About Accessibility, Have We?
By Jonathan Christopher.
"Back when Web standards were the talk of the town, accessibility
concerns were a hot topic of conversation as well. After all, the
accessible nature of Web standards was a good argument to those that
didn't stand behind standards, right? Lately I've been fearing that we
may have in part lost sight of how truly important accessibility
Do CAPTCHAs Block Spam or Your Readers?
Glenda Watson Hyatt
"Unfortunately bloggers are inundated with spam comments. CAPTCHAs -
Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans
Apart - are frequently used to weed out spambot comments from human
New U.S. Plain-Language Law Good for People with Cognitive Disabilities
By John Rochford.
"The Plain Writing Act of 2010 was signed into U.S. federal law on
October 13, 2010. Essentially, it requires federal agencies to create
documents using plain language."
University of Iowa (UI) Focuses on Web Accessibility
By Alison Sullivan.
"Twenty years ago, it was enough to guarantee a physically disabled
person access to a school. Not anymore..."
Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP)
DCMP's mission is "to promote and provide equal access to
communication and learning for students who are blind, visually
impaired, deaf, hard of hearing, or deaf-blind. The DCMP is an idea
that works thanks to funding by the U.S. Department of Education and
administration by the National Association of the Deaf."
Principles of Inclusive Design and the UK eAccessibility Action Plan
By Henny Swan.
"The eAccessibility Forum, part of the Department of Business
Innovation and Skills, published their eAccessibility Action Plan last
week. Among many good things it highlights the importance of web
education and the work that the Open Web Education Alliance (OWEA) are
doing to promote open web education..."
By Jeremy Keith.
"I mentioned in my last post that I was looking for volunteers to help
transcribe the video of my talk at Fronteers 2010. I didn’t get much
of a response so I put the word out on Twitter. Then I got plenty of
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
Style Visited and Unvisited Links Differently (Most of the Time)
By Roger Johansson.
"On some websites visited links look exactly the same as unvisited
links. This doesn't always cause problems, but sometimes it can slow
you down. As an example I'll compare two sites that have lots of
outgoing links: Delicious and Twitter..."
CSS3 Tranform Property - The Scale Method
By Alejandro Gervasio.
"In this third part of the series, I explore another helpful method
offered by the transform CSS3 property, called scale()..."
Fluid Width Equal Height Columns
By Chris Coyier.
"Equal height columns have been a need of web designers forever. If
all the columns share the same background, equal height is irrelevant
because you can set that background on a parent element. But if one or
more columns need to have their own background, it becomes very
important to the visual integrity of the design..."
IE6 CSS Fixer 0.9 - Output Cleanup
By Niels Matthijs.
"It's been a while since we updated our ie6 css fixer tool, that's
because we're running out of bugs to fix (at least, in an automated
manner). There were a few other things up for improvement though, one
of which we fixed in this latest version. The newest addition has
everything to do with performance and output, so read on to find what
you can expect in v0.9. Like always, if you have any suggestions for
new features you can drop us a note..."
Parent Selectors in CSS
By Chris Coyier.
"Let's be clear here, just in case someone is finding this from a
search engine: there are no parent selectors in CSS, not even in CSS3.
It is an interesting topic to talk about though, and some fresh talk
9 CSS3 Properties You Can Use Now
By Elliot Swan.
"If you've looked at any of the stuff to be included in CSS3, you were
no doubt bouncing off the walls in excitement until you remembered how
long it tends to take some browsers to support that kind of stuff..."
+03: EVALUATION & TESTING.
Usability Testing Isn't For You? Really?
By Joe Dolson.
"Whenever somebody tells me that they really don't see the point in
doing usability testing on their web site, I can't help myself from
asking why. Let's be honest here what's a really good reason for
skipping usability testing? The first thing that comes to my mind, of
course, is because you've just finished a major usability review. I
can understand wanting to give it a skip if you've just gone through
the usability testing process..."
Using Personas During Design and Documentation
By Niranjan Jahagirdar and Arun Joseph Martin.
"...although demographics and task analysis play an important part in
persona creation, personas are more than just a collection of user
profiles and groups. You should make them as real as you can. They
should embody all the human attributes you'd expect to find in your
users. For example, they could be moody, very task oriented, work in a
specific type of environment, or even hate the idea of referring to
documentation unless they are absolutely compelled to do so..."
Infusing Usability Testing with Reality
By Michael Hawley.
"The setup for this study was similar to that for any typical
usability study. We invited people to participate in one-on-one
sessions with a moderator and asked participants to complete a series
of tasks while using the think-aloud protocol. Project team members,
including designers and business sponsors, watched from another room.
We wanted to gain the best possible understanding of the entirety of
the proposed user experience, including branded words for labels,
information architecture, and categorization. Therefore, during the
course of the sessions, I asked participants to describe what they
expected to see in a section or on a page behind a link before they
clicked it. I thought this would help me to understand the users'
mindsets coming into the experience."
2011 International Conference on Data Engineering and Internet
Technology (DEIT 2011)
March 15-17, 2011.
By Lars Gunther.
"Answer: You are watching it. There are no good tutorials for
By Nicholas Zakas.
"Well-designed web sites and applications always keep in mind the
enhancement is built around the idea that the content of the page
advanced functionality is available..."
By Mike Davies.
"...I believe developers asking the question of 'How many people have
measured, but the actual result does not adequately answer the
question of 'How many people will not be able to use your
Web Accessibility - A Look Back and into the Future
By Bill Cullifer.
"Interview with Debi Orton, IT Manager New York State Government..."
Why Are Colleges Flunking Web Strategy 101?
By Jeff Cram.
"...I see several challenges higher education leaders need to overcome
to drive effective digital programs...At the end of the day, most
colleges simply struggle to build an effective business case for the
iPad as the New Flash
By Jeffery Zeldman.
"Too many designers and publishers see the iPad as an opportunity to
do all the wrong things-things they once did in Flash-without the
taint of Flash..."
Is the iPad Sending Design Back to the Dark Ages?
By Michael Calore.
"...Jeffrey Zeldman thinks so. In his essay, 'iPad As the New Flash,'
the author and standards guru argues that designers are now coding up
device-centric user experiences at the expense of web standards,
accessibility and the advancement of open web technologies..."
IE 9 Does Not Resize Text Sized in Pixels
By Roger Johansson.
"When trying out the beta of Internet Explorer 9 I noticed that there
still seems to be no way of increasing or decreasing the size of text
set in pixels without zooming the entire page..."
By Jakob Nielsen.
"What users believe they know about a UI strongly impacts how they use
it. Mismatched mental models are common, especially with designs that
try something new."
Web Management Requires Minimalism
By Gerry McGovern.
"...Simplicity requires a lot of effort. Most organizations do not
measure the benefits that are delivered as a result of this effort.
That's why we have complexity..."
Less is More: Simplifying your User Experience
By Trent Marten.
"Through the rapidly increasing amount of information, messaging,
reviews and data online, we know that consumers are presented with
more options than ever before. As a result they are becoming more and
more savvy and resourceful to research products and services that
they're interested in. Ultimately they're becoming wiser with how they
are making their buying decisions and more demanding to have the
information they need, when they need it..."
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
09:: 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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