[webdev] Web Design Update: October 13, 2011
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Thu Oct 13 06:37:11 CDT 2011
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 10, Issue 16, October 13, 2011.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web
design and development.
++ISSUE 16 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.
05: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
08: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
10: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Accessibility: A Progress Report (Google)
By Naomi Black.
"Over the past few months, my colleagues and I have worked closely
with advocacy organizations for the blind to improve our products..."
Accessibility and Reduced Design, Development, Production, Maintenance Costs
By Karl Groves.
"When I do an audit of a web-based system against WCAG, I subject each
test unit to both automated & manual tests against nearly 250 Best
Practices. Of those, 40 of them relate directly to forms. The #1 way
which users interact with web-based systems is through the use of
forms. Some sites, such as Facebook & Twitter are nothing more than
forms and content generated by users interacting with those forms.
Naturally it makes sense to ensure that the forms are both usable and
Easy Fixes to Common Accessibility Problems
By Todd Kloots.
"Making a site or application accessible can seem so overwhelming that
it can completely stall efforts before they begin. But sometimes
simple changes can provide the necessary momentum while resulting in
significant improvements for users. So, in the spirit of small things
that make a big difference, here's a list of fixes for common
National Federation of the Blind and Penn State Resolve Accessibility Complaint
"The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) and The Pennsylvania State
University (Penn State) announced today that they have reached an
agreement that will resolve a complaint filed against Penn State by
the NFB with the United States Department of Education, Office for
Civil Rights. There was no admission of any wrongdoing..."
HTML5 Video Captioning
By Frank Olivier.
"The promise of HTML5 is a Web that works for everyone. Media
accessibility through captioning is an important part of that promise
and an area that is still emerging through standards work. Using the
proposed HTML5 track element, developers can add captioning to HTML5
video by pointing to a caption file that contains a written
representation of the dialog or actions in the video. Once the
standards for captioning converge, there will be less need for
external add-ons to publish accessible video content..."
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
Using display:table has Semantic Effects in Some Screen Readers
By Roger Johansson.
"Sometimes you may want the layout properties that HTML tables have,
but you don't want the semantics of a table since you're not really
working with tabular data. A couple of examples are creating equal
height boxes and making an unknown number of items flexibly occupy all
available horizontal space. In situations like these you can use CSS
to tell any HTML elements you want to behave like they were tables,
table rows, and table cells by using a combination of display:table,
display:table-row, and display:table-cell. You get the layout you want
without littering your markup with tables that shouldn't be there. But
there is a slight catch..."
The CSS Display Property: A Reintroduction To A Familar Friend
By Steven Bradley.
"A few weeks ago I received an email from Pedro Reis asking if I would
write a post about the css display property. I thought it would make
for an interesting topic as the display property sits at the heart of
a lot of what we do in css layouts..."
CSS3 Gems: The calc() Function
By Craig Buckler.
"There are many hidden gems in the modular CSS3 specifications. In
this post we'll look at calc(); an incredibly useful property which
may change the way you approach layout design..."
+03: EVALUATION & TESTING.
Leveraging User Research for More Effective Feature Prioritization
By Gail Swanson.
"The project's scope is firmly rooted in well-considered facts. The
approach has been validated with consumers and business owners to
ensure that it will deliver value. The project budget is based on
accurately crafted estimates created by well-informed technologists.
Last but not least, the timeline has been determined by the number of
resources available to do the estimated work."
December 5-6, 2011.
Washington, District of Columbia, U.S.A.
+05: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
Is Information Architecture Dead?
By Thom Haller.
"Dead of alive? Who cares? Making the complex clear and understandable
is more necessary than ever. "Employees need to perform their jobs to
support their clients. Information architects are on the front lines
when it comes to improving performance. We know how to listen to what
users want from a system; we know how to analyze what we learn so we
can determine what to put in and what to leave out; we know how to
cluster information into smaller usable chunks that support
information processing and decision-making; and we know how to test
our assumptions and optimize a system so it is directed toward a
Information Overload, Information Architecture and Digital Literacy
By Tibor Koltay.
"When thinking about folksonomies and similar user-generated knowledge
organization, we can see that professional goals would most probably
require not only the use of these unsophisticated tools, but also
classification and subject indexing that employ classification
schemes, top-down hierarchical taxonomies, thesauri and other formal
Mobile apps Must Die!
By Scott Jenso.
"Frog's creative director Scott Jenson argues that mobile apps must
die. He explains why the overall model of native apps is holding us
back and that they shouldn't be the default approach "
Detecting Mobile Devices - Don't Bother
By Adrian Roselli.
"Image of mobile phone showing this site.Since I started working on
the web (and was slowly coaxed to the world of Netscape from Mosaic
and HotJava), clients have asked me to find ways to adjust how a page
behaves based on what browser the end user has. Before campaigns like
the Web Standards Project (WaSP) took hold and slowly convinced web
developers, and by extension clients, that the right approach is to
build for standards first, web developers struggled with everything
like the browscap.ini file for IIS. These all took time to maintain
and were never 100% effective..."
Luke Wroblewski - Designing for Mobile (Podcast)
By Sean Carmichael.
"Mobile is the 'hot topic' these days. It's increasingly at the front
of designers' minds. In a world where the power and capabilities of
the device in your pocket are so great, the possibilities become
somewhat astounding. The mobile landscape is changing so rapidly that
it makes developing a formal strategy to 'figure mobile out' all but
PHPMaster: Regular Expressions
By Jason Pasnikowski.
It makes all the sense of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics to you,
although those little pictures at least look like they have meaning.
But this… this looks like gibberish. What does it mean?..."
Array Handling Functions
By J Armando Jeronymo.
"In my previous article on PHP arrays I suggested a number of things
that are tables and therefore can also be expressed as arrays. In this
article I'll use a pack of playing cards to explore some of the
built-in array functions most often needed by PHP programmers..."
+08: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
By Grace Walker.
"Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee pointed out that the critical Human
Computer Interaction functions are of greater importance to a site
visitor than any other aspect of a Rich Internet Application (RIA).
Foremost among these are the elements used to exchange information and
data between client and server. Every aspect of the process must be
geared to achieving Berners-Lee's system of well-defined data,
collaborative structures and optimized use of hardware available. This
requires the proper organizing of the sites basic structures so that
everything, every object, and its components, are easily accessed and
utilized. HTML5 provides the semantic structure required to properly
develop and manage your site. The new tags and attributes increase the
ability to compartmentalize and dissect your pages more efficiently.
This demo provides a basic overview of HTML5 with CSS3..."
JAWS, IE and Headings in HTML5
By Jason Kiss.
"If you use explicitly ranked h1 to h6 headings nested in HTML5
sectioning elements, as opposed to using exclusively h1 elements, JAWS
12.0.1170, as well as the JAWS 13.0.171 beta, will misrepresent the
Native Audio with HTML5
By Emily Lewis.
"Once upon a time, audio on the web lived primarily in the world of
third-party browser plug-ins like Flash, QuickTime and Silverlight.
This was not a bad world, but it had its issues..."
Mobile Content: If in Doubt, Leave It Out
By Jakob Nielsen.
Less screen estate, higher constraints on publication.
"Writing for mobile readers requires even harsher editing than writing
for the Web. Mobile use implies less patience for filler copy."
Beyond Task Completion: Flow in Design
By Dana Chisnell.
"There's an old maxim of user interface design about ensuring that
products are useful, usable, and desirable. Does the design solve a
problem? Can people make it solve their problems? Do people want it to
solve their problems? But even if the answers to these questions are
all 'yes,' now what? 'Usable' and 'satisfied' are pretty low bars.
It's like saying your design is 'adequate,' 'fine,' or 'average.' It's
like saying you're having sustenance for dinner. People want more than
Why Rubrics Fail as a Means of Measuring Documentation Quality
By Tom Johnson.
"Alice Jane Emanuel has an interesting post that details her methods
for measuring the quality of documentation. The post consists of notes
from a webinar she gave on the subject. Alice writes..."
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
+10: 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.]
+ SUBSCRIPTION INFO.
WEB DESIGN UPDATE is available by subscription. For information on how
to subscribe and unsubscribe please visit:
The Web Design Reference Site also has a RSS 2.0 feed for site updates.
+ TEXT EMAIL NEWSLETTER (TEN).
As a navigation aid for screen readers we do our best to conform to
the accessible Text Email Newsletter (TEN) guidelines. Please let me
know if there is anything else we can do to make navigation easier.
For TEN guideline information please visit:
+ 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
More information about the Webdev