An in-depth look at the design decisions of the Google and Apple map applications, announcement of the second edition of the Responsive Web Design book, and alternatives for adding related content to your posts/pages are a few of the resources you’ll find in this week’s roundup of web design and development resources.
If you’re new to my blog, each Friday I publish a weekly roundup of some of my favorite posts I’ve read in the past week for user experience, accessibility, WordPress, CSS, HTML, and responsive design.
Stay-up-to-date daily with resources like these by following me @redcrew on Twitter.
This week’s photo is the cornerstone commemorating the dedication of the Edison Institute (now the Henry Ford Museum) in September 27, 1928, showing Thomas Edison’s signature.
Having a good vocabulary means replacing several words with one, not small words with larger ones.
— Len Kendall (@LenKendall) December 2, 2014
- In their Mapping an iOS issue of Design Explosions, UX Launchpad provides an amazing in-depth review of Apple and Google’s design approach in their maps apps. At 43 minutes, it’s the longest read in this week’s roundup, but I encourage you to take the time. You’ll get a fascinating look at the challenges of first-party application design, affordances, placement, and options.
- When you push the limits of UI design, make sure you keep it simple enough for users to learn, says Dominic Quigley. Create digital designs that delight from content, and how it’s displayed and navigated.
PSA: If your system requires 16 hours of training and is *not* a nuclear reactor or life-or-death medical device, its #UX needs work.
— Danielle Cooley (@dgcooley) December 2, 2014
- All images must have an ALT attribute, but there are times when a null ALT attribute is acceptable.
- Google’s announcement this week of No CAPTCHA ReCAPTCHA, a replacement for those frustrating-to-use reCAPTCHA’s with distorted text, had many web professionals wondering about the accessibility of the new process. Derek Featherstone and his team explored the methodology and shared their findings on the accessibility of Google’s No CAPTCHA.
Our healthy skepticism was soon replaced with surprise, and maybe even a reserved delight.
- If you’re interested in learning the basics of assistive technology, sign up for INDATA’s Assistive Technology 101 full-day training on January 23, 2015, available as an in-person event and online. The course is free, and focuses on how assistive technology can benefit people with visual impairments, hearing loss, mobility and communication needs, learning difficulties, and more.
- Launching in early 2015, the RogerVoice app combines VoIP and automatic speech recognition software to provide subtitles for real-time conversation.
- Wouldn’t it be nice to edit your WordPress pages and posts directly, without having to use the editor? Save time editing your pages and posts with the Front-end Editor Plugin, currently in beta version.
- Author Jonathon Hassell interviews Graham Armfield on the accessibility of WordPress in this 18-minute video. Armfield highlights the lack of accessible WordPress themes, challenges of poor color contrast used by many web designers, and the benefits of creating accessible websites.
- I remember when the first edition of the WordPress Multisite 110 guide was published. This week, Mika Epstein announced the publication of the seventh edition of WordPress Multisite 110, updated for WordPress 4.1.
— David Bisset (@dimensionmedia) December 5, 2014
- With nRelate closing down the end of the year, my post recommends alternatives to the nRelate plugin for adding related content to your pages and posts.
- There are multiple ways responsive design improves SEO: one URL for your content means one optimization campaign, reduced bounce rate, and better user experience.
- It’s out! Ethan Marcotte’s second edition of Responsive Web Design was released this week. The 153-page book has been updated with tips for browser support, recommendations for serving images, performance, and more.
- And if you want to learn more about the book, what Ethan’s been up to lately, and his plans for the future, read Sara Wachter-Boettcher’s interview The Only Constant is Change: A Q&A with Ethan Marcotte on A List Apart.
CSS and HTML
- In Understanding CSS Stats: How to Make the Most of the Numbers, Jonathan Cutrell discusses CSS best practices, and shares tips for managing specificity and maintainability.
- Anna Ladoshkina takes a closer look at what you can expect in WordPress 4.1 when it’s released next week.
- Who knew? You can keep your keep your CSS short with the currentColor keyword. First I’ve heard of
currentColor, but I can see how it will be useful in my projects.
What I Found Interesting
- Save files from the Internet directly to your Dropbox or Google Drive with the Save online tool (works on desktop and mobile).
- Flickr’s announcement about selling Creative Commons photos had several people concerned about their photos and many Flickr users reviewing their choice of licenses.
Flickr might be legally allowed to profit off its users’ creativity, but it might just blow up in their faces.
- Mozilla and the Ford Foundation are looking for emerging tech leaders with a passion for Internet policy to apply for the Ford-Mozilla Open Web Fellowships. Is that you?