In this week’s roundup of web design and development resources, you’ll discover how to apply engineering principles to the design team process, learn seven things every designer should know about accessibility, find out about responsive content modelling, and more.
Each Friday I publish a post with my favorite resources for user experience, accessibility, WordPress, CSS, HTML, and responsive design I’ve read in the past week.
If you’d like to learn about resources like these on a daily basis, follow me @redcrew on Twitter.
Today’s photo is from my yard. Spring has finally arrived in southeast Michigan and spring flowers are blooming everywhere.
Tweet of the Week
If more people appreciated how one day of user research can save weeks of coding I think they would do it more.
— Joshua Porter (@bokardo) April 16, 2015
- Accepting Our Lack of Control: Susan Robertson recommends web creators accept the fact that the user ultimately gets to decide how they use the web.
These suggestions of ours should make it easier, not harder for people to access our content in the manner that best suits them.
- Engineering our Design Teams: Translating five engineering principles and practices into the design team process can lead to faster decision making and improved collaboration.
— Derek Boman (@MillisecondDB) April 14, 2015
- Why You Should Ignore UX Best Practice: Following best practices is no guarantee of success, says David Mannheim. You need to test your designs with your own users.
- Intent to Solve: When you’re doing early user research, ask questions designed to find out if users have already shown an “intent to solve” the problem.
- 7 Things Every Designer Needs to Know about Accessibility: Great roundup of seven accessibility guidelines to use in your designs, written by Jesse Hausler of SalesForce. My favorite is his first guideline: Accessibility is not a barrier to innovation. We don’t want to design for our design peers.
- Netflix Begins Audio Description for Visually Impaired: Nice to see Netflix doing the right thing. After receiving comments about the lack of audio descriptions for their new Marvel’s Daredevil show about a blind attorney, Netflix adds audio descriptions to the show.
- Accessibility and Inclusive Design In-Person Groups: When my accessibility colleague Jennison Asuncion shared in-person digital accessibility groups on the WebAIM email list, I published a post to share the info with other web creators.
My eyes are so tired of little, piddly icons everywhere.
Designers: please consider using words instead. Less noise, better understanding.
— Mark Boulton (@markboulton) April 13, 2015
- On HTML belts and ARIA braces (The Default Implicit ARIA semantics they didn’t want you to know about): It may be time to pull back from the “belts and braces” approach for HTML elements and ARIA
- WordPress versus Automattic: Trying to explain the difference between WordPress.com, Automattic, and WordPress (content management system) is a lot easier, thanks to this week’s post by Brian Krogsgard.
Automattic is not the parent company of WordPress. They are the parent company of WordPress.com, the hosted website service that utilizes the open source WordPress platform.
- Three years of building an eCommerce platform: Congrats to Pippin Williamson on the third anniversary of releasing the Easy Digital Downloads plugin. Great to read the backstory of the plugin, the community and team behind it, and how lives have dramatically changed. Inspiring.
- Recap: WordPress Social Media & Security Basics: Read the notes and view the slides from this week’s presentations by Angela Samuels and Eric Malcolm at our Metro Detroit WordPress Meetup.
- The Best WordPress Maintenance Services: The Top Providers Compared: WPLift reviews the top WordPress maintenance providers, comparing costs, plans, and features offered.
- Cloudup Refreshes Its Web Interface and OSX 10.10 Desktop App: File storage and sharing service Cloudup received a fresh update, with changes to the interface and a modern look for the OSX 10.1 desktop app.
- Responsive Content Modelling: In the first post in the series, Steve Fisher discussees how gathering the right people in the room allows you to establish a responsive content framework.
— Jason Beaird (@jasongraphix) April 16, 2015
- RWD: Are we failing our clients?: Duncan Jimbo comments on how responsive design has changed web creators approach to design and development to work more collaboratively.
CSS and HTML
- 3 Things (Almost) No One Knows About CSS: I was able to answer two of the three questions Kevin Yank of SitePoint asked about CSS. Give it whirl and see how you do.
- Ultimate Guide to Link Types for Hyperlinks: I had no idea there were so many link types. Have you ever used the
- An In-Depth Overview Of Living Style Guide Tools: Robert Haritonov walks you through the different tools you can use to create your style guide. Check the comments for more suggestions.
- HTML vs Body in CSS: explains the key differences between applying global styles on
html. There are situations where you may choose to use one over the other.
What I Found Interesting
- Introducing #StarWarsEmojis: If you’re a Star Wars fan and love emojis, this week’s announcement from Twitter is just for you. Use the hashtags #StormTrooper, #BB8, or #C3P0 in your tweets, and the emojis will appear.
- Capturing real life—not reality life—through collaborative filmmaking: Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the shows we watched on TV told stories of the people who lived down the street? Real people, not scripted “reality” people.
- Type “Find My Phone” Into Google to Locate Your Android Device: The new feature in the Android Device Manager makes it simple to to find your Android phone.