In this week’s roundup of web design and development resources, you’ll learn how to simplify your web designs, discover accessibility technology challenges facing millenials, learn about the latest WordPress security release, and more.
Each Friday I publish a post with my favorite resources for user experience, accessibility, WordPress, CSS, and HTML 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 Miller Woods, one of my favorite places to look for spring wildflowers. As the temperatures get warmer, the white blossoms of Squirrel Corn are beginning to cover the forest floor.
Tweet of the Week
Today I got notice that our sales team won a client by promoting our accessibility. It was a key sales point. #a11y is worth it! 😀
— Brian Sinclair (@brianarn) May 7, 2015
- How to properly simplify your web design: Jerry Cao of UXPin explains how to design a web interface around user decisions to ensure a simple layout.
- Don’t “click here” – 5 ways bad link text screws up your website: Want to annoy people reading your content? Use “click here” to hide the main point of your web page, says Max Johns.
- A UX Professional’s 5-Step Guide to Selling Your Design: Robert Hoekman walks you through the five steps you need to follow to successfully sell your designs to stakeholders.
Silence is golden.
So don't set your your video ads to autoplay on full volume.
— Neil Milliken (@NeilMilliken) May 7, 2015
- Breaking into UX: Interview Planning Tips: Preparation determines success. Do your research, schedule your interview on a Tuesday morning, and use your resume as interview props, says Brian Sullivan.
- The Accessible Technology Challenges Facing Millennials: Obtaining instructional materials in Braille, accessing online videos with quality captions, and lack of easy to understand websites were three of the challenges young adults discussed in last week’s community forum hosted by the Federal Communications Commission.
- Global Accessibility Awareness Day, Detroit Returns for Second Year: Our Detroit User Experience group hosts the second annual Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) event, an interactive event with workshops. Join us!
When you say "that's a 3rd party tool and we can't control its accessibility" remember that you chose that 3rd party tool in the first place
— Derek Featherstone (@feather) May 5, 2015
- Placeholder text: clever, or too clever?: Placeholder text is intended to give a hint about what you should enter in a form field. As Sarah Bourne points out, it can be used poorly and incorrectly in form design. Avoid confusion with placeholder text; test it with actual users before pushing it to production.
- WordPress 4.2.2 Security and Maintenance Release Available, Update Your Sites: The WordPress 4.2.2 release contains fixes for two security issues, the Genericons icon font package and a critical cross-site scripting vulnerability. If you don’t have automatic background updates enabled, update your sites now.
- Genericons and Theme Updates: For the first time, the WordPress core security team updated a number of themes in the repository without first notifying the theme authors.
- How to create better, more accessible WordPress themes: Sami Keijonen has compiled a helpful post on what he’s learned about creating accessible themes, with tips for ARIA landmark roles, forms, contrasts, headings, and the recently introduced
- How To Set Up WordPress with DesktopServer: Mark Zahra offers a step-by-step guide for setting up the free version of DesktopServer, a tool for creating a local development environment (for Mac and Windows). Note: his guide focuses on OS X.
- An Introduction to Mobile-First Media Queries: Chris Poteet takes a look at the benefits of mobile-first media queries, how to create them, and manage them with Sass.
This month, for the first time (as far as I know), the avg. webpage weighs over 2MB
— Scott Jehl (@scottjehl) May 6, 2015
- Responsive Design Dashboard: Find out how your content adapts to different screen sizes with SpeedCurve’s design dashboard.
CSS and HTML
Learned today: press fn+f8 to pause the JS execution in Chrome so you can debug HTML/CSS that arrives onmouseover.
— Zoe Mickley Gillenwater (@zomigi) May 6, 2015
- Browser Testing Is No Fun, But These Tools Will Help Make Your Life Easier: Whether you’re looking for your first browser testing tool, or you want to explore alternatives, this review of tools will make the decision easier.
- Form Inputs: The Browser Support Issue You Didn’t Know You Had: The new HTML5 input types don’t behave as you might expect; browsers have implemented support in different ways across browsers and mobile platforms. Workarounds exist, but there are problems with the workarounds
What I Found Interesting
- Losing focus: Why tech is getting in the way of work: Do you find it more challenging to focus on tasks? According to this BBC article, you can blame it on technology. Getting into “flow” is a challenge, but there are apps and strategies to help you increase your attention span.
- How to Start a Podcast in 10 Days: Practical tips, resources, and lessons learned from Katie Kovalcic who, with Tim Kadlec, recently launched the Path to Performance podcast. This is the post I’m going to refer everyone who wants to start a podcast.
- Stephen Colbert shocks South Carolina schools by funding every single teacher-requested grant: Impressive. Comedian Stephen Colbert funds
…nearly 1,000 projects for more than 800 teachers at over 375 schools, totaling $800,000.
- Google finds a way to make ordering delivery food even lazier: Ordering take out just got a lot easier. Next time you do a Google search for restaurants in your area, look for the “Place your order” option in the search results.