This extended category features articles on client-side and server-side programming languages, tools, frameworks and libraries, as well as back-end issues. Experts and professionals reveal their coding tips, tricks and ideas. Curated by Dudley Storey and Rey Bango. Subscribe to the RSS-Feed.
In the physical world, no one builds anything without detailed blueprints, because people’s lives are on the line. In the digital world, the stakes just aren’t as high. It’s called “software” for a reason: because when it hits you in the face, it doesn’t hurt as much. No one is going to die if your website goes live with the header’s left margin 4 pixels out of alignment with the image below it.
But, while the users’ lives might not be on the line, design blueprints (also called design specifications, or specs) could mean the difference between a correctly implemented design that improves the user experience and satisfies customers and a confusing and inconsistent design that corrupts the user experience and displeases customers.
AngularJS has grown to become one of the most popular single-page application frameworks. Developed by a dedicated team at Google, the outcome is substantial and widely used in both community and industry projects.
One of the reasons for AngularJS’ success is its outstanding ability to be tested. It’s strongly supported by Karma (the spectacular test runner written by Vojta Jína) and its multiple plugins. Karma, combined with its fellows Mocha, Chai and Sinon, offers a complete toolset to produce quality code that is easy to maintain, bug-free and well documented.
Today Smashing Magazine turns eight years old. Eight years is a long time on the web, yet for us it really doesn't feel like a long journey at all. Things have changed, evolved and moved on, and we gratefully take on new challenges one at a time. To mark this special little day, we’d love to share a few things that we’ve learned over the last year about the performance challenges of this very website and about the work we’ve done recently. If you want to craft a fast responsive website, you might find a few interesting nuggets worth considering. – Ed.
Improvement is a matter of steady, ongoing iteration. When we redesigned Smashing Magazine back in 2012, our main goal was to establish trustworthy branding that would reflect the ambitious editorial direction of the magazine. We did that primarily by focusing on crafting a delightful reading experience. Over the years, our focus hasn't changed a bit; however, that very asset that helped to establish our branding turned into a major performance bottleneck.
Making an application work offline can be a daunting task. In this article, Matthew Andrews, a lead developer behind FT Labs, shares a few insights he had learned along the way while building the FT application. Matthew will also be running a "Making It Work Offline" workshop at our upcoming Smashing Conference in Freiburg in mid-September 2014. – Ed.
We’re going to make a simple offline-first to-do application with HTML5 technology. Here is what the app will do: Store data offline and load without an Internet connection, allow the user to add and delete items in the to-do list, store all data locally, with no back end, and run on the first- and second-most recent versions of all major desktop and mobile browsers. The complete project is ready for forking on GitHub.
Scrolling effects have been around in web design for years now, and while many plugins are available to choose from, only a few have the simplicity and light weight that most developers and designers are looking for. Most plugins I’ve seen try to do too many things, which makes it difficult for designers and developers to integrate them in their projects.
Not long ago, Apple introduced the iPhone 5S, which was accompanied by a presentation website on which visitors were guided down sections of a page and whose messaging was reduced to one key function per section. I found this to be a great way to present a product, minimizing the risk of visitors accidentally scrolling past key information.
Since first hearing of spaced repetition a few years back, I’ve used it for a wide range of things, from learning people’s names to memorizing poetry to increasing my retention of books. Today, I’ll share best practices that I’ve discovered from using spaced repetition to learn and master a programming language.
A lot of funny 404 pages have been shared recently: carefully crafted memes, funny GIFs, even the odd interactive game. But if the 404 doesn’t help your visitors, then what’s the point?
A visitor could find themselves on a 404 page for one of many reasons: a mistyped address, a bad link from somewhere else, a deleted page or content that has moved elsewhere. While you can prevent errors from moved pages with redirects, you can’t control people’s mistakes.
Subscribe to our email newsletter for useful tips and valuable resources, sent out every second Tuesday.
Meet Smashing Book #5, our new book on real-life responsive design. With front-end techniques and patterns from actual projects, it's a playbook to master all the tricky facets and hurdles of responsive design. Save 25% today.
Fixing RWD issues can be quite easy — once you understand exactly why they come up. The Mobile Web Handbook will help you understand technical issues on mobile and how to deal with them effectively.
Hungry for more content? Over 60 eBooks are waiting to be discovered in our lovely Smashing Library. And guess what? You can watch Smashing Conference talks there, too.
SmashingConf isn't the eighth wonder of the world, but we are pretty close. Join us at at the shores of Santa Monica for SmashingConf LA on April 27–30 or at SmashingConf NYC on June 15–18. You won't be disappointed.