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The Smashing Book: Vote For The Book Cover Now!

The Smashing Book project is now entering its next phase. Based upon your tremendous feedback, we have finalized the concept and the outline for the book. In fact, the topics have been selected and our writers have already started to brainstorm the ideas for their chapters in the book. The one thing that still remains to be discussed is how the book will actually look like.

And since the Smashing Book is supposed to be the community book, we would like you to decide what design would fit the book best. In this post we present 6 book cover designs that were designed by the community for the Smashing Book Project (see the Book Cover Design Forum). We let you decide what book cover the Smashing Book will have. Please vote in the poll below – it's your turn now!

Book Covers
Book Covers

 

What cover design should the Smashing Book have?
( polls)

You can vote for multiple designs. Please notice: the book will be a paperback, not hardcover as shown in some drafts above, the book will not be available in stores or any retail stores — it doesn't have to fight for customer's attention against numerous other books in stores. It also should make a really good impression online. Please vote now!

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Breaking: Internet Explorer 8.1 Eagle Eyes Leaked

Smashing Magazine tries to be at the forefront of new and exciting developments in the wide world of the web. You might have heard that we met with the IE 8 Chief Strategist in the past, so it should come as no surprise that we like to keep up with the latest events in the web browser industry.

Even with the successful recent release of Internet Explorer 8, in some underground circles there is already talk going around about the next version of Internet Explorer: IE 8.1, codenamed Eagle Eyes. Loaded with exclusive features such as a new JavaScript engine, support of WebSlices and full web standards support (CSS 3), IE 8.1 is speculated to debut in this summer.

Screenshot of IE 8.1

In this article, we take a closer look at the new features of Internet Explorer 8.1, compare it with other browsers and share with you our first-hand experience with the browser. Overall the browser is faster, more flexible, more stable and also more secure and performs already much better than a recently released IE 8. One word sums up our experience with IE 8.1: Eagle Eyes is the browser that Internet Explorer should have brought on the market a long time ago - and now it's finally here.

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The Smashing Book: Vote For Topics Now!

The Smashing Book project is coming along. At the end of February we announced our most interesting (and important) project for 2009: “The Smashing Book,” a smashingly written, beautifully designed and professionally printed book. We asked for your opinion about what the topics of the book should be, your wishes and ideas, and we were completely overwhelmed with the huge amount of great ideas and suggestions in our Smashing Book Forum. We express sincere gratitude to all those who helped us and discussed various ideas in the forum.

The book will definitely cover the following topics: the Smashing Magazine story, prototyping and wireframing, typography guide, color theory and practical examples, usability, performance optimization and business and freelancing guide (starting your own business).

Of course, this isn't everything. Many more topics can be covered in the book, and you can decide what topics should be covered in the book. Please vote in the poll below!

What topics should be covered in the Smashing Book?
( polls)

We took some time to go through all the suggestions and ideas, analyze them, find common interests and determine what you expect from the book and how it should look to meet your expectations. And now it's time to get a little bit more concrete in the second round of the Smashing Book project.

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Smashing Community Icon Set: Vote Now!

Two days ago, we invited you to participate in the Smashing Community Icon Set event, in which you would tell us what icons you want and we would design them for you together with the design agency SoftFacade of Russia. We express our sincere gratitude for the engagement of our readers, the useful feedback and the support. Thank you!

Vote now!

Indeed, we were overwhelmed by the amount of ideas and suggestions. Overall, we received over 430 comments in our announcement post and in the forum. We identified over 120 (!) various ideas, combined them according to similarity and ranked them in order of popularity. We ended up with the seven most popular ideas.

And now it is your turn to decide which icon set we should design. Please vote for your favorite set in the poll below. And please spread the word so that as many users as possible can participate, so that the set that is truly most wanted by the community is chosen. You have 48 hours.

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Smashing Community Icon Set: Comment and Win!

Ready for this? Here's how it works: you tell us what icons you need, and then we design them together with SoftFacade (which recently created the beautiful Smashing Retro Icon Set) and release them for free. And to make it a bit more interesting, we'll smash six commenters and forum participants with original nerdy gifts. To participate, just suggest an idea for a great useful icon set in the comments to this post or in this forum thread. Details are below.

Just let us know what icon set you would like us to design (and, if possible, what specific icons the set should contain) in the comments to this post or in this forum thread. The set may contain at most eight icons.

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The Smashing Book: Join In!

No, we're not giving anything away in this post. Instead, we've got some work to do, and we need you to play an important role in it. Our most interesting (and important) project for 2009 is something we are modestly calling "The Smashing Book": a smashingly written, beautifully designed and professionally printed book. It will be created by and for the Web design community. Four key decisions have already been made: the book's title will be "The Smashing Book"; it will be a paperback; the price is fixed, as is the release date, which is early September 2009.

The Smashing Book

We want to create a totally unique and exciting book, full of insightful and useful articles; a book that contains only articles that a reader of Smashing Magazine would really want to read. No fluff, no cruft, just hearty meat and potatoes content.

To achieve this, we need the help of our community: your help. And what could be better than working on this important project together with our readers? If you want to participate in our project, please visit the forum (the registration is required for replies) and help in any of the following ways.

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Hardware Giveaway: 5,000 Comments Challenge!

Update (27/02): we received 9000 comments – we hit the 5,000 mark! And the winners are: 1) graphic card goes to Joshua Lawson (#5533) from Sewell, NJ; 2) the mouse goes to Gareth (#5651) from Cape Town, South Africa; 3) the headphones go to Catalin (#8598) from Bucharest, Romania. Congratulations! All winners have already been contacted.

If you didn't win, it may make sense for you to subscribe to our RSS-feed, more giveaways are coming! Thank you for participation!

Why should you get gifts only on Christmas and your birthday? We at Smashing Magazine love to give away things all year long. This time, you have a chance to get some really cool hardware.

Taking part in this giveaway is easy... well, maybe not that easy. We're keen on seeing a lot of comments and want to see at least 5,000 comments in this post, so spread the word and help us get to 5,000 or more comments and then win one of the smashing prizes below.

Sapphire Radeon HD 4870 X2

The 5,000 comment challenge is important, folks. If we don't reach that goal, then the prizes get torched. Okay, they don't get torched, but the giveaway only kicks in after 5000 comments. It is not a random, unrealistic figure either; we got 3,800 comments in our recent books giveaway.

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