It's one thing to create a web application and quite another to keep it accessible — independent of the device that the user is using and its capabilities. That's why Heydon Pickering, now the accessibility editor on Smashing Magazine, wrote an eBook Apps For All: Coding Accessible Web Applications, outlining the roadmap for well-designed, accessible applications.
This article is an excerpt of a chapter in the eBook that introduces many of the ideas and techniques presented. Reviewed by Steve Faulkner, it's an eBook you definitely shouldn't miss if you're a developer who cares about well-structured content and inclusive interface design. – Ed.
Because the W3C’s mission from the outset has been to make the web accessible, accessibility features are built into its specifications. As responsible designers, we have the job of creating compelling web experiences without disrupting the inclusive features of a simpler design.
This year has brought a number of changes in the conference scene around the world. Quite a few established conferences have taken their last bow, and a whole bunch of new conferences have appeared — and I'm not just talking about the Smashing conferences! There's even a conference for developing applications of the not-yet-released Google Glass.
Many exciting conferences have already featured some of the industry's most illustrious speakers in the first half of 2014, however, there are quite a few more to come! Take a look at today's round-up of conferences taking place this year from June onwards, and remember, since most events are a bit light on the design aspect, it may be a good idea to visit those conferences that focus specifically on visual and artistic technologies.
We’ve all been there, haven’t we? You find yourself in a coffee shop abroad, sipping cappuccino and chomping a muffin as you realize that your laptop’s battery charge is just about to crush your creative session to dust. Well, perhaps you’ve got your power adapter with you but, of course, it isn’t the right one for foreign power sockets.
So you end up looking around and chatting up with strangers asking for help. Some are more responsive than others, and before you know it, you don’t just have a full battery, but you've made a couple of new, surprisingly interesting acquaintances.
By now, you might actually know how it works. The good ol' Smashing Mysteries: the door that would never open and the rain that would never stop. Well, the Mystery continues! To celebrate the launch of Paul Boag's Digital Adaptation book, we’ve prepared a new riddle, and this time it's a bit different and a bit easier.
How does it work? Below you'll find three animated GIFs that contain a hidden message. Each GIF contains a few scattered letters (all uppercase) that you can use to build words. Once you put the words from all the GIFs together, you will be able to create a sentence. Please notice that no letters should be left unused. Once you've resolved the mystery, please tweet the full sentence using the hashtag #smashing.
Nothing is more frustrating than stubborn management entangled in dated workflows and inefficient processes. That's why we created Digital Adaptation, a new practical book on how to help senior management understand the Web and adapt the business, culture and workflows accordingly. No fluff, no theory — just techniques and strategies that worked in practice, and showed results. Get the book.
The book will help traditional businesses and organizations to overcome their legacy, and help you plant the seeds of change with very little power. If you do want to finally see changes happening, this is the book to grab. Written by Paul Boag. Designed and illustrated by Veerle Pieters. 176 pages. The books are shipping now.
Everybody loves a good riddle, but when you design one, you never know how it will be perceived until you try it out. The new Smashing Mystery Riddle didn’t emerge over night, and after weeks of fine adjustments and many — many — test runs, we prepared some coffee, pressed that shiny "Publish" button and, you know, started waiting for tweets.
And now, exactly two days later, it’s time to reveal the mystery and announce the winners. Oh, you want to figure it out first? Well, then please close this tab since there are (obviously) spoilers in this post. Admittedly, the new riddle turned out a bit harder than the previous one. Again, we didn’t want it to make it easy and we also didn’t want to make it too hard since most people would just drop it at some point. We did want to challenge you to be creative and think hard though, and finding this sweet spot of complexity took time and patience.
SmashingConf NYC 2014 won’t solve all complex problems, but once it’s over you’ll know how to conquer yours. Our new conference in New York has 1 track, 2 conference days, 7 workshops, 18 excellent speakers and just 350 available tickets. With a heavy focus on networking and practical takeaways from real-life projects, you really don’t want to miss out on this one.
Update (29.01.2014): After 22h the conference tickets are now sold out. We only have a few workshop tickets with a conference pass left. If you didn't get your ticket in time, please reserve your spot on the waiting list by sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your patience and support! — Ed.
When we organize a conference, we make sure that it provides a lot of value for everybody involved. We don’t care about volatile trends and we don’t believe in overnight success stories. Every success requires hard work and many failures along the way.
There are lessons learned, takeaways, and problems solved, but also many sketches and designs and ideas and prototypes thrown away because they didn’t work. We are interested in how problems are solved—ideas that failed, and why exactly they failed and what decisions were chosen instead.
SmashingConf isn't the eighth wonder of the world, but we are pretty close. Join us at SmashingConf Oxford on March 16–19 or meet us at the shores of Santa Monica for SmashingConf LA on April 27–30. You won't be disappointed.