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Desktop Wallpaper Calendars: February 2016

Since seven years, we welcome the new month with a collection of unique desktop wallpapers. And it’s not any different this time around. Created by designers and artists from across the globe, they are just waiting to give your desktop a makeover and provide you with some fresh inspiration.

Desktop Wallpaper Calendars: February 2016

This post features their artwork for February 2016. Each wallpaper comes in two versions, with and without a calendar, and can be downloaded for free. Now you only need to decide which one will accompany you through the month — and that won’t be easy given all the creative ideas the community has come up with. A big thank-you to everyone who participated!

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Web Development Reading List #122: A Performance Budget Builder, Streams, And The Web Push API

This week, Firefox 44 has been released to the public. The new version offers better video support (VP9, WebM in addition to h.264) and adds support for Brotli compression (a new, better compression than gzip) for HTTPS connections. Service Workers are also supported now.

Streams

The new Chrome Beta channel build now includes a security panel in the developer tools. This panel shows you how secure your site is, including details on HTTPS and mixed content warnings. Unfortunately, it’s not super detailed yet, and it also doesn’t provide information like HSTS, HKPK and other security details, but I’m excited to see this and bet that they’ll integrate more features over time.

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Freebie: The Months Of The Year Icon Set (12 Icons PSD, AI, EPS, SVG, PNG)

New Years' Eve is not far past, and yet one twelfth of the new year is already behind us. We think this is a great time to release the first new free icon set of the year. So without further ado, today we're pleased to release the Months Of The Year icons: a set of 12 images that are all available in EPS, AI, SVG and PNG formats. This icon set was designed by Manuela Langella and is free to be used in personal as well as commercial projects.

You may modify the size, color or shape of the icons. No attribution is required, though reselling bundles or individual pictograms isn't cool. Please note that this icon set is available under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license. We'd kindly like to ask you to provide credits to the creator and link to this article if you would like to spread the word about the freebie.

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Is The Internet Killing Creativity?

The internet is a wonderful place (mostly). An unprecedented revolution in communication, it continues to empower more people to publish and share their knowledge than any other phenomenon in history. It is a limitless playground of ideas and unbridled creativity. Or is it?

Is The Internet Killing Creativity?

In 2014, Elliot Jay Stocks declared that designers have stopped dreaming. That we’ve stopped being creative. That every site looks the same. A crazy notion, considering the magnitude of tools and resources we have at our disposal. But Elliot’s been right before, and he’s not alone either.

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★ “Busting Myths and Horror Stories Of Designing For The Web!” ★

Hear, hear! SmashingConf NYC 2016 is coming! A spectacular performance about failures, successes and superpowers in front-end and UX — now on Broadway! A flabbergasting show on fascinating endeavours in web design, with busted myths, horror design stories and wisdom gained from daunting real-life struggles! Don't miss the most remarkable show of the year!

Can you dispel the truth from the lies? Honesty from deception? Myths from heartbreaking real-life experience? Have you figured out responsive design, mobile, pattern libraries, SVG, flexbox, performance, HTTP/2 — and all of the other mischievous, erratic facets of designing for the web today?

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The New Smashing Mystery Riddle: Have You Figured It Out Yet?

Yep, one of those mystery riddles again? To celebrate the launch of SmashingConf NYC, we’ve prepared yet another riddle, and this time it will be a matter of patience and following clues. As usual, we've hidden secret keys hashtags in a series of animated GIFs.

Smashing Book Mystery
Seek out the address. Spaces are overrated. Watch out for file names. (View large version)

Below you'll find the first animated GIF, containing a location clue. To move to the next level, you have to find a hidden hash tag and follow a link in a tweet containing it. Once you've reached the last level (you'll know when), just tweet all of the keys in one single hash tag (or a screenshot if there isn't enough characters left!) to @smashingmag on Twitter! Not that difficult, right?

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Responsive Image Breakpoints Generator, A New Open Source Tool

Responsive websites, even the most modern ones, often struggle with selecting image resolutions that best match the various user devices. They compromise on either the image dimensions or the number of images. We can solve these issues and start calculating image breakpoints more mathematically, rather than haphazardly.

Responsive Image Breakpoints Generation: Challenges, Mistakes And A New Solution

The lives of web developers aren’t getting any simpler as the number of different devices and potential screen resolutions increase. The high-resolution arms race seems to be never-ending as vendors try to top one another with innovations in laptop and mobile device screens. New devices such as TVs and smartwatches are entering the market, making the race even more complex.

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Combining UX Design And Psychology To Change User Behavior

Have you ever wondered why your users do not interact with your product the way you hope? Persuading people to perform a particular action, like signing up or buying a product, is a challenge in most industries, especially when you want that action to be performed repeatedly.

Combining UX Design And Psychology To Change User Behavior

As UX practitioners, we try to create the best conditions for users to complete their tasks, and yet even the most usable interface is sometimes not enough to engage users. Why is that? To understand the reasons behind what drives users to certain behaviors, we need to look at the psychology that underlies the process of initiating and performing a behavior.

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Web Development Reading List #121: The Illusion Of Completeness, Client Hints, CSS Subgrids

Over the last two weeks, I had the chance to review about eighty job applications for a front-end position. The position requires strong JavaScript knowledge, but it also requires HTML and CSS. And here’s a thing: nearly no one could show off substantial markup skills, not to talk about accessibility.

Anatomy of a web app attack.

Although I only had the chance to review their personal websites or GitHub profiles and this might of course not be a full show-off of their knowledge, it assured my lately developed opinion on web developers. Many are not able to choose the right HTML elements, to explain why and how a clearfix works, or what ARIA roles are for, but they can use React and Angular. If you got some spare time over the next weeks, learn semantics and re-read the basics (or specs if you like the challenge) of HTML and CSS from time to time.

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How To Create And Customize A WordPress Child Theme

The WordPress platform is a magnet for those who want to take matters into their own hands, who want complete control over their websites and want to be independent in running them. WordPress does make it really easily to completely customize a website. If you have a bit of knowledge of HTMl, CSS and/or PHP, there is nothing you can’t change.

How To Create And Customize A WordPress Child Theme

I mean, just compare the default themes, Twenty Fifteen and Twenty Fourteen. Hard to believe they are running on the same platform, isn’t it? Therefore, it is only natural for you to want to adapt the look of your website to fit your vision. I doubt there are many WordPress users out there who don’t constantly think about what to implement next. However, a problem arises.

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