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Smashing Daily #11: Batteries, Colors, Videos

All mobile performance nerds, responsive image thinkers, font lovers, colorblind people and everybody else who works on the Web will probably find something of interest in this edition of The Smashing Daily. Enjoy!

The real conflict behind <picture> and @srcset1
A few weeks ago there was this row about responsive images: two competing proposals that somehow clashed. Jason Grigsby takes another look at both of these proposals from the viewpoint of the lookahead pre-parser, claiming that they are both conflicting with this idea and that they are a maintenance nightmare. He concludes with the fact that this issue should be solved from within the image itself, and he’s right about that. We’ll just have to wait awhile. Anybody at Adobe listening?

Picture and srcset2

“Open Source Mobile Performance Test”
Testing performance on mobile devices can be pretty hard to do. There are some different tools out there and one of them, Mobitest, has been open sourced for a while now. This tool lets you remotely run accurate tests on real devices. You can try it out here or you can install it yourself now (which is rather complicated, like everything on mobile).

Browsers and Apps in 20123
So is this the final piece written about native vs. Web? Tim Bray wrote down all the reasons for making a native or a Web app, concluded nothing, and shared a lot of links on the subject. Go ahead and read it if you’re still amused by this discussion.

JavaScript Battery API4
New APIs seem to be released every week. A while ago the Battery API was implemented in Firefox Aurora (and I believe it’s in Chrome as well now). David Walsh explains how this new API works and what it’s for.

The battery API5

Blog: Type News: Feral Lamb Chop6
The weekly update by Typedia for all font nerds, with some beautiful new typefaces (there’s even one with a windmill!) and lots of links to all of the things that have happened in the world of letters.

We are Colorblind7
About 8% of the male population—that’s about 4% of all people—have some kind of color blindness. We may optimize our websites for browsers (with that many users), yet we may not always think about these men. Here’s a whole website dedicated to colorblindness, with good articles on buying clothes8, and good examples like finding the links in Readability9. A section with tools would be a good addition to this website

We are colorblind10

Video, Mobile, and the Open Web11
In this very long post Brandan Eich explains why Firefox will support the H.264 video codec on devices that have hardware support for it. If you’re interested in this matter, go ahead and read all of it, it is interesting stuff.

Mozilla Hacks Weekly, May 3rd 201212
Is The Smashing Daily not enough? Do you need more to read? Here’s another list with links, provided by the Mozilla Developer Engagement team.

Last Click

CSS States13
The more we play with CSS transitions the more incredible things/hacks we find. It reminds me of the old days when every week or so a new CSS trick was published (things like sliding doors, or some sort of blob navigation with sprites). Here’s an incredible transition hack that keeps the state of the animated figure. Yes, I know, that’s an extremely vague description, so you should probably just check it out and read the blog post about it14.

Endless transition delays15

Previous Issues16

For previous Smashing Daily issues, check out the Smashing Daily Archive17.


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Vasilis van Gemert is the Principal Front-end Developer at Mirabeau in The Netherlands and a board member of Fronteers. His aim is to close the gap between design and (front-end) development. He believes the excess of knowledge he has can be better used by others, by more creative and smarter people. You can follow him on Twitter.

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