Smashing Newsletter: Issue #189

This newsletter issue was sent out to 226,933 recipients newsletter subscribers on Tuesday, August 29th 2017.


You probably have been there before: Just when you think everything possible has already been invented and thought of, a lightbulb sparks over someone’s head and fascinates everyone around them. The outcome of these ideas isn’t necessarily honest or respectful towards the users though. Just like technology isn’t neutral, so isn’t design as it’s crafted by people like us who aren’t neutral either.

Dark patterns are out there, and they are still heavily used, and sometimes widely accepted. We need to build honest UIs and help users make better, informed decisions, and that, of course, means involving the people we’re designing for in user research and testing whenever possbile — even if the client is wrong. It’s all about the audience we are designing for. For example, we need to study and understand how kids use the web as well as how elderly folks use the web, as the interaction patterns are likely to be very different, and so are users’ needs.

All the more we are humbled and proud to be a new home for White Hat UX, a truly smashing book on prioritizing UX, research, testing, ethical design and privacy issues — and how to make a strong case for honest user experience in your company. Take a look at the Table of Contents. Written by Trine Falbe, a UX expert and consultant from Denmark, along with her colleagues Kim Andersen, and Martin Michael Frederiksen. More empathy can never go wrong.

Table of Contents

  1. 100 Questions To Help You Design Smarter
  2. SmashingConf Barcelona Is Coming
  3. The Best Sketch Resources In One Place
  4. 100 Days Of Secrets
  5. A Graveyard For Memorable Products
  6. Extra! Extra! A Newspaper Time Travel
  7. Free Food Photography With A Soul
  8. Upcoming Smashing Workshops
  9. New On Smashing Job Board
  10. Popular Articles On Smashing
  11. Most Recent Articles On Smashing

[](#)1. 100 Questions To Help You Design Smarter

Design is more than creating pixel-perfect assets. As a designer, you’re also part marketer, part sales person, and part user. To help you accomodate all these aspects in your design process (and design smarter), Jon Moore put together 100 questions designers should ask themselves, the user, and the client to make the most out of a project.

100 Questions

The questions are divided into 50 business and 50 tactical questions. What elevator pitch do you want the user to tell? How might users fail or get lost? Where am I willing to compromise the design? By going beyond what’s usually asked, you’ll gain a fresh view on your project. Give it a try. It’s worth it. (cm)

[](#)2. Ready To Master New Challenges? SmashingConf Barcelona Is Coming!

The web is constantly changing. So, what could be better than learning first-hand from people who know their craft — Marcy Sutton, Brad Frost, Sarah Drasner, Chris Coyier and Monica Dinculescu, among others? Well, SmashingConf Barcelona is returning to the magical Palau de la Música Catalana once again this fall (Oct 17–18th) to boost up your skills. Two packed days of hands-on, practical sessions by some of the most respected members of the community.

SmashingConf Barcelona

Join us on our journey to the sunny Mediterranean seaside where we’ll explore new front-end challenges, UX strategies, and design patterns that you’ll be able to apply immediately to you work. No fluff or theory, just things that have worked in real-life projects — with enough time for networking, of course. To the tickets →

[](#)3. The Best Sketch Resources In One Place

Sketch. Nearly no week goes by without a cool new tool, plugin or resource seeing the light of day that makes the mighty app even mightier and the work with it even smoother. To help you stay on top of things when it comes to Sketch resources, Jonno Riekwel maintains a handy collection of the best Sketch resources.

Sketch Resources

In it, you’ll find kits and frameworks, plugins, elements, UI kits, icons and useful apps — most of them available for free. The collection is constantly growing, so if you know of a cool Sketch helper that isn’t listed yet, feel free to share it. (cm)

[](#)4. 100 Days Of Secrets

We all have secrets. Things we rather keep to ourselves because we feel uncomfortable sharing them with others. An embarassing habit, a story from our past, feelings or doubts. Illustrator Terence Eduarte took our most personal secrets as inspiration for a 100-days project. And what better name could there be for an undertaking like this as, well, 100 Days Of Secrets?

100 Days Of Secrets

For the project, Terence illustrated 100 friends and strangers, in exchange they told them their secret. And as these strangers disclose a part of themselves, you get the impression to know them — at least a bit. A very delicate project that shines both through its art and the stories being told. (cm)

[](#)5. A Graveyard For Memorable Products

Products come and go. Some of them disappear with a big bang, others rather quietly. Fireworks, Flash, Windows Live Messenger, Mailbox, Google Reader — tools that once were loved and that left a gap behind. The Product Graveyard gives them a last resting place — and you a way to discover alternatives that’ll fill this gap.

Product Graveyard

The Product Graveyard features more than 1,000 deceased products and counting. Each product comes with an “obituary” that informs about the cause of death, the lifespan, what it’s remembered for, the last-known residence, and, of course, the alternatives to it. Users can even share their stories about the product or a eulogy. If you’re favorite product is missing, feel free to submit an “autopsy report“ for it so it won’t be forgotten. (cm)

[](#)6. Extra! Extra! A Newspaper Time Travel

Today, the news about whatever is happening in the world spreads within a few minutes. We have constant access — right from our pockets — we only need to open up Twitter or our favorite app or website. Now go back to the times when your grandparents (maybe even your great-grandparents) were young. To times, when the daily newspaper was one of the (if not the only) main sources of information. Wouldn’t it be exciting to leaf through these newspapers today? To take a peek at their layouts, their typography, and, most importantly, the stories they told and how they told them?


If you’re up for a little trip back in time, be sure to check out The site archives more than 306 million pages from more than 5,300 newspapers from across the US, Canada, UK, and Australia. You can browse and search the newspapers from the 1700s to the 2000s — interesting discoveries guaranteed. A seven-day trial is free, afterwards the service costs $12.49 per month. A treasure trove. (cm)

[](#)7. Free Food Photography With A Soul

Fresh, aromatic herbs, carrots that come straight out of the soil, bread with a perfect crust, the soft milk foam on top of a freshly brewed cappuccino. Hungry? Well, then we might have something to satisfy your hunger — at least visually: Foodiesfeed. On the site, food photographers from all around the world share their photos. For free.


The idea behind the resource is to put an end to sterile, soulless stock photos and replace them with naturally looking food photography instead. Photography that celebrates the beauty of the products and the joy of preparing and sharing a meal together. Now, if you ever get to work on a food-related project someday, you know where to start your search, right? (cm)

[](#)8. Upcoming Smashing Conferences

We create practical, hands-on conferences highlighting techniques, strategies and design patterns used in real-life products by experienced designers and developers. No fluff, no theory: just 2 days packed with practical front-end and UX techniques. Coming up: SmashingConf Freiburg, Germany (Sep 11–12) and SmashingConf Barcelona, Spain (Oct 17–18). That — and we love cats, too.

SmashingConf Freiburg 2017

SmashingConf Freiburg, Germany (Sep 11–12)

SmashingConf Barcelona 2017

SmashingConf Barcelona, Spain (Oct 17–18)

Or, if you’d like to run an in-house workshop at your office, feel free to get in touch with Vitaly at and briefly describe what problems you’re facing and would like to solve. Don’t worry about the costs — we’ll find a fair price for sure. Get in touch — it’s that easy!

[](#)9. New On Smashing Job Board

Here are some of the most recent job openings at Smashing Jobs:

  • Freelance Web Designer at Magnoliahouse Creative (Anywhere)
    “We’re looking to add a web designer to our growing team. The position is project-based, contract right now, though our ultimate goal for it to eventually transition into a full time employee. This is a great fit for someone who would like to spend more time on design and less time on client management.”
  • Senior Web Developer at Wake Forest University (Winston Salem, NC)
    “The Senior Web Developer will strengthen University Advancement’s development team by providing a flexible skill set to address development challenges on multiple fronts.”
  • Front-End Developer at Sisu, Inc. (Los Angeles, CA)
    “We are looking for a mid-level Front-end Developer to join our team. The ideal candidate will be inquisitive and driven, with a love for both design and technology and a desire to contribute and grow.”
  • The Nine Principles Of Design Implementation
    To really know whether our work is any good, we need a higher level of principles that can be used as a measuring stick for implementing design. We need something to guide the way we implement design without telling us exactly how to do it.
  • How To Create A Sketch Plugin With Front-End Technologies
    The open nature of the Sketch plugin system means that anyone can identify a need, write a plugin and share it with the community. Zachary Schuessler explains how you can do it with front-end technologies.
  • Color Theory for Designers, Part 1: The Meaning of Color
    There are few things in design that are more subjective — or more important — than the use of color. Cameron Chapman discusses the meanings behind the different color families, and gives some examples of how these colors are used.

[](#)11. Most Recent Articles On Smashing