News : April 2007
110am.com Redesign, Refresh Seattle, and WebVisions
My colleague at Blue Flavor, Tom Watson, tells me that he has redesigned his site 110am.com. The design changes per season and runs on Garrett Murray's killer SimpleLog CMS. If you are in Seattle tonight be sure to catch Tom's Refresh Seattle presentation Bridging the Designer and Developer Gap. Tom will also be speaking at WebVisions in Portland, Oregon this Thursday and Friday.
Digital Web Magazine at WebVisions 2007
For those attending WebVisions 2007 be sure to say hello when you see me, Tiff Fehr, Jessica Neuman Beck or any of the rest of the Digital Web Magazine staff. Also be sure to check out Garrett Dimon's workshop on Improving Interface Design, Tom Watson's presentation on Bridging the Designer and Developer Gap, and Mark Wyner's presentation on Experience Design As the Sum of Its Parts. Also, if you happen to be around on Thursday night be sure to RSVP for the Digital Web Magazine dinner. Space is limited!
New Editorial Assistant: Jessica Neuman Beck
You wouldn't believe the amount of work it takes to produce a weekly online magazine for web professionals, especially when it's an all-volunteer effort. We are fortunate to have some great staff members, and when we noticed DW author Jessica Beck's abilities and personality, we just had to grab her! She writes with pizazz, she designs, she has energy and insight, loves the web and books, and has that "It's already done!" attitude that makes her even more valuable to us. Her main website is Could Be Studios, the center of her web business, and a little investigation will reveal that she has skillions of websites and heaps of talent. Authors, don't be surprised if you hear from her soon, and even get a little editorial assistance. Welcome aboard, Jessica!
hAccessibility: Accessibility and Microformats
Just wanted to point to this article (and interesting discussion) from the latest article over at the Web Standards Project.
Written by Accessibility Task Force members James Craig and Bruce Lawson, hAccessibility looks at Microformats and their impact on accessibility - in particular, the use of the
abbr pattern for marking up dates of events and how they are read by screen readers.
WebVIsions 2007 ticket give away!
Me and my fellow co-workers at Blue Flavor have announced a contest where you can send in your jargon to get a chance win a ticket to WebVisions 2007. Pretty simple eh? So if you want to go to WebVisions for free, here is your chance!
New Website Development App: Coda
A new website development application for OS X hit the scene today. It's called Coda and it's from Panic, those guys that make Transmit. It looks cool and it's getting plenty of attention from the bloggers that got in on the beta-testing.
Is taking the time to try to integrate it into one's workflow worth the chance that after the demonstration period is up, you might find that it's not worth it?
35 Designers, 5 Questions, only one Digital Web
Everyone's favourite 'more–lists–than–you–can–shake–a–stick–at' site, Smashing Magazine, has been busy recently, asking 35 of the web's top designers some pertinent questions on their chosen career - and top of the list of regular reads? None other than Digital Web magazine, of course!
Women in IA - IA voice podcast
Wolf Nöding, from the IA Voice podcast has a great 'Women in IA series' running. So far he has interviewed Stacy Surla and Indi Young and I know he has many more on the way (me included).
New Release of Upcoming.org
Andy Baio tells me that they just launched a new release of Upcoming.org. The first thing you will notice is the merging of Upcoming accounts with Yahoo accounts. Once you get in you will see there is a new layout and architecture of some things in the site. You can read more about the new release on their blog. Congrats to Andy, Leonard, and the rest of the Upcoming.org team!
Reminder: WebVisions 2007
Just in case you're asleep at the wheel, WebVisions 2007 is just a few weeks away. That's right, this year's event is moved up to May 3rd and 4th. Keynoting this year's event is Kent Nichols & Douglas Sarine (AKA Ask a Ninja) and David Pescovitz (Boing Boing and MAKE: Magazine). Also speaking at this year's event is Chris Baum, Lane Becker, Kimberly Blessing, Jina Bolton, Zadi Diaz, Garrett Dimon, Renny Gleeson, Aaron Gustafson, Jack Herrington, Paul Ingram, Brian Jamison, Michael P. Jones, Phillip Kerman, Lee LeFever, Sean Madden, David McFarland, Irene McGee, John Moore, Steve Mulder, Thor Muller, Jeremiah Owyang, Robert Reinhardt, Daniel Schutzsmith, Monne Smith, Kevin Smokler, Kinan Sweidan, Jorge Taylor, Tom Watson, Todd Wilkens, Luke Wroblewski, and last but not least, Mark Wyner. We're also organizing a Digital Web Magazine dinner, hope to see you there!
Blogging for Fun and Profit
FreelanceSwitch, a blog full of advice for freelancers, has attracted over 3,000 subscribers in a little over two weeks - and why not, it's a beautifully designed site with some great freelancing articles and resources - but more interesting is the story behind it.
The owner of the site, Collis Ta'eed, has posted a frank appraisal of the techniques he used to identify a suitable niche topic, leverage his existing assets, and make effective use of both social media and carefully targeted paid advertising. It's a great example of self-marketing - if you're looking for a comparatively easy way to position yourself as an expert in your chosen field, remember that a blog can be more than just a personal journal, or the latest news about your company. With a little extra thought, you can build a resource that not only helps other people, but can also raise your profile a great deal more than a personal or work blog (with a few notable exceptions) ever can.
New Issue: CSS Positioning 101 and Richard Ishida on Internationalization!
This week, Digital Web Magazine is all about keeping tabs on your skills. We're debuting a new column, called “Web Design 101”—the basics every web professional should master, and a great starting place for beginners new to web design and the web standards community. So ask yourself: Do you have your CSS element positioning down pat? Test out your CSS expertise (or add to your CSS expertise) with Tommy Olsson's Web Design 101: Positioning. The concepts behind the
position property in CSS can confound even the best CSS experts. And
z-index is a great tool anyone dealing is cross-browser CSS. Get to know them better with our first “Web Design 101” article.
While you're positioning things in CSS like a pro, take a moment to also update yourself on the state of internationalization efforts in the W3C with their resident expert, Richard Ishida. Digital Web Magazine's newest columnist, Huiping Iler, and Mr. Ishida cover the basics of Internationalization that every web professional should keep in mind. International audiences come to our Web sites, so it is important to keep internationalization and the global marketplace on your mind.
IA Summit sessions available
I am only just starting to recover from attending the IA Summit at the end of March. It was great to meet many Digital Web readers and authors and to recommend DW to a new crowd.
Presentations for most sessions are available. Audio will be available for some in the next couple of weeks.
Now that's over, I should have some time to start digging out some great IA articles for you...
New Issue: "Bulletproof Ajax" and XHTML2 v. HTML5
This week, Digital Web Magazine features two timely pieces in web development. First is a review of Jeremy Keith's newest book effort, Bulletproof Ajax. Digital Web's own Managing Editor, Matthew Pennell, reviews the book and finds it to be a good, concise synthesis of responsible and measured Ajax methodologies. We’re also thrilled to feature David “Liorean” Andersson, who offers guidance through the daunting, acronym-filled jungle of “HTML5, XHTML2, and the Future of the Web”. Get your versions straight with this handy primer on the future of markup specs from the W3C.
Individual article comment feeds
I just finished adding in the last of the new comment feed features. You can subscribe to individual blog item comment feeds, seen at the bottom, here. You can also subscribe to individual article comments feeds, seen at the bottom, here.
Ext JS launched
A Mac Design Book in PC Packaging
I'm sure I'll offend many with my title, but I want to take a second to point out that this week's excerpt is from a book whose name and cover are in total contrast to its content. Inside this lovely designerly book, you'll find chapters like "Mining Art and Design History," "Varying Degrees of Derivation," "Balance Forms and Reconcile Paradigms," and interviews with people like Clement Mok, Milton Glaser, and Stefan Sagmeister. The book is thoughtful, useful, and replete with photos of well-designed work. The title and the cover seem more geared for, well, the NASCAR audience, and I wanted you all to ignore that and mine the info within. The book? Hot-Wiring Your Creative Process. Please don't let the title prevent you from looking, um, under the hood.
New Issue: Excerpt from "Hot-Wiring Your Creative Process" and How to Brand Your Intranet
This week, Digital Web is thrilled to feature an excerpt from Curt Cloninger’s newest design book, “Hot-Wiring Your Creative Process”. Excerpted here is Chapter 3, entitled “Four Ways to Bypass Inertia”. Mr. Cloninger offers multiple strategies for overcoming designer's block and lack of inspiration. Every designer runs into stale ideas and habits. “Four Ways to Bypass Inertia” gives us—count ’em—*four* fascinating, unconventional methods to keep a designer's eye fresh and productive.
In addition, this week we also feature Garth A. Buchholz on “Why Your Intranet Needs Its Own Personality”. Intranet design can be a highly contentious project, but Mr. Buchholz helps smooth out the politics by focusing on branding.
On the Other Hand: Not Getting Things Done
Ah, the irony! Right on the heels of Matthew's discussion of Getting Things Done (see post below), cold and flu season blasted some staff members, and we're holding up production of this week's double issue until tonight
Getting Things Done at Digital Web
The editorial team here at Digital Web (and columnist Derek Featherstone) are collectively working our way through David Allen’s seminal productivity book, Getting Things Done. The methodology he lays out has quite a few converts in the web design and development community – if you’re a GTD fan, we’d love to hear about your favourite tips, tricks, and software that help you get things done.