News : November 2008

News : November 2008

Thanksgiving Giveaway: Free hosting and domain for a year

We at Digital Web Magazine want to say thanks to our readers and authors for their dedicated patronage. As some of you may know, today in the U.S. is Thanksgiving day. To celebrate and say thank you to our readers and contributors we are going to be giving away a gift certificate for free hosting and domain name (you pick it if its available) for one year at Media Temple.

All you have to do is comment on this blog post, tell us how you first found out about our publication and why you feel its different than the other sites out there. We’ll hand select the best answer. This doesn’t need to be a book in length, a simple paragraph or two will do. Make sure you include your name, email address, and URL otherwise we won’t know how to contact you to send you the gift card.

November 27, 2008 at /files/includes/10.css:31 AM

Nick Finck

New Issue: Digital Web Seeks a New Tune

Digital Web is headed into our winter break—we take December off to gather our resources and review the year past. But before we hibernate, we have a holiday season present for our readers. It’s a bit of a departure, but we’re thrilled to have Chris Wright join us to ask a light-hearted question, Is The Web Really Helping Us Find New Music?.

Naturally, we have our own motives—this article represents an op-ed piece. It’s not a how-to, or new trick, and it’s definitely not an adventurous CSS idea—we’re thick-skinned around here, but the flamewars around our recent CSS pieces have been a new hurdle in the history of the magazine. So let’s all take a new outlook for the holidays and enjoy what we have.

We’d like to hear your reaction to op-ed-style pieces, too—please leave a comment in response to the article, and in response to its style. Have a happy winter holiday!

November 25, 2008 at /files/includes/10.css:52 PM

Tiff Fehr

Free CSS book from Sitepoint

The folks over at Sitepoint are giving away a free PDF of their book, The Art & Science Of CSS (co-written by one-time Digital Web columnist and all-round nice guy, Jonathan Snook). All you have to do to bag a copy is follow them on Twitter — full details can be found on

November 20, 2008 at 2:29 AM

Matthew Pennell

New Issue: RESTful CSS

We have a very interesting article this week from new contributor Steve Heffernan, who brings us RESTful CSS. Our last few CSS articles sparked quite a row in the comments, so I hope the same audience takes a long look at Steve’s proposals, even if web app languages like Ruby on Rails isn’t your day-to-day forte. CSS management is a growing issue as we make even greater advances in CSS techiques, JavaScript support and enhancement and rich interactions like web apps.

November 18, 2008 at 8:09 PM

Tiff Fehr

New Issue: Review of ‘Website Optimization’ and Are Accessibility Statements Useful?

Digital Web is happy to bring you another quality “twofer“—a two-article issue to get you through November. First up is returning contributor Andrew Stevens who reviews the new book Website Optimization by Andrew King on O’Reilly—the nighthawk book as it were. King looks beyond code optimization and examines optimizing a website’s full web presense, from search results to SEO to website responsiveness.

Leona Tomlinson returns from her recent article on accessibilty to ask a new question: Are Accessibility Statements Useful? Leona examines recent thinking on accessibility statements and where they can still be a benefit to users.

November 11, 2008 at 9:53 PM

Tiff Fehr

New Issue: Extract from Paul Boag’s “Website Owner’s Manual”

Digital Web is happy to feature a chapter from Paul Boag’s new book Website Owners Manual, entitled Know Your Site. Paul Boag is a well-known podcaster and web guru, with a lengthy resume throughout Headscape and Boagworld. His new book is a primer for website owners, and poses excellent questions for both web geeks and owners alike.

In addition to Boagworld’s book, last week Digital Web asked a timely question of our readers, “Does politics matter to web professionals?“? Our readers weighed in over the week leading up to this evening’s historic election in the U.S. And we’re happy to publish the results here in our news blog—Your views on politics and web design.

November 7, 2008 at 12:50 AM

Tiff Fehr

Your views on politics and web design

Last week we asked you how politics affects the jobbing web designer, and many of you responded with your thoughts. It was gratifying to see that, in the main, our readers are politically aware and realize the effect that national politics can have on their day-to-day lives — but what specifically do web pros need to consider? Adam Conrad says:

Politics has yet to affect my day-to-day life finding a job, doing my work and making the web a better place. However, at the end of the day, who is in office will directly affect many aspects of my work, which many in the industry fail to account for. If my taxes go up or inflation increases, then my per-hour wage may have to jump more than my clients can comfortably afford, and I could either lose business or money by taking on cheaper/less jobs. If our country goes to war, gas prices go up and it costs me significantly more to drive to a client’s home/business for a consultation, often a price I do not include in the contract. It’s simple things like these that, as I said, do not add up in the moment, but trickle down from big events that eventually affect everyone.

Brian Warren sees a more direct effect:

As someone who owns his own business the current political climate is extremely important to me. Health insurance alone is a huge pain for us. We pay way too much for way too little coverage. If you have a pre-existing condition then you may as well forget it. We constantly feel as the odds are stacked against the independent professional. The health insurance industry is completely built upon the framework that giving healthcare coverage to people who need it is not profitable. Knowing that Obama, and Democrats in general, are going to do something about that gives me hope for my family’s future.

And Brandy Reppy notes that: “trying to justify the expense of a well thought-out and maintained web presence to an organization or business that is struggling financially because of poor political decision-making is an uphill battle at best.”

There are also factors closer to home about which readers are concerned. Tristan Louis:

In this election cycle, things like open access, a high speed internet network architecture, and first amendment rights on the internet will be affected by who ends up in the White House as a result of this election.

Nathan Steiner took a closer look at the candidates’ technology positions, and writes:

Just for fun, compare the first google results for “Obama on technology” vs. “McCain on technology.” Obama’s result leads to his own page on the subject, which includes three clear and important priorities: net neutrality, broadband for everyone, and grants for research. McCain’s result leads to a third party site listing his positions on technology, most of which reveal a generic focus on financial and taxing issues. I don’t believe that either candidate would be considerably better or worse on issues directly related to web developers, but Obama has shown an understanding of the power of social networks and how to hook-up a grass-roots financing campaign into the web with unprecedented success. It seems that the health of the web as it relates to US business interests would greatly benefit from a president who understood it as clearly as the Obama camp does.

Finally, spare a thought for this guy:

I currently work for a company that relies pretty heavily on large enterprise customers and government agencies. So how those organizations’ spending is affected by the policies set by government, and however directly or indirectly by the person sitting in the Oval Office does affect my company, my job, and any rewards I may earn as a result of our success. So ironically while I am very politically liberal in beliefs and in how I vote (I’m a Green Party member who votes Democrat), my company may benefit from policy makers who benefit large corporations, which I am generally opposed to.

Thank you to everyone who responded.

November 4, 2008 at 8:24 AM

Matthew Pennell

Coworking space to launch in Seattle

Join myself and my colleagues at Blue Flavor on November 14th as we launch Whitespace, a coworking space for professionals in Seattle who are passionate about their work, but tired of working alone at home or in noisy coffee shops. Think of it as a co-op artist and tech space. It’s also a great environment for relaxing and collaborating with like-minded people.

To RSVP for the event please do so on Upcoming or Facebook. You can also visit RentWhitespace,com to learn more about the space and our rates. If you want to learn more about Coworking visit the Coworking Wiki, Coworking blog and Coworking Google group.

November 3, 2008 at 4:06 PM

Nick Finck