[webdev] Web Design Update: September 8, 2005
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Thu Sep 8 06:27:14 CDT 2005
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 4, Issue 11, September 8, 2005.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web design
++ISSUE 11 CONTENTS.
SECTION ONE: New references.
What's new at the Web Design Reference site?
New links in these categories:
02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
05: EVALUATION & TESTING.
08: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
14: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Web Accessibility: A Broader View
By John T. Richards and Vicki L. Hanson.
"In this paper, we take a broader view, discussing an approach that
costs developers less and provides greater advantages to a larger
community of users. While we have quite specific aims in our technical
work, we hope it can also serve as an example of how the technical
conversation regarding Web accessibility can move beyond the narrow
confines of limited adaptations for small populations."
CSS and Accessibility
By Richard Rutter.
"Here's something that's been playing on my mind recently. What role
can CSS alone play in making websites accessible? WCAG says to separate
content from presentation, so the implication is that using CSS for
layout, colours, fonts, etc. makes a page more accessible. But what
about more specific aspects?"
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
Mobile Web Design
By Cameron Moll.
"Let's cut to the chase: You're considering retrofitting an existing
website/web app to be more accessible to mobile users, or you're
planning a new website/web app and want to include mobile in the mix.
What are your options? The way we see it, your options boil down to
four choices: 1.) Do nothing. 2.) Kill all styling and allow raw HTML
to be rendered. 3.) Use media="handheld" stylesheets. 4.) Re-purpose
content, code, and images specifically for mobile users. Following is
an explanation of each method, including an unbiased look at the
advantages and disadvantages of each..."
Soup to Nuts: Making a CSS-based Layout Start to Finish
By Nate Steiner.
"My intention with this article is to describe how I make working,
standards-based XHTML/CSS web sites. The challenge is not really 'how
do I do this' but rather 'how do I choose from all the different ways
to do this', and I thought some folks interested in this subject might
appreciate a step by step walk through of my workflow. A basic
understanding of HTML and CSS will be helpful, but not required."
By James Siddall, Junior.
"Our call for assistance is directed towards cognitive psychologists,
human factors specialists, color perception specialists, any expert
that can confirm (or contradict, if more appropriate) our doubts
regarding the W3C algorithm, either through experimentation or
documented expertise. Our first goal is to collect scientific data
which will disprove the validity of this formula, so that its acquired
international authority is reasonably disproved. Our second goal is to
identify (or propose and verify) a new alternative, which provides more
Macromedia Studio 8 (Review)
By PC Pro.
"...Ultimately, whether Macromedia is going out with a bang or a
whimper, and whether you should buy Studio 8 or not, depends on your
primary interest. If you're producing page-based sites with
Dreamweaver/Fireworks, version 8 is a damp squib of an upgrade, but if
you're producing or planning to produce 'rich Internet apps' with
Flash, it's a breakthrough release..."
+05: EVALUATION & TESTING.
A Usability Testing Bake-Off
By Jared M. Spool.
"Practicing usability testing has great similarities with baking an
When Discount Usability Misleads Management - A Solution
By John Sorflaten.
"Usability folks often interact with marketing folks about progress on
Web site design. Do they speak the same language? That is the question.
If you tell someone that 80% of your test subjects "succeeded,'how
might you be misleading them? Know how to qualify your discount
usability test results with a "margin of error'."
Web Application Development Workshop
October 4-5, 2005.
Albany, New York U.S.A.
October 5, 2005.
In Search of... A Perfect Plugin Technique
By Andrew Kirkpatrick.
"I created a few test files that represent different approaches to
including Flash in a web page and then tested them. Methods, testing
criteria, and results at the end of this posting. The best solution?
Using a server-side scripting language (ColdFusion, ASP, PHP, etc), a
developer could deliver a page that satisfies all requirements to
individual browsers without too much difficulty."
+08: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
IA in Academia
"Who in the academic community is doing the leading research and
inquiry into IA issues? Who are the big thinkers?"
By Michael Youssef.
"When you write a script, most of the time you need to make a decision
based on the values of some of your variables, or based on the values
entered by the users, or even based on user actions. Decision making is
a fundamental building block for all programming languages and it's
similar in most of them. In this article, we discuss the if/else
statement block, the switch statement, and take a look at the prompt()
By Lucian Slatineanu.
"As always, there is a solution. It's just not as handy as using just
plain simple CSS styling. So it's time to bring on some JS support. As
always, the trick is in getting this solution to work in all browsers,
across all platforms and also degrade gracefully for those users that
for some reason haven't yet made the move to a real browser."
Work vs. Progress
By Scott Berkun.
"It's easy to tell when someone is working, but how can you tell when
they're making progress?"
10 Tips That Every PHP Developer Should Know, Part 2
By Jeffery Vaska.
"I wish I had known these 10 simple things the day I started working
with PHP. This article is part II in the this series and is intended
PHP 6.0 Wishlist
By Rasmus Lerdorf.
"Chiming in with his thoughts on PHP6 and what changes should be made
for it, Rasmus has sent a new email to the php-dev mailing list with
his eight suggestions."
Getting Started With Objects With PHP V5
By Matt Zandstra.
"This article describes the fundamentals of objects and classes in PHP
V5, from the very basics through to inheritance, for experienced
object-oriented programmers and those who have not yet been introduced
CSE HTML Validator Lite
"Clean up your site with CSE Lite! CSE HTML Validator Lite is an award
winning free HTML editor and basic HTML syntax checker for Microsoft
Simplicity Is Hard Work
By Gerry McGovern.
"Simplicity is hard. It's expensive to do well. 'Our experience is that
for every mouse click we take out of the user experience, 20 things
have to happen in our software behind the scenes,' states Brad Treat,
Chief Executive of SightSpeed...You are the worst judge of whether your
website or product is simple. You know your website. You designed it.
Remember, a potential customer who has never been at your website
before will spend less than one minute figuring out your homepage...To
achieve simplicity an organization needs to be genuinely
customer-focused. Extra investment will be required, as well as a
special commitment from designers and management. Is it worth it?
Certainly, organizations such as Apple and Google are showing that
simplicity can become a genuine competitive advantage."
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
+14: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
Cascading Style Sheets Information.
Evaluation & Testing Information.
Information Architecture Information.
Miscellaneous Web Information.
Sites & Blogs Listing.
Standards, Guidelines & Pattern Information.
[Section two ends.]
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+ SIGN OFF.
Until next time,
Laura L. Carlson
Information Technology Systems and Services
University of Minnesota Duluth
Duluth, MN U.S.A. 55812-3009
mailto:lcarlson at d.umn.edu
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