[webdev] Web Design Update: April 13, 2007
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Fri Apr 13 06:26:45 CDT 2007
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 5, Issue 43, April 13, 2007.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web design
++ISSUE 43 CONTENTS.
SECTION ONE: New references.
What's new at the Web Design Reference site?
New links in these categories:
02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
04: EVALUATION & TESTING.
06: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
11: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
14: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Accessible Web 2.0 Applications with WAI-ARIA
By Martin Kliehm.
"Our web applications can suffer from inaccessibility problems due to
inherent markup limitations. Martin Kliehm helps us sort through the
WAI specs for Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA) to increase
IBM Helps Blind 'See' Web Video
By Geoff Adams-Spink.
"Technology giant, IBM, is soon to launch a multimedia browser to make
audio and video content accessible to people with vision impairments..."
WAI Handouts and WAI Flyer
"The following two handouts are available for you to print and
distribute at conferences, presentations, and other outreach
opportunities. You may use these as is, according to the W3C copyright
and document use policies. Make sure to include the link to the online
version for updates to the information..."
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
How to Clear CSS Floats Without Extra Markup: Different Techniques
By Robert Nyman.
"When using floats in CSS, without a doubt you have encountered the
interesting effects it will have on the following content. Here I will
show you different ways to clear floats without any extra mark-up."
How I Use CSS Background-Color for Layout Corrections
By Sean Fraser.
"I don't know if you ever happen to do this but it occurs when
Sleepyheadedness sets-up or Stygian Deaths Rays Hypnotically emanating
from Venus by way of your monitor have rendered you Brain Dead. Style
sheet errors. I find that CSS 'background-color' property fixes
How To Attack An Internet Explorer Display Bug - Revised for IE7
By John Gallant, Holly Bergevin.
"Many authors who desire to make the switch to tableless design can be
brought up short when they encounter various browser bugs. Internet
Explorer for Windows can present some significant challenges to this
switch, exhibiting a variety of display problems. Although a full
understanding of how IE 'gets it wrong' may not be within reach for
everyone, it is possible to get by with a few key bug fixing tools. The
original article was written with IE6 and lower browsers in mind, but
there's a new player in the arena, IE7. While many of the display
problems have been dealt with, this new browser may still need some
special treatment. So, we've revised, updated and rewritten this
article, with a focus on how to bring IE7 along when it needs bug
fixing like its older siblings. This is information you need to know!"
Use Class with Semantics in Mind
"Often people use class names like bluetext, or redborder. A much
better way to name your classes is with the role a certain HTML element
of that class has..."
Introducing CMX JumpStart Detroit
By Sheri German.
"We are pleased to introduce our latest CMX JumpStart: Detroit. Created
by Adrian 'JoJo' Senior, it has all the trademarks of his designs:
clean with no-fuss CSS, easy to modify, and always professional
looking. This two-column, centered, fixed-width layout includes a
shadowed, tapering background image on the main column that gives the
effect of a raised platform for the content. Like all JumpStarts,
Detroit uses valid XHTML 1.0 and CSS 2.1 markup and follows WAI and
Section 508 accessibility guidelines."
+04: EVALUATION & TESTING.
When Observing Users Is Not Enough: 10 Guidelines for Getting More Out
of Users' Verbal Comments
By Isabelle Peyrichoux.
"...Observing a user perform a task provides more reliable information
than simply asking the user how easy it would be to perform the task..."
What's New in Creative Suite 3 Web Premium
Adobe Online Event.
April 17, 2007, 11:00-12:00 Pacific Time.
The Creative Professional Association (CPA) Annual Conference
May 8-11, 2007.
Orlando, Florida, U.S.A.
Web Video Summit 2007
June 27-28, 2007.
San Jose, California, U.S.A.
September 19-21, 2007.
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
+06: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
The No-Knead Approach to Information Architecture, 3 of 5
By Lou Rosenfeld.
"...Determine who your most important audiences are. Many organizations
-- academic institutions, for example -- already have an excellent
grasp of who their primary audiences are, but you'd be surprised at how
many don't. Ask yourself right now: do you know who they are?..."
Visio - The Interaction Designer's Nail Gun (3rd edition)
By Henrik Olsen.
"This is a third edition of my article on using Visio for rapid
prototyping for the web. The new edition includes a minor update of the
GUUUI Web Prototyping Tool that eliminates a major shortcoming: the
inability to create scrolling pages. The update also includes brand new
sketchy interface widgets..."
By Tom Negrino and Dori Smith.
A Detailed Explanation: How to Create a Maintainable Dynamic Slide Show
By Christian Heilmann.
"Following the workshop in Singapore I promised to send out a more
that can be fully maintained in HTML, redesigned in CSS and all dynamic
labels changed without having to change the main script. The trick is
once again separation, and if you care to learn more about this, check
the 5 step example how to create a maintainable slideshow..."
By Fortify Software.
"Fortify Software's Security Research Group has announced a new class
vulnerability that specifically affects Web 2.0 AJAX-style web
applications. Download Fortify's advisory detailing the risk and how
developers can make their code secure..."
Web Directions North 2007 Resources and Podcasts
"Every one of our in depth sessions was packed with new ideas and
techniques to help designers and developers build more usable, more
accessible, and simply better web solutions. We want to make as much of
this as we can available to those who simply couldn't be there. Over
time we'll be releasing podcasts, as well as speakers notes and slides
as they come to hand..."
EASI's (Equal Access to Software and Information) Conference Podcasts
The latest addition to the EASI podcast page is "Update on U.S.
Accessible Web Litigation and Global Law and Policy" by Cynthia
Waddell, Executive Director, ICDRI.
Gel (Good Experience Live) Videos
They have added videos of the Gel 2007 conference speakers."
Microsoft is Dead
By Paul Graham.
"...Everyone can see the desktop is over. It now seems inevitable that
applications will live on the web -- not just email, but everything,
right up to Photoshop..."
By Andy Rutledge.
"...Education is not a first step in our profession. It is an ongoing
process that is a vital part of our profession every day of the week.
Like programmers, if we rely on our current grasp of the world, of our
endeavor, and of our professional landscape, we're falling behind. Like
programmers, we have an obligation to keep up."
Breadcrumb Navigation Increasingly Useful
By Jakob Nielsen.
"Breadcrumbs use a single line of text to show a page's location in the
site hierarchy. While secondary, this navigation technique is
increasingly beneficial to users."
Using NOODP and NOYDIR
By John S. Britsios.
"When one of your web site's pages shows up in a list of results on a
search engine, what do people see? Often the contents of the
description tag of your pages are displayed in the search results. At
other times the search engines will display portions of your page's
content which contain words used in the search query. This helps people
to see if your page is relevant to their search request. Sometimes, if
you are listed in DMOZ (ODP), the search engines will display snippets
of text about your site taken from them instead of your description
meta tag. You can force the search engine to ignore the ODP information
by including a robots meta tag like this..."
Making a Font Selector
By Mike Cherim.
"We recently made a font selector for this site to offer visitors the
option of changing the type-face to something they're more comfortable
with. This font selector was made with a PHP Hypertext Preprocessor
meaning users don't need to have any special add-ons or plugins for
their browser to use it. We figured you might like to know how we made
it in case you want to employ such a thing on your site..."
PHP Month of Functions
By Rodolphe Eveilleau, Julien Pauli, and Damien Seguy.
"The month of PHP function aims at introducing PHP developers to a new
PHP function every day : one that gets too little usage and spotlight,
though is highly useful. There are over 3000 functions in PHP, and they
all solve different problems. Sometimes, by sheer ignorance, PHP
developers reinvent the wheel, and duplicate an existing function.
During this month, we'll present one or several function every day :
they all deserve more attention. You don't have to search for it : most
of the time, it will be available in your PHP installation, especially
if you're using PHP 5. Sometimes, those functions are available since
PHP 4, they are documented, translated and stable. There are no reason
not to know about them."
+11: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
HTML5, XHTML2, and the Future of the Web
By David "liorean" Andersson.
"If you're hard at work day in, day out, chipping away at the rock
face of professional web development, it's sometimes easy to get
lost in the details--and when we're talking about an organization
that moves as slowly as the W3C, you can be forgiven for taking
your eye off the larger picture. David Andersson gets us up to
speed on what may soon be coming our way in the world of HTML."
The Business Case for Web Standards Wiki
By Christian Heilmann.
"...In order to avoid more misunderstandings and make sure we have the
right verbal ammunition to deal with all kind of people when we try to
sell the idea of web standards development I set up a wiki on the
subject of 'The business case for web standards development'. I hope
that by aggregating information there and using it to formulate our
presentations and emails in the right manner we can have more impact
than we have now. I also hope that reading success stories of others
may encourage you to take a stand in your environment and try to get a
chance to work in a less random manner than we have to do without
sticking to standards..."
Leading By Example
By Ben Henick.
"The World Wide Web Consortium promotes standards for web markup. But
do its members practice what they preach?..."
Setting Type on the Web to a Baseline Grid
By Wilson Miner.
"As web designers, we sometimes may feel we're on a relentless journey
to bridge the gap between digital and traditional processes. Wilson
Miner brings us one step closer by offering up a way to work with
typographic baselines on the web..."
Linux Font Equivalents to Popular Web Typefaces
By Jonathan Christopher.
"I have written before about my admiration for Web typography, and in
that article I touched on the fact that many 'Web safe' fonts can't be
applied to Linux. Linux distributions each ship with their own font
libraries, but I'd like to focus on similar typefaces you can use
within a font-family to help make your design bulletproof."
New WellsFargo.com Home Page
By Jared Spool.
"Recently, Wells Fargo launched a new home page. They've come a long
way from their original designs. The results? The designers tell us
they've seen a 500% increase in the number of loan applications since
they made the critical changes. Sounds like it worked for them..."
Row Highlights in Web Forms
By Luke Wroblewsk.
"...In my work I find that people don't particularly like filling in
forms. So I often try to get them through the process as fast as
possible. However, the 'row highlight' technique might not help in that
regard because it doesn't seem to reduce the number of eye fixations
required to parse the form..."
Simplicity: The Ultimate Sophistication
By Joshua Porter.
"Most designers place simplicity above all else. We value simple things
because they do all the things we need easily and none of the things we
don't. Simplicity is harmonious. Even Leonardo Da Vinci said
'simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.' This is one of my favorite
quotes, and it plays on the idea that being simple isn't banal, it's
Introduction to Agile Usability, User Experience Activities on Agile
Development Projects - Part I
By Scott W. Ambler.
"To address the challenges faced by software developers an initial
group of 17 methodologists formed the Agile Software Development
Alliance, often referred to simply as the Agile Alliance, in February
of 2001. An interesting thing about this group is that they all came
from different backgrounds, yet were able to come to an agreement on
issues that methodologists typically don't agree upon. This group of
people defined a manifesto which defines 4 values and 12 principles for
encouraging better ways of developing software; this manifesto defines
the criteria for ASD processes..."
[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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