[webdev] Web Design Update: July 12, 2007
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Thu Jul 12 06:17:34 CDT 2007
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 6, Issue 03, July 12, 2007.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web design
++ISSUE 01 CONTENTS.
SECTION ONE: New references.
What's new at the Web Design Reference site?
New links in these categories:
02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
05: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
09: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
12: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Accessibility and 508: A Guide to Web Standards and Government
By Bevi Chagnon.
"...This comprehensive overview clears up the confusion by reviewing
what the standards are, who's affected by the government regulations,
and what you must do - or are encouraged to do - to be compliant..."
WCAG 2.0 Testability: Testing Times and Tetchiness
By Jack Pickard.
"One of the key concepts of WCAG 2.0 is testability. This is about
ensuring that each success criterion can be tested either by a machine,
or manually in such a way that at least 80% of the human testers would
agree whether it is a success or a failure..."
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
Cascading Style Sheets Part 2: Shorthand
By Sarah Horton.
"There's something oddly satisfying about styling a heading using one
line and 65 characters rather than nine lines and 128 characters. Such
are the savings when you use CSS shorthand..."
New Guillotine case in Internet Explorer (IE7)
By Stephanie Sullivan.
"Yes, it's a fact that Internet Explorer 7 is better than Internet
Explorer 6. But not all squashed bugs were completely killed. Like the
little gopher game you play at the fair, sometimes when you bang one on
the head and it goes underground, it simply pops back out in a
different place. Enter the Guillotine Bug..."
Styling Figures with CSS3
By David Storey.
"...I was discussing the difference between opacity and RGBA in the
office, and thought that it would be useful to write an example showing
what the later can be useful for..."
By Jonathan Snook.
"In CSS, there are certain selectors you can use that act like you've
injected new HTML into the page and have the flexibility to style those
new imaginary elements. These are known as pseudo-elements..."
The Obsolescence of Handheld Style Sheets?
By Mike Cherim.
"On any fixed-width designs I currently create I offer a handheld style
sheet for those users who may access these sites via a smart phone or
other handheld device. I feel this is needed in this day and age; I
want to make sure those skinny screen users have decent experience on
my sites and find it accessible and usable. But will this need become
less important, even unnecessary in a few years?..."
What CSS 3 Can You Easily Use Right Now?
By Peter Gasston.
"The short answer: None of it. The Slightly longer answer..."
Access Developer Day at Linux World 2007
August 7, 2007.
San Francisco, California U.S.A.
Captions for Video with Flash CS3 (Part Two)
By Tom Green.
"Do you think Flash video and accessibility can't peacefully coexist?
Think again. Flash video expert Tom Green is back with the second
installment of his popular captioning how-to. In "Captions for Video
with Flash CS3 (Part One)", we learned how to caption using the
Timed-Text XML standard. This week's follow-up brings an even easier
method: embedding the XML right in the Flash video file..."
+05: INFORMATION ARCHITECTURE.
Faceted Feature Analysis
By Adam Polansky.
"This article explains a process called 'Faceted Feature Analysis.'
It's an exercise that I've been using for nearly 8 years on projects
both large and small. The facets refer to three characterizing facets
in any project: business value, ease of implementation, and user value.
Faceted Feature Analysis also uses three constraints that govern every
project: cost, time, and quality. By crossing the characterizing facets
with constraints, you are combining the subjective needs of the project
stakeholders with the objective constraints of the project in a way
that ensures all points of view are fairly considered. It also ensures
that a project requirement is not included or excluded simply because
one person yelled louder than the others. The process involves six
Is Manipulating the DOM for Presentation Acceptable?
By Jonathan Christopher.
"Personally, I'm a big proponent of both progressive enhancement as
well as graceful degradation (fault tolerance). While both concepts are
similar in nature, they both possess small unique parts that set them
apart. To me, keeping graceful degradation in mind while developing
will aim to leave you with a functioning document no matter the
circumstances. Progressive enhancement on the other hand, is a level of
functionality present only if the reader has the needed technology
readily available. While it may seem that both are nearly identical, to
me graceful degradation seems to be more passive in nature when
comparing it to progressive enhancement, which is a more active.
Progressively enhancing a document gives the ability to make
alterations where applicable in an effort to make a document that much
more useful, while graceful degradation is more of a fall back plan..."
Thinking lowsrc - How to Make Sites Appear to be Available a Lot Faster
By Christian Heilmann.
"Those of you who've been around some years may remember an otherwise
forgotten non-standardized HTML attribute called lowsrc. It was
supported by Netscape browsers and allowed you to define a black and
white preview picture of the real picture. The browser would load the
'diet' black and white shot first and then load the 'full fat' colour
shot and overlay the preview picture line by line. Alongside
progressive JPGs (which load in lower quality first and then
progressively get clearer) and interlaced GIFs (which loaded every
second line first and then subsequently filled up the rest) this was a
killer trick to speed up your web site in the times when 56K Modems
were luxury items..."
Return of the HTTP Overhead Delay - This Time Without a Server Side
By Christian Heilmann.
"Following my post yesterday about delaying the loading of avatar
images to cut down on HTTP requests I was wondering if there is a way
to do this without having to resort to a server side solution. In
short, there is. Check out the demo page to see the script in action,
and download delayHTTPoverhead.js to use in your own sites..."
Insert in Place Without document.write
By James Edwards.
"So here's the situation: you want to syndicate some content using
syndication script can't know anything about the page it's being used
on - so it can't have a dependency on the existence of particular
elements. Yet the host page needs to be able to control where the
content is inserted - the syndication script needs to insert the
content wherever the <script> tag is. How do you do it?..."
Tim Berners-Lee Interview: The Future Of the Web as Seen by Its Creator
By Peter Moon.
"I think that slowly the Internet will get more bureaucracy. I think
it's inevitable. It's important to allow people in different countries,
developing countries, to develop their use of the Internet as quickly
as possible. But the administration of something so big will never be
controlled by a unique bureaucracy. I don't know what form that
bureaucracy will take, since there is a lot of politics involved. But I
would say it's very important that it should be government free and
without censoring the people who use it."
The Web is Messy
By Gerry McGovern.
"The nature of the Web is not neat and tidy. A website is not a project
but rather a process of continuous improvement..."
Audio and Notes for Joe Clark's @media2007 Session
The audio from Joe Clark's thought provoking session, delivered at
@media2007 Europe, is now available - When web accessibility is not
your problem (MP3, 28MB).
Five Things All Clients Want to Know
By Russ Weakley.
"I meet potential clients on a regular basis. The first meeting can
often determine if you win or lose a job. So, what can you do to
convince a client that you are right for the job? Over the years, I
have found that most clients don't want a sales pitch, they want
reassurance. They want to know if you can be trusted to help them solve
their problem. The most common questions that they are likely to ask
More on In-page Links and the IE Bug
By Jim Thatcher.
"I have been writing about this problem on and off for about 2 years,
first the article on skip navigation links; then information about the
hasLayout property and how that relates to the IE bug. There is even
mention of this issue in Chapter 7 of the new Web Accessibility book.
But a couple of days ago I received an email from Andrea Fercia in
Milan, Italy, and she suggested a simple approach to the problem..."
+09: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
W3C Supporters Program
A W3C paid link farm.
Why HTML 5 Specification Matters?
By Karl Dubost.
"This is a simple story. The story of an HTML bug. Like every stories,
it could start with- Once upon a time, there was a bug..."
Blue Sky Browser Summit Review: XTech Paris, May 15, 2007
By Molly Holzschlag.
"...Anne Van Kesteren, who works with Opera Software and is an active
member of the WHAT WG commented that he felt these concerns were far
less problematic than people think, and that with the commitment from
the W3C's HTML WG to adopt the WHAT WG's HTML5, this was a very
positive step forward for the future of HTML. Of course, arguments,
particularly regarding <canvas> and accessibility, remain at the heart
of the debate with no clear solutions in sight..."
The CSS Redundancy Checker
A tool for checking your markup for outdated CSS rules that don't match
any of your HTML. "...you'll need Rubygems and Hpricot, plus a
reasonably up-to-date version of Ruby..."
Colour Contrast Analyser for MAC
By Cedric Trevisan of TPG (Europe) and WAT-C.
"A MAC version of the Contrast Analyser has been developed by Cedric
Trevisan (TPG). The interface is similar to the windows version...at
this stage the CCA MAC does not have the image simulation features
found in the windows version."
Users Gain Freedom in a Designer Keeping Control
By Natalie Jost.
"...There's clearly nothing wrong with designing for the user, to make
them comfortable, to guide their path through a site. But, there is a
line where the user can been given too much control over too many
pieces of the site which are unnecessary and it is this line where the
designer will lose the user. Sometimes (more advanced) users will want
control. It is possible, ideal even, to consider the needs of the user
before ever reaching the point of handing design decisions to them..."
Write Articles, Not Blog Postings
By Jakob Nielsen.
"To demonstrate world-class expertise, avoid quickly written, shallow
postings. Instead, invest your time in thorough, value-added content
that attracts paying customers..."
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
+12: 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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