[webdev] Web Design Update: March 12, 2011
lcarlson at d.umn.edu
Sat Mar 12 05:40:22 CST 2011
+++ WEB DESIGN UPDATE.
- Volume 9, Issue 37, March 12, 2011.
An email newsletter to distribute news and information about web
design and development.
++ISSUE 37 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: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
09: What Can You Find at the Web Design Reference Site?
++ SECTION ONE: New references.
Accessible HTML5 Video with JW Player as Fallback
By Terrill Thompson.
"The DO-IT Video site recently got a face-lift. Among the changes was
a new player, which uses the HTML5 <video> element for browsers that
support it, and falls back to the JW Player for those that don't..."
Accessible Tabs - Part 1: The Problem
By Emily Coward.
"...ideally tabs on the web should replicate the functionality used in
applications, so they are more intuitive for everyone..."
UK Census: Are Screen Reader Users Stupid?
By Gez Lemon.
"Every 10 years we have to complete a census survey in the UK. I'm
working in London this week, so don't have access to the full online
survey, but from an initial check it seems an assumption has been made
about the intelligence of screen reader users..."
Using HTML Lists
By Leonie Watson.
"HTML lists are simple but extremely useful. Like HTML headings, they
help give semantic meaning to information on a web page. Coded
correctly, lists also give screen reader users important insights into
the nature of the content they're exploring..."
Crowdsourcing to Fix the Web
By Sharon Perry.
"Well.. not the whole web, obviously, but some of the inaccessible
bits. Fix The Web is a site which encourages people with disabilities
to report any accessibility problems they have with a website.
Volunteers then take these problems up with the website owners..."
By John Eric Brandt.
"I was recently introduced to a new free captioning service called
Universal Subtitles. This service essentially takes the place of a
captioning application that you might use (or a professional captioner
or speech-to-test reporter) to view, listen and transcribe the
speaking parts of a video.As you know, the captioning of video is an
accessibility requirement if you want to make your video content
available to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing folks."
Mature Age ICT Users Survey 2
By Roger Hudson.
"The results of the second survey into how people over the age of 60
use information and communication technologies (ICT) are now
+02: CASCADING STYLE SHEETS.
Create a Stylish Contact Form with HTML5 & CSS3
By Chris Spooner.
"Follow this step by step process to create your own stylish contact
form completely out of HTML5 and CSS3. We'll be using a couple of the
handy new features in HTML5 to add cool functionality to our form,
while making use of cool CSS3 properties to recreate our Photoshop
concept purely in code..."
CSS Floats 101
By Noah Stokes.
"The float property is a valuable and powerful asset to any web
designer/developer working with HTML and CSS. Tragically, it can also
cause frustration and confusion if you don't fully understand how it
works. Test or refresh your knowledge as Noah Stokes explores float
theory and behavior, and guides us through common float-related coding
Scoped Styles in HTML5
By Louis Lazaris.
"The topic of scoped CSS styles in HTML5 came up twice in the comments
of a recent post by Chris Coyier. The post itself was discussing the
contenteditable attribute, but a few users brought up HTML5's new
scoped attribute, used on the <style> element. Let's take a brief look
at this future HTML5 feature and see how it might be useful in the
ever-changing web development landscape..."
CSS Border Tricks with Collapsed Boxes
By Thierry Koblentz.
"These tricks will help you achieve designs without resorting to the
use of images, CSS3 gradient or extraneous markup. By collapsing boxes
with zero line-height and height values, we can display content
outside of the content box, over borders..."
Flexible Height Vertical Centering with CSS, Beyond IE7
By Roger Johansson.
"One of the most common CSS questions is undoubtedly how to center an
element vertically. There are several techniques for doing that, but
many, including one that I posted more than seven years ago in
Centering with CSS, rely on specifying a height for the centered
content. That obviously makes the technique somewhat inflexible..."
Colour Contrast and CSS Sprite Maps
By Gez Lemon.
"CSS sprite maps improve efficiency by making fewer HTTP requests to
the server, but most implementations cause serious problems for users
who view content in high contrast mode."
+04: EVALUATION & TESTING.
4 Forgotten Principles of Usability Testing
By David Travis.
"Many usability tests are worthless. Researchers recruit the wrong
kind of participants, test the wrong kind of tasks, put too much
weight on people's opinions, and expect participants to generate
April 9-10, 2011.
Columbus Ohio, U.S.A.
May 5, 2011 in Melbourne, Australia.
May 12, 2011 in Brisbane, Australia.
May 16, 2011 in Sydney, Australia.
May 19, 2011 in Canberra, Australia.
May 6, 2011 in Melbourne, Australia.
May 13, 2011 in Brisbane, Australia.
May 17, 2011 in Sydney, Australia.
May 20, 2011 in Canberra, Australia.
Designer/Developer Workflow Conference
July 14-16, 2011.
Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.A.
+06: STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & PATTERNS.
HTML5 Simplequiz 6 - Zeldman's Fat Footer
By Bruce Lawson.
"For the last couple of years, it's been fashionable to have 'fat
footers' in websites..."
HTML5 Accessibility Chops - Section Elements
By Steve Faulkner.
"HTML5 introduces new section elements. The new elements include
header, footer, section, article, nav and aside. What is the
accessibility potential of these new elements for users of assistive
technology such as screen readers?..."
Microsoft's Anti-IE6 Rhetoric
By Mike Davies (Isolani).
"...I caution web developers supporting this public campaign. As my
good friend Steve Webster notes: Microsoft's idea of an upgrade is to
IE8, which today has no support for HTML5 or CSS 3 and is already two
years behind the current crop of modern web browsers. This isn't a
great leap forward...."
The Dangers of Design by User
By Demetrius Madrigal and Bryan McClain.
"...While it is always advisable to understand the user perspective,
there are certain dangers that are associated with an over reliance on
user input. As we've mentioned in the past, improperly conducted user
research can be a liability that could lead you down the wrong path.
These kinds of mistakes are extremely costly and easily avoidable. The
trick is to know where the pitfalls lie and ensure that you navigate
them properly. This month, we'll talk about ways to be a critical
consumer of user research..."
We Killed the Content
By Gary Barber.
"...So at the end of the day we are responsible in part for killing
the web content, just because we have provided people with tools
allowing them easy alternation of the content with no real
A Checklist for Content Work
By Erin Kissane.
"There's really only one central principle of good content: it should
be appropriate for your business, for your users, and for its context.
Appropriate in its method of delivery, in its style and structure, and
above all in its substance. As Erin Kissane explains, content strategy
is the practice of determining what each of those things means for
your project-and how to get there from where you are now. We are
delighted to present an excerpt from Erin's new book, (and the third
title from A Book Apart), The Elements of Content Strategy..."
HTML is not XML
By Tiffany B. Brown.
"...Let me emphasize the above point: server MIME types - not DOCTYPES
- determine which parsing rules the browser applies. So what does this
mean? It means you need to be a better coder. Make sure that what your
server says agrees with what your document delivers. If you can't
configure the server, make sure you code your documents according to
the MIME type your server says it is. Use a DOCTYPE. Understand the
differences between XHTML and HTML. And, as always, validate your
[Section one ends.]
++ SECTION TWO:
+09: 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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