Back in university, I didn’t have cable. It was either TV or internet and I chose the latter. So I didn’t watch The Wire until after it went off the air, when I got a job and a salary. After finally getting a chance to watch it, I could understand why it had such a following. The writers knew how to make me care about the characters like they were people I knew personally. I would tell myself, “I’ll just watch one more episode.” Then it would be 1am and I’m counting down how many hours of sleep I would get if I watched one more, even though I had to get up for work in the morning.
When I heard about Lara Hogan’s career celebration process of eating a donut to be “deliberate about marking achievements” I thought it was a fantastic idea. I tend to focus on all the things that I have yet to accomplish and then make myself feel bad for not accomplishing them. But when I was putting together the content for my website redesign last year, I remember thinking “Damn, girl! You’ve done a lot!” (I sometimes talk to myself.)
Can I take you out for coffee and pick your brain?
This question simultaneously brings up feelings of flattery and hesitation. I’m flattered that someone deems me knowledgeable enough to help them on their career path and give advice. But getting unsolicited requests feels like an imposition on my time (and subsequently, my money). Even if the request is short, polite, friendly and comes from a good place. And then being asked to travel to a coffee shop, to meet someone I don’t know? We all have different comfort levels so for some people, this is not an issue. But for me, it’s a bit of an uncomfortable ask from a stranger.
When Responsive Web Design was introduced to the developer community, it brought on a significant change in how we think about our web sites as well as how we develop our projects. But even before before adding responsive web techniques, it’s important to create a fluid layout to make the transitions between different screen sizes easier to manage and require less breakpoints for making changes.
When I started developing websites way back when, I noticed that there were similar chunks of code and page structures that I would use over and over again. I had this grand idea that I would create templates to reuse for similar projects. The closest I got to this was to create code snippets for my text editor. Though creating snippets are really useful, getting from design to code faster or creating quick prototypes can be achieved using front-end frameworks.
Using a CSS preprocessor is fast becoming a crucial part of a developer’s workflow. If it isn’t part of your process yet, consider giving it a try! Check out part 1 of this series and get up to speed with basic features such as nesting selectors, variables and mixins. Using preprocessors can help organize your CSS and reduce redundancy. However, learning more advanced features will make your CSS even more powerful.
I just came back from the O’Reilly Fluent Conference in San Francisco this week and met some great people and got a chance to reconnect with those I already knew. I didn’t see as many talks as I would have liked to, since I was still working on my own slides and prepping (some day I’ll have them done earlier… well, probably not, let’s be real). The talks that I did see were fantastic and overall it was a great experience.
CSS is the language used to make the web beautiful. Preprocessors can be used to help make CSS more beautiful. CSS preprocessors extend the basic functionalities, overcoming many limitations of traditional CSS by adding features such as variables, nesting selectors and mixins, creating CSS that is more maintainable and efficient. CSS written in a preprocessed language must also be converted or compiled into traditional CSS syntax. There are many apps that can be used to do this and will be discussed further in this article.
The #iamdoingprogramming trend on Twitter was started in response to the blatant misogyny displayed in an article that purported that women with computer science degrees failed to stick with or do well in programming jobs. At first, I thought it was funny. I even joined in on the shenanigans. But as I looked at more pictures and tweets, I started to feel out of place. I didn’t get half of the puns & jokes and the other half made me groan more often than chuckle. I couldn’t see myself in this. A hash tag that was started to combat sexism ended up making me feel alienated because once again, I couldn’t relate to my peers in the industry, male or female.
Despite being interested in computers during my teenage years, I fell into web development by accident. I was in my last year at York University in Toronto, completing a degree in Psychology and Communications when a professor had us experiment with different kinds of media by showing us how to create simple web pages using Dreamweaver. I enjoyed it and became my group’s unofficial “webmaster” but because I was finishing up my degree, it didn’t even occur to me to pursue it any further. It wasn’t until about a year later, in a dead end job, I was bored and started flipping through a Seneca College brochure and came across a Web Design program. I decided to take the plunge, quit my job and joined the program.
For many, planning a multi-screen web experience is no longer an afterthought; it’s the starting point. More and more, people are viewing websites outside of the traditional desktop screen. From tablets and phones to netbooks, laptops, and even TVs, optimizing for a wider audience (and their wider screens) is key. However, there are many considerations to explore before even one line of code is written.