.. Your Daily Design Dosis

Tweet Parade (no.48 Nov 2013)

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.. stay up to date! Time for a new roundup with last week’s best tutorials and design articles! It’s all about HTML, CSS, PHP, responsive web design, branding, SEO, WordPress and more. A broad scale of topics, but never-the-less the underlying focus is on Design.

Also I see this as my personal bookmarks of great articles from the Community of the last period. These hand-picked articles and tutorials are categorized by their main topics. The best way to keep track of these tweets is simply to follow me on Twitter.

Webdesign Coding: CSS, HTML, Javascript, PhP, APIs, etc.

How to Use Webfont Icons as Bullet Points in HTML5 Lists  – HTML unordered lists are boring. You can define a disc, circle or square but it’s not easy to change their size or color. Wouldn’t it be great if we could use any icon in any color instead of standard bullet points?

12 Most-Wanted Sublime Text Tips and Tricks – After exploring it for a while, you might be surprised that you can do quite a number of cool things in SublimeText. We went in and dug around for a bit and here are just some fo the tips and tricks that we think you would like to play with.

Polygon feature design: SVG animations for fun and profit – vectors can increase or shrink to arbitrary sizes without any loss of fidelity, and animations and operations done on SVG elements adjust relative to its size without any additional work.

The HTML5 meter Element – Similar to its sibling – the progress element – a meter element must also have both a start tag (<meter>) and an end tag (</meter>). This becomes very useful when we devise a robust fallback technique for older browsers that do not support the meter element.

8 HTML Elements You’re Not Using (and Should Be) – One of the best ways to start writing better markup is to replace generic tags with more expressive elements. Let’s take a look at eight that you can use to step up your game.

SVG Icons FTW – Despite the growing popularity of SVG, its time around and excellent browser support, we have a lack of good vector icon approaches. It’s time to fill this gap and use SVG as icons in our web projects.

Useful PHP Snippets – I want to bring to your attention a small collection of quite interesting and useful php snippets. They are designed as finished functions, and you can easily transfer them in a class or a library file for later use in your projects.

How to Compile Sass with Sublime Text – Before you can compile Sass, you need to create a configuration file, which is similar to the config.rb that you can find in a Compass project. To create the file, go to Tools > Sass Builder Config in Sublime Text.

Making Forms Fabulous with HTML5 – Filling out forms on the web has never been exactly fun, and it can be downright painful on a mobile device with its on-screen keyboard. But modern browsers help to make this much easier by providing new semantic input types and validation.

Animated SVGs: Custom easing and timing – By using animated SVGs instead of GIFs we were able to reduce our page size from 1.6 mb to 389 kb, and reduce our page load time from 8.75 s to 412 ms. That’s a huge difference.

60fps scrolling using pointer-events: none – Now applying pointer-events to the body will work just fine in most cases but if pointer-events: auto is applied to any child elements they will override the parent property and cause janky scroll.

The Repository Design Pattern – Any application has to work with persistence and with some kind of list of items. These can be users, products, networks, disks, or whatever your application is about. If you have a blog for example, you have to deal with lists of blog posts and lists of comments.

Cleanest CSS spinner, ever – Yhere is fallback text, to make it accessible to screen readers. Tested in Chrome, Firefox, Safari, IE10. Should degrade gracefully on IE9 (spinner should look fine, just no animation).

Usability, User Experience, Responsive Web Design, Mobile, etc.

WVU Research responsive redesign, web performance optimization and more…  – The main purpose of this article is to share my experience and lessons learnt during the responsive redesign of WVU Research website and also dispel some myths about RWD, workflow and especially SIZE of responsive websites with example and proof.

Responsive Design: Mobile Up Or Widescreen Down? – Responsive design isn’t designing for a single static set of dimensions. It’s designing for several key sets of dimensions in a way that you can flexible get from one to the next.

7 Tips to Speed Up Responsive Websites – Thanks to the rise of the mobile web, we now have responsive websites. Surprisingly, even responsive designs don’t necessary load quick. Here’s how you can speed up responsive websites.

Responsive Design: A Critical Piece of User Experience – Responsive design’s implementation philosophy solves various problems. It is not merely a trend or just the latest thing. RWD is an evolutionary approach to design for the Web that addresses long-standing design issues.

Systemic Design – Components are manageable and flexible. So long as the components join together seamlessly in the end, modularizing the pieces translates to flexibility, speed, and paradoxically both independence and collaboration.

How to stop responsive images wrecking your site – Images are a particularly obvious example of the need for devices to dictate the specific dimensions needed. Why do I have to download a 15MB desktop background image if it’s going to be displayed on a tiny five-inch screen?

Top 5 Tips for Making Fast RWD Sites – The tips are roughly in order of priority, based on my assessment of their criticality, except for the last one, which is really a wildcard. Here are the top 5 tips for making your RWD (Responsive Web Design) site FAST

Webdesign in Common, Web Typography, jQuery, Tools, etc.

Why Your Web Project Was a Waste of Time – And What to Do About It – But we’ve passed the point that it’s cool simply to have a website. Everyone has a website. You’ve got to set your goal higher. You need to create a digital presence that accomplishes your business goals.

14 Free Icon Fonts for Web Designers – Icon fonts are useful in responsive designs because, among other things, they scale to the appropriate size. This roundup features more than 3,600 icons!

Web Style Guides for the Smaller Project – There is no reason why you can’t put in place some style guides as part of your service for the smaller project, and doing this also has advantages that extend into other areas of your design and build process.

25 HTML5 speed tips – Creating high-performance web applications is essential for every web developer, whether we’re talking about websites that run on a standards-based web browser or apps. The goal of the developer is to improve web performance by reducing the following factors

Taking Your Business Global with Cross-Cultural Website Design – As soon as your website goes live it technically has a global reach. Anyone from Toronto to Tokyo can access your little corner of cyberspace, but that doesn’t mean they will. Distances might not mean much online, but linguistic and cultural differences remain.

5 Killer Tips that Will Get You Clients: Copywriting for Web Designers – Your portfolio sucks. It makes me cry. You are a great designer with a perfectly designed portfolio site, and yet, it’s still terrible at the same time. Even my cat, Sheldon, knows it, too. Good thing, you can still improve it.

Cyber Mundane: Why online shopping is overhyped, and what brands should focus on instead – Every year around this time, we hear about some new survey that says Americans plan to do more online shopping for the holidays than ever before.

Graphic Design, Brand Identity, Typography, Print Design, Icons, etc.

13 Quick Tips for Designers – Here’s a collection of useful tips to help save you some time. These are not big, detailed tutorials, just quick and easy tips that take a few seconds and are worth knowing – no matter how long you’ve been designing.

10 branding ideas for small businesses – brand promotion is ideal for small businesses without large marketing budgets, and it gives you widespread exposure and brand visibility without the exorbitant cost.

Color – A Powerful Tool To Stand Out With A Unique Brand – Branding automatically communicates and delivers a great message to the customers about the attributes of your products and services. One of the powerful elements to create winning a brand is color.

How to create a brilliant print and digital portfolio – part 1 – Through this tutorial I’ll run through how to create a simple app design that will showcase your work as well as your digital skills, and can also easily be applied to a beautiful, bespoke A5 piece of print.

Working with Type in Photoshop – In this post I’m going to show you some of the tools that I use in my workflow when working with type in Photoshop.

Blogging, Social Media, Writing, Content Strategy, Email, etc.

3 Things Missing From Your Facebook Marketing Strategy – Most Facebook marketing strategies are lacking, and it’s never entirely obvious why. That’s why I’ve decided to share three insights your Facebook strategy is most likely missing.

7 Blogging Mistakes That Will Give You Zero Traffic – There are plenty of ways to attract more traffic to your blog, even if no one knows you yet, but if you’re making any of these 7 mistakes you’re sabotaging your own success.

Tumblr’s Audio and Video Post Types – We’re making great progress with our custom Tumblr theme! In this video we’re going to continue building our markup, turning our attention to the audio and video post types.

Top 15 Useful Writing Tips for Bloggers – Quality content is the key to a successful blog and the main area you should focus your efforts on, at least at the beginning. What can you do to improve your writing skills so your readers will like what and how you say what you say? But how to provide such content?


Evaluating WordPress Plugin Weight and Performance – And if a plugin is affecting your theme, make sure to evaluate it in context. In other words, don’t just check how much weight a plugin is adding, check that a plugin is adding weight that matters.

– We get a lot of submissions to the WordPress.org plugin repository, and so there is often a lot of dangerous code submitted. Usually this isn’t malicious, it’s just by people who honestly don’t know that their code has problems.

The 11 biggest myths about WordPress – It’s a bit frustrating to build a 20,000 page directory that is secure, fast, reliable and easily editable, then hear a client tell us “Isn’t WordPress just for blogging?”. Here I’ll explain why it’s not, and nine other things commonly believed about WordPress that aren’t actually true…

5 Ways to Use WP Besides Blogging – If you’ve passed over WordPress hoping for a better location to start your specific web plan and been disappointed, check out these five great ways to use WordPress that don’t require a steady stream of self-indulgent missives.

Making the Perfect WordPress Theme: How to Code Well – In this article; we went through the processes of properly coding and commenting with some standards, then we saw how to validate our code and test our theme. In the next part of the series, we’ll be looking at some bad practices.

WordPress is Making Me Lazy – Content Management Systems (CMS) platforms and their Open Source communities provide such a rich development environment that I rarely have to hand code any more.

Learning to Love Your WordPress Sidebar: Examples, Code & Advice to Improve it – The sidebar can often be overlooked or relegated to simply housing a recent post widget. Yet, with just a few simple steps, this overlooked area can be lifted up to be one of the core elements of your site.

Using WordPress for Web Application Development: An Introduction – In this series, we’re going to take a look at exactly what WordPress offers as it relates to building web applications, the difference in an application framework and a foundation, the features that lend themselves to building full-stack applications with WordPress.

Making the Perfect WordPress Theme: Bad Practices – We learn how to write better code, how to comply with the standards, how to make our code readable by others and so on.In this article, we’re going to see how to do bad: We’ll go through some of the worst practices that one can follow when building WordPress themes.

Search Engine Optimalization, Conversions, Analytics, etc.

6 Ways Google Webmaster Tools Can Improve Your SEO Strategy – Most search experts rely on Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) to analyze the technical aspects of a website. These experts focus on data like crawl stats, page errors and rich snippets.


Building a Custom CSS3 Pagination User Interface – In this tutorial I want to demonstrate a collection of CSS techniques for designing pagination. Once you combine these designs with content systems like WordPress you can see how the interfaces really work in action.

Create fantastic visual effects with the CSS filter property – Along with many of the newest CSS features, browser support for CSS filter effects is still limited. The majority of Google Chrome users already can experience the powers of the filter property today.

Freelance, Business and Workflow Related Stuff

What I’ve learned about creating meaningful work – Self-employment is the ultimate life experiment, complete with an uncountable number of variables that come with large amounts of fear and challenges.

10 Tips to Gain More Confidence as a Designer – ten things you can do to gain confidence as a designer. These tips can work for experienced designers after a troubled project, or new designers looking to break into the market. It’s advice worth taking to heart.

Why Do Some Freelancers Fail? – Some freelance failure might seem like a mystery, but there’s almost always an underlying cause. In this post, I share some of the not-so obvious reasons why freelancers fail. In the comments, be sure to add your own ideas about why freelancers fail.

Why a creative brief is the key to success – The biggest problem freelancers face, is disagreements with a client once a project has started. There is a simple, logical, and professional way for both parties to understand each other with complete transparency.

How to Not Suck at Managing Your Time – Assuming you want to exit the bumpy roller coaster and jump into a sweet uphill ride to prosperity, the following is my prescription to help you conquer lack of discipline and time management.

Are You Asking These Golden Questions? – These questions are designed for customers who bought minutes ago—those who encountered barriers to conversion (but made their way past them), and can help you to figure out where the problem spots are.

Make Your Marketing (and Your Business) a Smashing Success -Today, we’ll discuss five winning ways to think about your business and your marketing so you can rise head and shoulders above your competitors.

8 Negotiating Secrets to Help Freelancers Get the Best Projects – Learning how to negotiate can help you get better projects, better terms for your projects, and even better pay. In this post, I’ll share 8 negotiating secrets to help you become a better negotiator.

F*cking Brilliant, a great Read or just magnificent Tips!

Should Designers Code?  – Every industry has debates where people on either side hold rigidly to a point of view without really thinking through the issue. The world of web design is no exception and one of the debates we seem to argue about is whether or not web designers need to code to be effective web designers.

Good vs. Great Web Design: The Difference – Naturally, now that you are already knowledgeable about typography and colors and other design aspects, it is time you moved on to ideas that can transform your good design into a great one. And in this article, I shall be discussing those very ideas!

10 Embarrassing Examples of Designer Jargon You’ve Really Got to Stop Using – Who decided jargon was a good thing? When did we start believing it made us look smarter? I don’t know about you but one of my biggest gripes as a designer is the amount of jargon I come across, especially in the web industry!

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I hope you have enjoyed these hand-picked great articles? Did we miss a great article, please let us know .. To keep up to date with all the cool links, simply follow me @gonzodesign


Author: Jan Rajtoral

Jan Rajtoral AKA Gonzo the Great is the Founder of and Designer at gonzodesign, providing design services across the full spectrum of Brand Identity, Graphic Design, Print and Advertising Design & Website Design.

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