18 Jul 2014 1 pm eastern

Design Problem

Design problem

FOUND on a school restroom door. If you don’t turn the little latch to the right when you exit, the door automatically locks behind you, and nobody else can use the restroom.

Instead of fixing the door, they made a sign.


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2 Jul 2014 3 pm eastern

Original Hip Hop Art

Original hip hop poster

WHY THE INTERNET was invented: this single-page, no-frills website presents a trove of original, old-school hip hop party posters mainly designed by Buddy Esquire and Phase 2, and featuring legendary rappers before they got famous. Word to your mother.

Hat tip: Fred Gates Design.

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2 Jul 2014 1 pm eastern

Netdiver returns

Image from Netdiver Magazine

PIONEERING design ‘zine Netdiver is back, baby!

Founded by my friend and colleague Carole Guevin in 1998, Netdiver was one of the first web ‘zines to seriously explore and promote design and design culture on the web. In its pages, you would discover pretty much everything exciting that was happening in web and digital design, photography, industrial design, and digital filmmaking.

Sites as fine (and as different) as Swissmiss and The Great Discontent can trace more than a strand of their DNA back to Netdiver and its creator.

Like many of the great zines and blogs from the first and second waves of indy web publishing, Netdiver has been quiet over the past few years. It’s a thrill to see it come roaring back to life. Maybe it’s a sign. Maybe a long overdue re-flowering of blogs and independent websites is imminent. A boy can dream.

Filed under: Design, Publishing

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24 Apr 2014 2 pm eastern

Video: It’s a Great Time To Be A UX Designer by Jared Spool

Jared M. Spool

IN THIS 60-minute video caught live at An Event Apart Austin 2013, Jared M. Spool explains why “It’s a Great Time To Be A UX Designer.”

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18 Apr 2014 3 pm eastern

The Practice

Filed under: Design, Typekit, Typography

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8 Apr 2014 11 am eastern

A List Apart № 393: Inventing & Documenting Design Patterns

A LIST APART Issue №  393

A LIST APART Issue № 393 is about documenting design patterns with a style guide and creating new ones with the z-axis.

Creating Style Guides

by SUSAN ROBERTSON

A style guide, also referred to as a pattern library, is a living document that details the front-end code for all the elements and modules of a website or application. It also documents the site’s visual language, from header styles to color palettes. In short, a proper style guide is a one-stop guide that the entire team can reference when considering site changes and iterations. Susan Robertson shows us how to build and maintain a style guide that helps everyone from product owners and producers to designers and developers keep an ever-changing site on brand and on target.

The Z-Axis: Designing for the Future

by WREN LANIER

For years we’ve seen the web as a two-dimensional space filled with pages that sit side by side on a flat, infinite plane. But as the devices we design for take on an increasingly diverse array of shapes and sizes, we must embrace new ways of designing up and down. Designing on the z-axis means incorporating three-dimensional physics into our interface designs. Wren Lanier explains how, by using the z-axis to place interface elements above or below one another, we can create better design systems that are more flexible and intuitive to use—and create new patterns that point the way to future interactions.


Illustration by Kevin Cornell

Filed under: A List Apart, Design

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27 Mar 2014 3 pm eastern

Big Web Show № 116: The Difference Between Ideas and Products

Phillip Reyland and Roland Dubois, cofounders of Byte Dept.

IN BIG WEB SHOW № 116 (“Everything Web That Matters”), I chat with Phillip Reyland and Roland Dubois, cofounders of Byte Dept., a NYC agency that designs and builds digital products for brands and agencies, and that created the popular Bike Department app for iOS.

We discuss…

Creating products for clients instead of yourself. Four strategies to apply to every product: experience strategy, platform strategy, mobile strategy, and integration strategy. Rethinking the mobile bike app: using data to predict whether a bike will be there when you get to it. The experience layer versus the visual layer. Finding the right partner. Working with ad agencies. The difference between ideas and products, and how to explain it to your client. The wild world of wearables. And more.

LISTEN to Big Web Show № 116 on Mule Radio.

URLS Mentioned

Sponsored by Typekit

Filed under: Big Web Show, Design, The Big Web Show

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15 Mar 2014 8 am eastern

Designing and Developing “The Web at 25” Website

Tim Murtaugh, front-end developer

Mike Pick, designer

IN BIG WEB SHOW № 114 on Mule Radio, designer Mike Pick and front-end developer Tim Murtaugh talk to me about how they created The Web at 25 website for the W3C in just five and a half weeks.

Mike and Tim are the real deal: a great web design and development team from whom we can all learn a lot. They are also funny, humble, and insightful.

We discuss design, approval, and client focus. Working for geniuses. What we’d all be doing if the web didn’t exist. Keeping the web open. What the W3C has in common with IndieWeb. The web today versus the early web: more powerful, more empowering, and more requiring of specialization. The effect of mobile on the digital divide. Stephen Fry naked. And more.

Enjoy Big Web Show № 114.


This episode is sponsored by Hover.


Filed under: Big Web Show, Design, State of the Web, The Big Web Show

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13 Feb 2014 7 pm eastern

Big Web Show № 111: Web Design Comes of Age with Andrew Clarke

Andrew Clarke

IN BIG WEB SHOW № 111, Andrew Clarke and I discuss ten years of web design history, approaches to public speaking, running a successful freelance design business, the importance of writing, CSS3 easter eggs, growing your small studio, responsive web design, and more. Enjoy!

Sponsored by Squarespace and Hover.

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13 Feb 2014 3 pm eastern

Big Web Show № 110: CSS and JavaScript: Can’t We All Just Get Along?

Nicole Sullivan

IN BIG WEB SHOW № 110, Nicole Sullivan and I discuss CSS Conf, building scalable systems that won’t break, designing for speed and performance, learning Ruby, Object Oriented CSS, a CSS Style Guide, Type-o-matic, practical takeaways from stunt CSS, pairing as a work method, sexism and racism tests, and setting aside biases when selecting conference sessions. Enjoy!

Sponsored by Typekit.

Filed under: Big Web Show, CSS, CSS3, Design, The Big Web Show

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