Weekly Web / Design News Round Up – Sept. 28th- Oct. 2nd
Hello to all our fellow design nerds, and welcome to another fine edition of S2N Design’s Web / Design News Round Up. This week’s news is all about “lessons learned.” And what better way to learn than by trial and error… or reading about the trials and errors of others?
Website accessibility is important. Unfortunately it’s also EXTREMELY easy to forget about when a designer is in the exciting stage of trying to make everything look just so. While standard practices exist to ensure websites’ accessibility to the visually impaired, they take a little extra effort and memory. Or, in Medium’s case, a little trial, error, and a good ole’ case of oops-let’s-learn-from-our-mistakes. This article breaks down five goofy things Medium web folks did that made their site nearly impossible to read with a screenreader. A good and short lesson learned! Not to mention a needed reminder that just because you can see doesn’t mean that everyone can.
A good read on a development challenge: cross-platform development is tricky regardless, and to take on three platforms in four weeks is quite frankly insane. Jordan Crone kept a diary of the process of building the spelling bee fan app with a three-person team, ending with a fabulous summary of lessons learned in the process.
If you haven’t tried out CodePen for yourself, do it now. Well, first finish reading this News Round Up, and THEN try it now. CodePen is an incredibly useful tool for active developers and anyone who needs a coding solution or wants to see how others solved their problems. This particular collection of CodePen demos includes an interactive Rubik’s Cube, a Confetti Generator, and seven more incredible demos that will make you marvel at what the web can do.
This is not a “lessons learned” article exactly, but the whole concept of Invisible design is one of the most important lessons a designer can learn. And it’s honestly something every one of us will be learning everyday. Yet another article we wish we could quote from beginning to end (but we’re not because that’s called plagiarizing), Oliver Reichenstein’s quote–originally from an interview in The Verge–is a definition of Invisible design too beautiful to ignore:
“Good design is invisible. […] Minimum input, maximum output, with minimal conscious thought is what screen designers focus on. And just as type designers and engineers we do not try to find the perfect solution but the best compromise.”
A quick read, this little article is a good reminder of five of the most obnoxious sins of web design and how to avoid them. It’s also a reminder of how old you are: sixth graders are now downloading their homework and study guides rather than taking things home. I guess navigating crappy websites is a small price this generation has to pay to save a few trees… and their backs from the burden of the overloaded backpack.
This site is a great example of why you should keep up with S2N Design’s Web / Design News Round Up! Your site may not look as dated next week as this little time capsule from 1999, but I venture to guess this web design firm got stuck in its own little Flash universe at least in part because the designer behind it was not keeping up with his design news. Be sure you have your sound turned up on this one, and block out plenty of time to enjoy this masterpiece. Keep a look for such gems as the classic game “Shoot NSYNC” and the shopping… elevator?
And that concludes this week’s Web / Design News Round Up! I think this week’s Worst Site of the Week says more than I ever could to convince you to join us again next Friday for more exciting adventures in web design. Until then, we invite you to comment below: what lessons have you learned this year in your own design escapades?