Posts Tagged ‘web development’

HTML5 is Coming (and is already here)

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

With the very recent launch of the Apple I-Pad, I have seen the phrase “HTML 5” being thrown around more than ever before. I’m thinking, “OK what’s the big deal?”. So I started to actively research the new upcoming web standard and I must say I am truly excited! This is going to be a very nice leap for the web. Websites are going to look sharper and high-def with native SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) support. SEO has the potential to be more useful and accurate with the new semantic tags such as <header>, <footer>, <article>, <nav>, to name a few.

Pack in <video>, <svg>, and <canvas>, and multimedia and interactivity will get a huge bump that could very well topple Flash, especially if all major browsers support all HTML5 with haste.

Check out this awesome video by Google to help you get up-to-date on the emerging web standard.

Introduction to HTML 5 from Brad Neuberg on Vimeo.

Based on my brief research so far, the new semantic tags are well supported across the browser platforms, at the very least. While HTML5 is still considered bleeding edge, it is safe to start using it. I know I will.

Exercise, Discipline, Design

Saturday, March 20th, 2010

OK, so I am totally stealing the Dog Whisperer, Cesars Millan’s, mantra and replacing a word. Instead of exercise, discipline, affection, I will be writing about exercise, discipline, design, or if it applies to you: exercise, discipline, development. My point is if your job, no matter what it is, consists of sitting in-front of a computer monitor all day, you need to take care of your body.

Personally, when I design or develop, it makes a huge difference if I find some time to take a break and walk, preferably before the workday, and then throughout. I tend to get fatigued, frustrated, and even depressed if I am sitting at a computer for an extended period of time. A little exercise does wonders to snap me out of that mode, get my blood moving, and clear my mind creatively. I really believe that every designer, developer, or computer technician owes it to their bodies to break and exercise.

Not only will this keep you healthy and alive, it will also help your career if you think about it. When your body is exercised and you have no sluggish fatigue, tension, or depression, you work better.
Even for you unchained developers and designers who do all your work on laptops (I am jealous) are not exempt from this. Sometimes it may seem that there is no time to exercise, but as hard as it can be to fit in while living in this fast-paced world, we really cannot afford not to get regular exercise.

Web Designer Vs. Web Developer

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

What is the difference between a web designer and a web developer?

I have been asked this question by clients on numerous occasions. The short answer that I would give is a web designer is skilled at creating the visual appearance of the website. The designer creates a custom theme using sound layout practices, color theory, usability, and branding. A web developer is more involved in the actual building of the functioning website or web application using programming and scripting. So if you were building a custom car, the designer would do the body detailing and paint job, while the developer would be tinkering with all the components under the hood.

This of course is really putting the two disciplines of design and development in a vacuum. While it is true that web designers may tend to be less savvy in programming, and web developers less aesthetically-oriented, it is hardly this black and white in the real world.

Many designers and developers can both program, code, and design to varying degrees. It is very rare to find an individual who can design like Michelangelo and code back-end systems like a mad scientist. It truly is a left-brain, right-brain split.

Most people bearing the title of web designer are more on the graphic design path, creating entire layouts and themes in Photoshop. But they also have the ability to take their composition, chop it up and code it into a functioning (albeit, mostly static) web page using xhtml and css. Familiarity with JavaScript, PHP (or other) server side scripting is very important, but proficiency isn’t a must. Web designers rarely go far on the other side of the fence into heavy-duty programming realm.

As you can probably tell, this post was written by a web designer aspiring to go for the gold and dive into programming. It is tough, but very satisfying and rewarding.