Articles tagged as ‘Web Development’

Pre-made Layouts – a Time-Saving Alternative to Wireframes

No matter how experienced you may be with using wireframe techniques, it is still a time consuming activity, as is researching a conceptual design as a first step in getting a new project off the ground. While wireframes provide basic frameworks for website pages, pre-made layouts have become an increasingly popular alternative.

Conceptual designs need to be developed before wireframing can commence. Conceptual designs are an integral part of a pre-made layout.
Initial sketches have to be transferred to a grid in to initiate a wireframe process. This step is not required when using pre-made layouts.
Incremental enhancement of a wireframe design takes time. Editing a layout is an extremely rapid process.
With a pre-made layout, you can build a website in a small fraction of the time it would take when using a wireframe approach. You can literally hit the ground running…


Learning the Basics: Prototyping in JavaScript

In my book, Learning to Program, I teach the concepts, principles, and tools needed to program the right way. I’m not going to try to do that here. This article will teach you just enough JavaScript to prototype, and some of the things you learn will be just plain ugly. But that’s okay because you’re just prototyping. If you want to learn more, and learn why those bad things are bad for real applications, check out my book.

By the time you’re done reading this article, you will have learned just enough JavaScript to make a prototype registration form that checks for unique usernames and has a password strength indicator. We’ll be using an online editor called CodePen to take care of a bunch of the hard stuff. The hard stuff is interesting and important to learn, but again, that is not the purpose of this article…


11 Handy Shortcuts for Customizing Any Selectable UI Element

Online forms are some of the most common interfaces for user interaction. Many web fields rely on user input from the keyboard, but others have pre-filled answers waiting to be selected. These may include checkboxes, file inputs, or even select dropdowns.

Although select menus are fantastic they can also be a little boring. All web design should be functional, but great web design incorporates pleasant aesthetics too.

The following ideas center around dropdown select menus for website layouts. Web designers often like to design their own custom fields which best-suit the project at hand. Select menus and similar inputs can be tricky to customize, but modern techniques make the process a whole lot easier. Check out these plugins and code snippets which can be perfect for customizing any form field…


4 Crucial Components to Optimizing Page Load Time On Your Website

We live in a fast-paced era where speed is the dominating factor that governs the success of our personal and professional skirmishes. And, when it comes to a website’s page load time, its impact amplifies even more!

Today, users have become so impatient that they don’t want to suffer even a single second delay when surfing a website. They need the information – they came to seek on a website – to be displayed within a snap or a blink of an eye, to be exact. In fact, even a 400 milliseconds gap is long enough to frustrate the visitors and cause them to bounce off to a different webpage, according to Google’s engineers.

At the end of the day, speed is what you need to leverage to beat the competitors and, not to mention, to take the top spot of SERP. After all, Google has already laid out that a website’s load time or speed is one of the key SEO factors that regulate its SERP ranking.

So here I’m presenting you some of the effective practices that will help you tweak the loading time of your website (be it a desktop or mobile) and offer a lightning-fast surfing experience…


How Speed Up Your Front End Web Development Process

Web design is often lumped together with a lot of other ideas like UX design and web development. Although these areas do overlap, the skill sets are not interchangeable and not all designers know how to code (or vice-versa).

But those who do code websites are often very task-oriented with a focus on the final outcome. This means it’s a good idea to work with best practices to speed up the whole development cycle. It’s not an easy task, but there are plenty of free resources out there to help.

This article includes some handy tips and resources for a more expeditious development process. As with most projects, why should work take longer than it needs to? Those who reinvent the wheel often have a good reason for doing so–but it’s not the best choice 100% of the time. Instead utilize these resources to improve the speed and efficiency of your own frontend workflow…


30 Best Free Calendar & Datepicker jQuery Plugins

Some might assume that an Internet loaded with free code would breed indolence. Yet it seems developers are willing to contribute their help to projects more than ever before. JavaScript libraries are a microcosm of the larger open source community – specifically jQuery with its ever-growing popularity and easy learning curve.

One such area of broadened potential would be jQuery-based calendars for websites. Although date & calendar interfaces have sparse usage, they come in handy for very specific circumstances. And when building a site that requires this type of interface you’ll be happy to know there are dozens of open source plugins available.

I’ve catalogued the 30 best free jQuery plugins that offer datetime functionality. Some are more developed than others and each plugin has its own set of benefits. The best part about using open source code is that it’s easy to customize for your own purpose. So peruse through this collection and take a look at any plugins which pique your curiosity…


Ultimate Guide to HTTP Status Codes and Server Error Messages

Most of us are familiar with the gut-wrenching, nerve-wracking error codes like 404 and 500. But did you know that not all HTTP status codes and server error messages are mean and scary? Although some of these numbers could appear in the tech remake of Nightmare on Elm Street, others should evoke a sense of excitement and jubilation! But these “good” status codes are rarely visible to the average Internet user.

So this leads us to one final question: How do all these status codes work?

In this guide you’ll find all the necessary information to understand the concepts behind HTTP status code messages. Whether you’re a designer, developer, or just a curious Internet fanatic, this information should be useful to people of all backgrounds. It is my goal to clarify the process of website requests and how the web server passes information to your machine…


13 of the Best Hosted CMSs

Open-source content management systems like WordPress and Drupal get a lot of attention on design blogs, but they are not the only options when it comes to choosing a CMS. There are a number of hosted CMSs available that are popular with designers and their clients.

While the features vary form one hosted CMS to another, several of the primary benefits are common to all or most of them. Things like having the hosting included, the possibility for designing and developing sites very quickly, availability of pre-designed templates, and support tend to be listed among the benefits of choosing a hosted CMS.

Some hosted CMSs allow designers the opportunity for a private label, meaning that designers can brand the CMS as their own. In this case clients will see the designer’s branding rather than that of the company behind the CMS. In many of these cases the designer can also earn a commission on monthly hosting fees, which provides a nice stream of residual income for designers who use the CMS with a number of clients.

Here is a look at some of the best and most popular hosted content management systems…


43 Brilliant Free jQuery Image Gallery/Slider Plugins (And 14 Tutorials to Make Your Own)

jQuery Image Galleries

jQuery image galleries (also known as homepage sliders, slideshows or image carousels) have become more and more common on websites since the inception of jQuery in 2006. Designers and Photographers are especially attracted to them because they allow you to present many beautiful images in an interesting way. You can easily load up multiple images in the carousel and present them in a single position on your site without taking up too much room.

However, there are several issues with using jQuery Image Gallery/Sliders that you should be aware of before you jump the gun and add one to your homepage. They aren’t ideal for every type of website, and in some instances they could actually hurt your website.

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