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Auto Layout lands in Figma

December 5th, 2019

Here’s a fresh update to my favorite design tool that is thoroughly exciting: Auto layout! That means we can make frames that resize based on the size of the content within it. That’s particularly useful for buttons in a design system where you want to drop a button on the page and then keep its…

Masking GIFs with other GIFs

December 3rd, 2019

The other day, Cassie Evans tweeted a really neat trick that I’ve never seen before: using SVG to mask one GIF on top of another. The effect is quite lovely, especially if you happen to grab a colorful GIF and place it on top of a monochrome one: See the Pen Masking gifs with other…

We are Programmers

November 22nd, 2019

Building websites is programming. Writing HTML and CSS is programming. I am a programmer, and if you’re here, chances are you’re a programmer, too. The thing is, the details in programming layout with CSS are different, for example, than the details in programming API endpoints with Ruby. Or machine learning with Python. Or programming a…

Everything and Nothing

November 22nd, 2019

I’ve been thinking about the question for a solid month now. What about building websites has you interested this year? The question pervaded my solitary thoughts and played in the background during my conversations. I’d love to just tell you the answer I’ve come to, but the more interesting part was my thought journey in…

How Building in the Open Can Change Our Industry

November 21st, 2019

I have to admit, I’m a developer who hasn’t built a website. When I first read Chris’s question, I sat in silence for at least a minute. Which technical topic did I want to discuss? A new library, programming language or best practice? Nothing, in particular, came to mind. Is that because I’m a new…

Embrace the Political

November 21st, 2019

The tech industry has long held the belief that technology is apolitical. People are flawed, but the machines? They are neutral. They are pure. This is ridiculous, of course. People make the machines. We write the algorithms that can’t recognize dark skin tones. We decide to downplay or ignore harassment on our platforms. There are…

Embracing the Universal Web

November 21st, 2019

There are constantly new features appearing in browsers—from subgrid to variable fonts to better developer tools. It’s a really great time to be re-thinking everything we know about design on the web. Responsive design has served us well over the years, but it’s still rooted in the limitations of the web from 2010. Ten years…

The future is bright, because the future is static

November 20th, 2019

I’ve been doing this web thing for money for 10 years this year and although I haven’t been around as long as some folks, I feel like I’ve seen a few cycles come and go now, so let’s say that hot new things are often cynically viewed, initially. This milestone of mine has also got…

No, Absolutely Not

November 19th, 2019

I think the difference between a junior and senior front-end developer isn’t in their understanding or familiarity with a particular tech stack, toolchain, or whether they can write flawless code. Instead, it all comes down to this: how they push back against bad ideas. What I’ve learned this year is that web performance will suffer…

The Best Cocktail in Town

November 18th, 2019

I admit I’ve held in a lot of pent-up frustration about the direction web development has taken the past few years. There is the complexity. It requires a steep learning curve. It focuses more on more configuration than it does development. That’s not exactly great news for folks like me who consider themselves to be…