Interface Inventory

An interface inventory is similar to a content inventory, only instead of sifting through and categorizing content, you’re taking stock and categorizing the components making up your website, app, intranet, hoobadyboop, or whatever it doesn’t matter. An interface inventory is a comprehensive collection of the bits and pieces that make up your interface.

Another brilliant idea from Brad Frost! Seems like common sense, but I would wager that most designers will fine some sort of graphical creep that falls outside your brand style guide. When I get some free time  I will schedule some time to do an interface audit.

By the way if you aren’t reading Brad Frost you should be ashamed.

via Interface Inventory. Creative Cloud Is Not Suite

My thoughts exactly.

But for folks like myself, who find that only every second or third of Adobe’s major releases truly warrants the financial and technological hassle of an upgrade, losing that option is not so appealing. It feels less like innovation and more like manipulation.

I will eventually need to get the subscription to the CC Suite and every month I will have another reason to curse Adobe.

via Creative Cloud Is Not Suite.

Reorganization | Trent Walton

Because the things we build rarely take one shape these days, it’s key to keep in mind that our processes and teams probably shouldn’t either. The time of neatly organized process charts and workflows is behind us. Building for the web has become a journey with infinite potential for forks and bumps in the road. Let’s make sure that our process and organization ready us for what lies ahead.

Trent Walton talking about how teams should be organized in a multi-device web. He talks about adding planners, designers and coders to each phase of a build.

via Reorganization | Trent Walton.

Actionable Frustration or Why I Created


You know that moment when frustration gets to a point where you have to take action, I call this actionable frustration. My frustration was annoying but not frequent and it took years to finally do something about it.

Occasionally, I would need an HTML entity code to place in a project. You know an ‘a’ with a tilde or an ‘n’ with a squiggly line on top. I could never remember these codes. So, what do you do when you don’t remember, you google “Ascii Table” or “Character Code” or “Hexadecimal Unicode Character”. You click on one of the top results only to be taken to a website that is just crap. You struggle to find the character you need while cursing the flies that started swarming the steaming pile.

I say to myself: Why isn’t there a better resource for this literally every time I had searched for ascii table. I clearly am not the only designer out there who goes to these sites. Surely others have the same flies they are swatting away. Well, it turns out my frustration turned to action so I designed a better version.

It’s called Character Code and I organized it in a way that made it easier for me to find the character entity I need fast. First, I alphabetized* the Ascii table, there is no need for the capitals to be separated from the lowercase. I also made the character a large font size so I can actually see and identify the end result for which I seek. I also included the HTML entity name, HTML decimal value and hexadecimal unicode value in a way you can copy it easily.

There is something to be said for frustration, when acted upon in a non-destructive way you can end up with something to be proud of. So next time you find an actionable frustration do something about.

I hope you find Character Code to not be as frustrating as I found the other ascii table sites.

*Not all pages are alphabetized.

The Web We Lost – Anil Dash

Great article and with news that Posterous is shutting down, I thought I would list this article about owning your own content.

In the early days of the social web, there was a broad expectation that regular people might own their own identities by having their own websites, instead of being dependent on a few big sites to host their online identity. In this vision, you would own your own domain name and have complete control over its contents, rather than having a handle tacked on to the end of a huge company’s site. This was a sensible reaction to the realization that big sites rise and fall in popularity, but that regular people need an identity that persists longer than those sites do.

via The Web We Lost – Anil Dash.

I still hold a little flame that people might own their own identities by having their own websites, instead of being dependent on a few big sites to host their online identity. I have given into twitter, facebook and instagram, using them is simple and provide instant gratification. What we really need to do is use those big sites as a way to drive people / friends to the content you own.

It would be nice if I used my hosted site more.

The In-Between | Journal | The Personal Disquiet of Mark Boulton

Lots of interesting thoughts on responsive design. More breakpoints (media queries) with less style and a content-out approach. One thing is clear. You really need to think about your content and how your design is effected by the viewport. Times sure are changing for website design.

Focus on the in-between

Content-out design means defining your underpinning design structure from your content, and then focusing on what happens in between ‘layouts’. This approach of optimising your design by adding media queries I like to call these optimisation points than break points, because nothing is broken without them, just better, means you are always looking at your content as you’re working. You become more aware of the micro-details of how the content behaves in a fluid context because your focus shifts from controlling the design in the form of pages, to one of guiding the design between pages.

via The In-Between | Journal | The Personal Disquiet of Mark Boulton.

Tina Roth Eisenberg writes about what she has learned from her 1yo business

1. Never hesitate to challenge a status quo

Temporary tattoos have been around forever. I didn’t invent anything new, but, I was able to put a new spin on it by having professional artists create the designs and making sure that they are produced in the US with the highest quality standards. I admit, I never expected the success we’re having, but now, looking back, it actually makes total sense.Never hesitate to challenge a status quo of a product or service that already exists. Put your own spin on it, stamp it with your personality and you might redefine an entire industry.

You should read the entire article, especially if you are thinking about opening a ecommerce store. There are seven tips, this is one. What can I put a spin on.

via swissmiss | Tattly = 1 | Things I’ve Learned.