The Site Slinger Blog

Web Development, Design, and everything PSD to HTML
By Jeremy H.

January Think Piece: Web Design And Development News

Welcome to our January Think Piece. Each month, we’re going to publish some of our favorite articles and resources we’ve discovered. In this issue, you will learn more about UX principles, font pairing, new releases of Firefox and Bootstrap, Project Spartan (rebranded IE for Win 10), and you will discover a new collection of design resources as well. We’ve also included several articles for inspiration and entertainment. Hope you’ll enjoy the reading!

Web design and development news

Education

Understanding Web UI Elements & Principles

The design of any commercial website is about conversions, sales and leads. That’s why every good designer should know at least some UX basics. The more principles you know and apply to your designs, the more benefit you’ll bring to your customers and the more new orders you get.

This article talks about some of the most important principles of web UI design. The main idea is that the interface is not just a set of beautiful buttons and elements, but the funnel to guide a user towards some certain and fixed goal to complete (usually sale or lead generation). When drawing some innovative interface, please note that most users are quite close-minded and tradition-bound, and they might not accept some radical innovation, even if it promises them more convenience in the future. Your designs should pass the so-called MAYA-principle test (Most Advanced Yet Acceptable). All practical hints in this article have interesting and funny examples.

6 Tips for Perfect Google Font Pairing

There are no strict rules for fonts pairing; however, there are some basic principles for doing it properly. This article outlines several generic recommendations on how to pair fonts. The first rule is that no font can rescue bad content. Second, keep typography simple so it doesn’t become overwhelming. Third, use contrast fonts, but use them right. Don’t forget about readability; ensure the text remains easily readable. Do not limit yourself with several fonts you are used to working with – use online resources for new fonts, new pairing samples and inspiration. Be creative and do not be afraid of experimenting with new pairings.

Prepare for 2015 with 1000s of New Artistic Resources

This fresh collection of design resources will help you prepare and complete new challenges in 2015. Design effects, custom scene creation packs, Photoshop kits with styles, brushes and textures – these resources will help you create new, beautiful design effects and save you time. This collection has received several enthusiastic comments and you will definitely love it, too.

Image source - Designcuts.com

Photo from Designcuts.com

Inspiration for Text Input Effects

Opportunities for form input customization are undeservedly overlooked in most cases. The majority of input forms are, by default, just dull. Mary Lou shares some experimental styles and effects for text inputs in her post. Almost all of the effects use CSS transitions, pseudo-elements and CSS properties that will work on modern browsers only. The post itself was written more for inspiration rather than for practical use, but it is still worth reading.

Inspiration & Entertainment

How To Transform Your Problem-Solving And Creativity

Creativity is one of the most important things for any designer, but what, actually, is it? Is it some kind of God-given talent, or just a skill that can be trained and improved? Creativity is all about fresh ideas, and ideas are usually generated by thinking. So, theoretically, there is a direct relationship between mental capabilities, the level of creativity, and every person with a strong logic and strong ability for thinking, right? Well, the reality shows that is not always the case. Check out this article with an overview of five books that will stimulate and improve your thinking abilities, creativity and problem-solving skills simultaneously. They will teach you new methods and ways of thinking to remove any barriers and preconceptions of your mind, and free and improve your creativity.

8 Places to Prowl for Creative Inspiration

Every designer knows that inspiration is not something that can be bought or summoned to appear exactly when you need it. That means you need to look for it, and this article will help you in your search for places that waken your creativity. It introduces eight sources for inspiration available in any country, region and environment. The first place is nature, which, for example, inspired Nike to create a modular design of shoes (similar to the structure of microscopic water creatures). Music also works pretty well for inspiration. In some cases, you can use words for inspiration and try a so-called title-first approach (like Sting, who sometimes invents a title for his future song first, and then starts composing the music itself). All sources of inspiration in the article have very interesting, and sometimes funny, practical examples of famous people. We highly recommend you read this article in its entirety.

A Browser-Based Illusion Made all in CSS

As it turned out, CSS is applicable not only for ordinary styling; you can also do some magic with it. James Louis Walker introduces illusions with impressive animated effects. The illusions themselves were inspired by videos with optical illusions made by Brusspup on Youtube. But the feature of James’ illusions is that they are all completely done in CSS. The post gives you some hints on how this illusion was created, so if you want, you can do your own and send them to us for publishing on our blog and in our social groups to get some promotion in our community.

30+ Examples of Login Form Designs

Login and registration forms are very important elements of any design. They have to be easy to notice and easy to use. But when they are creative and beautiful at the same time, it’s a triumph for each designer. Here you can find examples of creative and efficient (and sometimes quite funny) forms. We hope this collection will inspire you and contribute to your own projects.

For Developers

This is Spartan! Project Spartan is Microsoft’s new web browser for Windows 10

It seems Microsoft will give up Internet Explorer in Windows 10 and introduce a new default browser called Project Spartan. According to Christina Warren and Mashable.com, it’s more like an attempt to rebrand IE rather than an intention to develop completely new and different browser. It’s quite logical step, because more and more developers pay little to no attention to IE compatibility at all. They mostly focus on Chrome and Firefox now. The new browser will be based on a new rendering engine with a cleaner user experience and a more streamlined appearance. More information on this topic can be found here.

Firefox Version 35 Has Been Released

Mozilla has also released a new version (version 35) of its Firefox browser recently. In addition to lots of bug fixes, this release contains several features that will make the life of developers easier. For example, they enabled CSS source maps by default. This feature was initially added into Version 29, but now it is enabled by default. Check Mozilla’s developer network for a full list of all the bug fixes, improvements and changes.

Bootstrap 3.3.2 released on January 19

According to the Official Bootstrap Blog, this release contains more than 300 commitments from 19 contributors. It doesn’t contain any significant new features, but it does include lots of bug fixes, accessibility improvements and documentation updates. As always, the post contains a link to a music video. This time, it’s Ace of Base – “The Sign”. Enjoy it!

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