What makes a design system better than any other?
A simple brand exercises that speaks volumes.
A skill that separates the amateurs from the professionals.
There’s nothing new under the sun.
Pilots are a great way to start a design system.
A simple framework for effective storytelling.
Design systems make deciding in the browser much easier if you have the right ingredients.
Using an investment framework to help evaluate what’s worth doing.
The first few days on a Windows machine.
I’m switching to Windows.
Measuring Trump against the Bible’s criteria for leaders.
A 3-step formula for accountability between yourself and those you interact with.
Announcing SuperBooked, a service that helps you find work with a little help from your friends.
An inventory of the most popular design systems out there.
Apprenticeships are a fantastic solution to bridge the gap between opportunity in tech and those in need of change.
Great writing from Mike really brings me back.
How to convince your boss that a design system is a good idea.
Death to “full service.”
To overcome your fears, you need [permission] to try something different.
Embracing the difference in pattern types is the key to making a modular design system infinitely more scalable.
Don’t believe anyone that tells you otherwise.
Some tips on making the right hire.
That magical phrase that gives you permission to brush off the things you really want to do.
Epicurrence was the most beautiful, energizing, comfortable, and relaxing uncomfortable experience I’ve had in a long time.
What’s the minimum amount of time we should be working per week?
Dealing with creative block.
After nine years of using iOS1 – iOS7 across iPhones 1 – 6, I’m switching to Android to gain a new perspective.
The time has come for me to step away from Businessology.
Like magnets and archaelogists.
How to start charging for your work.
A tangible way to approximate how your pages should perform.
Celebrating my favorite industry event ever.
A new Adobe feature for designing systems.
A live 2-day tour through learning Sketch.
Learn about the business of design in person.
Some advice about public speaking.
Use Google Calendar.
An open redesign.
A design deliverable for the post-PSD era of responsive design.
A primer on creative direction as compared to art direction and design… and what they all mean in a digital context.
How I’m voting.
Advice for anyone.
The story of the new responsive TechCrunch.
New work on a mobile responsive site for Entertainment Weekly.
Two years later, this site is finally responsive.
Still alive and kickin’.
Creating an app in public. Maybe.
Questions, answers, and hidden answers.
Create quick vector assets with really small file sizes.
The lack of blogging about the lack of blogging.
Prepping for the next episode of The Businessology Show.
After just over 10 years, I’ve decided to leave my band
A look back at one year in business.
A problem of expectations.
More about the design process in the public story of a new site for Reading Is Fundamental.
An abstract way to document design for Reading Is Fundamental.
The first chapter in the public story of a new site for Reading Is Fundamental.
Recap of a great event I had the pleasure of speaking at in Dallas, TX.
A small trick I use to improve readability for responsive designs.
A barter-style pricing system for web design & dev projects.
A recent dilemma about responsibility.
The world has lost one more great man.
Some speaking advice from Jeremy Keith.
A list of some great books mentioned in Grok sessions.
Today’s my birthday. This year, I got myself a new house, a new (old) city, and my very own design studio.
Today is my last day at Big Spaceship.
Celebrating rituals that encourage new beginnings.
Hands down the best industry event I’ve ever attended.
Plan your dream conference.
Be adventurous and experiment with new faces, but don’t forget about the classics.
An idea for configuring Photoshop.
Netflix should be applauded for their bold redesign.
Wow. After five long years, it feels great to have a new site.
I get domain renewals email almost weekly. Sadly, those domains slip quietly into oblivion.
After finishing the excellent HTML5 for Web Designers by Jeremy Keith and A Book Apart, I decided to dive in head first.
After months of procrastination, my design swap is finally live!
I recently participated in FullCodePress, an event that challenged 3 teams to build a website for a non-profit organization in 24 hours.
Imagine that the world’s most popular monitor makers decided to revolutionize crt monitors. From now on, monitors would ship without the color Blue.
I’m ready to speak plainly about Apple’s stance toward Flash.
Two weeks ago, I had the pleasure of having lunch with Dave Dawson, a new friend of mine. As we talked about the industry, I shared my philosophy about staying inspired as a designer.
When properly progressively enhancing a page, you’ll often have the need to modify your layout to accommodate the new features. Here’s a little technique I’ve been using to handle this.
A quick Photoshop template I created for YouTube and Vimeo videos.
Go to the address bar in your favorite browser, and type one letter. Start with “a”, end with “z.”
Three years ago, we decided to build Wikipedia for typefaces. Today, it’s live. We’re calling it Typedia.
Tomorrow is my last day at Happy Cog.
Even as the web grows larger, most web presences have no such curator position, no one who really oversees and evaluates the important of content and what should be presented front and center.
The Mozilla Foundation has engaged us to redesign mozilla.org. This process is a unique one; for the first time, we’re employing a design by community scenario, where our designs are open to the scrutiny of the public.
Over the last year, I’ve had the chance to participate in a wonderful project: the website redesign for the Maryland Institute College of Art. To date, it’s been one of my favorite projects ever.
These are tough times, and it’s not always clear on how to deal with it.
I love reusable solutions. But, sometimes, they just don’t cut it.
I drank the Subversion Kool-Aid; I’m sold. But I’m not a developer. I’m a designer, and I use svn like one.
I passed a homeless man on the street today. He asked me to buy him some chips; I ignored him.
I’ll never forget some of the last words he said to me. “I want to be a blessing.”
Every once in a while, you get to be involved in something amazing.
What have you always wanted to work on?
I’ve been really privileged to be invited to speak at a few upcoming events. If you haven’t gotten enough of me yet, here’s where you can find me for the last half of this year…
As a movie, The Dark Knight was spectacular. As a sequel, it was fantastic. As a work of art, Heath Ledger’s finest performance. But as a Batman story, it was a let-down.
Having trouble seeing the most current version every time you update a Flash movie? Here’s a quick tip to help you get over that.
A local college has made the mistake of hiring me to teach a web design class.
My wedding was probably the most memorable day of my life. I’m writing about it so that, years later, I can still look back on this and remember how great it was for my wife and me.
Sorry I haven’t been writing much lately. Been busy!
Whether on a computer or my sketchbook, an empty canvas is difficult to face.
It’s that time of year again, when dreams of barbecue and geeking out can happen in the same 6-block radius. It’s SXSW!
Hiring a good designer is like hiring someone to cut your hair.
I get a lot of email about it, especially from aspiring designers, so I’d like to talk about the process of building a website from start to finish.
Even now, as the title of designer graces my business card, this inferiority complex hasn’t completely dissipated, but I have found a few tricks to quell it.
I’ve had the pleasure of helping the Fog Creek team redesign the FogBugz site.
I finally caved and joined twitter, but I’m not sure how much longer I’ll keep it up.
How would you most semantically mark up the word “MySQL”?
What would you like for me to write about?
This year is especially exciting for me, as I’ve finally decided to man up and submit a panel idea to SXSW.
Good friend and aspiring dancer Kevin Cornell is featured in “The Comic Issue” of Philadelphia’s citypaper. Go vote for his cartoon!
Every once in a while, I have to build something that sucks. It’s usually nothing more than a bore. Here’s hoping you don’t have to.
Is blogging the same as online journaling? Hardly. But where does that leave online journaling?
As you may or may not have seen, I took this site down last week while I switched hosts. Now it’s back up.
This week was great for my ego.
Here’s the #1 tip I give people when they ask me how to jump-start their web careers.
I’ve recently gotten a lot of email, asking about specifying font sizes in css. Here’s my attempt to answer that, or at least give you the low-down on my approach.
I’m a little late to the SXSW round-up, but I have to get it out: I’m actually a bit depressed that it’s over.
Over a year in the works, I’m proud to announce the unveiling of a project that has been very close to me.
It’s a big month for Happy Cog. First, we launched our new site. Now we’ve launched a brand new project that we can be proud of.
Today, the Happy Cog site gets a long overdue refresh.
Just wanted to settle a quick misconception about the terminology concerning certain css layouts.
I’ve recently (again) become enamored with photography portfolios, especially those done with Flash.
Did I mention that I love my job?
A couple of quick tips as to how you can enhance a barebones Flash navigation into a “You are here” roadmap.
The designer for a new website build was kind enough to pre-cut all of the images. And therein lay the problem.
I’ve never considered myself very active in social issues, but this is one I’d like to bring to the forefront.
Well, the secret is out: I’ve left the old digs and have been working for a new boss. Today marks the official grand opening of Happy Cog Philadelphia.
A midnight mystery for you all: which one of these sites is the original and which is the imposter?
Certain fonts should be retired. Here are some that just don’t make the cut.
My bookshelf has given up on me. My brain will soon follow.
My grandfather was a strong man.
After 4 long years, as of June 17, 2006, school is finally over with!
There’s still one thing we can’t test for backward and forward compatibility: the Flash player.
This weekend marks the culmination of 20 weeks worth of work, namely my senior project for the digital media program at Drexel University.
Few designers take advantage of the
<body>tag. Like most tags, it can receive
While trying to debug some CSS on a site we were working on, Pixelworthy partners-in-crime Michael and Mark helped me to devise a new way to handle ie. I call it the IE Sandwich Hack.
In honor of the first ever annual naked day, my site has decided to slip into something more comfortable.
Understanding the concept of Actionscript can make you a dangerous designer or developer, especially if you understand and practice the separation of content, presentation, and behavior.
The timeline is one of the most basic tools in Flash. There are instances where timeline animation is more appropriate than programmed animation.
The gang is super excited about SXSW. For some of us, it’s the very first time over to the cool kids’ table. Others are seasoned veterans. But we’re all stoked.
Let’s examine some practical and appropriate applications of Flash.
In wrapping my Christmas presents this year, I realized that I never picked up any tags to write names on, so I decided to improvise.
While FACE certainly a testament to the great things that the technology can now do, I’m not so sure that promotion for the use of FACE is such a great idea.
In preparation for an event apart, I’ve got some stuff to share with the class.
My online world is colliding with real life. I just received a circular from Amazon in the mail this morning.
I’ve been meaning to get to it for a while, and I’ve finally had the time to make some changes under the hood of this site.
Some sites contain different approaches to what I would typically do, and, more importantly, arguably go against what could be considered best practices. One of the most common examples is the use of the vertical bar, or the pipe.
I’m taking a class called “Digital Storytelling & Cultural Production.” I have to say that it looks like a very promising (but busy) upcoming couple of weeks.
The Firefox I once knew and loved is lost to me. Please come home, Firefox.
Short of being a lesson in kerning, here’s a little tip in making your typography look just a little bit better.
Some rules on the way to ultimate success in life.
There’s one thing that I’m most eager to do: organize my jumbled typeface collection.
Well, it’s no Mike Davidson contest, but here’s your chance to benefit from my misfortune and get your very own iTunes free download.
To all message-leavers: please consider the following points when faced with leaving a message on a person’s voicemail.
There have been a lot of mixed reactions about every portion of the new A List Apart, most prominently the design, followed by the markup, information architecture, and content.
Graphic tees are about as popular as bad teeth. They’re all around us, and you can’t ever miss them. I will admit, they do appeal to the designer in me.
Drexel University’s design college, the College of Media Arts & Design or CoMAD, has long been in need of a modern website to represent the excellent instruction that goes on everyday.
I have a confession to make: in the past, I have used my powers for evil. It’s not something I’m proud of, but I won’t deny it.
The kind folks over at CSS-Mania have deemed my site worthy of their gallery.
According to today’s Metro (a free newspaper distributed at train stations), here’s how you can ensure safe blogging.
After almost 3 months of apparently disappearing, you can finally see why.
Think back to the first time you were introduced to the alphabet. Remember that chart that was hanging over the chalkboard that you always used for reference?
Fontshop just published their I Am gallery. You’re encouraged to design and upload a 150×150 GIF or JPEG with the subject matter of which typeface embodies you.
Unexpectedly thrown into a form of virtual chain mail, here’s my response to Stan’s nomination.
A play-by-play of my 2-column setup.
Electronic Ink, a user-centered design firm in Philadelphia, is looking for a few good people.
The term “programming” may cause you to cringe, especially if you’re comfortable inside your usual design tools, but it can effectively take your designs to the next level.
Pretend that I’ve already given you the typical welcome speech.
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