10 Things a Website Should Never, Ever Do

As a designer of the world wide web, you are armed with the power to amaze, enlighten, entice, and captivate. The web is an easel for your creative aspirations, and the content you design for is the foundation of your creativity. With so much power at the tips of your fingers, you also possess the ability to deter, annoy, anger, and infuriate. Your users are yours to command, their emotions yours to pluck like the strings of a harp. Continue reading…

From “Developer” to “Designer”

It’s easy to forget how a website really works. I mean really works. I’ve had the pleasure of working with many brilliant and talented developers (programmers) who could bend the functionality of any application or server-side platform at the drop of a hat. They are problem-solvers, as is everyone in this industry of the online. Continue reading…

SharePoint Design in Five Minutes

You can now download my free SharePoint theme, Medazio, on SharePointDesigNerds.com. We’re still working on cleaning up the site while it’s in “draft” version, but feel free to sign up, browse a couple of the themes that we’ve uploaded, post your amazing SharePoint spotlights, and give us feedback on the design, navigation, and functionality in the site. Continue reading…

Responsive Design Testing with Screenfly

Responsive design is all the rage. Ethan Marcotte, just today, released a new book on the subject, of which I’m quite excited. My last post was all about responsive web design, and after writing the article, I couldn’t help but ask myself: what now? Designing and implementing experiences for an unknown number of devices can be an intimidating task, especially when you don’t have the opportunity to test your designs on many (or any) of them. The answer, for me, was to create a new web app that aids in this testing process. It’s called Screenfly, and it’s the first of many apps that will be available on QuirkTools.com. Continue reading…

Responsive Layouts Using CSS Media Queries

The days of the desktop are numbered. In the past, designing a web interface involved targeting a screen resolution in the vicinity of 960 pixels wide. For many years, this worked, and it worked well, because 99% of online users could easily read and scroll at that resolution, regardless of the browser, operating system, or machine they were using. Times have changed. Continue reading…

SharePoint 2010 Item Styles and DDWRT

I’ve done some crazy things to make SharePoint work like I want it to. One of the things that I’ve done in the past is write some insanely complex XSLT functions to format dates in SharePoint 2007 item styles. SharePoint 2007 offered a very useful FormatDate feature of the DDWRT XSL library, but the formatting customization was limited to picking a prefab format, which didn’t always gel with what you or your client wanted to see. Continue reading…

SharePoint 2010 CSS Reset

A most difficult aspect of customizing the SharePoint 2010 interface is the arduous task of overriding the thousands of styles that Microsoft has already put in place for anything and everything that you see in the browser window. This can be a tedious task, to say the least. Largely, the SharePoint interface doesn’t rely on the cascading facet of Cascading Style Sheets. Instead, most of the elements that you see in SharePoint 2010 (like web parts, navigation menus, lists, libraries, page editor styles, etc.) all have specific CSS styles that specify font size, color, and even the font family. Continue reading…

SharePoint 2010 Scrolling

If I have one gripe about SharePoint 2010, it’s scrolling. It’s something I’ve bumped into in every 2010 project I’ve worked on thus far (which has been a lot). First, I’ll explain the problem, and we’ll subsequently look at some potential solutions (which have their drawbacks) for this highly visible and hotly debated element of the SharePoint interface. Continue reading…

Who Needs Flash?

I have a bumpy relationship with Flash technology. I love to hate it, and hate to love it. It’s an essential element of the online experience, allowing some amazing functionality (when it’s used correctly) like video, interactive graphs and charts, and the interactive extension of capabilities that you simply can’t do with HTML, CSS, or JavaScript. Continue reading…

SharePoint Conference in Baltimore, Maryland

I’m very excited to be a part of the upcoming SharePoint .ORG Conference that will be held in Baltimore this year.  If you have even a small amount of interest in SharePoint or SharePoint design, you’ll love the line-up.  I’ve attended and have spoken at numerous conferences and events around the country, but this is the first SharePoint conference I’ve seen with a dedicated “design” track.  I’m very excited to have the opportunity to speak at a few of the design sessions, and I look forward to seeing any readers at the conference. Continue reading…