Archive for the 'reading list' Category
Subgrids thinking out loud – “our thoughts about subgrids feature from CSS Grid Layout specification”, by Igalia, who are implementing Grids in Blink
More Chinese Mobile UI Trends
Chrome change breaks the visual viewport writes PPK
Progressive Web Apps – a list compiled by Opera Developer Relations. Your’s isn’t on the list? Add it.
Font Metrics API – explainer for the (very nascent) Font Metrics API in CSS/ Houdini. anything missing? Raise an issue, do. We need real developer input.
Why I love working with the web by Remy Sharp. “If you sit back for a moment, and think about just how many lives you can touch simply by publishing something, anything, to the web, it’s utterly mind blowing. That’s why I love working with the web”
Indian firm launches £5 smartphone, thought to be world’s cheapest
A Message to Our Customers Apple’s Tim Cook: “[The FBI] have asked us to build a backdoor to the iPhone.” Time magazine has good analysis: This Is the Real Reason Apple Is Fighting the FBI
GCHQ hacking does not breach human rights, security tribunal rules – “remotely activating microphones and cameras on electronic devices without the owners’ knowledge, is legal”. WTF?
Snoopers scolded UK parliamentary committee “blasts government surveillance plans” calling them ‘incomprehensible”, too sweeping and needing justifying
How to prepare and write a tech conference talk – loads of good stuff in this post by Lena Reinhard
Literally trillions* of people asked me “Bruce, how do
Smart Alerts in Opera Max work?”. So I blew Opera’s video budget on this 2 min explainer, featuring an eggbox and a Where The Wild Things Are puppet.
Building Offline Sites with ServiceWorkers and UpUp (UpUp is a nice’n’easy ServiceWorkers library)
Subgrids Considered Essential – Eric Meyer on CSS Grids: “If grid layout is released without subgrid support, we’re risking shoving subgrids into the back of the author-practices cupboard for a long time to come. And along with it, potentially, grids themselves.” Related:
Could a simpler subgrid lead to more implementer interest? – proposal by Francois Remy
Big Web Show 141: CSS Grid Layout With Rachel Andrew Rachel is “Ms Grids”.
The woes of date input – HTML5Doctor article by Ian Devlin
Remove <iframe seamless> – removing it from HTML (no-one implements; overtaken by events; complex; devs need auto-resize, but CSS Working Group is already on the case).
The world’s poorest households are more likely to have a mobile phone than a toilet – Word Bank report. “The full benefits of the information and communications transformation will not be realized unless countries continue to improve their business climate, invest in people’s education and health, and promote good governance.”
The Facebook-Loving Farmers of Myanmar – “A dispatch from an Internet revolution in progress”. Fascinating article.
What to do when you get sued… [for your inaccessible website] (revisited) by Karl Groves
Moving to a Plugin-Free Web – “Oracle plans to deprecate the Java browser plugin in JDK 9”
Losing Our Heads – Separating Information from Interface – nice briefing note by Peter Gasston on Push notifications, their usefulness to consumers, and their effect on UI design
What I’ve learned from monitoring four years of web page bloat by Tammy Everts, with helpful tips on what to concentrate on to give anyone who touches your web pages Talking of fast, fast pages:
Opera Mini 14 for Android is out, with more than 90 languages supported, including 13 Indian languages.
Responsive Image Breakpoints Generator, A New Open Source Tool
2016 – the year of web streams – Jank Architect walks you through the Streams API. Good comments, too.
Optimising SVGs for Web Use — Part 1
Leaner Responsive Images With Client Hints
Gyrophone: Recognizing Speech From Gyroscope Signals – ” Since iOS and Android require no special permissions to access the gyro, our results show that apps and active web content that cannot access the microphone can nevertheless eavesdrop on speech in the vicinity of the phone.”
My Experience With the Great Firewall of China – “as an InfoSec professional I was very curious to finally be able to poke at the Great Firewall of China with my own hands to see how it works and how easy it is evade”
Uninstalling Facebook Speeds Up Your Android Phone – Tested – “that settles it for me… I am joining the browser-app camp for now…”
Lite apps grow in popularity on the App Store – because they’re less than 1MB to download, and work in low-connectivity conditions.
Woe-ARIA: The Surprisingly but Ridiculously Complicated World of aria-label/ aria-labelledby by one of the devs of the NVDA screenreader Video corner:
The Future of the Web Platform: Does It Have One? – Google’s sinister mastermind, Alex Russell, “discusses the impact of new standards-track technologies like Service Workers, Web Manifests, and Web Push which are landing in browsers” (48 mins)
Becoming Responsible for CSS – a talk by CSS co-editor Alan Stearns of Adobe (17 mins) Audio corner:
Working Draft – Revision 250: Achtung Baby! – “we managed to get our greedy hands on no one less than Bruce Lawson from Opera. Having barely returned from a trip to Asia and still dizzy from his jetlag, we managed to extract a whole bunch of classified information on CSS Houdini out of him (also thanks to our German interview style)”
Why India is the fastest growing tech hub in the world – “developers in India are 3 times more likely to be female than in the US.”
China’s Millennials Infographic – There are 318 million Chinese millennials (15-29 year olds). 48% are female. >90% own smartphones. >90 million are graduates. They’re 50% of China’s international travellers. 74% feel they have more in common with global millennials than their Chinese elders. Each expects to spend $4362 on luxury goods this year. 66% choose western brands over Asian brands.
Const & Immutable Objects – “The goal of this blog post is to go into detail about const and cover some ways ES6 handles immutability” by Ada Rose Edwards Blink-dev
Intent to Ship: Brotli (Accept-encoding: br on HTTPS connection) for 17-25% better compression than gzip. (It’s used in WOFF2)
Firefox OS is not helping the web – “As we have learned time and again, the way to change the web is through evolution, not revolution.” by Anne Van Kesteren (of Mozilla)
Bosses Free to Spy on Emails’? Well no, not really – by Darren Newman, “Employment law trainer, writer and consultant”
The resolution of the Bitcoin experiment “It has failed because the community has failed… controlled by just a handful of people. Worse still, the network is on the brink of technical collapse.” – fascinating article by a Bitcoin developer of 5 years (and Metafilter comments)
A survey about money – Rachel Andrew writes “If you mostly work for yourself and work on the web I’d love it if you could fill this in”
Simple standalone toggletip widget pattern by Steve “Toot Lips” Faulkner
Progressive Web Apps – list of resources, by Chrome team
Helllllooo TAG – Andrew Betts on his election to W3C Tag, which is a Jolly Good Thing.
Zero-Day FFmpeg Vulnerability Lets Anyone Steal Files from Remote Machines
It’s 2016 already, how are websites still screwing up these user experiences?!
The CSS bands & songs quiz, by Mathias Bynens (3 min YouTube video)
Building for HTTP/2 is a deeply splendid article by Rebecca Murphey Like, OMG corner:
Implement the picture element – “Support for the <picture> element has landed in WebKit.” I congratulated them maturely, as it’s very nearly four years to the day since I first proposed it iOS browser update corner:
Real-time news and notifications from your iOS browser – Opera Mini squishes pages and videos down so you get more for your data plan, get fewer Buffering Spinners of Ohfuckit™ and pages download quicker. Opera Coast, on the other hand, simply keeps out of your way and shows pages full-screen with gestural controls (swipe to go back, pull to refresh).
Mobile App Developers are Suffering – “It’s just too saturated. The barriers to adoption and therefore monetization are too high. It’s easier on the web.”
Flash, HTML5 & Open Web Standards – Adobe: “we encourage content creators to build with new web standards”
What Web Can Do Today – “An overview of the device integration HTML5 APIs” with code examples
Metadata markup – Jeremy Keith on redundancy and competing “standards” to get post previews to appear on Facebook, Twitter and Slack. (In A Little Less Metacrap, Peter Gasston slims down Jeremy’s example somewhat, but his point still stands.)
Progressive Web Apps: Stack Overflow questions
WPO stats “The impact of web performance optimization (WPO) on user experience and business metrics” < Woo, numbers!
The state of internet connectivity in the world in 9 charts
Styling and scripting sliders by PPK. See also @notwaldorf’s <input> I ♡ you, but you’re bringing me down.
Flexbox Grid Finesse by Heydon Pickering. Thanks to this article, I also learned about the TV programme “Sex Box”
flexbox froggy – learn flexbox by positioning frogs onto their lily pads. Brilliant lunchtime learning, by Thomas H. Park
Flexbox’s Best-Kept Secret “Using auto margins with Flexbox is an effective way to get all of the flexibility of css floats, without the nastiness of breaking elements out of the document’s normal flow.”
Getting Started With CSS calc() by Ana Tudor
Splitting CanvasRenderingContext2D so it can be used in Houdini’s CSS Paint API (proposal)
CSS Indexes – A listing of every term defined by CSS specs. (work in progress)
Toy firm VTech hack exposes private data of parents and children – 4.8 million accounts leaked, suspends trading on the Hong Kong stock exchange
The Porn Business Isn’t Anything Like You Think It Is – “Mobile and social media platforms have pulled us away from the openness of the worldwide web and into walled gardens, squeezing the avenues of distribution for porn” (images SFW)
From the department of taking credit for other peoples’ work, here’s a list of geek admin calendars running from today (December 1st) to Xmas day, compiled from tweets by Rachel Andrew and Andy Davies.
Update: Adrian Roselli has a
much better list than this.
The Golden Link o’ the Week:
Introducing Pokedex.org: a progressive webapp for Pokémon fans – “works offline, can be launched from the home screen, and runs at 60 FPS even on mediocre Android phones. This blog post explains how I did it.” A superb blogpost by Nolan Lawson.
Progressive Web Apps Are the Future – video with Andreas Bovens (Opera) and Alex Russell (Google) from Chrome Dev Summit
Firefox to support Progressive Web Apps, too – so, who’s next? Microsoft or Apple? Place your bets!
Building an Offline Page for theguardian.com – a useful real-world Service Worker case-study
Raspberry Pi Zero: the $5 computer – or free as a magazine covermount. Built in Wales. Hurray UK! Craig Lockwood sums up my feelings well in his post We have come a long way, baby.
flexbugs – “A community-curated list of flexbox issues and cross-browser workarounds for them”.
Building HTML5 Form Validation Bubble Replacements – if you really have to (Marketingestapo have a gun to your dangly bits) here’s how to do it
Seriously, Don’t Use Icon Fonts – “It’s time to let icon fonts pass on to Hack Heaven, where they can frolic with table-based layouts, Bullet-Proof Rounded Corners and Scalable Inman Flash Replacements.”
Fontdeck to close. “Fonts will stop being served on 1 December 2016.” (Note: *next* year!) Migration plan etc in the link. The reason? “As neither OmniTI nor Clearleft have the resources to take Fontdeck to the next level, we had no desire to traipse around the Valley with a begging bowl; instead we took the decision to retire Fontdeck rather than let it wither on the vine.”
Unicorns and Bubbles in which Baldur Bjarnason writes “startups are generally staffed by cowboy coders who stack up lines of technical debt faster than a monkey playing Tetris”
Responsive Issues Community Group newsletter – it’s out every 2 weeks. You can sign up.
Opera Max now also helps you save data while streaming music – free Android app compresses audio and video by up to 50%, so less stuttering media and more vids for your data plan. (Instructions on how to get more out of your Opera Max.)
[blink-dev] Intent to Remove: Insecure origin usage of geolocation – Should Blink remove support for geolocation on insecure pages? Opera’s Simon Pieters suggests a staged removal.
TIL – Autocomplete and forms by Raymond Camden
Google can remotely bypass the passcode of at least 74% of Android devices if ordered – Android devices without full disk encryption (those older than Android 5.0) can easily be remotely reset by Google (if compelled by a court order).
WordPress joins the PHP to Node train
Decommissioning a free public API – “relying on a free service you have no control over means adding a single point of failure on a volunteer basis” (by author of a side-project API that some set-top box manufacturer depended on
How A Rural Community Made Its Own Phone Network In South Africa – “there is no electricity to charge cell phones and that people have very limited funds to spend on mobile airtime”
Opera’s Engineering Team meetup – evil bosses made me go to the south of France for an all-hands engineering meetup. Here’s a 4min video.
“Out of Sight, Out of Mind” campaign on ‘invisible disability (including mental health), with an short piece Nicky asked me to write about my multiple sclerosis for the campaign launch
HTML5 is the New Flash by Steve Pemberton (chair XHTML2 Working Group)
Sky Q website – party like it’s 2003 and you have Shockwave installed.
This week’s Golden Link:
Service Worker Cookbook from Mozilla “is a collection of working, practical examples of using service workers in modern web apps”
Progressive Web Apps 30 minute video from Chrome Dev Summit session with Alex Russell (Google) and Andreas Bovens (my boss, Opera).
Manifest Generator by me and Stuart Langridge mentioned in the video above, that scours your site for metadata and tries to make a manifest that you can download. Beta!
Better specifications for the sake of the Web – w3c blog by Virginie Galindo (@poulpita). TL:DR: summarise, don’t fragment, diagrams, examples.
After Endless Demonization Of Encryption, Police Find Paris Attackers Coordinated Via Unencrypted SMS Job ad:
Senior User Experience Designer Opera’s looking for one to work on Opera for Android with my nice boss, Andreas Bovens. “While professional UX experience is required, talent and ambition are your best assets”. Tell ’em I sent you. Talking of which,
A Recruitment Evening for Technically Talented Disabled People — BBC seeks web developers with disabilities.
Applying Flexbox to the Video Player – Laura Kalbag makes a video player even more responsiver with Flexbox
My captioning workflow – Using YouTube’s captioning tools to make video more accessible: step-by-step guide by Michael Lockrey
Fronteers 2015 videos and every single one has ME in it!
Interoperability Case Studies – BlinkOn 5 presentation by @foolip (Opera) and @RickByers (Google)
Interview with Gramneenphone CEO (the leading telecommunications service provider in Bangladesh) – “Although people in remote areas in Bangladesh still have no access to proper education and heath services, they are changing their lot just using internet as the power of internet is huge.” Talking of connecting the unconnected,
Opera won Best Disruptive Innovation award at AppsAfrica for sponsored web pass with 1 million free days of web access
Quantum computers a step closer to reality after silicon coding breakthrough
The Day Google Deleted Me – I’ve endorsed Terence Eden on LinkTin for his wildly inventive swearing in this
Miss Amazing – a beauty pageant for women with disabilities “judged on their levels of self-confidence” (Nothing to do with web development, but I liked it)
Progressive Web App: A New Way to Experience Mobile – write-up by Flipkart on how they made Flipkart Lite, an installable web app, with HTML Manifest and Service Worker Talking of Service Worker,
Making a Simple Site Work Offline with ServiceWorker is a great intro Also,
My first Service Worker – Jeremy Keith reminisces about his first time
The Cost of Frameworks – International glamourpuss @aerotwist wrote up his excellent @ffconf talk.
In defense of the Reset button… by Raymond Camden
PSA: don’t use gradient generators by Ana Tudor
Houdini meeting, Japan – interesting stuff from Apple on declarative “crazy scroll things”, touch and gestures without running script
Beyond the Rack -“Beyond the Rack re-engages users on the mobile web, increasing revenue per visit by 26% with push notifications”
The Realities of Installing iBeacon to Scale fledgling problems with the Physical Web
The ethics of ad blocking written up in Oxford University’s “Practical Ethics”
Your Unhashable Fingerprints Secure Nothing
Peering Into The Minds Of The 4.3 Billion Unconnected – “These are people who mostly can’t tell what the X at the top-right of the screen does, or what “sign up” means, or what a username and password are”
How Opera’s video compression technology works – not technical but a maybe-interesting overview Talking of which,
Opera Mini for iOS beta (featuring video compression) if you’d like to sign up.
WebGL 2.0 – presentation by Zhenyao Mo, and Ken Russell of Google
OK Computer: how to work with automation and AI on the web by Peter Gasston
A better paywall ecosystem with content passes – “There is declining but unfortunately still significant cohort of people who think all content “wants to be free” or similar nonsense” by Andrew Betts
Future of HTML – some soul-searching at W3C TPAC meeting on future of HTML5 spec vs WHATWG HTML Living Standard, and Steve Faulkner’s thoughts (on Medium; he’s so Thought-Leader)
Is Google usable? – an eye-opening usability lab video of a featurephone user’s first contact with the web, trying to type a search term into Google on a smartphone
Three years with CSS Grid Layout – self-appointed Grid Cheerleader Rachel Andrew writes on how the spec’s evolved as she’s waved her pompoms
Building an offline page for theguardian.com “How we used service workers to build a custom offline page for theguardian.com”
Background Synchronization – “A design and spec for ServiceWorker-based background synchronization”
The Web Payments Browser API– a proposal for an API that “enables web developers to register payment instruments (credit card, PayPal, Bitcoin, etc.), initiate requests for payment, and acknowledge requests for payment.
Less content marketing, more quality content – “Telenor of Norway deleted almost 90% of their pages. Conversions went up by 100%. support requests went down by 35%”
Full support for network interception using Service Workers in Firefox 44 Developer Edition.
CSS Round Display Level 1 – extending CSS for circular displays. Draft by LG, with watches as the usecase.
Things To Avoid When Writing CSS by Heydon Pickering (and part 2)
<panels> and <panelsets> – proposed new HTML thangs. Write-up by permaglam Leonie Watson.
Opera Max data-saving app to come bundled on Samsung, Xiaomi phones. We expect 100 million Android devices to ship with Opera Max by 2017.
Petition – Government to abandon all ideas of trying to ban strong encryption “At 10,000 signatures, government will respond to this petition. At 100,000 signatures, this petition will be considered for debate in Parliament”. (UK folks only. But please sign).
Internet browsing history – Freedom of Information request for “all websites visits made through parliamentary PCs made by MPs or their staff during the past 12 months.”
Metadata of emails sent to and from the Home Secretary F.O.I. request – because if you’ve nothing to hide, you’ve nothing to fear.
The changing form of the web browser – thought-piece by Peter Gasston
Top quality rant by Linus about “compiler masturbation” – One day, I’ll tell him exactly what I think about Git’s command line.
Bruce Lawson’s personal site is copyright © Bruce Lawson 2003-2016. Much (but not all)
is available under a
commons license that allows non-commercial attributed distribution. It's polite to ask me first, though.
I work for
Opera, but all opinions contained herein are mine (and are thus incontrovertibly
correct) and do not represent the opinions of my employers. (Comments are copyright their authors, not written by me, and
are therefore probably the ramblings of mad people.)