- Modern CSS Layout, power and responsibility – Rachel Andrew makes the important point that if CSS Grid Layout loses subgrid, visual tools will produce flat HTML structures so everything is a direct child of the grid, thereby damaging HTML semantic quality (especially important as Grid Layout is the most natural, designer-friendly way to lay out pages)
- Mozilla’s Firefox extensions are changing to be “largely compatible with the model used by Chrome and Opera”, perhaps including some Opera extras like sidebar API. Although they’d “like add-on development to be more like Web development: the same code should run in multiple browsers”, Mozilla will use their own .xpi format and require (unspecfiied) “small changes” to Blink extensions rather than using the vendor-neutral .nex format Opera proposed and uses, because apparently they’re “skeptical of the benefits of standard packaging“.
- Mobile Browsing Around The World by Peteypoo Gasston
- Responsive Images Pt. 2 with Yoav Weiss – Yoav puts on a funny voice and draws really fast in this five-minute video
- Where to Put Your Search Role – by Adrian Roselli. TL;DR, not on a <form> element, as that overrides its native semantics
- Making radio buttons and checkboxes easier to use by UK Government Digital Services
- User Agent Intervention – a discussion document by Dmitri “Web Components” Glazkov on what to when “user experience gets so bad that the User Agent is compelled to intervene”
- Using requestIdleCallback, a “new performance API for scheduling work when the user is idle”, says Paul “Idol” Lewis
- Houdini / CSS Face to Face meeting notes (day 1)
- What Open Data can do for Africa’s growing population
- Opera’s “Web on Wheels” brings free Wi-Fi to 20 Indian cities – to celebrate our 20th birthday, we’re taking a car around 20 cities for 10 months, bringing free, unlimited WiFi
- EU’s new VAT rules forcing thousands out of business article on VATMOSS – mad EU sales tax changes on digital sales
- WordSafety.com checks your product name against swear words & unwanted associations in 19 languages – caveat emptor, though; it didn’t flag up “Boobie Nob” and “TwinkSpank” for me
- Stems: new open file format for music with separate tracks for drums, vocals, bass, harmony, and also the full stereo song for fallback in non-Stem software
- The Slow Web by Cole Henley, is a well-written musing on the rather badly-written article by Hossein Derakhshan. Paul Robert Lloyd wrote and interesting follow-up, too.
- Opera is twenty years old
- Stop pushing redux – in which PPK argues against me and Jank Architect arguing against him.
- Optimizing Performance – some excellent advice on Google Web Fundamentals by some heavy-hitters
- Understanding critical CSS
- Laying Out A Flexible Future For Web Design With Flexbox
- CSS element() function – “this function renders any part of a website as a live image.”
- CSS dropcaps and initial letters – wrapping text around the *ink* of a drop cap, rather than its box (editors draft)
- Big List of Naughty Strings “which have a high probability of causing issues when used as user-input data”. For QA purposes, of course.
- The End of the Internet Dream – I thought at first this was another dull medium-hosted “the web was better before the hoi polloi came along” getoffmylawnist lament, but the more I read the more I agreed
[From my notebook, earlier this year, on the 15.45 train from London to Birmingham.]
On a packed, hot train
I scrounged space to rest my notepad
To write notes from my London meeting.
And opposite me,
Oblivious in bliss in silence
A woman and her baby
Their gaze unbroken throughout
Enraptured in their wonder and love.
- On PPK’s moratorium on new browser features by me ‘n’ my homies
- If we stand still, we go backwards – Jank Architect’s take on the moratorium
- SLICE: the web – Paul “The new Cilla” Kinlan on the positive aspects of the web as a platform for users and developers
- Fast-forwarding the Web Platform another take on PPK’s article, by Nicolas Bevacqua
- Mobile Web Isn’t Broken, Yet and another, by Mariano Viola
- Ramblings on New Browser Features, Interoperability, Craft, and the Future of the Web – Aaron Gustafson of Microsoft weighs in too
- Considering the Users of Internet Standards IETF draft by Mark Nottingham (him off the W3C Tag) “mandates end users as the highest priority constituency for Internet standards.”
- Say no to 10 years for file sharing – @OpenRightsGroup petition
- BLCK4777 by p01 – Winning 1kb intro released at Assembly 2015. Turn on speakers and wait for a few seconds. Made by Opera’s Mathieu ‘p01’ Henri
- This App Is Cashing In On Giving The World Free Data – “Mobile data costs up to 10% of a person’s average wage in Brazil, Eagle says, and more than a third of someone’s income in Africa, while in the U.S. it’s more like 1% to 2%”
- The picture element is happening say Your Friends In Redmond
- Opera 31 released: CSS multi-column layout, scrollingElement, ES6 computed property names, Web Audio API++, and more. For consumers, it starts up to 70% faster – great for those on slower/ older hardware
- Modern CSS Layout, power and responsibility by Rachel Andrew
- Pointer Events now in Firefox Nightly – so Opera, Chrome, Microsoft, Firefox. Who’s missing, I wonder?
- Google+: I’ve concluded that it’s time for a “pivot” – “can now focus on doing what it’s already doing quite well”. Note *quite* well. Oof. I never used G+; the way it tied to YouTube was like 2 dogs stuck after sex – neither could move properly and it was very undignified
- Inside the failure of Google+, a very expensive attempt to unseat Facebook has deeper analysis, but no dogsex similes
- Non-blocking Asynchronous JSON.parse Using The Fetch API
- Behavior of <iframe> in vertical writing mode – interesting question now the web is finally getting better support for non-latin scripts
- Tying ecosystems through browsers by David Baron of Mozilla
- Hackers manipulate self-aiming rifle into shooting different targets – your occasional reminder that Internet of Things security is lamentably poor yet vital because, unlike web sites, things can kill you
- How your phone’s battery life can be used to invade your privacy
- Building a smart meeting room w/ LoRa and Physical Web
- Mozilla FlyWeb – “Instead of phones interacting only with the cloud, they can discover and interact with electronics around them that are running empty web clients, such as TV’s, projectors, game consoles, etc. The electronics come to life when connected to phones. The key here is that either the phones serve web apps to these electronics, or the electronics serve web apps to the phones.” (More: Fly Web – A Unified Strategy for the Web on Smart Devices)
- Android Fragmentation Visualized (AKA “Android Strength & Diversity Visualised”) – “We have seen 24,093 distinct devices download our app in the past few months.”
- Making and Breaking the Web With CSS Gradients by Mike “Chicken Legend” Taylr (Mozilla)
- The adblocking revolution is months away (with iOS 9) – with trouble for advertisers, publishers and Google
- Is polyfilling future web APIs a good idea? and Brian Kardell’s reply (TL;DR – “prollyfills are better”)
- Advanced CSS filters
- Position an element relatively to another element from anywhere in the DOM – Web Platform Incubator group: CSS feature request. (As requested by Matt “GRRARRRRGGGHH” Wilcox, 7 years ago.)
- Confidence of Silicon Valley’s venture capitalists hits two-year low – “Silicon Valley’s venture capital community is starting to get a little bummed out”. My heart bleeds for them, it really does. I’m going to start a kickstarter to send them some flowers. Who’s with me?
- Sorry Soylent dudes: After the revolution the clueless tech elite will be doomed “Technology is revolutionary, it has changed our lives for the better, but the boosting and veneration of the giant babies of Silicon Valley, both the ones that live there and the ones spawned by its ideology, is a net negative for humanity.”
The Birmingham Mail has published a totally scientific list of Midlands Twitter users who “have the ability to influence the UK more than most in the region”.
Apparently, I’m a respectable number 101 which means I’m more influential than
- Black Sabbath (#191)
- a Personal Beauty Shopper at Selfridges (#188)
- Sutton Park Donkey Sanctuary (#164)
- Birmingham city council (#120)
- James Morris, Conservative MP for Halesowen & Rowley Regis (#115) – ha!
- Solihull police (#112)
I was pipped to the number 100 post by Drayton Manor theme park. Now we know why they were so damn anxious to build their Thomas The Tank attraction, Thomas Land.
I’m now crowd-funding “William Burroughs’ Naked Lunch Land” to be built in my back garden, and am recruiting mugwumps. I must beat Drayton bloody Manor.
- Vendor Prefixes And Market Reality on specifying webkit-only vendor prefixes, and (presumably) Mozilla finally following Microsoft who followed Opera to alias -webkit- prefixes.
- On that subject, in CSS Vendor Prefixes, ex-Chair of the CSS Working Group, Daniel Homme de Glaz suggests a way to rid us of this scourge.
- Proposal: Generalized Cascading Sheets Lea Verou proposes that Houdini expose”syntax, parsing, cascade & specificity rules of CSS *as a language framework*”.
- Turn on <link rel=preconnect> support by default so devs can tell browser “You will need this resource so connect asap to avoid delay when you actually need it.” According to Yoav Weiss, “Up to the max connection limit of the browser, it should be beneficial (assuming you’d actually use all these hosts later)”
- Understanding Proxy Browsers: Architecture – first in a series by Tam Kadlec
- Talking of proxy browsers: The Philippines — from text-messaging capital to most “social nation” – “The number of Opera Mini users on Android devices grew by 91% in the Philippines”
- The fastest-growing mobile phone markets barely use apps
- Will Patents Kill H.265 or Will H.265’s Patents Kill WebRTC?
- Update on standardizing shadow DOM and custom elements by Anne van Kesteren (Mozilla)
- Service Worker meeting highlights by Ben Kelly (Mozilla)
- Web components Face to Face meeting notes, July 2015
- Declaring performance bankruptcy – “we do care about performance. We care about it SO HARD that we’re publicly declaring performance bankruptcy.”
- ATAG 2.0 – version 2 of the Authoring Tools Accessibility Guidelines. Because disabled people need accessible web-based CMSs, too. (Related: Earlier this year, the US Department Of Justice mandated that edX makes their CMS accessible.)
- 3D Xpoint memory: Faster-than-flash storage unveiled
- Mobile Safari’s Performance is Not the Problem (lack of features is)
- Got half an hour to spare? Matt Marquis’ TXJS talk Smaller Faster Websites is an excellent time investment. (Slides)
- An Open Letter to Microsoft’s CEO: Don’t Roll Back the Clock on Choice and Control” by Chris Beard, Mozilla’s CEO
- and Benjamin Kerensa, a Mozillian, accuses Chris Beard of Unnecessary Finger Pointing
- How to change your default browser on Windows 10
- Stop pushing the web forward – PPK wants “a moratorium on new browser features for about a year or so.”
The reading list – a day early as I’m off to the taverns and love-dungeons of Brussels for the weekend to teach Belgians how to drink beer.
- Where the Internet Lives – world map with countries scaled based on the number of internet users they have.
- W3C Geofencing API Spec Ready for Comment & Contribution – includes Service Workers for extra zeitgasms
- [selectors4] Features to Defer native CSS
:has()“parent selector” deferred until 2078.
- 20 Home Pages, 500 Trackers Loaded: Media Succumbs to Monitoring Frenzy
- Stop Gratuitous UI Animation
- Hackers Remotely Kill a Jeep on the Highway—With Me in It IoT security is a major challenge when Things can kill you.
- Startup lands $100 million to challenge smartphone superpowers Apple and Google – loads of ex-Mozillians set up “H5OS”, a commercial fork of Firefox OS, funded with Chinese government money.
- The Chinese Firefox OS fork is all about control writes PPK, continuing “this story is definitely worth following — but from a political angle, without the HTML5 openness ideological blah” which, in the absence of more information, I tend to agree with, although Xiaomi’s Mi OS based on Android Open Source Project or Alibaba’s Yun OS (also based from AOSP) may be better candidates for a “state” Operating System, if such a thing is planned
- European web law developments < 30 min talk by Heather Burns at WordCamp Europe, June 2015
- Small Pieces Loosely Tied Together With URLs – ““The Network is the Democracy.” Our revolution is under attack from reactionary forces. We must storm the barricades.”
- At the limit of Moore’s law: scientists develop molecule-sized transistors – “A red blood cell is a 36,000 times bigger. Even a strand of DNA is 15 times bigger”
- nice nice JPG – “The only image placeholder service on the web bringing you nothing but Vanilla Ice jpgs.”
- Link o’the Week: By the people by Yoav Weiss. “Join the WICG. Spread the word. And then, we can start building the Web together, one spec and one feature at a time.”
- Seeing the Extensible Web Manifesto Through by Mat Marquis
- In the Valley? Poor you. But the $10 Open Web Camp has some excellent speakers. And is $10.
- 10 Reasons To Use HTTPS by Guy Podjarny
- Web Components and Microsoft Edge (Part 1). Travis Leithead: “we may have full Web Component support in Edge by the end of next year”. Also, part 2.
- Transcoders – the technology we love to hate that will never go away – it’s about the priority of constituencies; 10,000 devs: “Opera Mini – meh”. 100 million users: “Yay! the Web”.
- The Web’s Cruft Problem – “the cruft problem is largely caused by a greater monetization problem that the web faces today.”
- How The Washington Post cut its page load time by 85 percent – TL;DR webP and cutting out cruft
- Art-Directing an SVG Embedded Using <object> – by SVGara Soueidan
- Introduction to the Physical Web– 4 min video by Scott Jenson
- Pointer Events stylus/pen tilt support demo by Pattypoo Lauke. Pointer Events stylus/pen tilt support demo (Video).
- More shit that @patrick_h_lauke does with Pointer Events: Touch tracker with Surface 3 pen. Video for both of you without a Surface 3.
- Cheap smartphones rule in Africa – < $100 = 45% Q1 shipments, <$200 = 75%. 89% Android, 7% iOS. Nigeria grew 135%, South Africa by 56%.
- Why Web Design is Dead – link-bait title; some good discussion points
- “Web Design Is Dead.” No, It Isn’t. by Vitaly “smashing” Friedman
- Talking of ‘The End is Nigh!’, The Web We Have to Save tells us how the web is DOOMED. There are one or two interesting points, but the while thing reeks to me of “get off my lawn!” and “these new-fangled ‘Beatles’ aren’t real music”. And using Medium as your soapbox to lament the centralisation of content is deeply ironic.
- 23 Emotions people feel, but can’t explain
- Hitler doesn’t like Git.
Many of you lovely readers aren’t on Twitter 24/7, so heres’s a blog retweet. Or a “re-bleet” as I like to call it.
This was posted yesterday by the European Blind Union (“The voice of 30 million #blind and partially sighted people in Europe”)
Dear #webdev people, if we are #partiallysighted we need to zoom to read on #mobile devices so please don't disable this feature! #a11y
— European Blind Union (@euroblind) July 13, 2015
In other words: yes, please use viewport meta to make content responsive. But don’t muck around with
user-scalable properties, as these restrict zooming.
Couldn’t be clearer, could it? We’ve been asked nicely, by those who are affected, so let’s not do it anymore.
I wrote a song in UK, Amsterdam and Barcelona, as part of my ‘Music for ecstatic dancing or fucking. Or just, you know, having a nice cup of tea to’ series. I recorded it with the aid of Shez, my old schoolfriend, bandmate and member of Silverlake, who did drums and bass and production.
I made a video for it. It may be NSFW if you work in a monastery or for Al Quaida (boobs).
Imprecise and Infrared,
you burn my brain, you broke my heart
The fire inside the words you said
almost split the world in half.
Sing as you like, sing as you love
– in music there’s no imprecision.
All of your colours are
flickering beyond my vision.
Today i don’t believe in searching
these days I believe in nothing
waiting while the world is turning
all around me.
Weave the sunlight in your hair
deadly red, bright colours shine.
All the world can come to stare
but find no words to define you.
imprecise, and infrared
– I feel your heat through all your winters.
Even though the words you said
lie in fragments, fractured, splintered.
Today i don’t believe in searching
these days I believe in nothing
waiting while the world is turning
all around me.
It’s burning all around me.
You’re always Imprecise and Infrared.
Words and music © Bruce Lawson, 2015