Like every proficient software developer, keeping up on industry trends and news is vital no matter how many years of experience you may have. We are contstantly bookmarking and sharing good reads here at Sevenforty and I thought this would present a good opportunity for a new blog series by sharing a selection of a few interesting articles I’m personally reading. Topics in the future will including everything from back-end programming to SEO and all manner of industry news.
Here now is a list of weekend reads for the web developer:
10 lessons for uncultured web developers — Troy Hunt brings a little perspective on cultural awareness for developers to think about.
Web Fonts Performance: Making Pretty, Fast — Ilya Grigorik shares some basic tips on improving web font performance.
HTML5 APIs You Didn’t Know Existed — David Walsh shares and explains some lesser known HTML5 APIs.
53% of Organic Search Clicks Go to First Link — SearchEngineWatch is reporting on some interesting data from compete.com. If the data is accurate, what we’re seeing are some interesting insights for SEO and SEM.
Next Generation SEO — The folks at SEO Book ponder the near future of SEO.
Like most developers, I keep an extensive list of bookmarks with links to various online tools, documentation and other miscellaneous development resources. In this post, I thought I would share a few web-based tools that I keep bookmarked and utilize quite often when I am doing front-end development.
1. Google’s Closure Compiler Tool
2. Our CSS Compressor
3. CSS Border Radius Generator
I like tools that are simple. The CSS Border Radius Generator is about as simple as you can get. Whenever you need some rounded corners, you’ve got some in a matter of seconds.
4. CSS Gradient Generator
There are lots of CSS gradient generators available for front-end designers, but this gradient generator is quite simple and fantastic to use.
5. HTML Color Picker
How many times do you fireup Photoshop or Gimp just to get the hexadecimal value of a color? No need to do that anymore, just use the HTML Color Picker by W3Schools.com. Best part of the tool, it gives you all the related shades of your selected color. Very handy.
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The Lonely Planet developer blog has an interesting tale of web performance and its effects on conversions. Or in other words, how a slow web site hurts the bottom line.
The only difference between the big dip in experiment E and surrounding weeks D & F is that we intentionally slowed down the user experience … There it was staring us in the face – the first hard evidence from our own site that page performance has a significant impact.
What the team at Lonely Planet realized, was that not only did a slow web site lead to negative impacts on user experience, but also led to significantly reduced ecommerce revenue streams.
An interesting read which highlights the importance of having a well-run and effecient web infrastructure.
In the past, efficient email validation in PHP was a bit of technical challenge that required the use of pattern matching through regular expressions. This task was often complicated for those without a solid grasp of regular expressions and required constant hits to “heavy” functions such as preg_match().
However, with the advent of PHP 5.2, a little known function called filter_var() easily and efficiently performs common filtering routines often found in web development, such as email, IP and URL validation. For example, instead of performing a regular expression match to determine a valid email address:
It’s much more effecient and simpler to leverage filter_var():
Which of course returns a boolean value upon failure instead of a match count as before. filter_var() not only handles validation routines but also sanitation tasks as well. Have a look through the complete filter type list and see whether or not filter_var() can help simplify your code just a bit more.
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