Frank Patrick


Posts tagged with "webdev"

Jul 5

PM Link: Requirements and Specifications

A good summary and set of descriptions of key project documents…

  • User Requirements
  • System Requirements
  • Functional Requirements
  • Functional Specs
  • Design Specs
  • Flow or Logic Diagrams
  • System Architecture Diagram
  • Prototypes and Mock-ups
  • Technical Specs

Read the whole thing at Requirement and Specifications.

Jul 1

Mobile UI Link: 10 Ways the Mobile Web is Different

More considerations for designing for the mobile web compared to the desktop web…

Less power (smaller screens, slower processors, less bandwidth, less multitasking).

Alternative approaches to entering data (touch input, fiddly keyboards).

Different browser features and capabilities (pages viewed inside apps, portrait screens, little or no Flash support).

People using mobile devices in different ways to desktop computers, and for different tasks.

There’s more detail on these at 10 Ways the Mobile Web is Different

UI Link: Apple page with "tap-friendly" layout

Last week, I posted a link on why mobile sites fail.

Today, I’m offering up an example of a redesign of a desktop-based site so that it is more “tappable” on phones and tablets.

Check it out at Apple updates support page with more “tap-friendly” layout.

PM Post: Creation and Revision

OK. I’ll admit it….

As a project manager for creative endeavors, concerned with keeping the effort moving toward promised delivery dates, there’s the occasional frustration with multiple reviews and revisions impinging on the schedule. Sometimes (?), even after the one or two or three contracted revisions and “final approval” has been granted, there’s someone else who has a better (or maybe just their own) idea for a minor tweak to a few words or to the position or color of an image on a website.

Read More

Mobile Link: Top 5 reasons why mobile sites fail

How is your mobile web experience?

I know at my last agency, we got hung up on trying to support feature phones and ended up locked into a platform that tied our hands for really mobile web experiences for too many of our implementations. The linked article from iMedia Connection points out another reason for all the other lame mobile web experiences out there…

We were going to transform the mobile web into something highly usable and useful, but then Angry Birds came along, resulting in a complete loss of productivity for 12 months at a cost of $100 billion to the U.S. economy. (These figures are approximate.)

So we’re way overdue to give consumers some relief from these abysmal mobile experiences. We’ve got our work cut out for us: dotMobi reports that only 29.7 percent of the web’s top 10,000 sites are optimized for mobile…

The piece goes on to detail 5 things to watch out for and fix in your mobile site…

  1. Forgetting that mobile users are mobile
  2. Forgetting that humans have thumbs
  3. Forms that fail 
  4. Losing your brand 
  5. Lipstick on the pig

Good points all. Read the whole thing at Top 5 reasons why mobile sites fail.

Jun 5

Code Link: 6 Free E-Books and Tutorials on HTML5

It is what it is…

6 Free E-Books and Tutorials on HTML5 from ReadWriteWeb.

Web Link: “Mobile” versus “Small Screen”

I’ve recently been intrigued with the possibilites for responsive design for the webs.

This link points out that it’s not just for mobile applications, but for use in smaller than standard browser windows as well.

It’s very tempting (and scope-friendly) to tell a client that we can adjust their site for mobile users, when much of the time what we’re actually doing is simply adjusting a design for small screens.

Potential applications in “pop-out” window content that might also be called upon for viewing in normal browsing as well come to mind.

["Mobile" versus "Small Screen" from via Zeldman]

To CMS or not to CMS…

I found myself in a conversation this week about using a CMS or not when building websites. Specifically, I mentioned the power of WordPress, which has gone beyond being just a blog platform to a powerful CMS for building non-trivial websites. The other side of the conversation took the stance that the nature of the sites they build are not usually subject to frequent modifications or updates. (Think highly regulated industries like Pharma or Financial Services.) It still seemed to me that the benefits of using a standard platform (especially a free one) as a starting point made it worth using.

Read More

Designing Hyperlinks: Tips and Best Practices

Addressing the core element of a web page.

How to work with a designer who is new to the web and wants to control everything

Q. Working with print designer who is just getting into web and they want to control everything. Any advice on how to deal with them?

[Link – Jeffrey Zeldman Presents The Daily Report]

Mar 9

Link: 7 Deadly Web Design Sins

I heartily agree with all of these, especially #2. I just saw a site today that uses Flash for a simple slideshow of images - something that could be done just as well (and viewed in more platforms) using javascript.

From the article

1. Putting your brilliant design first. …more…

2. Going overboard with Flash.

"Flash is certainly a pet peeve. It has its place, for sure, but since the bust we’ve come a long way. Today our customers want to be found – they expect to be found – but what does that mean for us? We need to set the stage for search engine optimization, so we need to stay away from Flash. When I see a site overly done, you ask yourself, does it really make sense for you to do that in Flash? No."

— Antonio Navarrete, president and creative director of SilentBlast in Toronto

3. The unwelcoming welcome screen. …more…

4. The boggling homepage. …more…

5. Worshipping the fold. …more…

6.  Not addressing the user’s real need. …more…

7. Hiding who you are. …more…

Mar 4

3 Affordable A/B Testing Tools For Small Businesses

Which design is better?

ReadWriteWeb has some suggestions for determining just that.


Facebook Page Redesign 2011: All You Need to Know

Feb 9

Is Your Website Ready For the Coming Tablet Explosion?

Good question…

If the vast majority of analysts and pundits are to be believed, 2011 will be the year of the tablet, and the popular adoption of the devices won’t stop there. In a recent report, Forrester predicted that tablet sales could quadruple from 2010 to 2015, leading to a surge in tablet-based e-commerce and chipping away at the amount of Web traffic coming from PC’s.

Many site owners are already seeing a huge uptick in users browsing from tablets, and that upward trend will continue. Is your company’s Website ready for these visitors?

…and for tablets, we don’t have to worry about distractions like the bogus need to support “feature phones” that muddied the waters in supporting mobile phones.

Responsive Web Design

Flexible design/dev for different devices and browsers.