Tag Archive / coding

  • The State of Front-End Development in 2017 (…well, at least, my version of it…)

    A response I gave to Roger Johansson‏ (@rogerjohansson) on Twitter (please read through the whole thread):

  • A Brief Note on Responsive Design and Constraints

    (In response to Adam Silver’s Stop using device breakpoints)

    There are two points that I like to add –

    The relationship between Constraints, Content, and Context

    Content

    Content will always affect Constraints (i.e. breakpoints) and vice versa.

    What I do is a) use the familiar set of breakpoints as initial guesses and b) treat them as assumptions that need to be tested and verified.

    If you’re getting more breakpoints, maybe you need to reconsider your initial ones. Some may just need to be:

    1. Moved or
    2. Removed completely

    Experience

    This is probably more a developer than designer problem(?) but depends on your background. It comes down to hands-on knowledge of various devices.

    1. Don’t assume the device you have on hand is the one [definite] solutions. Just because you have an iPhone doesn’t mean everyone else does…sounds sensible but you’ll be surprised how many people don’t follow that advice. I have experience because most of my work involved non-American clients (more likely to see a Samsung than an iPhone).
    2. Comes back to testing on multiple devices – using BrowserStack (or other simulators) helps testing for both iOS/Android devices or just get a few old/borrowed devices on hand.

    The idea here is to get use to the idea of breakpoints as initial guides, not fixed points.

  • Coding The Problem

    There is this “thing” that has been nagging me for almost a year.

    Basically, it’s a conversion that I had with a CEO of a company. Anyways, during the course of the conversation, he brings out this remark:

    “Your job is to code, just like the designer’s job is to design.”

    That comment bothered me. It wasn’t a comment bore of malice or ignorance. It had some truth to it. But it missed an important point. It was the equivalent of saying “My job is to write HTML.”

    Now, there’s nothing bad; that is part of my job. But only a part.

    No, my annoyance is this:

    If my job was just coding, then I’m not doing a good enough job.

    OK. Let me explain.

    Coding is (relatively) easy. Businesses can pick and choose what company or freelancers to do the work. For a cheap price, the work can be farmed out to anyone of the many off-shore companies at will.

    Altogether, that the big talent pool of coding talent.

    You, (client/CEO) have to go through this massive pool to find the right person. But that is not what you are looking for. The truth is that you are not looking for someone to code.

    You need someone to solve your problem.

    As for coding? It’s a means to an end. Employers don’t hire people who code; they hire people who can solve their problems. (And also it’s the same thing that will keep them around…)

    Now, I wish he was around when I said this. I have no doubt that both of us would be agreement.

    There was another thing that he said, in jest, but in hindsight just as important. Basically, people like myself like the “shiny, new projects”. And yes, I admit, they are the nice ones to work on.

    But. There is a group of problems, the “old – fixed it just for now” problems that really need attention. The ones that are begging for someone to just look at and say “you know, if you give me some time, I think I could make this better.”

    There are lots of those problems that need serious attention, not the million dollar, new app of the month ones.

    Then, there is The Content Problem.

  • To All My Co-Workers And Clients:

    I want to apologize for all the bad coding decisions that I have made during the last couple of years. A number of decisions were made with ignorance as the impact they may have made in terms of performance. Some of those decisions may have been made without consideration for the user.

    If I seem out of sort during the last couple of week, it was simply because the changes I need to make will require changing not just code but a mental process. Like anything, this will take more than a fortnight to change. It is a process of renewal and making mistakes and just throwing stuff into the trash bin.

    What I need is some understanding and some patience while this process works itself out.

    Sincerely,
    Ivan Wilson
    Front-End/UI Developer