This week I attended a fascinating class from Noble Desktop on State of the Art Web Design: What Can I Do Now, focusing on the latest development in HTML5 and CSS3. While I’m not a developer, I often manage programmers and designers on my projects, so knowing what’s possible (and what’s not) is very helpful. For example:
- If you’re not sure what browsers support which features, consult sites like caniuse.com and html5please.com for a detailed comparison
- Using the new CSS3 Media Queries tag is a great way to build responsive websites (examples here), but you still have to decide what will be viewed on different size screens (not a small task)
- Even if you don’t yet have a mobile friendly website, specify percentage sizes on pages instead of exact pixel values
- As a starting point for new website pages, try html5boilerplate.com which includes some basic CSS and useful tools such as JQuery and Modernizr
- Consider what will happen if users don’t view your latest technical tricks (i.e. because of the browser or device they’re using) – will they still be able to get the data they need? See Progressive Enhancement.
- On mobile, scrolling is OK but forcing viewers to constantly zoom in and out to view your content is not OK
- The latest tools from Adobe are Edge and Muse – but they’re still in development (and be careful with Muse, which is simpler to use but more limiting in what you can do)
Noble Desktop will be rolling out a new website soon which will demonstrate many of the technologies mentioned above. Also check out their upcoming session on Mobile and Responsive Web Design. (I’ve attended their classes – they’re excellent.)
P.S. Thanks to everyone who commented on my blog post last week on Blackbaud’s acquisition of Convio, including Blackbaud CEO Marc Chardon.