Today’s Readings

I am not entirely sure what an “element vertex” is, but if it will help me make a 3D shaded X-Wing, I’m in!

Is iOS slowly becoming the next Windows OS??

The Native versus HTML conversation, to me, has been mostly dead for a while, but a recent article from Smashing Magazine covers building hybrids, testing, and even “mash-ups” like PhoneGap.

Building a Mobile-First, Responsive site, that works in IE8. A great walk-through from The Guardian!

And here’s another fine walk-through, this time for‘s new site, showcasing some of the variations they used when switching from device-to-device.

Okay, now let’s really take it to the upper limits, and then jump back down to Earth, with a POV video from Felix Baumgartner’s stratospheric jump

Object.observe(). Okay, I’m sold.

What Each Country Leads the World In. Interesting to see things like: South America + Ostriches (I tend to think Australia + Ostriches); Chile + Staying Married (nice going, Chile!); Bolivia + Brasil Nuts (would have expected Brasil on that one); and had to laugh when I zoomed in and realized my initial reading of Australia + Deadly Animals and Melodrama was not correct… :-)

And for your viewing, and educational, pleasure, here are four talks given by Ilya Grigorik from Fluent 2013.

Looking for some place to really test your own boundaries and those of the world around you? Hey, if someone can redefine the lowly thermostat, imagine what else they can redefine!

Oh animated GIF… You have gone from the darling of the early days of the Internet, to despised ugly duckling (for reminding us of those early days), to the princess at the ball again, and now we learn you’ve been taxing us behind our backs all this time… What are we to do with you??

I’ve been a big fan of ‘s site since I stumbled across it a few months ago, and here’s another fine example of a basic, clear, easy-to-follow tutorial, this time creating a CSS/JS fullscreen slideshow. One of the more interesting tidbits for me was the use of position: relative for the first slideshow element to force the wrapper to the proper size. Hadn’t thought of this one myself, nice!

Not surprising coming from Microsoft, where naming conventions aren’t always the best, as this author tries to shove all the necessary keywords into the article title, don’t let that distract you for the magical two lines of CSS, and what they can bring to the web!

So how many people out there really see sites without JavaScript? The answer is not as simple as you might think, and the results might surprise you.

Using SVGs as sprites. Not exactly the implementation I expected, but I like it!

And once we have our SVGs neatly in place, let’s make them dance, with Snap.svg!

Anything that makes pages load faster is a good thing in my book, and dns-prefetch, subresource, prefetch, and prerender are all good things in my book!

And layout boundaries are another good thing! Learn the “few small CSS tweaks” you can use to help minimize your page reflows!

Now that we have our pages loading faster, let’s get them reacting more quickly! Touche.js removes the 300ms delay, re-map clicks to “touchend” events, expose an “on” method, all for just 0.666kb. Looks simply devilish, no??

And suddenly three different versions of screenshot comparison tools: photobox, PhantomCSS, and Huxley. Live it up!

For you fellow WordPressers out there, a few clever bits:

This is a very slick method for adding art-direction positioning to a single <img>, sans-JS… It does mean that you’re serving the same-sized image to all devices, but it’s a nice middle-step. (And as I saw referenced elsewhere, if you were to couple this with ‘s <picture> polyfill, you’d really have something!)

And finally, I remember from my childhood, my brother having M.C. Escher’s Relativity as a jigsaw puzzle, but as Legos is really pretty incredible…

Happy reading,

2 Responses to Today’s Readings

  1. Alex says:

    I like the SVG sprites article and got all excited reading it but then was disappointed when he didn’t mention any fallbacks for IE8-. Perhaps this is because there are no good fallbacks? Know of any?

  2. aarontgrogg says:

    hey, AK, good to hear from you!

    true, IE<9 has no SVG support at all, the even the slightly more advanced stuff goes downhill quickly in other browsers & versions (, which sucks…

    falling back to PNGs or Flash are the more common options, but here are a couple other options that i have heard about, but not yet tried (they come with some big names attached, though):

    if you do try any of these, i would love to hear how it goes!


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