On Friday Canberra welcomed an influx of web geeks, inviting them to mash up government-supplied data in interesting and useful ways. I'm not sure anyone really knew what to expect, least of all the hosts!
In the tradition of my "big stonking posts", these are my notes from WDS09 - basically unedited (expect typos ;)), unfiltered for the most part (so they are a bit liveblogish in tone). Stuff [inside square brackets] is an aside, my own thoughts rather than something the speaker said. Sketch notes taken from Waferbaby's awesome sketch notes (under CC license).
When we get new toys, we use them... and use them... and use them... Sometimes the problem with new toys is reminding ourselves when not to use them.
Web development is no different. Support for new CSS features means we can start using things like rounded corners, font embedding and proper transparency/opacity - straight from our stylesheets.
Ask web developers about the tools they use, and it’s likely they’ll start talking about hardware, software and web applications. That’s understandable, but it’s not the whole picture.
I believe things like software pale in comparison with the most powerful tool available: coffee.
It's CSS Naked Day, is your markup showing?
There's a certain purity to seeing content with absolutely no CSS applied. Raw structure, a focus what the page is really about. It pares away all possible distraction, shows the heirarchy of content. Plus, it kind of reminds me of the early days when my net access was text-only ;) (vt100, dialup).
Running good semantic HTML without any CSS is perhaps the most levelling thing you can do - everyone can use it. Desktop browsers, mobiles, Lynx, screen readers... the Googlebot is pretty big on text, too.
Good structural markup is the foundation for a solid, flexible and maintainable website. You should always pay attention to your markup!
Many things live on past their use-by date, but few have shown the zombie-like tenacity of IE6. It has remained animated, chewing on our brains long after it should have stopped twitching.
We've all felt the pain of building for IE6 alongside modern browsers. So, it's glorious to be able to say this - 2009 is the year we get rid of IE6. Say it with me, people!
The popularity of netbooks seems to just keep on growing. I suppose it's not really surprising to find a lot of people are keen on a cheap, small laptop!
I bought a 10″ Eee PC just in time for WDS08, where it seemed even the Macbook Pro's dominance might be under threat from cheap ultraportables. Since then I've travelled to Perth with it; taken it to several web events; and even used it at work.
Since I periodically get asked what I think of the Eee, I thought I should write up a proper review.