128: Rapidfire 34

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This week it’s another Rapid Fire!!! Nothing but the best darn question and answer action you’ve ever heard!

We talked about:

Q & A:

  • 2:01 I follow tons of awesome web developers on Twitter and I learn about all the cool new things. I’m feeling a little overwhelmed. How do I actually get better at making websites?
  • 8:22 I got an email that contained a countdown timer gif. Do you know how this was accomplished?
  • 15:54 I am working with a site that generates it’s own short urls and I was wondering about adding to my pages. First of all, what good does it do? Secondly, I also saw . What is the difference, if any, and which should I be using?
  • 25:44 What is your preference for fixing design breakpoints in responsive designs?
  • 33:54 Now that Twitter is cutting off their Javascript engine to the public, how do I pull in tweets from Twitter without having to use the embedded widgets?!
  • 40:02 Why do people avoid using Javascript?
  • 44:44 How do you handle touch screens and responsive design?
  • 52:42 Many mobile first grids/ frameworks I see use predefined breakpoints. Doesn’t this go against the common rule of designing for the content and not the device? Should I have commonly defined breakpoints then tweak each page accordingly?


  • 13:55 E4H: Front End Summit Environments for Humans brings together some of the Web’s most notable experts in Frontend for an all-new, one-day only online conference, the FrontEnd Summit 2014! Bring the experts to your desktop August 21st from 9AM to 5PM (CT).
    • As the web changes for the better, so do our tools. While keeping on top of industry changes is part of the job, fighting our tools that can help us do our job faster and better shouldn’t be. In this special FrontEnd Summit, we deep dive into tools–some common like text editors and some relatively new to the scene like Grunt and Sketch–to see how they can help stay on top of cutting edge.
    • Use coupon code SHOPTALK, and grab your tickets now!
  • 30:22 Adobe – Check out Project Parfait: it’s a really nice way to extract everything you need from a PSD – in your browser!
    • Also, take a look at the Edge Animate CC updates: some sweet new features like copy/paste SVG art from Illustrator.

Show Links:

  • mulegoat

    Re Question 1. This site provides a good introduction to javascript frameworks http://www.funnyant.com/javascript-framework-guide/ if you sign up to the free course you’ll get a few emails which break down the differences between the current frameworks, features, dependencies, popularity, size of active community etc. Ideal for that mental database which will probably get queried many times – but never updated 🙂

  • On the last question, I used to be adamantly against frameworks like Bootstrap and Foundation. But most of that was not knowing what was going on under the hood. Once you get over the hump it gets a lot easier.

    If you use the SASS version of Foundation, for example, you can easily just tweak the media queries to fit your design—and you should. You can include only the bits you need, like the grid or typography so it’s not so unruly. Frameworks are just starting points yet I think a lot of people take them as finished work. Just like the default canvas size in Photoshop is 7 x 5, you change that to whatever you’re working with… treat a framework the same way.

    As Chris hinted at, you could use semantic markup with foundation’s mixins to give you clean output so becomes ” instead.

    • Thanks for answering my question! That’s pretty much what I ended up doing a while back. Sass was a big help. I usually take a framework grid then tweak it as needed for each site. I also make sure changes are documented in a style guide.

    • I’ve been using Bourbon Neat. That way I can add in the breakpoints where I need them and I don’t have to worry about hacking through the UI.

      However, I’ve heard recently that Foundation5 is pretty slick, so it’s worth looking into.

  • Tim Woodruff

    If the Countdown GIF didn’t have to be exact on time, you could always create it entirely ahead of time. Which would be extremely laborious. But anyway. 😀