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Web Design Articles

Don’t Let ChatGPT Write Your Code


We can all agree it’s ridiculous to suggest that we should ignore a modern tool that makes it exponentially easier to finish our work.

But as I’ve learned in 20+ years of writing code, there’s always going to be a drawback to using any tool that “makes life easier”. In this case, AI-based tools that use ChatGPT or some other AI-based foundation are similar to the frameworks we’ve been using for years.

CSS Rules vs. CSS Rulesets

CSS Rules vs. CSS Rulesets Over the last 10 years or so I’ve done a ton of technical editing work. I’ve helped with CSS articles and CSS books for various online and print publications. One of the things that comes up often when I make suggestions is the difference between a CSS rule and a CSS ruleset.

In most cases, almost all authors use the term “CSS rules” to refer to the blocks of CSS that include the selector and the CSS declarations. Is this correct?

Filestack: A File Uploader and Powerful APIs to Deliver and Transform App Content

Filestack [Sponsored] If you’re building an app that requires a lot of user-generated content and media that needs to be processed, tagged, filtered, or otherwise manipulated in real-time, you definitely want a solution that’s fast and seamless and doesn’t get in the way of your app’s primary functionality. Filestack is a service you’ll want to consider. Here’s what Filestack offers:

How to Disable JavaScript in Almost Any Browser

Disable JavaScript in the Browser In 2022 I think it’s still important as a web developer to test your how your websites look and function when users disable JavaScript in their browser. Developing in this way used to be a cornerstone of Progressive Enhancement and can be handy on both desktop or mobile.

I still find myself wanting disabling JavaScript on pages I visit. Sometimes it’s to test a page I’m working on, but in other instances it’s simply to visit a web page that’s not functioning correctly and I want to see if JavaScript is the culprit.

Solutions and Tools for Dealing with Broken Links in Web Pages

Internet Archive logo A couple of months ago a post by Leo Blanchette got to the front page of Hacker News and there was an interesting discussion on dealing with broken links and external content – the main problem being links that become out of date due to paywalls, altered content, or content getting taken down.

I’ve been running this blog since May 2008. If you’ve run a content-driven site for even a fraction of that, you know that link rot is a problem. In this post I’ll go over some of the suggestions in that thread along with some tools to use to check for broken links.

Accessible and Keyboard-Friendly Hamburger Menu + Slide Out Navigation

Hamburger Menu This week I did some research to try to build a hamburger menu that opens a slide-out navigation panel, a common design pattern nowadays. But I wanted to ensure the whole thing was keyboard-friendly and as accessible as possible.

I’m not 100% sure what I’ve come up with is the most accessible solution, but I did consult a number of decent sources on building accessible navigation menus like these. I also did some rudimentary testing using the free NVDA screen reader, to ensure there are no major problems.

CSS4 is a Bad Idea

CSS4 Over on CSS-Tricks, Chris breaks down what some in the industry have said on the possibility that there will one day be a CSS4. The latest article that Chris references is one by a well-respected member of the community, Peter-Paul Koch (“PPK”).

In brief, PPK believes in initiating some sort of marketing gimmick wherein we basically try to repeat the success of the buzz surrounding “CSS3” by pushing the name “CSS4”.

So You Really Want to Learn React? Well, So Do I.

Learn ReactI probably don’t need to tell you that if you want to make it easier marketing yourself as a strong front-end web developer, it’s important to learn React. No, it’s not absolutely crucial, nor is it required. But React is undoubtedly the most important UI library in the front-end landscape in 2019 and it’s not going away anytime soon.

Being Aware of Initial Values in Your CSS

Initial Values in Your CSSIn CSS, every property has what’s referred to as an initial value. Sometimes this is called the default value, but the spec uses the term initial, which I think is a slightly better term.

Technically speaking, the initial value of any given property needs to be declared only if that value is overriding a previously-defined value that’s not the initial value. But initial values are often present even when they’re not necessary.

For example, suppose I have a block-level element that I want to take up the full width of its parent. I want it to sit on its own “line”, so to speak, in the layout, so I add the following CSS: