A List Apart


The Articles

  • JavaScript for Web Designers: DOM Scripting


    JavaScript’s ability to access and modify elements on the page is undeniable, and the Document Object Model is an essential component of that. In this excerpt from Mat Marquis’ new book, JavaScript for Web Designers, Mat shows us how to manhandle the DOM to get better results from our scripts.

  • Using CSS Mod Queries with Range Selectors


    When you distractedly agree to do something that you then realize you don’t actually know how to do, what do you do? Briefly panic, and get down to work. Patrick Clancey comes up with a little arsenal of tools to help him deal with mods, ranges, and ranges within mods, allowing him to break away from standard-implementation fixed length or fixed-layout lists.

  • A Redesign with CSS Shapes


    At least one set of crude hacks has left the building. With progressive and responsive enhancement—and using new CSS features—we can define how text should flow past a floated element. Eric Meyer explains what An Event Apart recently learned about floating shapes and feature queries.

  • Task Performance Indicator: A Management Metric for Customer Experience


    Measuring user experience can seem like a vague, touchy-feely process with amorphous results. Where’s the value? Managers can’t always get their arms around concepts like “better” or “simpler” or “faster.” Gerry McGovern says that’s why it’s important to have a tool like the Task Performance Indicator, which gives reliable, actionable metrics that can be revisited over time.

  • Why We Should All Be Data Literate


    Design to the data. That’s the mantra of modern, research-driven web designers. But blindly accepting statistics and studies at face value is delusional at best, irresponsible at worst. Former journalist and current design specialist Dan Turner says be a skeptic. And don’t let fear of math, or innumeracy, stop you from running the numbers. Unexamined data can lead to costly mistakes. (Hint: Tripling your page views doesn’t mean much if you started with one visitor.)

  • Designing Interface Animation: an Interview with Val Head


    Animation has come a long way over the course of the web’s still-young history. For years, designers felt the need to take sides. Should we build hypnotic sites in Flash? Or should we stick to static, standards-compliant sites built with HTML and CSS? Author Val Head never wanted to choose. Her new book, Designing Interface Animation, celebrates how animation is finally coming into its own, and shows us what we can do with it. In this wide-ranging interview, she tells us why she loves animation so much.

  • Designing Interface Animation


    “How your brand moves tells its story.” In this excerpt from her new book, Designing Interface Animation: Meaningful Motion for User Experience, author Val Head focuses on how motion can help bring a brand to life and make it memorable.

  • Webfonts on the Prairie


    Richard Fink first wrote about webfonts for A List Apart in 2010. Back then, those of us making the web were itching to break away from so-called “web-safe” fonts. And break away we did: by 2016, roughly 60 percent of sites were reportedly using webfonts, up from just two percent in 2011. Webfonts and, by extension, web typography, have blossomed. So surely no one would argue for a return to system fonts, right? Wrong. This article teases apart the arguments for and against.

  • Help! We (Think We) Need to Hire a Content Strategist


    Managers beginning active searches for content specialists frequently have little understanding of what their companies need beyond a title, cautions Jennifer Bassett. Hiring managers at agencies, brands, and startups would do well to hire based on the type of work they want to focus on. And if they’re not sure what type of work that is, talking with a real live content strategist is an excellent place to start.

  • Why Aren’t You Asking Questions?


    As a designer, your job is to understand your client’s needs. Listening to what they tell you is a good place to start, but it doesn’t end there. You gain much more insight by asking the right questions. Of course, it also helps to ask the right people and ask in the right way. Janice Gervais offers some tips to turn you into a better designer/detective.