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  • The Foundation of Technical Leadership

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    Technical leadership starts with technical expertise, but also requires a passion for training, an ability to plan out team success, a clear head and constant readiness to help. Brandon Gregory spells out some of the soft skills a tech lead needs in order to show true leadership.

  • The Future of the Web

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    Is the web’s way forward to be defined by a bunch of renegade mavericks armed with Flash or JavaScript? Matt Griffin argues that it may not be so bad to let web authors kludge together the things they’d like to build, and follow where their mistakes lead us.

  • Help One of Our Own: Carolyn Wood

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    Selfless editor and colleague Carolyn Wood has run into a medical emergency and needs the community’s help. Over the years, she has given us immense gifts without ever asking for anything in return. Let’s pull together and give back.

  • Promoting a Design System Across Your Products

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    Our industry has gotten really good at making living style guides out of parts: reusable components like color, typography, buttons and forms, voice and tone. We’ve also learned how to map skills to these parts by mobilizing the best people to make decisions across platforms. But, argues Nathan Curtis, a third element is crucial to any design system mission: products. What products will use our system? How will we involve them?

  • Making your JavaScript Pure

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    JavaScript code can easily grow into a thicket of dependencies that harbors wily and persistent bugs. Keeping the rows neat with functions that don’t reach outside their scope makes your codebase more reliable and easier to document. Jack Franklin suggests looking for opportunities to use pure functions—it could make maintaining the code a stroll in the park for your future self.

  • Commit to Contribute

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    Even a very basic contribution to an open-source codebase will turn into more than a one-line change when all is said and done. New developers can be put off by seemingly arbitrary roadblocks when they’ve just worked up the courage to contribute. Remy Sharp has a rundown of some tools that can smooth the way and make novices feel more welcome.

  • Once Upon a Time

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    To communicate like a grown-up, take a lesson from your inner child. Anne Gibson argues that business interactions could benefit from fairy-tale constructions—start at the beginning, get to the point, and don’t forget to tie up loose ends.

  • The Rich (Typefaces) Get Richer

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    Type on the web has come a long way since the beginning of the decade. We now have literally thousands of fonts at our disposal to use on our sites. But the same faces—the Futuras, the Gothams, the Proxima Novas—crop up everywhere. Jeremiah Shoaf encourages us to break out of our cognitive ruts and explore the wealth of typographic diversity at our fingertips.

  • Never Show A Design You Haven’t Tested On Users

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    User testing doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming—and it should never be skipped entirely if you don’t have “permission” to do it. Injecting real feedback early and often affects how we design our work, communicate, and even present concepts to the client. Testing should be a habit, even when it doesn’t seem possible. It just requires a little ingenuity.

  • Meaningful CSS: Style Like You Mean It

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    Our markup too often remains a snarl of divs, our CSS a chaos of classes. Tim Baxter urges us to move beyond that. We can use real objects now instead of abstract representations. We can write CSS to support our markup instead of the other way around, and both can be more semantic and meaningful. The browser support is there; the standards are in place. Only habit is stopping us.