Articles

Designing for Conversions

Quantifying the success of creative work may not be easy for designers and developers, but for many clients, it’s a necessity. Through tools like A/B testing and conversion rates, formerly nebulous qualities like user satisfaction can take on clear measures of success. Developer Brandon Gregory provides an overview of these and other tools, and discusses the benefits of designing for conversions, which allows products to reach their targets and serve the right people.

Paint the Picture, Not the Frame: How Browsers Provide Everything Users Need

Designers want to create fully branded experiences, which often results in customized highlighting colors or pixel-perfect typography. While these design touches can enhance the experience for some, they can render the experience inaccessible for others. Designer Eric Bailey makes a case for leaving key accessibility features to the browser to ensure the most accessible experience possible.

UX in the Age of Personalization

There is a watershed moment approaching for personalization design. Most strategy is still driven out of marketing and IT departments, a holdover from the legacy of the inbound, “creepy” targeted ad. According to Colin Eagan, fixing that model requires the same paradigm shift we’ve used to tackle other challenges in our field. In this piece, he takes a detailed look at the UX practitioner’s emerging role in personalization design: from influencing technology selection, to data modeling, to page-level implementation. It’s now 2019, and the timing couldn’t be better.

Taming Data with JavaScript

Processing huge amounts of data on the web is always a back-end job—except when it’s not. Sometimes processing data in the browser via JavaScript makes sense. What are those use cases, and how can we succeed at them? Brian Greig tells all.

Designing for Interaction Modes

To deliver a great user experience, you have to think about interaction modes. But because of pressures, competing priorities, and industry trends, they’re often an afterthought. Andrew Grimes shows you how to make them a more central part of your design process.

var to JIT

JavaScript language designer Kevin Smith completes the “From URL to Interactive” series. He explains how browsers compile and execute our JavaScript, and what happens from the moment we land on the page to when we leave. Understanding these browser processes leads us to write more performant code.

Braces to Pixels

We continue on A List Apart’s four-part “From URL to Interactive” series with Greg Whitworth, a member of the W3C CSS Working Group and the CSS Houdini Task Force. He’ll walk through how CSS is parsed, how values are computed, and what the “cascade” in style sheets actually means. Then we’ll discuss layout, painting, and composition. Brace yourselves, we’re about to drive through a one of our most scenic and winding parts of our journey.

Tags to DOM

In the second installment of A List Apart’s four-part “From URL to Interactive” series, Travis Leithead, former editor of W3C’s HTML spec, walks us through the process of parsing HTML: from how browsers create trees to how the DOM responds to events. Equipped with this knowledge, you’ll be able to make smarter DOM decisions, reduce time to interactive, and eliminate unintended reflows.