jQuery Mobile Review

July 28th, 2011
jQuery Mobile Review

Great things come in small packages

A project I’m working on had me looking into how to create a nice looking mobile site. Two very popular frameworks came to mind: jQuery Mobile, and Sencha Touch. The back-end guy I’m working with on this project recommended Sencha Touch, so I took a look at that first. Let me just say that if you haven’t worked with Ext.js and it’s panel component, or are not even familiar with that library, you are going to have one hell of a time. It is not all that easy to use, and the limited amount of tutorials on how to use it suck beyond belief. After a couple of hours fiddling with it, I decided to say screw it, and went over to jQuery Mobile. The difference? I got a site up and running in roughly a half hour with no problems themeing. jQuery Mobile wins in ease of use hands down.

This isn’t to say that Sencha Touch is bad, because it sure looks good, but it isn’t as intuitive as Mobile. This isn’t really about Touch though…it’s about Mobile. So let’s get into it!

jQuery Mobile logo

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How to Build a Horizontal jQuery Accordion

July 21st, 2011
How to Build a Horizontal jQuery Accordion

Sliders, accordions oh my!

If you search for jQuery slider, you will find tons of posts and articles on how to do so. There are plenty of ways of building one, and I haven’t really seen any two that were exactly the same. Hell, even I wrote on how to build a jQuery slider, using the slider on this blog as an example. You know what is quite difficult to find though? Tutorials on horizontal accordions. I had a hell of a time figuring out how, because most of the articles are about using a plugin. Which, if you have read any of my posts in the past, you will know that I like to do things myself most of the time. I only found one that was super helpful, and it was buried a few pages in. The only problem is that it was using an unordered list, and I needed it to use divs. Luckily for me it was easy to change, and if you care to view the original tutorial over at Design Chemical (written by a guy named Lee I believe), please do so and tell him he rocks. Take a look at the demo first so you can see what the end result looks like.

View Demo

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Skeleton CSS Framework Review

June 29th, 2011
Skeleton CSS Framework Review

Responsive grids to the rescue

I’m not a huge fan of CSS frameworks. Not to say they are bad or anything, I just don’t care for them. I’ve tried a couple, and I thought the 960 grid did a pretty good job. There has been a lot of hype lately though for responsive design, so I thought I would take a look at one that has been getting a lot of respect and talk – Skeleton.

Skeleton’s CSS syntax

The creator of Skeleton, Dave Gamache, deserves a lot of credit for what he has done with it. For one, I’d like to thank him for using easy to remember class names like ‘one-third’ and ‘two-thirds’. I had a hard time remembering 960′s class names with .grid-whatever. He also uses things like ‘offset’ which is easier to tell what it does by reading it, than ‘push’ or ‘pull’ ever did. Looking through Skeleton’s grid CSS made me really happy when I first opened it, so props to Dave.

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Web Development Tools – Is Dreamweaver Still Relevant?

June 9th, 2011
Web Development Tools – Is Dreamweaver Still Relevant?

Remember the magic?

When I started doing web development and design, Dreamweaver was THE program to use. Everyone was talking about it. When I first started using it, I was blown away. I spent hours upon hours creating fake sites trying to get the hang of everything. I even remember thinking about trying to get the Dreamweaver Certification that Adobe offered so I could put the logo on my first portfolio site. Everything was easy to understand because of the graphical interface and no real need to know HTML. This was in the days when tables were the way to go, and CSS was just getting started.

Then along comes a book called Dreamweaver 4 Magic, one of the authors being a guy name Al Sparber (which you can buy on Amazon for less than $1 now!). The book was awesome. It taught a lot of cool things you could do in Dreamweaver, and it taught me some basic HTML and CSS. Al Sparber though did more things that helped me grow as a developer – he created the site projectseven.com.

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Displaying Menus On Specific Pages In WordPress

June 7th, 2011
Displaying Menus On Specific Pages In WordPress

WordPress is pretty damn cool

It’s been a while since I’ve written a post (mostly because of life happening and a freelance project), and I thought I would get back into the swing of things by writing something on WordPress. I’ve been doing more work in it lately and have had the pleasure of seeing some cool things done by my manager. One of which is to get different menus, using WordPress’ Menu Manager, to display on different pages. For instance, you have a Services page that you want to display a services menu in the sidebar, and a portfolio page with a different menu. It is stuff like this, and the amount of support you can find on the web that makes me really like WordPress. Aside from it being relatively easy to theme.

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