Should IE8 support concern you when designing for the web? What do you say when a client wants to make their site IE8 compatible? From Netscape 3 to Explorer 6 to Blackberry to the latest Chrome, supporting legacy browsers has — and probably will be — a concern for web designers.
So what are your options when working on a new web site or application?
- Don't use anything that IE8 doesn't understand. This includes CSS3 and media queries.
- Create a separate stylesheet tailored for IE8. This is a common trend, but it's still a pain that requires a whole separate QA process.
- Ignore IE8. It's going to die anyway.
We're inclined to go with the last option. But sometimes it's not that easy. Convincing some clients to ignore IE8 will require hard facts and difficult conversations. Here's some firepower for you when that chat comes up:
Explorer 8 is the latest IE browser...
We often get asked why we make Foundation, our responsive front-end framework, free. It's fair question. The simple answer: Foundation is free because we love to help people design better products faster. And it helps us do that too, which is why we use Foundation every day on customer and internal projects.
The same answer applies to why we make a great deal of our content free, from our Playground pieces, such as our prototyping stencils, to our free apps like Bounce. And our paid products are also centered around this idea of designing better, faster and stronger. That's why we love it when we meet others who have a similar philosophy, such as the awesome folks over at GraphicStock. We're happy to announce that they'll be sponsoring our educational and training content, ZURB University.
GraphicStock provides more than 50,000 royalty-free images, icons,...
Today we're opening the huge wooden doors to the new Forrst, like that scene in "Jurassic Park." We've been in Private Release for the past month or so, getting feedback from the community members lucky enough to be part of it. Now we're open for business for every Forrster.
Forrst is a unique place where designers and developers can share their work and get contextual feedback. When we took over earlier this year, we saw an opportunity to build upon what founder Kyle Bragger started and turn Forrst into a place of active learning. And it's become that as part of our educational resource, ZURB Expo.
The big changes are:
When it comes to email marketing, content is king. Getting your message out to a diverse group of email subscribers can be a huge pain, though, thanks to a highly fragmented market of email clients, many of which have extremely poor support for modern HTML and CSS features.
Last year we created a Playground piece featuring five responsive email templates to make the task a bit easier. We knew the problem of accommodating mobile email users needed to be solved (after all, studies suggest that 48% of emails are opened on a mobile device), but we weren't expecting such a huge response. While the piece was fairly well received, one question kept coming up: "how do I support Outlook with these?"
We had to think long and hard about this one. Technologically, Outlook's many limitations make supporting it difficult,...
Imagine for a sec that you've just given feedback to the designer on your team. Afterwards, you find that the designer hadn't incorporated your suggestions or addressed any of the problems you saw. There was no followthrough. What could have gone wrong? What could you have done differently? Provide contextual feedback.
Follow-through on solid product design work is tough. The problem we've seen on projects is that it comes down to lousy feedback that's vague and directionless. Cryptic feedback can result in a bad product. So where do things fall apart? Where do things go wrong? They fail to put things into context.
Put Things Into Context
Research has shown that our brains are "wired to recognize and organize coherent connections, not arbitrary ones," according to Anthony Greene in a 2010 Scientific American Mind article. He uses the example of a girl who likes...
The other day in the Foundation Github issues tracker, a user stated that Foundation CSS doesn't validate. We are using vendor prefixes and attributes like
zoom in some areas that the validator is choking on. Our framework is tested in almost every perceivable browser, and battle-tested daily by our 20-plus team of engineers and designers, and yet we still don't meet validation, even though it renders well in most every browser. This made us wonder if validation is still relevant?
Although HTML and CSS validation icons no longer appear at the bottom of every modern-facing website, there is still a general sentiment that validation is necessary. Can we satisfy standards compliance without the need for validation, or, alternatively, is there a better approach to validation? We say yes.
Validation Was Once Useful
Validation was created, in part, to drum up interest for...
The impact that Apple had — and continues to make — on modern design is hard to miss. The idea of “flat” colors instead of textures in iOS7 wasn’t a surprise. But whether their September upgrade influenced design trends today or they’re following a shift brewing over the past few years, everywhere we look we see flat, geometric, texture-free interfaces.
It’s said that anyone can predict today. What about tomorrow? While we can’t make promises, here are a few things we expect in the coming years.
Simple and single numbers. Specialized interfaces will feature a single datum and rely on users’ memories to fill in the gaps. For example, when you launch your favorite weather app and see a giant “72” on a cool blue background, you can infer it means “72 degrees Fahrenheit.”
Dabbling with black and white. What’s flatter than flat color? No color. Sapping away hues for a grayscale...
Assumptions can kill a product. Assume that all your decisions are right without validating them can be fatal. Hard facts are needed to drive decision making. If not, how can you be more confident that your decisions won't destroy existing or potential revenue?
Remember New Coke? It failed because they made too many assumptions about their customers, including them not missing the original formula.
Heard of BeenVerified? Their co-founders burned through $550,000 before realizing their product had no market. It was a tough lesson to learn and could've been avoided had they validate some of their decision making. But how do you validate design decisions while building your product?
Use Existing Research
Existing research has been a solid way to backup decisions. Statistics and data don't lie. It's a good way to show growing trends and chart where the market...
When we launched Design Quips in August to help designers make decisions based on hard data — and to justify decisions they’ve already made — we estimated that a certain percentage would be interesting.
While many of the facts fall into the “nice to know” category, we were surprised how many factoids remind us how amazing, diverse and huge the web is. Here are ten quips that gave us particular insight into how imperative a mobile-first design approach is.
Do Small Devices Mean Big Numbers?
It’s easy to say “mobile is big.” But ComScore data in an Information Week article put that statement into perspective: By July of this year, mobile phones accounted for 17.4% of global web use, up from 11.1% last July.
Mobile usage is growing. Fact. The stats don't lie. The global smartphone market alone grew from 55 million in 2010 to 219 million last year. And mobile traffic is quickly surpassing desktop traffic in Asia, Africa and even South America. We're using our mobile devices more and more — and not just for Angry Birds — so aren't we giving and receiving feedback on those devices?
Mobile Interactions are Becoming More Complex
Our work habits are changing with the ubiquity of mobile devices. At ZURB, we usually carry one or more devices with us from room to room, whether it's our iPhones or iPads. We use them around our office to project work on large screens during scrums. We're not the only ones — 66% of workers use more than one device to get their job done. The lines between work and personal use are blurring when it comes to mobile devices.
Take our Chief...