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Creative / Development Inspiration 23

This weeks creative & development inspiration covers some great articles, all the way from bad user onboarding and UX to using IBM Watson to analyse your social media. The most eclectic post so far.

 

4 Examples of Bad User Onboarding That Will Ruin Your UX

Starting off with this great article on bad user onboarding, Ty Magnin breaks down a few issues that are causing bottlenecks in getting users onto your service. It doesn’t just stop there either, if the user can sign up easily, they may hang around longer.

https://www.appcues.com/blog/bad-user-onboarding

 

Gender pay gap: women in graphic design earn £4,000 less than men

Gender equality is something that is being spoken about in all industries. This article discusses the issues behind the gender pay gap for woman in design, and how woman in design get paid 6% less than their male counterparts.

https://www.designweek.co.uk/issues/3-8-april-2018/women-graphic-designers-earn-4000-less-year-men-gender-pay-gap-shows/

 

NEA Media

Whilst researching different portfolio websites for styles and how the page load is managed I stumbled across NEA Media. The way the site loads and then animates up is really enjoyable, as well as the design across the whole site. Definitely worth a look.

http://www.neamedia.fr/en

 

“Let’s not be elitist about what we do”: should designers give away their secrets?

Pentagram partner Natasha Jen recently lambasted the term “design thinking” as “bullshit”, “jargon” and “extremely dangerous”. Designers share their thoughts on the concept and discuss whether teaching design skills to businesses is helpful or irresponsible.

https://www.designweek.co.uk/issues/26-march-1-april-2018/lets-not-be-elitist-design-thinking-designers-share-secrets-natasha-jen/

 

Analyzing Your Company’s Social Media Presence With IBM Watson And Node.js

Jamie Munro demonstrates how to perform a search with Twitter’s API to retrieve content that will be inputted into the ML algorithm to be analysed. This way, you’ll be provided with characteristics about the users who wrote that specific content so that you can get a better understanding of your audience. The example application will be written using Node.js as the server.

https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2018/04/analyzing-social-media-presence-ibm-watson-nodejs/

 

Modern PHP Without a Framework

This article discusses the reasoning behind not using a PHP framework for your next project. A fairly technical read, but definitely worth it if you work with PHP.

https://kevinsmith.io/modern-php-without-a-framework

 

Mitsulift Elevators by Base Design

The last link is a beautiful new identity by Base Design. The new identity manages to work across all mediums, whilst easily portraying the brand and what they do. Big fan.

http://bpando.org/2018/04/03/branding-mitsulift-elevators/

Google Music Lab

Creative and Development Inspiration 21

Dot Colors

A beautifully simple website built for web designers and developers to check their colour codes. Just drop in an array of HEX colours and away you go.

https://dotcolors.co/

 

Notifications – A breakdown

A great article on web notifications from Inclusive Components. In the format of a style guide, it covers how notifications can used correctly, and what aspects of web may need a notification. It has a nice checklist at the end, if you don’t want to read the whole thing…

https://inclusive-components.design/notifications/

 

Googles Music Lab

Google is back with some more fun. The Creative Lab team has built an in browser song maker, just click the grid to add notes when share it with a link. You can also use a MIDI keyboard or sing into it if you so wish. Google have been bringing out some great bits of inspiration and helpers for developers, as shown with Flutter in Creative and Development Inspiration 18.
Share your masterpieces in the comments!

https://musiclab.chromeexperiments.com/Song-Maker/

 

Navigating the complexity of change aversion

Change aversion is a concept well known to website designers and developers. It’s the negative reaction users have to changes in your product, whether that’s functional changes such as updates to product features, or interface changes such as visual redesigns. This article explains how this can be navigated.

https://blog.intercom.com/navigating-the-complexity-of-change-aversion/

 

Google Web Designer

Google Web Designer is a free, professional-grade HTML5 authoring tool. It can be used to build interactive, animated HTML5 canvas, no coding necessary (although you can use code if so inclind). It is more aimed at creating professional looking adverts that can run anywhere on the web. Still in beta but definitely worth keeping an eye on.

https://www.google.com/webdesigner

 

Ethical Design: The Practical Getting-Started Guide

Web designers and developers have an obligation to build experiences that are ethical, and better than using features that expliot human behaviour. This article explains how unethical design happens, and how to do ethical design through a set of best practices. A great read.

https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2018/03/ethical-design-practical-getting-started-guide/

 

Scrollbooster

A drag to scroll JS libary. Works in IE11 Edge, and most modern browsers. It is a great package that allows content to be easily scrolled by touch, and mouse, and is tiny in size. I am planning to use it in a current project to test it out. My only concern is being able to alter options when the device size change, i.e. scrolling vertical, to horizontal.

https://ilyashubin.github.io/scrollbooster/

Rough.js graphic creator

Creative and Development Inspiration 20

This week creative and development rundown is more development orientated. I have found some great packages to help enhance the user experience, as well as some alternatives to already well used solutions. Although a shorter list than usual, these items are far more usable, both in terms of using within a project and for learning more!

 

Driver.js

Driver is a powerful yet light-weight, vanilla JavaScript engine to drive the user’s focus across the page. This would be great for when a user signs up to a new website, or service., as well as providing interactive overlays. It is easy to implement and has great documentation.

https://github.com/kamranahmedse/driver.js

 

React Tutorial: A Comprehensive Guide to learning React.js in 2018

As the title says, this tutorial is a ground up guide to learning ReactJS. It is well broken down, and incredibly easy to understand. ReactJs is definitely a must for most front end developers. The majority of tech companies use it as a quick route to sale.

https://tylermcginnis.com/reactjs-tutorial-a-comprehensive-guide-to-building-apps-with-react/

 

Toast UI Chart

No one like having to make code work on legacy browsers. But sometimes it matters.  The developers of Toast US couldn’t find a project which supported legacy browsers, maintained reliably, and was free for commercial use, so they decided to make one. It is well documented, and quite pretty! I will most probably be giving this a trial run on the next web development project that requires charts!

https://github.com/nhnent/tui.chart

 

Animating Elements Along SVG Paths: Introducing PathSlider

This tutorial by Scotch is a really simple to follow SVG path animation guide. It used the PathFinder plugin, and anime.js, both very user friendly packages. Although not a groundbreaking example, it is a great gateway drug into SVG animations.

https://scotch.io/tutorials/animating-elements-along-svg-paths-introducing-pathslider

 

Rough.js

Rough.js allows you to create roughly drawn graphics within the browser. It is a light weight (~8k), Canvas based library that lets you draw in a sketchy, hand-drawn-like, style. The library defines primitives to draw lines, curves, arcs, polygons, circles, and ellipses. It also supports drawing SVG paths.

https://github.com/pshihn/rough

 

Creating User-friendly forms

Forms are of pivotal importance to individuals & businesses alike. When it comes to collecting data, forms most often than not is the direction we all take (perhaps due to it’s long-time presence around us offline before the internet boom). Therefore, creating user-friendly forms is a major key to increasing the completion rate of your forms.

https://blog.prototypr.io/creating-user-friendly-forms-46e3f7f4eef2

CSS Animation Shooter Game

Creative and Development Inspiration 16

This post has been a long time coming, what with crippling man flu (sympathy vote alert) and work deadlines I haven’t been able to put anything together. I have however had a lot of time to stare at my phone and look at pretty pictures. That means that this list is especially special, and has some pretty interesting links for you to peruse.

 

basicScroll

Inspired by skrollr, this scrolling library allows you to change CSS variables depending on the scroll position. Use the variables directly in your CSS to animate whatever you want. I am a massive fan of this, and can’t wait to roll it out on some of my projects.

https://basicscroll.electerious.com/

 

3D Parallax Example

Thismanslife built this example of 3D parralax on IMacs only using CSS.  Definitely need to take a look at that source code!

http://www.thismanslife.co.uk/projects/lab/imac3d/

 

Sweet Alert 2

Need to remind a user to save their work before they leave the page? This alert library is a perfect addition to any web project using alerts. Easy to integrate, and an improvement on the standard browser alert.

https://github.com/sweetalert2/sweetalert2

 

5 UX Design Principles That Never Go Out of Style

The best designers understand that there must be a balance between standardization and innovation. Keeping that in mind, here is how to design a product with GREAT UX.

https://medium.com/walkme/5-ux-design-principles-that-never-go-out-of-style-672cc6ba9047

 

Stimulus

Because why wouldn’t we need another JavaScript library?! Personally I doubt I will ever use this, but you may. Easy to install using NPM, Yarn ect and allows you to enhance your already existing HTML.

https://stimulusjs.org/

 

Gangbase

One for the designers. Gangbase was created to collect all studios, designers, tools and awesome websites in one big base, where it’s easy to find whatever you need.

https://gangbase.design

 

GradPad

A beautifully designed website, with only one purpose. To create perfect CSS colour gradients within your browser. Perfect for web designs / developers.

http://ourownthing.co.uk/gradpad.html

 

Kutt.it

Like Bitly, but yours. Free and open source, Kutt.it allows you to host your own server, and manage all of your links & data yourself. A great interface, and documented API.

https://kutt.it/

 

CSS Space Shooter

I haven’t had one of these in a very long time. An old-school arcade-style 3D shoot-em-up rendered entirely with CSS 3D transforms. A great break from work, as well as a perfect example of CSS transforms. How far can you get?

https://www.michaelbromley.co.uk/experiments/css-space-shooter/

Material Design Example

Creative and Development Inspiration 14

This week I have found some great links for UX snippets and examples, some CSS/JS magic, and a little titbit for you cryptocurrency geeks. All in a days work.

 

Bye bye Material Design

Considering Material Design for your next project? Emin Durak thinks otherwise. He belives that it is, I quote, “premature, shallow and arguably incorrect approach”.

https://medium.com/techtrument/bye-bye-material-design-acaebcc7c6b4

 

Micron.js

A Microinteraction Libary Built with CSS Animations and JS. A great plug and play libary for a quick MVP.

https://webkul.github.io/micron/

 

How Much Do You Know About Web Typography

Web typography is a bit tricky. So many quirks and snippets of information you need to know. Take this web typography quiz and test your typography knowledge.

https://betterwebtype.com/web-typography-quiz

 

Gradient Topography Animation

Codrops is back with a great new code snippet. An incredibly sleek organic SVG shape layer animation based on Diana Hlevnjak’s work “Gradient Topography”. Powered by anime.js.

https://tympanus.net/Development/GradientTopographyAnimation

 

Button with Email Dropdown

Code My UI has brought us a nice little snippet to create a drop down input field from a button. Keep everything tucked anyand tidy!

https://codemyui.com/button-email-optin-dropdown

 

Jump on the Cryptocurrency Bandwagon

Minergate is a piece of software that mines a varity of cryptocurrency coins in the background whilst you work. You can set the level depending on how much you need to use your CPU/GPU. Keep the referral link, and I get a small percentage of the fee (nothing is taken from you!)

https://minergate.com/a/2b33a24f39993dc303296b47

Poor UI Missile Threat

Creative and Development Inspiration 13

2018 so far seems to be the year that UX/UI is at the forefront of every-bodies mind. Maybe that’s just me though? Well with that thought, here are a few links to tickle your Monday brain. Some are educational some are just pretty.

 

Microinteractions to Help Improve UX

As your users spend time on your website, they are constantly interacting with its features – and some of those small interactions matter more than you might think.

Each small movement has an impact on their overall experience. Use these small moments to improve your user experience, and ensure users follow through on further interaction as they begin navigating your website.

Speckyboy covers some examples of Micro interactions, and goes into a little detail.

https://speckyboy.com/eight-microinteractions-better-user-experience/

 

Hawaii’s missile alert fiasco highlights the importance of good interface design

We all read the news. The panic that struck residents and tourists in Hawaii on Saturday morning over the past weekend – owing to a public emergency alert about an incoming ballistic missile that was mistakenly transmitted – could have been easily avoided with the help of good design.

https://thenextweb.com/dd/2018/01/15/hawaiis-missile-alert-fiasco-highlights-the-importance-of-good-interface-design

 

Laws of UX

This site highlights a collection of key maxims that designers should consider when building user interfaces. A really clean site with some great insight.

https://lawsofux.com

 

Smooth Gooey Radio Slider Button

This is just something a bit different. A Codepen of a nice micro interaction for a radio button.

https://codemyui.com/smooth-gooey-radio-slider-button/

 

Sketch Icons – Generate a Dynamic Icons Libary

This one is for the designers. Creating a dynamic icon library is time consuming. Here is an article outlining how to do it manually, and then a link to a great plugin to streamline your workflow.

https://blog.prototypr.io/introducing-sketch-icons-2074d9dc9ed2

 

Decorative Letter Animations

Something pretty to finish off. Tympanus has done it again with some great text animations. Each example has a Github link to see the code snippet.

https://tympanus.net/Development/DecorativeLetterAnimations/

Froala Design Blocks

Creative and Development Inspiration 10

Starting this year as I plan to go on, with a good old list. This time I have brought together 6 articles that look across the year to help you develop your skill set, as well as a glance back at the past year.

 

2017 Web Design Trends

The list would’nt be complete without a look back at 2017 and it’s trends. 1st Web Designer do a great job at highlighting the best examples.

https://1stwebdesigner.com/top-10-web-design-trends-2017/

 

Froala Design Blocks

This is a brilliant open-sourced respository on Github. It is a collection of 170+ responsive design blocks that can be used to build a website. A great way of rolling out a site in minimul time! Based on Bootstrap 4 and entirely customizable

https://www.froala.com/design-blocks

 

Reframe.js

Reframe.js is a javascript plugin that makes unresponsive elements responsive! This could be a lifesaver.

https://dollarshaveclub.github.io/reframe.js/

 

Tips for Designing Awe-Inspiring Conversational Interfaces

As online chat becomes an industry in itself, with virtual assistants and help desks it becomes essential that the interface is as user friendly as possible. Those of you who are just getting started in this direction will benefit from these eight tips for designing awe-Inspiring conversational interfaces.

https://www.webdesignerdepot.com/2017/12/8-tips-for-designing-awe-inspiring-conversational-interfaces/

 

Shards – Modern UI Toolkit

Shards is a modern design system based on Bootstrap 4. Unbelievably clean, and packed with 10 custom components. Only 12kb minified and gzipped.

https://designrevision.com/demo/shards/

 

18 Designers Predict UI/UX Trends for 2018

There is no other way to end this list. With a look across 2018, and a few thoughts on which direction ui/ux trends will go. Whether you approve of it or not, I think #8 is very likely.

https://blog.figma.com/18-designers-predict-ui-ux-trends-for-2018-2d04d41361c6

 

I would love to hear your thoughts on trends for 2018, both design and development. The both industries are moving at such a rate, with great new technologies emerging. It’s going to be an interesting year.