Skip to main content
TunnelBear

Creative / Development Inspiration 24

This weeks Creative & Web Development Inspiration does not touch the code at all. I have found 5 articles that look at the design aspect of websites, as well as a few ideas that cover the process of creating digital media. How emotional interfaces can help retain users, all the way to the idea of transparent design.

 

How To Design Emotional Interfaces For Boring Apps

Humans can’t endure boredom for a long time, which is why products that are built for non-exciting, repetitive tasks so often get abandoned and gather dust on computers and phones. But boredom, according to psychologists, is merely lack of stimulation, the unfulfilled desire for satisfying activity. So what if we use the interface to give them that stimulation? Alice shares five secrets to more emotional UIs: gamification, humor, animation, illustration, and mascots.

https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2018/04/designing-emotional-interfaces-boring-apps/

 

Constant Small Improvements Pave the Way to Perfection

A great article from Invision on constant improvements on design. Baby steps forward. Constant iterations. Nonstop nudges in the right direction. That’s how an empire is built. The path to success doesn’t need to be sprinted. Start selling this to clients, for both a better relationship, and a better product.

https://www.invisionapp.com/blog/designer-perfection

 

Start your designs with a concept

Defining a concept upfront can help shape everything that follows: the interactions, the relationship between elements, the tone of voice and copy, the transitions, the animations, etc. Once you have a strong concept, all these aspects start to align. Interfaces that are conceived without a concept and designed on autopilot creates interaction patterns that aren’t strategically aligned, user paths that don’t follow a clear logic, screens that are inconsistent and do not ladder up to a consolidated metaphor or concept.

https://uxdesign.cc/start-your-designs-with-a-concept-7270e6b00fcc

 

New to email coding? Here’s where to start.

The sooner you stop fighting the quirks of email, the sooner you can use them to your advantage. Email can seem like a tangled mess, and you will deal with some crazy parameters. But once you learn to embrace the peculiarities, beautiful things begin to happen. Caity covers some great resources and techniques for creating emails that even work on Outlook! I also covered a great resource in Creative and Development Inspiration 1 – Heml!

https://explore.reallygoodemails.com/new-to-email-coding-heres-where-to-start-2494422f0bd4

 

Why transparent, open design leads to happier clients

“When you bring the folks you’re working with directly into the project, you create a lot more buy-in,” said Adonya Ourshalimian, Client Partner at Citrusbyte. “There’s a much better understanding of what’s actually happening.” The program they use looks unbelievably useful as well, sit down XD – https://www.figma.com/

https://blog.figma.com/why-transparent-open-design-leads-to-happier-clients-aaf98a7cd50c

Neomedia Pokemon

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

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

CSS Animation Room Selection

Creative and Development Inspiration 11

I have pulled together 6 links that span creative, web development, and just plain old interesting. There are a couple of freebies to keep you interested as well 😉

 

Pretty Scroll

A library to make an element follow you as you scroll. This could be used for so many things, from keeping images alongside a section of text, to triggering animations at a certain point. Bookmark this!

https://appleple.github.io/pretty-scroll/

 

Homepages Over Time

This article covers some of the bigger web brands, and shows how their homepages have changed over time. All of these will have used not stop A/B testing, and tracking to get to this point.

https://blog.sourcerer.io/a-study-of-homepages-over-time-62947486008c

 

Prometheus Free Icon Set

450 free icons that work with both Adobe and Sketch apps. Always good to have an endless supply!

https://dribbble.com/shots/4045963-Prometheus-Free-Icon-Set

 

CSS Glitch Effect

A really really cool glitch effect using only CSS. Works for film style sites, but could also work with more industial clients as well!

https://tympanus.net/codrops/2017/12/21/css-glitch-effect/

 

Engaging Micro-animation CSS House

This responsive house by David Khourshid is a brilliant example of using micro-animations to engage the user, whilst at the same time providing value. It uses a slider to pick the type of house a user is looking for.

https://codepen.io/davidkpiano/full/xLKBpM/

 

More Freebies! A selection of Instagram Banner Inspirations

These Instagram templates are fully customizable, and provide great inspiration for creating and building a Instagram following.

https://designshack.net/articles/inspiration/best-instagram-templates-banners/

Animated button tooltips

Creative and Development Inspiration 5: Feature Highlights

Finding ways to display hidden information for users can be tough. The number of times brochure websites have required some level of user engagement and I have had to scour the web for examples such as these. I thought I should share.

 

Project Feature Highlights

By adding tooltips into div elements they can be positioned anywhere on a page. I imagine this could get a big fiddly for a responsive page, but nothing a few calculations can’t fix!

https://codepen.io/ianfarb/pen/qkpJH

 

Intro JS

A step-by-step guide and feature introduction script. It has no dependencies and is pretty small! Very easy to integrate.

https://introjs.com/

 

Animated Tooltips

Simple, effective use of tooltips. There are three styles. Fading, expanding and swing. By using the HTML5 data-title attribute they minimize the amount of extra HTML required.

https://codepen.io/neogomo/pen/BjqJzr

 

Automated Tooltips

Attractive, small tooltips that effectively display extra information for the user.

https://codepen.io/adwin/pen/vGqzLq

 

Animated button with Tooltip

I have included this, not so much for the button, but how the tooltip looks. If this was applied to a product image to show extra information, it would work brilliantly.

https://codepen.io/takeradi/pen/oxbGpb

WordPress Code Snippets

WordPress Code Snippets

When I first started building themes with WordPress, I spent a lot of time looking at other programmer’s code. I would find a snippet, pull it apart and learn from it. Rinse and repeat. I learnt a lot from this process, and still do. Other people will always be finding solutions to problems you have, or problems similar.

 

I have decided to start posting specific snippets of code that I use time and time again for other people to get some use out of them, and learn as I did.

 

All these snippets will be fully documented, so as to provide as much understanding as possible. I will also try to explain how they can be used, give ideas on how to adapt them, and link to other websites that I use myself.