Web Design & Development

An Introductory History of the World Wide Web

By | Web Design & Development | 2 Comments

In the beginning, mankind wasn’t graced with computers. Instead, people used soup cans and string to communicate on a global scale. If you were wealthy, you’d buy a Campbell’s brand soup can and be the envy of your neighborhood. If not, it was nice if your can had a label on it at all. The shiny unlabeled silver was a common staple of those early years of mass communication. It wasn’t until the end of…

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HTML Tutorial #1: What are HTML Tags?

By | Web Design & Development | 7 Comments

Welcome to your first class on understanding the HyperText Markup Language (HTML). HTML is the language used to build websites. When a web page is delivered from a server to you, your browser doesn’t see what you see. Instead, it sees a series HTML tags, interprets them according to specific standards, and then displays a graphical representation of that code on your screen.┬áIn this HTML tutorial, I’m going to focus on answering one simple question…

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The 15 Best WordPress Plugins to Use in 2012

By | Web Design & Development, WordPress Tips & Tricks | 827 Comments

Updated for 2012: One of the reasons that I’m so madly in love with WordPress is the thousands of plugins available. It doesn’t matter what you want to accomplish on your blog, there is probably a WordPress plugin that will allow you to do it. This list will provide you with 15 of the best WordPress plugins available today. Only the 15 best WordPress plugins have made it while anything less than amazing has been…

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Introducing the Basic Elements of Design

By | Web Design & Development | 11 Comments

The goal of this article is to introduce you to the most basic elements of design. Whether you’re styling your blog, selecting a graphic illustration for an article, working on an advertisement, or simply just expressing your artistic side, these building blocks provide a foundation on which you can build an amazing understanding of the vast world of design. Allow me to introduce you to the line, shape, space, volume, value, color, and texture. These…

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I Hate Internet Explorer and You Should Too!

By | Web Design & Development | 86 Comments

As a web developer, I despise Internet Explorer in all of its forms. I hate version 6. I hate version 7. I hate version 8. And I even hate version 9. In fact, if you are reading this article right now using any form of Internet Explorer, you’re missing out on parts of this very website. There are aspects of this site that simply do not work in your browser and as a result, you’re…

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Dive into the Future of Web Development

By | Web Design & Development | 29 Comments

HTML5: Up and Running is appropriately subtitled, Dive into the Future of Web Development. It allows readers the opportunity to jump head-first into the world of design by drawing a historical picture demonstrating how the web has evolved into what we currently experience while at the same time exploring in vivid detail the newest features being rolled out by the development community today. Perhaps the greatest strength of this book is its ideal blend of…

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Creating a Dynamic HTML5 Cache Manifest

By | Web Design & Development | 19 Comments

If you’ve spent much time digging into the newest features being released in HTML5, then you’ve probably already played around with the Cache Manifest. It’s certainly a powerful tool for caching your site’s content in the browser of your users so that they can browse from page to page with lightning speed. For a good introduction to the cache manifest, be sure to check out Mark Pilgrim’s Dive Into HTML5: Let’s Take This Offline. In…

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Maintaining a Fresh & Professional Website

By | Web Design & Development | 70 Comments

Successful blogging is really a series of cycles that seem to carry us forward in our online journeys. We spend a little while setting everything up by securing a domain name, obtaining hosting, building or installing a template, setting up a brand or site name, developing content and more. We spend time installing plugins, optimizing our sites for search engines and then writing content. Often times, however, as we progress forward in our blogging journey,…

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Sliding Social Media Icons Like on Mashable

By | Social Media, Web Design & Development | 50 Comments

When I first set eyes on the uniquely stacked and sliding social icons located to the left side of each article at Mashable, I immediately wanted them for myself. I was highly impressed and I assumed that others would be as well so I began searching for a way to make it a reality at Site Sketch 101. The solution, though hard to find, was incredibly simple to┬áimplement. It’s a plugin called Digg Digg. Digg…

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Amazon S3 and Your Absolute URL Structure

By | Web Design & Development | 11 Comments

Two days ago, I posted on Site Sketch 101 bragging to the world that I had moved the bulk of my files from my local server onto the Amazon Cloudfront servers. Shortly after I hit the publish button, the very person to whom I directed that post began making fun of me (We’re friends so that’s certainly allowed.) for how much of my site was still being hosted on my local server. There was only…

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