We design intuitive, high-performance responsive websites and user interfaces

Learn how we do it

Typographica’s favorite typefaces of 2014

…the small number of retailers (companies that sell fonts from multiple foundries) decreased by one when Monotype bought the last major reseller not in its portfolio: FontShop. Monotype now owns Fonts.com, MyFonts.com, Linotype.com, FontFont.com, and a newly launched FontShop.com.

Lot’s of great new typefaces from 2014 that you’ll most likely be buying from Monotype.

Paul Yoder on why he recommends Ember over Angular:

And then I distinctly remember pausing and thinking something didn’t feel right. Something was off, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. And then it hit me: I was actually understanding the code base for a project I had never looked at before.

One of the major benefits of using Ember. I think this is going to be a trend with Angular developers jumping ship to either Ember or React.

Thoughts on the 12″ Macbook

Someone thought the design decisions of the new MacBook were so silly that a parody youtube was in order: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KHZ8ek-6ccc

Don’t get me wrong. It’s funny. However the arguments are all silly to begin with:

  1. One USB port is not enough. It’s a bad tradeoff.
  2. The processor is too slow.
  3. It’s an overpriced netbook
  4. A 480P front facing video camera is weak sauce. It’s there so they can cut costs and increase profits.

The first argument is the biggest feature of the new MacBook that most people will be turned off by simply because it’s so different than what they’re used too. It also might not be the best choice depending on your use case, but for me it’s perfect.

I’m a designer and web developer. When I go into work, I plugin a Magsafe power adapter, a thunderbolt display adapter, and occasionally a USB for ethernet or my iPhone. That’s three things I plug in every morning. With this new MacBook that number goes down to one assuming I just leave everything plugged in. Granted plugging in three cords isn’t burdensome, but I’ll take one over three any day of the week.

Maybe you use your HDMI and SD slots a bunch, but I don’t. If you do maybe this computer isn’t for you, but it is for me. Change is tough when you don’t want to change, and Apple has other computers you can buy.

The second argument is that the processor is too slow. This is a valid argument if you’re doing a lot of computationally intensive tasks. However, if you’re like me writing client side JavaScript, this is probably a non-issue. For me I have a preference for longer battery life over processing speed – and I think a lot of other people are in this camp with me. You’re probably not one of them.

The third argument is that this is an over priced netbook. Have you ever used a netbook? Seriously the 11” air is closer to a netbook than this — and it’s really not a netbook. Compare the size of the keyboard and trackpad of this new MacBook to any netbook and you might understand what I’m talking about. They’re in completely different leagues. Netbooks feel like toys. Cheap toys.

The last one is a low blow. A 480P camera! Oh the outrage. I don’t know what Apple’s profit margins are, but to assume they’re using this camera just to increase profits is a stretch. Instead I think they’re focused on increasing profits by selling a gold watch and just keeping this new MacBook’s price as low as they can while still maintaining their margins. They realize front-facing cameras are not a feature people shop for when looking for a new notebook. At least I don’t. It’s never once been a factor in any of my computer or phone purchases.

To recap I think all of these arguments are silly and invalid because they’re made from the perspective of a person that this computer isn’t built for: Someone that doesn’t understand the difference between a Macbook and a netbook, loves plugging stuff in, and makes purchasing decisions for mobile computers based on processor speed and front-facing cameras.

If you agree with those arguments, then obviously that computer wasn’t designed for you.

Generalists and specialists: thoughts on hiring

Nicholas C. Zakas:

Not good enough comes in many forms. The most obvious is in the front-end: every company I’ve been at that focused on hiring generalists has had a terrible time getting any sort of quality front-end built. Designers get frustrated because the engineers can’t figure out how to make what they designed, product managers are frustrated because the front-end is a key differentiator to end users.

This was published last year, but I’m just coming across it as I think it’s interesting and relevant. By definition generalists can all do front-end, but in my experience even if it ends up looking good, it’s a different story under the hood. Moreover most of generalist have a justified dislike for actual doing front-end development as it’s a deviation from a typical programming environment where code is written for one platform.

He goes on to argue that:

Eventually, every successful company will hire their first specialist – it’s a virtual certainty. The first step is to figure out how to hire that specialist. You need to accept that your current interview process probably doesn’t apply.

I think many companies actually understand this, but carry on with there standard process because it’s time consuming process to figure out what needs to change.

Brutal review of the Nest thermostat from a UX standpoint:

Not any product can solicit this kind of animosity. The fact that I loved it first is the real fuel here. It’s sort of like a bad breakup: If you really adored the person before the relationship’s end, the finale can be so much more bitter or vicious than if you were apathetic toward the person and things just fizzled. So when my Nest let me down, it didn’t just drop me; it kicked me to the curb.

Broccoli Plugins

New site to search for Broccoli plugins. Not surprising how quickly this project is gaining traction in the JavaScript community.