Just call me Nostradamus

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zoltar sign

I just found an old interview I gave for the local newspaper from 2002, back when the internet was still quite new. In the interview I was asked to predict what the internet would be like in 20 years.


Feeling nostalgic? Enter jsSID


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jsSID is a javascript-only implementation of the SID chip, used in the Commodore 64 to play music and sound effects. Hearing music from the SID gives me an immediate sense of recognition and nostalgia, so it's been fun checking out how close javascript and the new Web Audio API can get to emulating that classic sound. It's not 100%, but it's a great approximation.

You should be able to easily Google for the SID files for your old favourite games (or if you want to go nuts, check out the massive High Voltage SID collection), which can be played directly on the jsSID project page.

5 Things to Know Before Starting a Web Project


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Crumpled paper

If you’ve never been involved in the creation of a website before, there are some paths that can lead to delays or bloated budgets. A recent blog post from BuildStudio in Canada has identified five important things to consider.

I run into at least one of the five points they talk about in almost every project I work on, so I felt it would be good to link to their article for the benefit of everyone. The five points they mention in their article are:

  1. Underestimating How Long Content Will Take
  2. If the Content Comes After the Design, Your Site Will Suffer
  3. There are Important Principles of Design That May Run Contrary to Your Preferences
  4. Getting on the First Page of Google is Likely Harder Than You Realize
  5. The Contract is Far More Useful Than Boring

Read the full article here.

New mouse: Logitech MX Master

In Brief

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Logitech MX Master

After spotting it on OzBargain for a great price, I bought myself the Logitech MX Master to replace my old Logitech G700. 

Lifehacker has just posted a great article comparing the MX Master to its predecessor, the Performance MX, and their G502 Proteus Core gaming mouse. The article does a great job of comparing the features of each mouse, and comes to the conclusion that they're all pretty great, with only a few personal preferences separating them.

One of the headlining features of the MX Master is the Smart speed-adaptive scroll wheel, which automatically shifts from your standard click-to-click which scrolls a few lines at a time, to a free-spinning fast scroll. A few mice (including my old G700) have had a little button under the scroll wheel to switch between these two modes, but the MX Master can do this automatically when the scroll wheel reaches a certain speed, and then disengages fast-scrolling when the wheel stops.

At first I was annoyed by this automatic momentum scrolling, as it was always engaging when I didn’t want it to... that is, until I found in the settings where you can finely adjust the sensitivity. Sometimes it helps when you read the manual. Now everything’s golden! Coupled with the great battery life, it’s the nicest mouse I’ve ever owned.

Amazon: Logitech MX Master

ASIS Victoria Chapter Wins Website of the Year Award

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ASIS Victoria screenshot

I'm very proud to announce that ASIS International Victoria Chapter has taken home the Website of the Year Award, presented at the recent 2015 ASIS International 61st Security Conference and Expo held in Anaheim, USA.


Top 5 usability mistakes web designers are still making

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Stepping in gum.

How's that for a linkbait headline? Sorry about that. The web design industry is still only a baby, but it's old enough to have established a number of best practices that make sure that everyone has the best possible experience. It saddens me to still see the following crimes against usability pop up on the web.


Responsive Web Design Lessons

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So the dust is starting to settle as we become familiar with a number of techniques for developing responsive websites, but for myself, this road has not exactly been as problem-free as I thought it was going to be. Time for some quick reflection on a recent project and the challenges of "going responsive".


What features should a commercial CMS have?

Unsafe electrical plugs

Does ExpressionEngine rely too heavily on paid addons to provide basic functionality that should come out-of-the-box with a commercial content management system worth $300? What is the base-level of functionality that you should expect from a commercial CMS?


Jcrop - Quick and easy image cropping with jQuery.


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Jcrop from Deep Liquid is a quick and easy way to add image cropping functionality to your web application. It combines the ease-of-use of a typical jQuery plugin with a powerful cross-platform DHTML cropping engine that is faithful to familiar desktop graphics applications.

  • Attaches unobtrusively to any image
  • Supports aspect ratio locking
  • Supports minSize/maxSize setting
  • Callbacks for selection done, or while moving
  • Keyboard support for nudging selection
  • API features to create interactivity, including animation
  • Support for CSS styling

It's definitely one of the best one's I've come across. It's about 5.5KB (minified), compatible with all browsers and its free (MIT license)! Check out the demos.

"UX Professional" may be a bullshit job title, but they're still needed.

Desk workspace with man working with sticky notes.

The web industry is still only a baby. New job titles are being invented all the time. Some stick, some, thankfully, do not. Some people have to take on many roles, while others specialise in one or two areas. So what should we call ourselves? How much importance are we putting on our job titles?