Stir Trek 2014

Stir Trek was a lot of fun this year.  The sessions were pretty good and the movie was a great popcorn flick. It was also fun catching up with a bunch of folks that I haven’t seen for a while.

I found How we’re failing to secure the “Internet of things” to be very interesting. Mark Stanislav covered security breaches for several different types of devices. Really makes you question if you need every device to be WiFi enabled especially if there is not an easy path to upgrade the device.

I also liked Hany Elemary‘s session on A humbling experience through web accessibility as Hany showed practical solutions to problems he ran into while making his project web accessible. His example of updating a paging control really highlighted the difficulty in having a wireframe or comp that is designed to be seen vs how the controls should be read by a screen reader.

Looking forward to next year.

Video: Creating Living Style Guides

Another great YouTube video I watched this week.  We call them interactive style guides at work but they are the same thing.  A style guide that is organized by clickable sets of components that let you see how the individual component look styled against the actual CSS along with the appropriate HTML that can be copied and pasted directly in to the project.  We have used them on several projects recently and they work really well.  Much more effective at bringing consistency in the look and feel of a site especially across large teams.  The only thing difficult about them is dialing in estimating how much time they will take to develop on a project.  As the “living” in the name implies, it changes over time and the effort varies greatly by project.

[JSConfUS 2013] Nicole Sullivan: Creating Living Style Guides

Velocity NYC presentations

It is finally slow at work with the holidays and I have had a chance to catch up on some videos I wanted to watch from the Velocity NYC conference. I stumbled upon them while watching Breaking the 1000 ms mobile barrier by Ilya Grigorik which had a lot of great detail on why 3g/4g mobile networking is less performant. So far the other presentations have been really good too and I have picked up several tools and tips for increasing web site performance. Here is a playlist of Velocity NYC 2013 presentations.

Matt Shooks Blog 2.0

I have recently updated my hosting account to be a cloud account and had to drop the use of ColdFusion as my host only supports .net and php. After using asp,, jsp, php, c and perl for creating web pages and sites, I still find ColdFusion is hands down the best. I have gotten more done with less lines of code thanks to ColdFusion. I had it to easy not having to manage connection information, 3rd party programs to do email, pdf and charting, easy integration with Flash and just getting programs developed faster. But the reality is the rest of the world does not agree especially around Columbus.

With the change in accounts, I also took the opportunity to clear out my repository of posts. I did most of my posting back in 2007 and 2008. A number of my popular posts were on how to use the World of Warcraft armory site XML that has changed formats over the years and is no longer relevant.

In the last year, I started working at Clutch Interactive. Word Press is a popular CMS so I have set it up as my new blogging software to help learn how it works and to have a platform to develop plugins.