Every developer, at one point in time, will run into a situation where they need to display a small amount of dynamic data. Why create a whole database? Enter the magical world of XML. XML is easily manageable by anyone who has ever even dabbled a bit in HTML, so understanding should come easily just by looking at an XML file. PHP has classes already set up to parse XML. Here you’ll learn how to use PHP and XML to randomly generate HTML content.25 Comments. Add one!
This is a tutorial on how to write a live validation script for HTML form inputs using jQuery. There are plenty of these out there already, but in most cases I found that they could not be applied quickly. 9 out of 10 websites that I develop need nothing more than a simple validation to tell the user when an input was left empty or filled in improperly. Once you’ve gotten the hang of this script, it will only take you a couple of minutes to reapply it to each new website that you’d like it on.
All you’ll have to do is type in a list of what fields are required, and then change the CSS style of a class to suite that particular website, and that’s it!110 Comments. Add one!
That first call you have with your client on constructing your web design vision is probably one of the most important calls you’ll make during a project from start to finish. If you do not ask enough questions, or the right ones, then you are going to end up handing over a design that the client is not interested in. This can cause a little loss in client faith in your abilities, as well as slow down the progress of the project and create more work for you. The more information you gather right from the start, the less changes you’ll have to make to your design concept. You have to make sure you are well prepared for this call.
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This is a tutorial on how to create the swirls that I’ve used throughout my website. It’s very quick and easy to accomplish them with some transparency and a few layer styles as long as you are a little practiced with the Pen Tool within photoshop.
Due to popular demand, here is a tutorial on how I created one of the more complicated pieces of machinery on my new site: the contact form. A lot of different techniques went into this, and I have a few people/places to thank for some of the original code that inspired my final product: primarily Design Shack for their tutorial on creating a slide-in contact form with ajax, Zachstronaut for his code on scrollable same page links (used all over my site, but most effectively on the contact link in my footer), and Yens Design for a quick how-to on creating the modal pop-up background darkening effect (surprisingly extremely easy to do with jQuery).
All you need is jQuery. No plugins are necessary for this to work, and it is only 2kb of extra code in addition to the jQuery library. This also works on all browsers, IE6 and up.367 Comments. Add one!
BIG SIGH OF RELIEF. After about a month of being a free-time vampire, and my neglect of friends and loved ones, this thing is live and ready to rock. I’ve learned a lot since the last version of the site was created over a year ago, so it is quite a drastic design change. I hope you all enjoy it and I look forward to working with it for all of my new blog articles. There are still some minor things that I plan on updating, but right now I’m going to go out and enjoy the holiday over here for a little while.
Give me feedback! I appreciate anything and everything. While the portfolio is for the clients, the blog is for the readers so I value your opinions. Also, if anyone has any requests as to how I did anything on this website, please let me know in the comments, and I’ll be sure to make a tutorial for it! I experimented with a lot of new things. Also, I updated the comment system, so it now uses WordPress 2.7′s threaded comments.5 Comments. Add one!
Welcome to the first post of a series of articles I will be doing that will bestow on you an enormous collection of bookmarks that I’ve horded like a squirrel and his nuts. These blog posts are not going to be your typical lists. These are posts that I have collected over the past year, and they’ve all been bookmarked and tagged for later use. Any good web designer and developer should have a nice bookmark collection; it’s appropriately compared to batman’s utility belt. With Firefox’s bookmarking system that it introduced in Firefox 3, this has become very easy thanks to its tagging system. For example, need to find a quick tutorial on that cool jQuery accordion effect that you found a couple of months ago? Hit CTRL+B, type in jquery accordion and whammo, there is the bookmark you need. This is only my recommendation, so do what you will with these links.
Many of these links are bookmarks to articles that were list themselves, so they included many items. What’s special about this list on Joren Rapini’s blog, you ask? Well, I have graciously copied and pasted the Firefox tags that I use to identify each one of these pages in my bookmarks, so you can copy and paste them right into yours! This should save you a lot of time, and give you an enormous wealth of resources to boot.30 Comments. Add one!
Thanks to current lack of support for and other licensing issues regarding @font-face, we have to turn to other methods of using special fonts on our web pages. But what to choose? There are several great proven methods out there for font face replacements on a website, so today we’re going to take a look at 4 of the bigger ones that I have taken for a spin. I’m going to list for you the pros and cons that I discovered for each method.12 Comments. Add one!
Hey everyone! Got some goodies this week. U-printing has offered up one thousand business cards to the lucky winner. In order to enter, all you have to do is leave a comment at the end of the blog post, describing what you would use the free business cards and/or canvas print for.18 Comments. Add one!
Sorry for the long delay in posts! It’s been a busy month. This article is a tutorial for how to create the following fantasy scene in Photoshop. You can use these techniques in a bunch of different ways from within a web interface design, to my example which is a wallpaper that I created as a Valentine’s Day gift to my fiance Candy.7 Comments. Add one!
I was originally going to write a quick post on some color tool resources, being inspired by Well Styled’s brand new revision of their awesome color tool, found here. The Color Scheme Designer has a lot of neat new functions, including generating a preview of a website with the colors that you have picked along with new customization features. I realized that most of the tools I had to write about were already included in this very nice website that Tom Dufour brought to my attention, called Web Designer Heaven.4 Comments. Add one!
Every client you deal with should have a unique solution to fit their needs. CushyCMS is definitely no end-all-be-all CMS solution, but it is absolutely perfect for a certain niche of websites. If you are developing a website that, for example, will often need a couple paragraphs on the front page changed often, or they’re a restaurant that just wants to update specials and prices every once and a while, then CushyCMS is a pretty optimal solution. You can let your client take control without damaging anything else on the website and, best of all, they get off your case on making updates! It’s extremely quick and easy to set up, and very easy to explain to your clients on how to use it as well.7 Comments. Add one!
There is one thing in my life that I will always cherish above even web designing and developing (gasp), and that is music. I was a musician for several years, and that even included being a high school band geek. I totally rocked that saxophone. In the last few years, I have expanded my horizon when it comes to music to encompass just about everything and I have a bit of an addiction to amassing as much of a collection as I can. If you share my love for music, then you will appreciate this post. I’m going to go over some of the applications and services that I use on my computer that helps with all kinds of aspects of dealing with a music collection from managing your library, finding new music, and just getting the most of out the experience.2 Comments. Add one!
This is somewhat of a continuation of Great Firefox Plugins For Any Web Designer or Developer where I talked about some handy Firefox plugins, and now I’d like to speak at you about some applications that I’ve found useful throughout my career, whether it be something that can help make a task a little easier or something that just helps me get through a day of work by making it more enjoyable.14 Comments. Add one!
So, you just created this awesome fancy background for a website. The top part of the background is large and in charge, while everything below it is going to be a repeating background that goes all the way down to the bottom of the page and helps define your website’s borders. The goal is to make sure the top background sits on top of the repeating background so that you cannot see the repeating background until the top one is done, but how do you utilize 2 centered background images without the browser creating a horizontal scrollbar?66 Comments. Add one!
The greatest thing about technology advancing is that it allows us to be more efficient and lazy than we ever have been before. I wanted to talk about some of the applications, services, and resources that I use that make my life as a web designer/developer easier, quicker, and more enjoyable. And more tasty. I realized that I bloated this article enough with just Firefox plugins, so I’m going to make another post after this one that involves useful non-Firefox applications. You may have already heard of a lot of these, but read on anyways because you never know what you might have missed. Or, possibly you are just enthralled by my incredible writing. Or you salivate over any mention of Firefox plugins.
If you still aren’t convinced, just shut up and read on anyways, I promise you’ll get a Hershey kiss at the end. Maybe.10 Comments. Add one!
I’ve been hard at work at this new website. Well, really going back and forth between “hard” work and “I’ll get to that later. . .” work. The website is finally complete, and now that it is I plan on working a lot more with it.
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