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Archive for the ‘Tutorials’ Category

Display Random Dynamic Content With PHP and XML

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.

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Nov
8

The Simple, Quick, and Small jQuery HTML Form Validation Solution

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!

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Oct
5

Design Quick and Easy Colorful Photoshop Swirls

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.

photoshop swirl tutorial
 

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Aug
23

jQuery AJAX Validation Contact Form with Modal + Slide-in Transition

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.

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Jun
11

Useful Javascript, jQuery, and AJAX Tutorials and Resources – MLC#1

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.

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Apr
5

Design a Space Cloud Starry Fantasy Scene with Photoshop

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.



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Mar
1

Easy Client Control Over Page Elements with CushyCMS

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.

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Jan
25

Double Body Background CSS Trick

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?

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66 Comments. Add one!
Dec
30

CSS Navigation Rollovers With Drop-downs

This post is a continuation of Super Fantastic CSS Navigation Image Rollovers where we created CSS rollovers with a single image, so it would probably be a good idea for you to take a look at that post in order to follow along with this one if you haven’t done so yet. We’re going to take the code from that post, and adapt it to Stu Nicholls’ CSS drop-downs. He has done a great job in creating a multi-level drop-down menu that is verified to work in most browsers, and without any slow loading javascript.

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35 Comments. Add one!
Dec
14

Super Fantastic CSS Navigation Image Rollovers

The fun part of CSS (if you’re a weirdo like me and get a kick out of this sort of thing) is coming up with the most optimized, cleanest, accessible, and compliant code that you possibly can. This tutorial will show you one of my favorite ways of doing a navigation menu with image rollovers done in CSS that uses only one image and very minimal HTML / CSS code. This is by no means the only way of going about it, nor is it the “right” way if there is such a thing, but I’ve found this to be a very quick and efficient way of accomplishing our task.

This article is the first of a 2 part series, and the second half will apply this tutorial into creating a CSS only dropdown menu navigation with the image rollovers that is compliant with IE6 and up.

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100 Comments. Add one!
Dec
3
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