My personal End Of Year post for 2014, random thoughts, no particular order.
I spent the first half of this year studying in Aarhus, Denmark, meeting awesome people and having an extremely nice time. Travelled to Oslo and Copenhagen while already being in the northern countries.
Upon returning I got my masters degree in media informatics from the LMU Munich. That marked the end of being a student for six years. It has been an amazing time, I learnt a lot both personally and professionally and met some of my best friends.
Just a couple of weeks later I started working as Fullstack Developer at Scandio. Enjoying these new challenges.
I ran my first 5k in 25 minutes (and 5 seconds, okay). I joined a gym for the first time in my life and am still going there seven weeks later. Proud of myself and it’s nice to move when sitting all week.
I have been at the Prima Leben und Stereo festival this summer, and saw Linkin Park in autumn. Will do my best to see even more bands live in 2015 (got tickets for the Black Keys and Rockavaria so far).
Looking forward to make 2015 even more of a blast.
I switched away from Gmail to Fastmail earlier this year. Superb service so far, no stress with spam or any outages that I am aware of. But they lacked support for a proper contact synchronization until now. Their own custom solution was a read only service, so I stuck with Google for handling contacts.
Today they finally announced support for CardDAV. So far it works like a charm using the Mac Contacts.app and on the iPhone. Importing the contacts from Gmail worked almost flawlessly – the contact images went missing.
Progressive enhancement isn’t a technology. It’s more like a way of thinking. Instead of thinking about the specifics of how a finished website might look, progressive enhancement encourages you to think about the fundamental meaning of what the website is providing.
Interesting write-up and first steps on why we should focus on creating websites in a progressive manner. Be sure to check out the other articles on 24 Ways this year.
It feels like at this point that we’re just, probably temporarily, but we seem to be in this little era of, “Well, let’s download Bootstrap, we know we’re going to have a header graphic. We know we’re going to have a horizontal list of links for our navigation. We’re going to have three columns and we’re going to have these boxes in these columns.” It feels a bit like everybody just makes that assumption so quickly without even imagining anything else as a possibility.
On The Web Ahead, Jen Simmons recently talked to Andy Clarke about “Creative Direction”. Or more about the current lack of it. I totally agree with Andy on this. It feels like too many projects start of with Bootstrap and all the design assumptions it caries. While it might serve the purpose of making a user-friendly website, it removes a lot of creativity that made the web so special (in a good and a bad way) in the beginning.
While all these UI patterns are well-tested and optimized, they make a lot of the web feeling the same. Recently I started to hold a little grudge against Bootstrap for that reason (and some other aspects but that’s for a longer post). I will try to put some more effort into design problems before just throwing one of these default elments at it.
And if you don’t listen to The Web Ahead yet, I suggest you give it a try. It’s ony of my favorite webdesign podcasts.
I just had the pleasure of setting up a new Mac at work. Great so far. But whenever on a fresh system I recognize how much I tend to customize it. I found myself hitting shortcuts and trying to execute commands that weren’t available. To get around this porblem faster the next time, I just created a repository for all my dotfiles. More to come.