Posts Tagged:pre

rfp-robotRFP ROBOT: Website Request for Proposal Generator

The time has come for a new website (or website redesign), which means you need to write a website request for proposal or web RFP. A Google search produces a few examples, but they vary wildly and don’t seem to speak really to your goals for developing or redesigning a new website. You need to write a website RFP that will clearly articulate your needs and generate responses from the best website designers and developers out there. But how?

Have no fear, RFP Robot is here. He will walk you through a step-by-step process to help you work through the details of your project and create a PDF formatted website design RFP that will provide the information vendors need to write an accurate bid. RFP Robot will tell you what info you should include, point out pitfalls, and give examples.


Making your web app work offline, Part 2: The Implementation

This two-part series is a gentle, high-level introduction to offline web development. In Part 1 we got a basic service worker running, which caches our application resources. Now let’s extend it to support offline. Article Series: The Setup The Implementation (you are here!) Making an `offline.htm` file Next, lets add some code to detect when the application is offline, and if so, redirect our users to a (cached) `offline.htm`. But wait, if the service worker file is generated automatically, how do we go about adding in our own code, manually? Well, we can add an entry for importScripts, which tells our service worker to import the scripts we specify. It does this through the service worker’s native importScripts function, which is well-named. And we’ll also add our `offline.htm` file to our statically cached list of files. The new files are highlighted below: new SWPrecacheWebpackPlugin({ mergeStaticsConfig: true, filename: “service-worker.js”, importScripts: [“../sw-manual.js”],…

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Getting Ready for Web Video

Inspired Magazine Inspired Magazine – creativity & inspiration daily Video is one of those really contentious points about web design. There are some people who feel like web pages should not have embedded video at all. These people are wrong. Like any technology, however, we should respect it and not abuse it. The two worst things you can do are: AutoPlay videos, without express consent from the user Embed too many videos in one page Both of these things are likely to cause annoyance to users and should be avoided unless you have a very good reason. Knowing what not to do will only get you so far. The rest of your online video success story will depend on knowing the things you ought to do, which is what we’ll cover in the rest of this article. Video categories There are six different types of videos that are commonly used…

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An update on the Layout Initiative for Drupal 8.4/8.5

Now Drupal 8.4 is released, and Drupal 8.5 development is underway, it is a good time to give an update on what is happening with Drupal’s Layout Initiative. 8.4: Stable versions of layout functionality Traditionally, site builders have used one of two layout solutions in Drupal: Panelizer and Panels. Both are contributed modules outside of Drupal core, and both achieved stable releases in the middle of 2017. Given the popularity of these modules, having stable releases closed a major functionality gap that prevented people from building sites with Drupal 8. 8.4: A Layout API in core The Layout Discovery module added in Drupal 8.3 core has now been marked stable. This module adds a Layout API to core. Both the aforementioned Panelizer and Panels modules have already adopted the new Layout API with their 8.4 release. A unified Layout API in core eliminates fragmentation and encourages collaboration. 8.5+: A Layout…

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Professional Video Game Player

This was a dream of mine, at one point, but, the reality is that I’m not that amazing at video games and broadcasting while playing isn’t something that I’m interested in. But, there was a time when I thought being in the video game industry full-time would be where I’d eventually end up and where I thought I’d be the most happy. This was entirely do to the fact that video games is the thing that got me into software programming – I just wanted to build things that I could play myself and through creating my own mini-games to modifying maps for my friends, I believed the industry had a spot for me. It wasn’t that I grew up and grew out of it; I just realized that to make it work would require a different type of person, someone that wasn’t me. So, I won’t be getting rich playing…

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Robust React User Interfaces with Finite State Machines

User interfaces can be expressed by two things: The state of the UI Actions that can change that state From credit card payment devices and gas pump screens to the software that your company creates, user interfaces react to the actions of the user and other sources and change their state accordingly. This concept isn’t just limited to technology, it’s a fundamental part of how everything works: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. – Isaac Newton This is a concept we can apply to developing better user interfaces, but before we go there, I want you to try something. Consider a photo gallery interface with this user interaction flow: Show a search input and a search button that allows the user to search for photos When the search button is clicked, fetch photos with the search term from Flickr Display the search results in a grid…

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An update on the Media Initiative for Drupal 8.4/8.5

In my blog post, “A plan for media management in Drupal 8”, I talked about some of the challenges with media in Drupal, the hopes of end users of Drupal, and the plan that the team working on the Media Initiative was targeting for future versions of Drupal 8. That blog post is one year old today. Since that time we released both Drupal 8.3 and Drupal 8.4, and Drupal 8.5 development is in full swing. In other words, it’s time for an update on this initiative’s progress and next steps. 8.4: a Media API in core Drupal 8.4 introduced a new Media API to core. For site builders, this means that Drupal 8.4 ships with the new Media module (albeit still hidden from the UI, pending necessary user experience improvements), which is an adaptation of the contributed Media Entity module. The new Media module provides a “base media entity”.…

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A Reasonable Approach for Getting Comfortable With Command Line

Considering how much the command line is an integral part of the developer’s workflow, it should not be thought overly difficult or tedious to learn. At one time I avoided it myself, but one day began teaching myself ways to make the difficult as easy as it should be. I got over the hurdle, and you can too. It was worth investing my time to increase my command line comfort-level, and I am going to share a few tips and resources that I found helpful in this post. The intended reader is the type who typically avoids the command line, or perhaps uses it occasionally but not as a regular or essential tool. Tip #1: Maintain a Pragmatic Mindset The way to get more comfortable with the command line is this: practice. You practice, and you get better. There is no secret trick to this; study and repetition of skills…

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Shopping with augmented reality

Last spring, Acquia Labs built a chatbot prototype that helps customers choose recipes and plan shopping lists with dietary restrictions and preferences in mind. The ability to interact with a chatbot assistant rather than having to research and plan everything on your own can make grocery shopping much easier. We wanted to take this a step further and explore how augmented reality could also improve the shopping experience. The demo video above features how a shopper named Alex can interact with an augmented reality application to remove friction from her shopping experience at Freshland Market (a fictional grocery store). The Freshland Market mobile application not only guides Alex through her shopping list but also helps her to make more informed shopping decisions through augmented reality overlays. It superimposes useful information such as price, user ratings and recommended recipes, over shopping items detected by a smartphone camera. The application can personalize…

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How Different CMS’s Handle Content Blocks

Imagine a very simple blog. Blog posts are just a title and a paragraph or three. In that case, having a CMS where you enter the title and those paragraphs and hit publish is perfect. Perhaps some metadata like the date and author come along for the ride. I’m gonna stick my neck out here and say that title-and-content fields only is a CMS anti-pattern. It’s powerful in its flexibility but causes long-term pain in lack of control through abstraction. Let’s not have a conversation about CMS’s as a whole though, let’s scope this down to just that content area issue. Now imagine we have a site with a bit more variety. We’re trying to use our CMS to build all sorts of pages. Perhaps some of it is bloggish. Some of it more like landing pages. These pages are constructed from chunks of text but also different components. Maps!…

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Freelance Graphic Designer – Tamberra – Sarasota, FL

The ability to take existing pre-built WordPress, Drupal, or Joomla themes and create mockups based on the available look and feel found in demos, that…From Indeed – Fri, 22 Sep 2017 21:04:31 GMT – View all Sarasota, FL jobs Source: http://rss.indeed.com/rss?q=Drupal+Developer

Unpacking the Mysteries of Webpack — A Novice's Journey

I’d worked on a handful of JavaScript applications with webpack before I inherited one in particular that had painfully sluggish builds. Even the incremental builds were taking up to 20 seconds…every single time I saved a change to a JS file. Being able to detect code changes and push them into my browser is a great feedback loop to have during development, but it kind of defeats the purpose when it takes so long. What’s more, as a compulsive saver and avid collector of Chrome tabs, I basically lit my computer on fire as it screamed like an F-15 every time webpack ran one of these builds. I put up with this for awhile because I was scared of webpack. I shot a handful of awkward glances at webpack.config.js over the course of a few weeks. Right before permanent madness set in, I resolved to make things better. Thus started…

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Template Doesn’t Mean Cookie Cutter

The Challenge The mere mention of website templates makes some clients bristle. Nobody likes being told they have to conform to a set of rules they feel weren’t written with them in mind. They also believe that their site will look like everyone else’s and not meet their unique needs. Developers and designers also get concerned with templates, unsure if content editors will put the correct types of content in pre-built components. Sites that the development and design team spent a lot of time building can end up looking unprofessional if the templates aren’t used properly. No one wins in this scenario. The Solution Let’s first dispel the myth that using templates means your site will look like everyone else’s. When we talk about templates, we aren’t talking about simple differences in colors and fonts. Our Lectronimo website solution takes advantage of Drupal’s modularity and Panelizer to deliver different frameworks…

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Creating Photorealistic 3D Graphics on the Web

Before becoming a web developer, I worked in the visual effects industry, creating award-winning, high-end 3D effects for movies and TV Shows such as Tron, The Thing, Resident Evil, and Vikings. To be able to create these effects, we would need to use highly sophisticated animation software such as Maya, 3Ds Max or Houdini and do long hours of offline rendering on Render Farms that consisted of hundreds of machines. It’s because I worked with these tools for so long that I am now amazed by the state of the current web technology. We can now create and display high-quality 3D content right inside the web browser, in real time, using WebGL and Three.js. Here is an example of a project that is built using these technologies. You can find more projects that use three.js on their website. Some projects using three.js As the examples on the three.js website demonstrate,…

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BeTheme Wants to Be the Only WordPress Theme You’ll Ever Need

Standalone WordPress themes simply don’t cut it anymore. In today’s environment, where clients demand instant project turnaround at rock-bottom prices, the race is on for a single WordPress theme that can do it all – at least for those clients who favor quick results and lower prices. This is where WordPress website builders come in and most of us have probably tried out Divi and some of the other more popular builders. However, the latest version of BeTheme – developed by Muffin Group – not only wants to be the only theme you need. It also wants to be the first WordPress website builder that shrugs off those slow loading times that can make them so frustrating.   BeTheme version 20: A faster website builder Version 20 of BeTheme rolled out on June 19 this year (2017) and there was one particular update that caught my eye. The theme package has now been reduced to…

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New Class: The Drupal Paragraphs Module

Over the last few months we’ve worked with more and more Drupal 8 sites. Those projects all had one thing in common … they used the Paragraphs module. Paragraphs is a very popular module for handling content in Drupal 8. Paragraphs works in a similar way to content fields, but also provides a wide range of options for the design, layout and grouping of your content.  Instead of putting all their content in one WYSIWYG body field, end-users can choose on-the-fly between pre-defined Paragraph Types independent from one another. Paragraph Types can be anything from a simple text block or image to a complex and configurable slideshow. If you use Paragraphs, you can give your site’s content creators a tremendous amount of power and flexibility to create the layouts that they want. This week’s new class is called “How to Use the Drupal Paragraphs Module”. You’ll learn about all the…

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Five ways to receive negative feedback well

Receive feedback well, and you‘ll get more honest feedback in the future. Here’s how.They’re watching you.I don’t mean to sound creepy. But it’s something to come to terms with as a leader: Your team is watching you.As a leader, your actions set the example – especially, when it comes to creating an open, honest environment in the workplace.Your employees are taking note: When someone offers a dissenting opinion, do you come off as annoyed and brush it aside? Or do you calmly listen and say, “Thank you, I’ll consider that”?How you receive feedback — especially negative feedback — sets the precedent for how welcome honest, forthcoming perspectives are in your company. Dismiss feedback on a whim or become overly defensive, and you’re not likely to hear critical feedback from that person again.So how do you receive feedback well? Here are five things you can do…Make empathy your mission.“How could they be saying that?” “I’m not sure that’s true…” Ever catch yourself…

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Building a Simple API with Amazon Lambda and Zappa

We recently had a client come to us with a request for a simple serverless API. They wanted little to no administrative overhead, so we went with the AWS Lambda service. It was my first foray with Lambda, and getting it set up came with its fair share of headaches. If you’re starting down the same path and want to build a simple API with Lambda, here’s a tutorial to help. Github If you would rather go through the tutorial on github, you can find it here AWS Lambda This is a great service offered by AWS that allows users to run a serverless application or function. It’s a cloud-based, serverless architecture that comes with continuous scaling out of the box. Deploy your code, and AWS does the rest. It will only run when “triggered,” either by another AWS service, or an HTTP call. It’s relatively young and has room…

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