Harry Cresswell

#178 - Omit the unimportant

Hi everyone!

Welcome to Issue #178. This month’s title is inspired by a quote I found whilst thumbing through the pages of ‘Minimum’, a wonderful little book by architect John Pawson.

The book is largly a visual essay exploring the notion of ‘minimum’ and the pursuit of simplicity – the point at which it’s no longer possible to improve something by means of substraction.

How can we apply these principles to web development? Maybe we should think less about what shiny new features we can add, and more about what we can take away? Just a thought.

Quotes to think about #

“Omit the unimportant, in order to emphasise the important” John Pawson, in Minimum.

“The world rewards you for value provided, not time spent.” James Clear in 3-2-1: Leave room for the unexpected.

“Designers should focus less on how to further optimize a flow and more on whether the flow itself is solving a problem the user wants solved.” Omar Lee in Making things that people want.

Interesting projects #

In Nitter and other Internet reclamation projects, Drew DeVault shares some of the open-source projects which aim to fix popular social silos, (a.k.a the corporate web), by scraping their content and offering a faster, lighter weight, more inclusive, user-first experience.

Gridless.design. In this short eBook Donnie D’Amato advocates for getting rid of the layout grid in web design. Over three chapters Donnie covers the history of the grid and it’s challenges. How designers might deal with these challenges by using Gestalt principles and various other approaches. And the tools developers have at their disposal to create modern layouts.

24 hours of design talks #

Last week Inclusive Design 24 streamed 24 hours of talks from designers and developers around the world. I’ve picked out Simon Hearne’s excellent talk Inclusive Design is Fast by Default, which includes tons of tips on how to prioritise the experience of users with limited access to the web.

Articles on CSS and performance #

Simplifying Form Styles With accent-color. Michelle Barker explores the the new CSS accent-color property, explaining what it does and how to use it alongside color-scheme for simple, accessible checkboxes and radio buttons.

Ahmad Shadeed introduces CSS Container Query Units and offers some use cases to show how they can help us to create leaner, cleaner code.

Critical CSS: what it is, why it’s useful, and how it works. Martin Underhill explains the performance benefits, how to implement it and shares some of the drawbacks.

Getting Your head Straight: A New CSS Performance Diagnostics Snippet. A little helper from Harry Roberts that helps spot common performance bottlenecks easily.

A course for developers who blog #

Blogging for devs. A free 7-day email course and newsletter by Monica Lent for developers, makers, managers, and technical founders growing their reach through blogging.

Something I wrote #

My approach when delivering responsive images and next-gen formats on websites built with Hugo – where image content is hosted by Cloudinary, and managed using Forestry.

Learn responsive typography #

Learning Responsive Typography with Scott Kellum of Typetura. Scott Kellum teaches Alex Trost how to create responsive typography using the Typetura project.

Thank you for reading #

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See you in the next one!

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