As a kinesthetic learner, my preference when taking a course in code is to build what I’m shown, but tweak, improve, build on and document what I learn as I go along.
Returning to professional web development after a long break, I needed a refresher course in php, so I took a look at the php basics video series from codecourse:
With a series like this, where examples have a minimal front end, I like to build a suitable front-end as I go, shaping it to the needs of the project. To me this is an ideal way to build a site, but isn’t always possible in a client project. Personal projects are ideal for this kind of discipline, and it’s amazing what can come out of it.
On Sunday, Hillary Rodham Clinton announced she would definitely like to be the next President of the United States of America. Before that announcement HillaryClinton.com looked like this: a holding page linking to the website of her official office.
Blue, a notoriously popular colour in web design, seems deployed here according to colour theory:always reassuringly safe, friendly and almost frivolous when light, while the darker blue brings a more serious tone. The background gradient gives an abstract sense of a horizon; the ground and the sky; don’t stop thinking about tomorrow. We’re meant to be reassured. The contrasting darker blue used for the ‘Hillary’ headline – really a logo – fits it quite well: we’re on first name terms with Mrs Clinton, but we’re still encouraged to take her name seriously as a strong and powerful proposition. The colour contrast emphasises the seriousness of ‘Hillary’ as a concept. We’re meant to be impressed.
The gradient is deployed as a background image rather than modern css: old-fashioned but fine for a lightweight single page site. There’s a technical fail, however, whereby the bottom curve of the ‘y’ descender in the logo (also deployed as an image) has been truncated by over-zealous cropping. This could have been avoided with modern web typography – or a steadier hand.
As noted by Claire Brotherton in her round up of Day 2, Sunday morning seemed sparsely attended, the announcement that the previous night’s social was a record bar taking for a UK Wordcamp presumably no coincidence.
Despite a brisk and enjoyable late-night walk home, I confess I was one of those lunching out the morning, so I missed Petra Foster on how to Be a Brand, Not a Commodity (although I’d caught this presentation at the previous month’s WP Brum meetup) and Pauline Roche and Ted Ryan on WordPress for Small and Not For Profit Enterprises.