the workshop

welcome

The workshop contains a number of links to online resources, mainly related to the topic of web development. The various sections can be opened or closed by clicking on the links on the right. Each section or “box” also has a button like the one below which can be used to close that particular box.

The first few sections relate to various personal projects. The second grouping contains links to resources which I have found to be useful and/or inspiring in my creative endeavours. If you are interested in more general links please try the bookmarks page.

Please note that most links found in the workshop will open in a new browser window.

 
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Residence Clerk Site

Location:

http://publish.uwo.ca/~dfoley/

This site is hosted on the University of Western Ontario's publish web server. it is a free hosting service available to faculty, staff and students who wish to create web pages to disseminate information relevant to their roles in support of UWO's mission.

Status:

online since spetember 2001.

Users:

The site is intended primarily for uwo's residence clerk team. The team provides round the clock coverage of the front desks at the university's 8 residence buildings. We are the gate keepers and the keepers of the keys.

One of the challenges that I face in developing this site is that the default browser on the office computers is Netscape Navigator 4.x, thus I am limited by that browser's idiosyncracies and inadequacies.

 
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test pages

msn.com tidy! msn.com's front page reworked so that it validates. i whipped up this page when microsoft made some nasty changes to their msn.com site and claimed (falsely) that they wre doing so to support standards. at the time msn.com did not contain valid/standards compliant html, and user's of browsers other than IE were being told to upgrade (to IE of course). note: it no longer works properly due to changes at msn.com (2002.10.07). this page has been referenced by zeldman and nublog.

microtidy! - ooops, i've done it again. this time it's microsoft's corporate homepage redesign (2002.10.04).
score: microsoft 0, little guy 2

fade test this is a sample cover page i've been playing with. the source code is adapted from a sample produced by marcio galli for netscape. it uses DOM 1 and CSS to slide text across the screen and change the font color at the same time.

the background-attachment test pages start here.

 
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accessibility

The Guide to Accessible Information on the Internet by James Byrne provides an excellent introdution to accessibility issues for authors and website developers. This document is located at the Making Connections Unit, also known as Jim's Web accessibility Weblog, which has many more articles, guides, resources and links of interest.

The World Wide Web Consortium(W3C) has its own Web Accessibility Initiative and has produced the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 which explains how you can make your Web content accessible.(Given the normally abtruse technical writing found in W3C documents I wish all W3C Recommendations were this accessible!). They have a large collection of links to more accessibility resources.

A-Prompt (Accessibility Prompt) is a software program designed to aid web developers and content authors create sites that are accessible to the widest possible audience. Based on the WAI guidelines, this software tool is made available through the collaborative efforts of the University of Toronto's Adaptive Technology Resource Centre and the Trace Center at the University of Wisconsin.

You can check your pages for accessibility using tools such as the Center for Applied Special Technology's Bobby and LIFT from UsableNet.

Section 508, an amendment to the Workforce Rehabilitation Act(USA), requires that electronic and information technology which is developed or purchased by the United States Federal Government be accessible to people with disabilities. In order to meet these requirements web authors need to know what accessible means, and what steps they need to take in order to produce compliant documents and sites. A good place to start is with Jim Thatcher's online course entitled: Web Accessibility for Section 508. The Section 508 Standards can be found at the section508.gov site.

 
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colour

color schemer
visibone lab
Death of the Websafe Color Palette?

 
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cascading style sheets

The nuts and bolts of Cascading Style Sheets(CSS) are defined by the CSS1 and CSS2 Recommendations of the W3C. If you are intersted in the development of CSS3, this page is the place to start.

Check your CSS with W3C's Validation Service. A few key points about the validator are illuminated in the FAQ.

The page layouts for this site are all based upon CSS technology. Templates were abducted from Blue Robot's layout resevoir. The technique used here relies upon the ugly/brilliant hack developed by Tantek Celik, originally publicized by Eric Costello. There is a lot of useful information at Eric's site regarding CSS layouts. Another good resource is Owen Brigg's noodle incident. If you are interested in CSS layout techniques and templates, I strongly encourage you to explore these sites.

See also the css reference page of owen briggs.

Eric Meyer is pushing CSS to the edge. He has also made available frame based versions of the W3C Recommendaions, which allow you to quickly access the specific CSS property entries with ease. CSS1 and CSS2.

The CSShark has answers to some frequently asked questions about CSS.

For help in understanding the often obscure and seemingly impenetrable relationships between selectors, you may wish to consult with the SelectOracle.

CSS articles at A List Apart

Cascading Style Sheets: Designing for the Web by Hĺkon Wium Lie and Bert Bos is a great reference from the authors of CSS 1 & 2. Ask for it at your local bookstore.

 
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html/xhtml

HTML has been through a number of versions.

The ISO (International Organization for Standardization) and IEC (International Electrotechnical Commission) have produced a version known as ISO/IEC 15445:2000 (ISO HTML). This is a very strict type of HTML. You may wish to consult the User's Guide to ISO/IEC 15445:2000 HTML.

Dave Raggett has created a great little tool called Tidy which can help clean up your source code. I use TidyGUI, André Blavier's free Windows GUI version.

To check your code against the standards, use the W3C's Validation Service or the Web Desgn Group's HTML Validator which can spider through your site and report on all your pages at once.

HTML/XHTML articles at A List Apart

 
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miscellany

Daily Report, news, rants and god only knows what else, from Zeldman.

Nick Fink at digital web reports on what's new in web design, information architecture etc.

On Fridays I read a list apart an online zine for people who author web sites.

wdvl
webmonkey
webreference
 
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search

DAYPOP
Google
Ixquick Metasearch
All the web

Other search tools:

 
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style guides

The following style guides provide sound guidance.

 
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tools

I do my work on a couple of used PCs. One is an AMD 486 clone box into which I have crammed two hard drives, a CD-ROM, one 3½ and one 5¼ floppy drive. It runs a highly altered version of Windows 98. The other is a Dell Optiplex GL5100 which I picked up for 150 bucks. It runs Windows 95 on an Intel P1.

What follows is a list of software tools that I use.

And here are some online tools:

 
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