The Best of September 2016: News, Tutorials, and Freebies
September is a time of transition. As everyone settles into their fall routines lots of new products and updates are released. Grab your favorite warm beverage, curl up, and catch up on all the latest news. We’ve curated only the best in the dev and design world and tossed in a few freebies to boot!
Some of the big players made some very big announcements. Apple introduced a new phone and Google announced that they would finally support responsive emails. Talk about a perfect intersection of software and hardware! In addition, Angular and Sketch released major updates.
iPhone 7. September brought the long awaited release of the iPhone 7. Apple is known for their innovation, which means either the wireless AirPods that replace earbuds will either set the new standard or be Apple’s latest Lisa (the pc that failed to take the world by storm). Apple is pushing the benefits of the improved camera and display, but developers need to pay attention to the concurrent release of iOS10. More robust Siri, Maps, Phone, and Messages APIs are waiting for you.
Angular. The release of Angular 2.0 was officially announced over at Google HQ in September. It’s optimized for productivity, stable, and continues to be flexible to suit your needs. Creating and scaffolding apps is incredibly easy with Angular CLI. As if that were not enough, the near future promises to bring even more speed and payload size improvements.
Sketch. Sketch 40 is here. Finally, Scale remembers the corner you last scaled from. In addition, vector editing is supported. You can edit multiple shapes at the same time and text can be styled in uppercase or lowercase. This release is loaded with bug fixes too. If you haven’t upgraded yet, you should.
Gmail. Gmail by Google is getting responsive. At long last, Gmail will support media queries in CSS. Well OK, some queries. You can now query against screen size, orientation, and resolution. It’s a start. The entire list of supported properties and queries is listed in their developer’s reference guide.
MUST-SEES FOR DEVELOPERS
Things are picking up on the dev front as well. September saw the release of a ton of demos and articles on improving your projects. We’ve selected the best demos, tools, and info you need to stay current.
Motion Background Effect. You must see this creative background segment effect created with anime.js and the CSS clip-path property. Filippo Bello replicates boxes from the background image and then animates them to move in perspective to the viewer. Be sure to view the demo to see all six variations.
Launch Checklist. Ever wish you had a checklist to make sure all bases are covered before your next site launches? You don’t need a magic lamp or a genie; Creative Market has granted your wish. This Website Launch Checklist covers 50 items that range from the basics (domain) to four required pages every site needs (do you know what they are?), front-end considerations, as well as technical issues. It’s definitely worth bookmarking.
Developing and Designing for Accessibility. Have you started to incorporate accessibility into your projects? It is estimated that 246 million people have vision problems. Many of these people will use the high contrast setting in their Windows to make their screens easier to read. This article covers how to use CSS to make SVGs render properly in High Contrast mode. If you don’t think web accessibility is important, read Why Web Accessibility is More Relevant Than You Think.
Ruby vs Python. Still on the fence about using Ruby or Python? This entertaining read is the Ruby vs Python Definitive FAQ and promises to once and for all answer the question, “Which is best?” The answer may surprise you.
WEB DESIGN MIX
Thinking about sprucing up your website or looking for new collaboration tools? Here are some of the best articles from the world of design and a free open source color palette.
Git for Designers. Git is great for designers too. Get out of here, you say! True, Git is a great way for teams to collaborate. Discover Why a UI Designer Should Try Git and you just might find yourself a convert too.
Website Redesign. Is it time for a website redesign? Get tips and tricks for an Effective and High-Returning Website Redesign. Functionality and UX have got to be top-notch or your visitors will navigate away quickly.
Open Color. Here’s a great color scheme for UI design. Open Color is great for borders, backgrounds, and fonts. It includes 12 colors plus gray, and is available as CSS, SCSS, and STYL files.
Tiny Logos. The standard placement for a logo has been the upper-left hand corner. That hasn’t changed, but the size of logos is shrinking! The trend has its roots in minimalism, but it works and plays well with many design patterns. Learn What’s Up with All Those Tiny Corner Logos and how to make it work with square logos, app icon-style logos, logotype, and more.
Here’s a collection of free fonts and templates to squirrel away.
Free Handwriting Font. Weem is the free font that gives you the sketchy style you want in a serious handwriting font. It has upper and lower case as well as all the accents and umlauts you need for non-English text.
Free Icon Sets. Here are two great flat line UX and e-commerce icon sets. They can be used for commercial and personal applications. There are a total of 83 icons, all for the great price of free!
Octanis. Octanis is a free font set that includes 8 stunning styles. Serif, sans, and slab are all included. This font set was made for headlines, logos, and even text.
Did you see a great demo or read an article we missed? Be sure to comment below to share with the community. We always love to see what inspires you. To stay up-to-date with the latest industry news and our announcements, subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.