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24 ways to impress your friends


24 ways is the advent calendar for web geeks. For twenty-four days each December we publish a daily dose of web design and development goodness to bring you all a little Christmas cheer. Learn more

  1. The Accidental Side Project

    Drew McLellan

    Drew McLellan puts the chairs up on the tables, sweeps the floor, and closes off our season, and indeed the entire 24 ways project with a look back at what it’s meant to run this site as a site project, and what impact side projects can have on the work we do. Will the last one out turn off Christmas the lights?

  2. Usability and Security; Better Together

    Divya Sasidharan

    Divya Sasidharan calls into question the trade-offs often made between security and usability. Does a secure interface by necessity need to be hard to use? Or is it the choice we make based on years of habit? Snow has fallen, snow on snow.

  3. Flexible Captioned Slanted Images

    Eric Meyer

    Eric Meyer gift wraps the most awkwardly shaped of boxes using nothing but CSS, HTML and a little curl of ribbon. No matter how well you plan and how much paper you have at your disposal, sometimes you just need to slant the gift to the side.

  4. There Is No Design System

    Jina Anne

    Jina Anne silences the night to talk about how we talk about Design Systems. Can the language we use impact the effectiveness of the solution? Fear not, if mighty dread has seized your troubled mind. Design systems of great joy we bring to you and all mankind.

  5. A Modern Typographic Scale

    Rob Weychert

    Rob Weychert reaches for the top notes to sing us a song of typographic scale. A little attention to scale and to the mathematics will help you to hit a high note with your designs this Christmas and beyond.

  6. Building a Dictaphone Using Media Recorder and getUserMedia

    Chris Mills

    Chris Mills brushes up his shorthand and shows how the MediaStream Recording API in modern browsers can be used to capture audio directly from the user’s device. Inching ever closer to the capabilities of native software, it truly is an exciting time to be a web developer.

  7. A History of CSS Through Fifteen Years of 24 ways

    Rachel Andrew

    Rachel Andrew guides us through a tour of the last fifteen years in CSS layout, as manifested in articles here on 24 ways. From the days when Internet Explorer 6 was de rigueur, right up to the modern age of evergreen browsers, the only thing you can be sure of is that the web never stands still for long.

  8. Microbrowsers are Everywhere

    Colin Bendell

    Colin Bendell gets into the minutia of microbrowsers - the small previews of your site that are pervasive all around the web and through social media apps and search engines whenever an item of content on your site is referenced.

  9. Design Tokens and Component Based Design

    Stuart Robson

    Stuart Robson rolls up his sleeves and begins to piece together the jigsaw puzzle that is design tokens and component based design. Starting with the corners, and working around the edges, Stu helps us to piece together a full picture of a modern design system.

  10. Art Direction and the New WordPress Editor

    Mel Choyce

    Mel Choyce explores how the new WordPress editor (also know as Gutenberg) can be used to create more carefully art directed posts. Like gifts carefully arranged beneath the Christmas tree, it’s the contents that matters but the presentation that sells.

  11. Making Distributed Working Work

    Anna Debenham

    Anna Debenham harnesses up the huskies and puts them to work to figure out how teams distributed across multiple locations can work effectively to all pull in the same direction. With modern workforces distributed from north pole to south, can they all be kept running in step?

  12. Gift Giving to the World (Wide Web)

    Frances Berriman

    Frances Berriman asks us to give the gift of consideration to those who are using the web on constricted devices such as low-end smart phones or feature phones. Christmas is a time of good will to all, and as Bugsy Malone reminds us, you give a little love and it all comes back to you.

  13. Z’s Still Not Dead Baby, Z’s Still Not Dead

    Andy Clarke

    Andy Clarke digs deep into snow to find ways flat design can be brought back to life in CSS with the use of techniques to create a sense of depth. Like spring after an everlasting winter, perhaps it’s time to let a different style of design flourish. What a relief.

  14. It’s Time to Get Personal

    Laura Kalbag

    Laura Kalbag discusses the gift of personal data we give to Big Tech when we share information on its platforms, and how reviving ye olde personal website can be one way to stay in control of the content we share and the data we leak. Christmas is a time for giving, but know what you’re giving to whom.

  15. It All Starts with a Humble <textarea>

    Andy Bell

    Andy Bell rings out a fresh call in support of the timeless concept of progressive enhancement. What does it mean to build a modern JavaScript-focussed web experience that still works well if part of the stack isn’t supported or fails? Andy shows us how that might be done.

  16. Iconography of Security

    Molly Wilson & Eileen Wagner

    Molly Wilson and Eileen Wagner battle the age old Christmas issues of right and wrong, good and evil, and how the messages we send through iconography design can impact the decisions users make around important issues of security. Are you icons wise men, or are they actually King Herod?

  17. Interactivity and Animation with Variable Fonts

    Mandy Michael

    Mandy Michael turns the corner on our variable font adventure and stumbles into a grotto of wonder and amazement. Not forgetting the need for a proper performance budget, Mandy shows how variable fonts can free your creativity from bygone technical constraints.

  18. An Introduction to Variable Fonts

    Jason Pamental

    Jason Pamental forges a path through the freshly laid snowy landscape of variable fonts. Like a brave explorer in a strange new typography topology let Jason show you the route to some fantastic font feats. Everything you thought you knew has changed.

  19. Twelve Days of Front End Testing

    Amy Kapernick

    Amy Kapernick sings us through numerous ways of improving the robustness and reliability of our front end code with a comprehensive rundown of ideas, tools, and resources. The girls and boys won’t get any toys until all the tests are passing.

  20. Making a Better Custom Select Element

    Julie Grundy

    Julie Grundy kicks off this, our fifteenth year, by diving headlong into the snowy issue of customising form inputs. Nothing makes a more special gift at Christmas that something you’ve designed and customised yourself. But can it be done while staying accessible to every user?