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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. Why Design Systems Fail

    Una Kravets

    Una Kravets takes some time to consider the implementation of design systems, and how and why they might not succeed. Don’t let your design system be like a New Year’s resolution that starts off well but fades by the Spring. With appropriate care it should start to blossom as the snow melts away.

  2. Getting Hardboiled with CSS Custom Properties

    Andy Clarke

    Andy Clarke lifts the lid on Custom Properties, and adds a little spice with an elegant method for providing fallbacks for those with older browsers. Remember, at Christmas we all need to look out for our elders, be they friends, family or even just browsers.

  3. Design Systems and CSS Grid

    Stuart Robson

    Stuart Robson tackles the thorny issue of integrating modern CSS Grid layouts into an existing design system, but in doing so reaps the benefits of leaner, more easily maintainable markup. It goes to show that with careful planning, there’s no reason old and new CSS layout methods cannot meet under the mistletoe.

  4. Teach the CLI to Talk Back

    Anna Debenham

    Anna Debenham sets out to humanise our interactions with the command line to put more of the user into the user interface. Like an injured hedgehog in the winter snow, sometimes we can all benefit from interacting with a human.

  5. Styling Components - Typed CSS With Stylable

    Bruce Lawson

    Bruce Lawson extracts the silver sixpence of CSS from the JavaScript figgy pudding with an open source tool designed to make building styled components a matter of process and not just convention. CSS at scale is challenging, and without good tooling you’ll soon be dousing it with cognac and setting the world alight.

  6. Stop Leaving Animation to the Last Minute

    Val Head

    Val Head delves deep into her Christmas sack to find two very important deliverables. With animation forming such a crucial part of interaction and brand design in modern interfaces, you may not want to leave its implementation to chance.

  7. Automating Your Accessibility Tests

    Seren Davies

    Seren Davies reminds us that unlike Christmas, accessibility testing should not come but once a year with a look at how to apply automated testing. By configuring tests to run against each commit, you can ensure that your site’s accessibility compliance need not be left to chance.

  8. Designing a Remote Project

    Suzanna Haworth

    Suzanna Haworth turns off the daytime TV and puts on her favourite Christmas slippers to discuss the subject of distributed teams. Is working away from the office the key to health and productivity, or a way to avoid small talk at the Christmas party? Well, at least you’ll be home when the postman delivers your shopping.

  9. Levelling Up for Junior Developers

    Dean Hume

    Dean Hume places another log on the fire, sets the poker back on its stand, pulls up and chair and gathers the junior developers around the hearth to impart some wisdom. Whether you’re just starting out or have been in the game some time, we can all benefit from a little levelling up.

  10. Jobs-to-Be-Done in Your UX Toolbox

    Steph Troeth

    Steph Troeth rallies the workshop elves around an idea for revolutionising their worksheets and giving them a new way to think about approaching each job. One thing’s for certain, as Christmas approaches there’s always plenty of jobs to be done.

  11. Lint the Web Forward With Sonarwhal

    Stephanie Drescher

    Stephanie Drescher is making a list and checking it twice to introduce an open source web linting tool that will help identify parts of your site that are naughty or nice. So roll up your sleeves and brush up on your best practices – there’s websites to fix.

  12. Cascading Web Design with Feature Queries

    Chen Hui Jing

    Chen Hui Jing pulls off the dust covers, swings open the storm shutters and lets the winter light fall on the subject of CSS feature queries. The chestnuts may not yet be roasting, and the halls may be still be undecked, but pull up a chair and settle down. It’s Christmas.