Category: Technology

OK Computer: how to work with automation and AI on the web

Auto¬≠mat¬≠ed sys¬≠tems pow¬≠ered by new break¬≠throughs in Arti¬≠fi¬≠cial Intel¬≠li¬≠gence will soon begin to have an impact on the web indus¬≠try. Peo¬≠ple work¬≠ing on the web will have to learn new design dis¬≠ci¬≠plines and tools to stay rel¬≠e¬≠vant. Based on the talk ‚ÄúOK Com¬≠put¬≠er‚ÄĚ that I gave at a num¬≠ber of con¬≠fer¬≠ences in Autumn 2015.

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Hardware APIs coming to browsers

There are many future web stack fea¬≠tures that I see as being vital¬≠ly impor¬≠tant to the long-term health of the web. These include exten¬≠si¬≠ble web projects such as web com¬≠po¬≠nents and CSS Hou¬≠di¬≠ni, as well as the script¬≠ing capa¬≠bil¬≠i¬≠ties in ES7 and beyond. These fea¬≠tures give devel¬≠op¬≠ers bet¬≠ter tools, and more fine con¬≠trol and power.

But I feel that what’s more impor­tant to the imme­di­ate suc­cess of the web are fea­tures that pro­vide par­i­ty with native mobile apps. I’ve writ­ten pre­vi­ous­ly about the impor­tance of ser­vice work­ers in pro­vid­ing this par­i­ty, but there are also a few new fea­tures break­ing through that I’m equal­ly excit­ed about, as they pro­vide access to pre­vi­ous­ly unavail­able hardware.

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Eddystone ‚ÄĒ A Briefing Note on Google‚Äôs New Beacon Format

Yes¬≠ter¬≠day Google announced ‚ÄėEddy¬≠s¬≠tone‚Äô, a new open Blue¬≠tooth bea¬≠con for¬≠mat which works on Android and iOS. I‚Äôve been doing a bit of read¬≠ing about it to under¬≠stand the tech¬≠nol¬≠o¬≠gy and its poten¬≠tial, and I put togeth¬≠er a brief¬≠ing note about it for my col¬≠leagues. I‚Äôm a believ¬≠er in max¬≠imis¬≠ing returns on my con¬≠tent, so it seems like a good oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ty to repub¬≠lish that brief¬≠ing note here.

This is a very rapid and shal­low look into bea­cons, and I’ve no doubt made some omis­sions or inac­cu­ra­cies, so apolo­gies in advance for that. If you think I’ve made any huge over­sights or errors, please feel free to let me know in the comments.

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A More-Than-Bearable Wearable: The LG G Watch

Yes¬≠ter¬≠day I read Chris¬≠t¬≠ian Heilmann‚Äôs arti¬≠cle Bear¬≠able Wear¬≠ables, a review of the Sam¬≠sung Gear Live and Android Wear. Christian‚Äôs over¬≠all opin¬≠ion was that it‚Äôs too flawed for him to cur¬≠rent¬≠ly find use¬≠ful. I‚Äôve been using an LG G Watch for the last few weeks, and have come to a dif¬≠fer¬≠ent con¬≠clu¬≠sion; that being the case, I thought I‚Äôd give my own opin¬≠ion. Con¬≠sid¬≠er this my review of the G Watch, in the form of a response to some of the issues Chris¬≠t¬≠ian raised ‚ÄĒ mean¬≠ing you should first read his arti¬≠cle in order to get the most from this one.

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The Thoughtful Web: a new email newsletter

There are very many excel¬≠lent email newslet¬≠ters cov¬≠er¬≠ing web tech¬≠nolo¬≠gies: Smash¬≠ing Mag¬≠a¬≠zine, CSS Week¬≠ly, Web Design¬≠er Depot are the first three to imme¬≠di¬≠ate¬≠ly spring to mind. But I think there‚Äôs space for anoth¬≠er one, one that has the focus less on code and process and more on phi¬≠los¬≠o¬≠phy and reflec¬≠tion. So I‚Äôm going to start one.

It‚Äôs pro¬≠vi¬≠sion¬≠al¬≠ly titled ‚ÄėThe Thought¬≠ful Web‚Äô, and my inten¬≠tion is to post an occa¬≠sion¬≠al email (not week¬≠ly, more than month¬≠ly), fea¬≠tur¬≠ing arti¬≠cles I think are real¬≠ly worth read¬≠ing. It‚Äôll cov¬≠er the web, new and emerg¬≠ing tech¬≠nol¬≠o¬≠gy, sci¬≠ence, soci¬≠ety, and phi¬≠los¬≠o¬≠phy ‚ÄĒ but I think it will all be rel¬≠e¬≠vant to the work we do mak¬≠ing the web.

If you‚Äôre inter¬≠est¬≠ed, you can sign up today. I intend to send the first email lat¬≠er this week, and I promise I‚Äôll nev¬≠er be spam¬≠my; I hate email noise, and don‚Äôt intend to con¬≠tribute to it.

A simple explanation of High DPI screens

NB: This post is based on a brief¬≠ing note I sent around at rehab¬≠stu¬≠dio, the agency I work for. It‚Äôs intend¬≠ed to clear up some of the con¬≠fu¬≠sion around res¬≠o¬≠lu¬≠tion on mobile devices with high DPI screens, espe¬≠cial¬≠ly when talk¬≠ing with clients, and is aimed at all roles in the agency, not only devel¬≠op¬≠ers. As such, it may not be one hun¬≠dred per¬≠cent ‚Äėcor¬≠rect‚Äô, but I think it does a good enough job of explain¬≠ing the subject.

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I‚Äôve updat¬≠ed my Speak¬≠ing page to include more con¬≠fer¬≠ences, more videos, and a lit¬≠tle on my speak¬≠ing require¬≠ments and pref¬≠er¬≠ences. I‚Äôm plan¬≠ning to cut down on the num¬≠ber of talks I give in 2014 (twelve is too many), but am always open to inter¬≠est¬≠ing offers and oppor¬≠tu¬≠ni¬≠ties, so please get in touch if you‚Äôre organ¬≠is¬≠ing an event.

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