Design Principles To Evaluate Your Product


  

A company proves that it has a strong creative process by developing successful products repeatedly. We see this in companies like Apple, BMW and Google. Founders such as Steve Jobs formed a corporate culture with an intense focus on creativity and design. This culture highlights two core elements in the creative process: the ideas and the team.

Product design preview

The creative process can be described in one sentence: Ideas begin with a small team of creative people at the heart of the company who communicate easily with each other.

The post Design Principles To Evaluate Your Product appeared first on Smashing Magazine.


Source: Smashing Magazine

A Beginners Guide to Titan Framework: Automatically Generate CSS for Your Options

One of the coolest features of Titan Framework is that it can automatically generate CSS for all the option types. There also exists a Sass compiler which not only compiles but also minifies the CSS. Two different ways are defined for generating CSS. Let’s automatically generate CSS for your options.

Ways to Generate CSS With TF

There are basically two ways through which you can automatically generate CSS with TF (Titan Framework):

  1. Via the css parameter
  2. Via the createCSS function

1. Generating CSS via the CSS Parameter

Throughout the series, you’ve come across the css parameter for defining CSS rules in most of the options. It is stated in the documentation that whenever you create any option in an admin page and/or theme customizer section, the css parameter generates CSS automatically (only if you are using that parameter). Let’s list all the options which support this parameter:

  • Text
  • Textarea
  • Color
  • Upload
  • Number
  • Editor
  • Checkbox 
  • Font
  • Radio
  • Radio Palette
  • Radio Image
  • Select

Let’s learn how the css parameter generates CSS properties via an example.

Example Declaration

Here, I’ll create a color type option in an admin panel. Use the following code:

I created a color type option at line #19 which sets the color value. I defined the css parameter at line #25. I’ve defined a class and then inside it I have defined the CSS property where I want the color value to be printed. So I added a class aa_bg_class, and inside it I added a CSS property background-color: value;. Here the keyword value will be swapped with the output of this option, i.e. whichever color the user selects will swap it.

Titan automatically generates a CSS file that contains all your CSS rules for you. It creates the file inside WordPress’s uploads folder in the format: titan-framework-<namespace>-css.css. In my case it is titan-framework-neat-css.css.

Let’s use this option to automatically generate CSS.

Example Usage

I added a div tag with class aa_bg_class and some dummy text on my page. 

Displaying the Result at the Front-End

Let’s select a demo color from the admin.

Generate CSS for Options

Look, the background color has been automagically applied. 

Viewing the result of the save color for options

2. Generating CSS via the CreateCSS Function

There is another way to generate CSS with TF. This is via the createCSS function, which declares all your CSS styles.

Let’s explain how it works with an example.

Example Declaration

I’m using the same color type option which was explained previously.

Here, I created an admin panel named Neat Options at line #7. Then I added a color type option at line #18. Next I defined the createCSS function at line #33 which takes up the variable $aa_color_opt. This is basically the ID of the same color type option I just defined above, and this variable has the value of the color which the end user selected in the admin panel.

Again note that this is a Sass (Syntactically Awesome Style Sheets) variable which corresponds to the ID of the option you want to get the value of. So don’t mix it up with a normal PHP variable.

I’ve added single quotes to avoid escaping the $ sign of the variable. Inside CSS I am targeting h1 headings. I set the value of the color option against the color property of CSS at line #34.

Example Usage

At this stage, if you preview the front-end it displays heading 1 in its default color.

Previewing the header in its default color

Let’s choose any demo color and save it. Suppose I select #ed3325.

Changing the color of the heading

The color of the heading now changes to this new value. Here is the screenshot:

Viewing the updated header

You can read more about the createCSS function.

Conclusion

Have fun generating CSS with Titan Framework. Make sure you are using the latest Titan Framework release

In my opinion, the createCSS function works really well when you need to add multiple CSS values dynamically, in a more controlled and modular fashion. 

If you have any questions, comment here or reach out to me on Twitter.


Source: Nettuts Web Development

How Enterprise App Development Can Improve Your Business

Here are some facts about ‘millennials’.

They are the generation born between the early 1980s and the 2000s and include about 80 million of the world’s population, higher than any other generation. Millennials are the new leaders in technology as well as other industries and it’s speculated that they will comprise of about 75 percent of the global workforce in the next 10 years.

The comfort level of millennials with technology is evident from a report, which states that millennials are attached to their mobile devices so much that they are 15 times more likely to give up coffee and 7 times more likely to give up television than their smartphones. Research conducted by Oracle reveals that almost 55% of millennials say that a poor mobile app experience would make them less likely to use a company’s products and/or services.

Continue reading %How Enterprise App Development Can Improve Your Business%


Source: Sitepoint

A Retrospective on Ruby in 2015

Progress Bar Uninstalling with the text: 2015

We’ve come to the end of 2015, which was a big year in Ruby. I thought it’d be a hoot to go back and look at some of the epics (major themes) of the year and the stories that comprised them. Kind of like a Agile process retrospective where I’m treating 2015 as a set of sprints and seeing how we did.

In order to play out this contrived idea all the way, I will need to define the epics. I’d say that, almost every year, Ruby has the following major areas/epics/whatever where the community needs to be productive in order to consider that sprint/year a success:

  • Improve the language
  • Grow the community
  • Keep up with the rest of the programming world

Those are the epics I’ve defined. In order to measure how the Ruby community did, I am going to revisit the blog posts, articles, and videos that touch on sub-themes of these epics. I am sure I’ll miss some, but that’s what comments are for, right?

Finally, any retrospective worth its weight in gems needs to look at what didn’t work. I’ll do that to round out our time today. My guess is some astute readers will have plenty to add to my list.

Continue reading %A Retrospective on Ruby in 2015%


Source: Sitepoint

Magento Theme Development: Product Page, Part 1

Now that we have completed the home page and the category page, in this tutorial we’ll start editing the third most important page of the eCommerce website: the product page. Let’s first open up the product page, and see how it looks now and how we want it to look.

The product page in our HTML design looks like this:

HTML design of product page

Our current product page looks like this:

Product Page before editing

To start editing it, we’ll do the same step as we have done dozens of times so far, i.e. enabling the template hints to figure out which template files are responsible for rendering this page.

Enabling template hints

As we can see, the page is a compilation of over a dozen files, but luckily we don’t have to edit all of these. We’ll just have to edit three or four of these files, and for the rest we’ll just modify the styles to make them look like our design, without messing with the phtml files.

If you look closely, the overall structure of the product section is coming from the templatecatalogproductview.phtml file. I’ve pointed that out through an arrow in the above image. This file is providing the outer structure of all components and then the inner parts are coming from other templates, but
we’ll edit this outer one first.

We’ll copy this view.phtml file into our new theme, and
start editing it. The current code of this file looks like this:

Now we have to check out our HTML code, and we’ll put all of our HTML code into this view.phtml file and then start editing
it. The current code of the details.html file in our HTML design file is like this (I’m only copying the code for the product part excluding header, footer section, etc.):

I know that’s a lot of code, and might scare you away. But don’t worry, because as you’ll see when we start placing the dynamic tags in it, the code will start melting fast, and we don’t have to worry about most of it.

Now we’ll start
editing this HTML code by inserting dynamic tags from our actual view.phtml file.

First of all, we’ll add these lines at the top, to do some initialization:

And then close the product-view div at the end of the file
(line 314):

Next we’ll wrap the product details div inside a form
element, as it is in the actual view.phtml file. So we’ll add these lines inside the product-details div at line 10:

Likewise, we’ll now close this form, and also copy this JavaScript from view.phtml at line 77:

In the next step, inside tab-box div (starting at line 129), remove all of the
existing code, and copy the following tab code from view.phtml (around 100 lines of code replaced with these few lines). To make sure that the tab JavaScript keeps working fine, we’ll add the current classes tab tab-box
div, so the new code will look like this:

With all that done, now we’ll insert the <?php echo
$this->getChildHtml('related_products') ?>
tag inside the hot-products
div, after removing existing code, so that it looks like this at line 166:

See how around 150 lines of code is replaced with just these three lines? Let’s save everything and see how the page is coming along so
far. If you did everything right, it should look something like this:

Product page after editing viewphtml

It might look all messed up, but trust me, we are getting
closer to what we want the page to look like. In the next article, we’ll edit the files responsible for rendering the images section, related products, etc., and we’ll lastly do some styling fixes, and our product page will be ready.

In the end, let me reiterate that the large chunks of code shown above might intimidate you at first, but once you start replacing the code with appropriate dynamic tags, you’ll soon realize that editing these isn’t much work.

In the next article, we’ll complete the rest of this page by editing other phtml files.


Source: Nettuts Web Development

Generating SVG With React


  

React is one of today’s most popular ways to create a component-based UI. It helps to organize an application into small, human-digestible chunks. With its “re-render the whole world” approach, you can avoid any complex internal interactions between small components, while your application continues to be blazingly fast due to the DOM-diffing that React does under the hood (i.e. updating only the parts of the DOM that need to be updated).

Generating SVG With React

But can we apply the same techniques to web graphics — SVG in particular? Yes! I don’t know about you, but for me SVG code becomes messy pretty fast. Trying to grasp what’s wrong with a graph or visualization just by looking at SVG generator templates (or the SVG source itself) is often overwhelming, and attempts to maintain internal structure or separation of concerns are often complex and tedious.

The post Generating SVG With React appeared first on Smashing Magazine.


Source: Smashing Magazine

How to Simplify Managing Multiple WordPress Sites

What You’ll Be Creating

I pitched this story to Envato Tuts+ back in August 2014 but have been too busy running WordPress and plugin updates on all my sites to find time to write it (well, and I had brain surgery). Over time, I grew increasingly curious about WordPress network managers and whether they might save me time—ManageWP does. It’s a well-built administrative aggregator that lets you manage and post to your sites all from one service.

With more than a dozen WordPress updates this year and the cascading accompaniment of plugin upgrades, it becomes more and more time-consuming to keep up—especially if you run a lot of websites like many readers. Or, let’s say you find a great plugin and want to install it on a dozen of your client’s websites? Generally, there goes a couple of hours.

With ManageWP, you can upgrade WordPress and install plugins across your networks with a few clicks. In this tutorial, I’ll guide you through signing up and using the service in some common scenarios across your site network, such as updating WordPress, installing plugins, managing users and roles, running backups and more.

Before we get started, please remember, I do try to participate in the discussions below. If you have a question or topic suggestion, please post a comment below or contact me on Twitter @reifman. You can also email me directly.

What ManageWP Offers

ManageWP The Ultimate WordPress Dashboard

For up to five websites, ManageWP is free. There’s a two-week trial period in which you’ll have access to its premium feature set. There’s also a no-questions-asked 30-day money-back guarantee.

Pricing and Plans

ManageWP provides a handy calculator for estimating costs with your WordPress network. The more client sites you run, the more you click and drag the slider to the right:

ManageWP Pricing and Plans

Based on how $loaded$ you are, you can pay monthly, annually or biennially to save money. You actually have to use the calculator to pick your initial plan and register. 

ManageWP Pricing Calculator

The Register & Checkout button is used to sign up. It’s the only signup entry point I found.

Also, as a blogger, I appreciate good affiliate programs and was impressed with ManageWP’s offering as well. If you’re intrigued, I posted a bit more about it on my blog

Getting Started

Once you’ve registered for your initial account, you can sign in from the home page:

ManageWP Sign In

Installation

Initially, you’ll see the empty dashboard to Add your website:

ManageWP Empty Dashboard

There are two ways to do this. First, let’s do it the manual way. From the WordPress site you want to manage, you’ll search for the ManageWP Worker plugin:

ManageWP ManageWP Worker Plugin Install

Click Install Now and Activate Plugin:

ManageWP ManageWP Worker Plugin Install Activation

You’ll see this page:

ManageWP ManageWP Worker Plugin Installed

From your ManageWP dashboard, enter your site’s domain name and select No, I have already installed the Worker plugin and activated it.

ManageWP Add your Website to the Dashboard

ManageWP will talk to its plugin:

ManageWP Adding Website

And, you’ll be connected and ready to go. There’s an optional security check which you can run after connecting each of your websites.

ManageWP Run Your Security Check

This can be helpful to detect vulnerabilities or compromised code on your website:

ManageWP Run Your Security Check in progress

Once the security check is complete, you’ll see this dialog:

ManageWP Site Added

The Dashboard

With your site integrated, the Dashboard will now be populated with an array of the features that make ManageWP so useful:

ManageWP The Dashboard with Sites

If you want to change the layout a bit, you can customize what appears on your dashboard from the Settings > Widgets menu:

ManageWP Settings Widgets for Dashboard

I’ve done a lot of work with WordPress and written a lot about WordPress for Envato Tuts+. ManageWP impressed me a great deal with its straightforward user experience and its incredibly useful set of features.

You can even access and work with your native WordPress dashboard from within the ManageWP dashboard:

ManageWP Use WP Dashboard in Place

Adding Websites Directly

Once you’re comfortable with ManageWP, there’s a faster way to add the remainder of your sites. If you provide your WordPress administration username and password, it can install the plugin for you. Select Yes, install and activate the Worker plugin for me:

ManageWP Add Websites Directly

Once I gained a sense for the quality of the service, I felt comfortable sharing my site authentication with the service and quickly added more sites to the network.

Helpful Usage Scenarios

ManageWP performs a number of highly useful tasks for WordPress consultants and clients. These are all things I generally do by hand today—or procrastinate doing.

Updating Themes

Here’s an example of how easy it is to update site features from within its dashboard. In the image below, I’m updating my themes at SimpleStart.io:

ManageWP Updating Themes

Updating Plugins

Updating plugins is a far more frequent and useful scenario. In the image below, ManageWP helps me update five of my plugins at ProTools.io:

ManageWP Updating Plugins

Backups

There are a variety of ways to back up WordPress, but ManageWP includes a simple, powerful, schedule-able option:

ManageWP Backups

I especially like how the service allows you to target a variety of locations for the backup to live, including Amazon S3, Dropbox, Google Drive, FTP and even your email.

ManageWP Backup Destinations

In this manual scenario, it provided me a download link:

ManageWP Backup Complete

It’s easy to connect to Dropbox and Google Drive under Settings > Linked Services:

ManageWP Dropbox and Google Drive

Installing Plugins Across Sites

Recently, I noticed an ad on Tom McFarlin’s site for the Bloom plugin. I’d been procrastinating installing an email opt-in form on my websites. I trust Tom’s judgement (he’s kind of my boss) so after reviewing the Bloom website a bit, I decided to install it on four sites.

I just needed to drag the purchased Bloom.zip file to the upload drop area below:

ManageWP Network Plugin Installation

Within moments, ManageWP installed and activated the plugin on my four sites:

ManageWP Plugins Installed Successfully

Honestly, this is one of the most awesome features of ManageWP.

Posting to Multiple Sites

If you need to post content to a few of your sites—say a vacation or service change notice—ManageWP allows you to post directly from its interface to any sites registered in your network. 

You write the post as if you were in WordPress and select the sites to publish to in the right-hand sidebar:

ManageWP Broadcasting Posts

Managing Users and Roles Across Sites

I think I have about a dozen variations of administrative logins, and ManageWP makes it easy to create one new aggregated uber admin with an awesomely complex username and password:

ManageWP Managing Users Across Sites

Chaos be gone!

Advanced Features

ManageWP’s premium plans offer a variety of other features which I’ll run through briefly.

Performance Reports

Its performance scans show you Google’s page speed analysis and the YSlow report with details:

ManageWP Website Performance Reports

SEO Analysis

There are also SEO reports. I ran a basic one which you should be able to review here (as the SimpleTech.io site is new, it’s probably not the best example).

ManageWP SEO Reports

Uptime Monitoring

Last year, I wrote about my Simple Monitor DIY app in Generate Notifications From Your Web App With the Pushover API (Envato Tuts+). My solution works great for me but it’s not necessarily a robust solution for my clients. ManageWP also integrates monitoring and notifications:

ManageWP Uptime Monitoring

The higher-level business plan is required to receive SMS notifications.

Security

Once you provide access to ManageWP to all of your WordPress accounts, security for your account there becomes essential and vital.

There are a number of great features ManageWP provides to manage security:

ManageWP Security Features

Again, you need a higher-level business plan to receive 2FA codes via text. Relying on email for code delivery might be kind of slow. IP access restriction might be a good in-between option.

Questions?

If you have questions, ManageWP offers a well-organized User Guide:

ManageWP User Guide

In Conclusion

Frankly, I wish I’d investigated ManageWP sooner. It offers everything it promises in an efficient, well-designed, economical service. I’m impressed with its usefulness and ease of use.

For me, it’s a no-brainer to purchase the standard plan if only for WordPress and plugin update management. I’m not yet sold on the Professional plan—cloning a site required FTP, which I avoid. The Business plan is attractive for its SEO, 2FA SMS delivery and white labeling. What do you think of the service? Baris Unver is going to be evaluating more of them soon. If there’s one you want him to explore, post a comment below.

Please also feel free to post your questions below. Or you can contact me on Twitter @reifman or email me directly. Please check out my Envato Tuts+ instructor page to see other tutorials I’ve written, such as my startup series (Building Your Startup With PHP) which I’m looking forward to getting back to now that I’m past my health challenges this year.

Related Links


Source: Nettuts Web Development

Get 2,000+ App Icons for $29.99

An easy way to save time on your next project while keeping your designs sleek and professional? Tempting. A way to do it for $29.99? Unmissable. Get Icon Tail’s iOS and Android Vector Bundle for $29.99 at SitePoint Shop. This pro-quality bundle includes 2,000+ ready-to-use icons in up to 12 file types for iOS, Android, […]

Continue reading %Get 2,000+ App Icons for $29.99%


Source: Sitepoint

Pass the Amazon Web Services Certification Exams with This $19 Bundle

It’s no secret that hiring managers are impressed by developers well-versed in the Amazon Web Services platform. It’s also no secret that SitePoint Shop is home to some of the top certification trainings available—including this one. Get the Amazon Web Services certification bundle for $19. This bundle includes two courses that’ll prep you for the […]

Continue reading %Pass the Amazon Web Services Certification Exams with This $19 Bundle%


Source: Sitepoint