Tag: Microsoft

Dispatches from the Spry Hive: Week 33

Posted by Ken Moire & filed under Tips.

This post is part of a weekly series featuring the latest buzz around the Spry Hive.

“My opinion is it’s a bridge too far to go to fully autonomous cars.”
– Elon Musk

Web Design & Development

Chris Coyier decided to jot down what goes through his head when examining a website. Good items to think about when building your next website.


Microsoft and An Event Apart are teaming up for another 10k Apart, a contest for web designers and developers to create ultra lean, compelling experiences that are under 10 kilobytes in size and don’t use JavaScript. Did we mention there are awards?


Dan Mall, former design director at Happy Cog and technical editor at A List Apart, shares his design trade secrets.


When PHP attacks:


Also found on Twitter… The importance of code reviews:


More emails are opened on mobile devices and that number is growing. Here is a great list of lessons learned from building responsive emails.


Still exploring what you can do with scalable vector graphics (SVG)? Well, learn what’s new with SVG 2.


If you prefer your sites on the static side, then you’re probably familiar with Jekyll. If you’d like to try the new Jekyll Admin before its release next week, they’re looking for early user feedback.


Misc

Twitter has some new features that allow you to better control your experience.


Uber Driverless Car

Courtesy Foo Conner / Flickr via Motherboard

Uber will begin transporting customers around with driverless cars starting this month in Pittsburgh.


After years of financial troubles and its share of controversy, Gawker will end operations come next week.


NASA is making 861 research papers available for free as part of their new PubSpace database. While you can expect the number of NASA-funded articles published to PubSpace to increase over time, the space agency will not be releasing all of their research. Exempt are materials governed by personal privacy, proprietary, or security laws.


Kick your legs up at the pool, beach or backyard and enjoy a lazy summer weekend with the Spry Hive. See you next week!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2016: Week 15

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

This post is part of a weekly series featuring the latest buzz around the Spry Hive.

Around Spry

This week opened with an addition to our creative team, Jay Yerxa. Jay is Spry Digital’s new Sr. Digital Art Director. Warm welcome, Jay!

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The rest of the week was filled with celebration as Spry Digital turned 6 years old! On Wednesday, our festivities took us to the ever-delicious Clementine’s Creamery. Above you can see part of the team after indulging in a little too much ice cream!

Web Design & Development

Laugh in the face of your web development & programming woes with these brilliantly hilarious coding inspired captions paired with classical paintings.

Discover why all client questions, both the commonly easy and challenging ones, are as much a part of UX/UI as user testing itself in Orr Shtuhl’s “Looking for ‘Trouble’” on A List Apart.


Faster image loading and responsive preview are just two of many new features in WordPress 4.5 “Coleman”, which is now available and named after jazz saxophonist Coleman Hawkins.

Learn all there is to know about content quality audits and how they can rejuvenate your website with Content Strategy Inc.

Continue indulging in web design topics with the Top 10 Web Design Readings for April 2016 by Mybridge Design.

Misc.

Discussing & keeping track of individual topics in Slack just got a whole lot easier as the company announced that they are bringing threaded messaging to the application.

Find the solutions to your design problems as Bloomberg has brought together 25 original thinkers in The Design Issue 2016.

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Microsoft is officially joining Apple in the fight against the government secretly accessing citizen’s emails, suing the U.S. Department of Justice.

Check out the data behind about 2000 screenplay scripts and uncover what it means about the current state of film.

Who doesn’t enjoy a good 404 page or people who are able to laugh at themselves? Well, you’ll find both when you can’t find what you’re looking for on Hillary Clinton’s website.


That wraps up the news of the week. Don’t forget to stop by next week for more from the Spry Hive.

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2016: Week 13

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

0This post is part of a weekly series featuring the latest buzz around the Spry Hive.

Around Spry

This week we hosted the St. Louis Drupal Users group for the first of many planning meetings for 2016 Drupal Camp St. Louis. Keep your eyes peeled here for more information about the event that will be happening this Fall. To get involved, visit the DrupalSTL Meetup Page.

Members of Spry will be representing the Drupal Association at the PHPTek Conference from May 23-27, so make sure you visit us at the Drupal table in-between the excellent sessions scheduled throughout the week.

Web Design & Development

Ensure that the website you’re designing meets the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines with these helpful tips.

The Spry team is a fan of Zurb’s Foundation tools as we’ve discussed previously. This week, we had the opportunity to hear from the Zurb team and ask them questions about their products in the form of an AMA.

stickers

Rep your favorite brands in programming and development tools with three free dev stickers.

Developers can sign-up for the Safari Technology Preview to get early glimpses into future browser and Webkit application releases.

To much applause, Microsoft has announced that Bash, the Linux command line, is finally coming to Windows.

Misc.

The FBI officially dropped their headline case against Apple. Now the tables have turned, as Apple is demanding that the agency reveals how they hacked the San Bernardino iPhone.

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Find out how Google caused a panic among users with this year’s April Fools Day joke, Google Mic Drop (that’s already been disabled).

Just when you thought Microsoft had learned its lesson after last week’s gaff with their Twitter AI, Tay, the company once again had to shut off the A.I. after it got stuck talking to itself.

There’s no excuse not to make your photos look great, as Google has announced that their photo editing software, the seven plugin Nik Collection, is now free.

Dig into the roots and legacy of the blues at the grand opening of the National Blues Museum in St. Louis this weekend.


 

Stay safe out there during the rest of April Fools Day and don’t forget to stop by next week for more Spry Hive!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2016: Week 10

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

The first full week of March saw some big news coming out of the tech giants like Microsoft and Google. So, catch up on everything you missed in this week’s Spry Hive!

The Web

Can Chris Poole save Google+? Hoping to revitalize their social efforts, Google has hired Chris Poole, the founder and developer of the popular online community 4chan.

Music

Learning about and visualizing music just got a lot easier and more convenient with Chrome Music Lab.

See Martin Molin bring his music to life with the fascinating Wintergatan Marble Machine.

Adding to the list of fallen stars in 2016, it was announced with much sorrow that the Beatles “fifth-member”, producer George Martin, has passed away this week.

Open Source Technology

Access to data may equal access to opportunity! Attempting to aid both families and communities, the White House has launched a program that provides access to local and federal data called the Opportunity Project.

Microsoft is evidently opening it’s front doors to the open source community, announcing that SQL server will now run on Linux.

The Getty Research Institute knows a thing or two about the obstacles of collaboration, which is why they’ve built a single platform to simplify the processes of communicating and file sharing called Getty Scholar’s Workshop.

Web Development and Design

Express yourself with emojis and code at the same time with Emojicode.

Version control your designs with ease using the new Git Sketch Plugin.

migration-trail

RIP Drupal 6. After seven years of success, Drupal 6 has finally been laid to rest. Find out what that means for sites still using D6 and how to plan your migration.

Still need convincing for making the jump to the latest Drupal release? Explore the various ways Drupal 8 makes things easier with Configuration Management.

Misc

Secret societies have been a topic of history and legend for as long as society itself, so sate your imagination with this inside look at San Francisco’s $2 Million Secret Society Startup.

download

Eating chocolate makes you smarter! Ever since it’s discovery, humans have been trying to justify their love for chocolate. Well, after 40 years of dedicated research, we now know the magical effects chocolate has on the brain.


That concludes another week of the Spry Hive. Don’t forget to spring your clocks forward this Sunday and stop by next week!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 45

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

Halloween may have been this past weekend, but that didn’t stop the working world. In fact, the holiday provided plenty of inspiration for designers, developers, and, of course, the internet. So, try not to fall out of your seats, and enjoy another week of the Spry Hive.

Tech

Superman isn’t the only one who can see through walls anymore, as developers at MIT have harnessed the superpower using wifi.

transparent-aluminum-640x425

Source = Naval Research Laboratory

Move aside, Glass. Furthering the legacy of Star Trek, Dr. Jas Sanghera has proven the feasibility of transparent aluminum.

Web & Apps

Step up your internet game with the ultimate Gif dance party.

If you’ve never heard of Basecamp, it’s about time to catch up. As of Nov. 3rd, Basecamp 3 is already available.

Have you been a fan of Snapchat’s sense of anonymity? Well, the company just reserved the rights to store your selfies.

Evidently, after luring customers into using OneDrive with unlimited storage, Microsoft has decided to drop the too good to be true offer, resetting the max limit at 1 Terabyte.

Design

Love the design of historic artifacts? Take a look at the Massimo and Lella Vignelli papers on Tumblr.

 

Mike Wasowski

Source = Go Monster Project

Acknowledging how creative our kids can be, the designers at Go Monster Project have created some stunning digital renditions of monster drawings from children.

Development

If you haven’t already heard, Drupal 8 will finally be released on November 19th! Join the celebration and find a release party near you.

Bring the weather to your users with Rain & Water Effects.

Interested in learning more about Apple’s cryptography?

Responsiveness is taking over the web, so be sure you keep up on all your CSS, jQuery, and JavaScript.

Front-end development has been, well… developing. So, what do we know now about the community?

Misc.

Watch out now, studies say your cat may want to kill you!

Space

Before NASA held another major press conference this week, the US Space agency put out an open call for the next generation of astronauts that will guide humanity to Mars.


So, as you can see, the holiday weekend did everything but hinder the week’s productivity. Hopefully you found something worth sharing with friends and family. Don’t forget to stop by next week for another dose of the Spry Hive!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 42

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

While the first debate for Democratic Presidential Candidates took over our feeds this week, a world’s worth of news flew right by! So, sit back, relax, and catch back up with your weekly dose of the Spry Hive.

Tech

Dandelion

Boeing shocked the tech world with the lightest metal ever, which happens to be 99.99% air.

Without the help of Comcast, or any other large ISP, the town of Chattanooga, Tennessee now offers internet speeds of 10Gbps!

Web

Use caution with Adobe’s Flash Player, as the company just announced a critical vulnerability in the software.

Following Google Chrome’s lead, Mozilla recently announce that Firefox will stop supporting plugins.

It’s always nice to hear someone own up to their mistakes, especially when they are internet advertisers.

Apps

Math class just got a lot more musical with the newest mod for TI graphing calculators.

Design

151009145016-lexus-cardboard-3-super-169

While it’s no hoverboard, Lexus’ latest design was inspired by origami…and cardboard.

Here are a few UX habits that will aid any designer.

The countdown to Halloween has begun! Get excited with 31 days of your favorite horror characters, illustrated and motion animated.

Development

While Foundation 6 is still in production, Zurb has released a Sass library for custom CSS animations, Motion UI, for free.

Once again attempting to create a more user-friendly experience on the mobile web, Google has announced a new project for developers aptly named Accelerated Mobile Pages.

Misc.

Ever thought you’d have a shot at graduating from MIT? Well, now you have a better chance than ever, as the university announced their first degree using free online classes.

Forget about water on Mars, astronomers may have just found signs of life in space.

Evidently, some people were surprised to find Microsoft using the Start Menu to display ads. Thankfully, this feature is easily turned off.


And with that, we have caught up on at least a few of the stories that didn’t take center stage this week. Keep preparing for the fast-approaching Halloween and don’t forget to stop by next week for another weekly dose of the Spry Hive!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 41

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

As we move into October, NASA has unlocked a trove of old mission photos and robots decorate beaches. Sip on that pumpkin latte and enjoy another dose of the Spry Hive!

Tech

As if it wasn’t already hard enough to find a job as an artist these days, robots have started taking their jobs at the beach.

From the company that advertises their device as, “The tablet that can replace your laptop,” we present the new Surface Book – Microsoft’s first laptop ever.

Web

What do you get when you mix Twitter, eBooks, and Music? A quirky yet awesome karaoke generator for any party!

Haven’t updated Internet Explorer to IE11 yet? Well, it might finally be time, as Microsoft is cutting off support to IE 8, 9, and 10.

See your face from a different perspective with this webcam manipulator that’s full of emotion. You’ll want to zoom in to see what’s really going on. (WARNING: do not click if you are prone to epileptic seizures or motion sensitivity).

Design

comet1

Source = Adobe

Hey, UX designers, Adobe is working on a new prototyping tool that works beautifully with Creative Cloud called Project Comet.

Development

Looking to put a little bounce into your next web animation? You’ll love Popmotion.

Some Google interface developers have shared how they create better user experiences by optimizing their web products using the RAIL Model.

We love Gulp for how it speeds up front end development tasks. Now it’s even easier to use with one of our favorite code editors. Check out Sublime Gulp.

The tickets have been selling fast for the inaugural WordPress Community Summit, WordCamp US 2015, so grab yours while you have the chance!

Misc.

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Source = NASA

Still don’t believe we landed on the Moon? Well, see for yourself with the 8,000+ photos from the Apollo missions, recently released by NASA.

Now, we know the internet is a place for cats, but this puppy playing with baby goats will steal your heart.

Fallout 4 is one of the most anticipated games being talked about right now, but nobody is as excited as this guy.


We hope you were able to lose yourself for a while with the baby goats, artistic robots, and other stories from the week. Don’t forget to come back next week to grab your weekly dose of the Spry Hive!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 39

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

Chipotle wasn’t the only company playing around with video games, space, or lawsuits over the past week. So, catch up on all of the latest news in another edition of the Spry Hive!

Web

taste-invaders-chipotle

Source = Chipotle

Tired of taking fire from the competition over their alleged use of GMOs, Chipotle is making their point by letting you shoot down the additives!

Don’t think you’re so sneaky. Facebook and employers everywhere are well aware of how much time is spent on Facebook at work. Now you have an excuse, though, with the introduction of…(wait for it)…“Facebook at Work”.

Tech

Volkswagen is taking some serious heat from the USA. Unfortunately for the company, their rigging software can only hide the truth during an emissions test and not the news cycle.

The world of technology is chock-full of overly complicated bugs and hacks, but the latest flaw on Android is just plain silly.

The once unthinkable for Microsoft has now become a proud reality for the tech giant; the company has started using Linux to run it’s cloud.

Somehow, it seems only fitting that the individuals behind Cards Against Humanity are actually very interested in preserving our own humanity by supporting Women in STEM.

Design

isotopic designs

Source = Nodegram

Looking for a little inspiration to end the year on a high note, or maybe just some eye-candy? You’ve got to check out the best isometric designs of 2015 (so far).

Having trouble convincing clients to buy those pieces of paper you value so much as a designer? Here is a helpful article on teaching the purpose of a style guide.

Learning should be constant, but it shouldn’t be a constant struggle. Use this guide to make it easier to keep up with the latest and greatest tools for web designers.

Development

Wondering whether or not your favorite modules are ready for Drupal 8? Keep up with the latest news using this database that details the status of the top 100 contributed modules for Drupal 8.

Misc.

Seeing the Earth as the size of a marble can change anybody’s perspective. Thankfully, a group of friends took it upon themselves to bring the scale of the solar system to us.

Pluto might not be considered a planet anymore, but it’s still a part of our gorgeous solar system! So, show our farthest cousin some love and check out the newest pictures of it’s landscape.

For the first time in decades we are seeing a video game like no other. Panoramical centers itself around meditative music that manipulates fascinatingly artistic and engrossing visuals.

In case you weren’t aware enough, there is only one day left in Sea Otter Awareness Week, so make it count!


So, now you can enter the weekend with a new view on life and a few new talking points. Don’t forget to stop by next week and, as always, have the spryest of weekends!

Dispatches from the Spry Hive 2015: Week 32

Posted by James McDonnell & filed under Tips.

This week kicked off with rumor that Windows 10 had already reached 67 million machines, but Microsoft quickly quashed the tall-tale, announcing on Monday that the launch period actually saw about 18 million machines upgraded. We saw more than just rumor throughout the week, though, as Lexus’ hoverboard resurfaced and Jon Stewart made his final appearance on The Daily Show. So, hopefully you can find something to enjoy as we dig into this week’s news!

Tech

Just a few weeks ago we found ourselves drooling over the images and concepts of a real-life hoverboard announced by Lexus. Now, making some of us question reality, the popular luxury-car company has released the first video demonstration of their seemingly impossible device.

Web

If you are looking for a quick and easy way to come up with a color scheme, then we’ve found the website for you! Generating colors that looks sit well next to each other, either randomly or based on personal selections you’ve locked into place, Coolors.co is a great web-tool to use on your next project.

Design

applewatchniceday-100602617-large

Source = Microsoft

The Apple Watch has been available for a little over three months, and we are finally beginning to see more third-party applications appear in the Apple Store. One of the biggest issues slowing down the production of applications for their smartwatch is simply trying to design a user friendly experience. That might be a thing in the past, at least for email clients, as, according to MacWorld, the design of Microsoft’s Outlook app shows other companies how it’s supposed to be done.

Pulling together as many icon fonts as possible, fellow designer and developer Tim Pietrusky has made it easier than ever to find, select, and integrate icons into your next web page. We really suggest you check it out because we love icon fonts!

Development

When it comes to implementing truly original and creative design on a website, most developers will agree that there are a plethora of issues that can arise, especially around Graphical Text Effects. Well, Sara Soueidan, a freelance front-end web developer, has reached out through Adobe’s blog to help you weigh out the pros and cons of solving these problems using SVG vs. CSS.

Are you looking to create a more formal web articles that elegantly and effectively utilizes data-driven graphics, tables, and side-notes? Well then look no further than Tufte CSS, a grouping of tools that will make it easy to style your next publication.

Misc.

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Photo by: Anuar Patjane Floriuk

After receiving and sorting through over 17,000 entries, National Geographic has finally chosen a winner for their yearly Travel Photo Contest. While the selected photo is expectedly stunning, one can find just as much beauty and excitement inside the photographer’s story.

Fans of Star Trek will be delighted to hear that actress Nichelle Nichols, famously known as Lt. Nyota Uhura, will be teaming up with NASA this coming September. Joining the crew aboard NASA’s newest, flying telescope, SOFIA, she will become one of the first humans to take on an active role in one of the agency’s projects as ‘non-essential personnel’.

In a teary-eyed celebration of the cast and crew behind the comedic genius of Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, Jon Stewart hosted his final show last night, bidding his adoring fans a fond farewell. While his departure certainly marks the end of a legendary, side-splitting era, we can rest assured that we haven’t seen or heard the last of him, yet.


Well, there we have it folks. This week’s news sent us looking to the stars as a Sci-Fi icon makes her way through the atmosphere and left us holding on for dear life as we try hovering for the first time. So, go forth, enjoy the weekend, and try not to get stuck in Philadelphia over the weekend or else you might end up like poor Hitchbot.