Publications

I’ve written two books, Stunning CSS3: A Project-based Guide to the Latest in CSS and Flexible Web Design: Creating Liquid and Elastic Layouts with CSS. I’ve created a series of video tutorials available online at lynda.com and on DVD, Web Accessibility Principles. And I’ve written nearly a hundred articles and tutorials for publications such as .net Magazine, Smashing Magazine, and Community MX.

If you’d like me to write for your publication, please get in touch.

Stunning CSS3: A Project-based Guide to the Latest in CSS

Published 12/2010 by New Riders, www.stunningcss3.com

CSS3 adds powerful new functionality to the web’s visual style language to help you create beautiful and engaging designs more easily than ever. With CSS3, you can create eye-catching visual effects such as semitransparent backgrounds, gradients, and drop shadows without using images; display text in beautiful, unique, non-web-safe fonts; create animations without Flash; and customize a design to the user’s unique device or screen size without JavaScript.

You’ll learn how to accomplish these effects and more by working through a series of practical yet cutting-edge projects. Each chapter walks you through standalone exercises that you can integrate into projects you’re working on, or use as inspiration. You’ll learn all of the most popular, useful, and well-supported CSS3 techniques, plus:

  • How to use CSS3 to enhance your pages, not just in terms of looks, but also in terms of usability, accessibility, and efficiency
  • When and how to provide workarounds and fallbacks for older, non-supporting browsers
  • How to create stunning designs with unique typography and beautiful graphic details
  • Advanced new selectors to streamline your markup and make it less prone to human errors
  • New methods for creating multiple-column layouts
  • How to quickly and easily create mobile-optimized web designs without using scripting

Learn more about the book, as well as download example files and sample content, at the Stunning CSS3 companion site.

Flexible Web Design: Creating Liquid and Elastic Layouts with CSS

Published 12/2008 by New Riders, www.flexiblewebbook.com

Liquid or fluid layouts change width based on the user’s unique device viewing size. Elastic layouts change width based on the user’s unique text size. Both types of flexible design offer clear benefits to users, who can view sites at sizes that work for their needs, but they can pose challenges to web designers who are used to perfect pixel control. Still, when planned and constructed correctly, flexible layouts can be visually appealing and reasonably easy to build. And the concepts and techniques of flexible web design can benefit fixed-width CSS designs too, as designers learn how to design for the inherent flexibility of the web, instead of the rigid qualities of print media or grid-based layouts. Using standards-compliant and cross-browser compatible (X)HTML and CSS, in Flexible Web Design: Creating Liquid and Elastic Layouts with CSS, designers will learn:

  • The benefits of flexible layouts
  • When to choose a liquid, elastic, or hybrid design
  • How to design and slice graphic comps in a way that makes flexible design achievable
  • How to build liquid and elastic layouts from scratch
  • How to create flexible background graphics and scalable content images
  • When and how to limit the degree of flexibility in a web page

Learn more about the book, as well as download example files and sample content, at the Flexible Web Design companion site.

Web Accessibility Principles

Available on CD-ROM from Amazon or online at lynda.com

Accessibility on the web remains a crucial but often overlooked element of web design. In this video training DVD, you’ll learn what the accessibility standards are and their benefits to you and your audience. You’ll also learn how to perform basic accessibility testing, and how to apply accessibility principles to new and existing sites using standards-compliant markup and CSS. Exercise files accompany the tutorials when you buy Web Accessibility Principles on CD-ROM from Amazon or lynda.com.

You can see a full table of contents at the lynda.com page, but here is a summary of the nine parts of the video:

1. Getting Started with Web Accessibility
Overview of accessibility standards, benefits, and basic concepts.
2. Setting Up an Accessibility Testing Environment
Which browsers, extensions, online tools to use for checking the accessibility of your pages. Also introduces a couple screen readers that you can use for free to hear your site as a person with vision impairments might.
3. Creating Accessible Page Layouts
Why tables for layout are problematic for accessibility, and how to use Dreamweaver to create a CSS-based layout.
4. Working with Text
Marking up and styling text to make it machine and human readable.
5. Creating Navigation
How to mark up and style navigation bars, use skip navigation links, and create accessible flyout menus.
6. Working with Images
How to choose and set proper alt text for images, as well as long descriptions for complex graphics.
7. Working with Tables
How to mark up data tables to be fully understandable.
8. Creating Forms
How to structure forms for accessibility and lay them out to still be visually attractive.
9. Deprecated Accessibility Techniques
Three accessibility techniques that you shouldn’t use any longer because they tend to hurt more than they help.

You can check out some sample videos from Web Accessibility Principles over at lynda.com. All of the videos from the first chapter, “Getting Started with Web Accessibility,” are free for anyone to view. But, I want to point out that the videos in the first chapter are not very representative of the format of all the later chapters. They’re mainly simple slideshows, because I’m just introducing the concepts in that first chapter. All of the rest of the chapters are a lot more dynamic, and almost all feature hands-on exercises. We build a site throughout Web Accessibility Principles, using Dreamweaver CS3 (though Dreamweaver is not required to carry out the techniques I teach you). You get to see every step of using Dreamweaver, testing in Firefox and Internet Explorer, and more.

Articles and tutorials

In 2011, I wrote Style Twitter posts on your site with CSS3 for .net Magazine..

In 2010, I wrote Modern CSS Layouts: The Essential Characteristics and Modern CSS Layouts, Part 2: The Essential Techniques for Smashing Magazine.

From 2004 to 2008, I was a partner at CommunityMX, where I provided forum support and wrote bi-weekly articles and tutorials on a variety of design topics, including CSS, XHTML, accessibility, and Dreamweaver. You can view a complete list of my articles for CMX at my author page. To read the abstract of any article, simply click on the title. Though CMX is a subscription site, it also publishes free articles every week, so many of the articles can be accessed for free as well. Here are some of my most popular and useful free articles from CMX: