CSS3 & HTML5 from a generalist

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Smashing Magazine recently posted an article defending the generalist (jack of all trades) in the web design industry. Having a basic knowledge of a vast number technologies versus having copious knowledge of a few specific technologies, get you much further in the world of web design and development. Not only does it allow you to stay nibble and ride the waves of the industry but its more fun and at the end of the day you are a more valuable asset to your clients.

Every few months a browser update is released with more support for CSS3 & HTML5 and in turn allowing me to throw away old technologies. So needless to say this is an exciting time for front end developers. For years we’ve relied on jQuery, heavy javascript or even Flash to handle what would seem to be basic user interface enhancements. jQuery isn’t going away anytime soon but i’m confident that in the next 5 years Flash will be phased out. When I say phased out I don’t mean Flash is going to be dropped from Adobe’s product line, as it’s still very strong as an application platform but it will no longer be needed for user interaction in web design.

Between CSS3, HTML5 & jQuery all needed user interaction can be accomplished. CSS3 can handle smooth transitions for just about everything and once it’s supported in all browsers, CSS3 can produce complex animations (Check this animation Paul Hayes made using CSS Transforms). Though it’s far from perfect right now, HTML5 will allow Drag & Drop functionality making it possible to develop interactive web application just using HTML & CSS.

As a generalist, I will continue to play with these technologies until something better comes along but the bottom line is that there are good things over the horizon for the web designer. Long live the generalist!

Stay in the loop with the CSS3 & HTML5 updates here:

CSS3 Denver


HTML5 Denver

Category: Ambiguity, Live & Learn

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