Archive for August, 2008

Websites You Shouldn’t Have Missed in August 2008

31 Aug
Noupe via Noupe shared by 4 people

August was a busy month, we have been watching great news, articles, tutorials, scripts, tips and lot of inspiration for web designers popping up everyday so we thought it would be a great idea to wrap all those resources in one package where you can check to fuel your energy for creativity. I found some nice examples posted at devsnippets that is worth mentioning, so i am going to list them here as well.

Today we have a round up of useful CSS, Ajax, Tutorials, tools, Graphics, WordPress and articles we’ve found in August that is worth your time.

Photoshop and Illustrator Tutorials and Resources

- Dynamic Recessed Watercolor Typography in Photoshop

Best Of August

In this tutorial, you will learn how to mix vector elements and watercolor effects with text to create a stunning design. It’s a quick process that depends heavily on good choices of images and colors.

- Free iPhone Design Set for Photoshop

Best Of August

- Create a Glowing Abstract Light Vector Graphic

Best Of August

- Wacom Settings In Illustrator

Best Of August

Ajax and Javascript

- Build An Incredible Login Form With jQuery

Best Of August

In this tutorial,you’ll create a sliding panel, that slides in to reveal a login form, using JQuery to animate the height of the panel. Checkout the demo here.

- Design a stunning Alert Box using MooTools

Best Of August

This tutorial explains how to design a stunning Alert Box which changes and improves the classic look of JavaScript Alert Boxes.

- Creating a Slick Auto-Playing Featured Content Slider

Best Of August

- Unobtrusive jQuery slide toggle with cookies

Using jQuery to create a “slide/hide” toggle and remembering the last state on reload, or page navigation

- Automatically Generate a Photo Gallery from a Directory of Images

Best Of August

This gallery is built using PHP, javascript and CSS. This gallery will not create the thumbnails for you, it builds itself dynamically from your directory of images. So when you want to add new photos, you simply drop the new photo and thumbnail in the directory and you are done! Removing photos just means removing the photos from the image directory.

- CSS Sprites2 - It’s JavaScript Time

Best Of August

Dave Shea demonstrates inline CSS Sprites2 in this article and adds some JS magic into it.

- Use jQuery with Google Analytics to Track Clicks on Outgoing Links From Your Site

Best Of August

Add outbound link tracking to a new or existing site. Provided that your links to other sites open a new window, you can track them very easily with some help from jQuery.

- Degrading Script Tags

Ever wanted to degrad the script tags that reference external resources (via the src attribute) and execute script embedded within the tag itself. So instead of doing this:

<script src="some-lib.js"></script>
  var foo = use_some_lib();;

You can do this:

<script src="some-lib.js">
  var foo = use_some_lib();;

- Mootools basics + 5 useful tips

In this post, you will find a little reminder of Mootools base functions (Basic Learning) , tips and examples to do more things with less code.

- Ten commandments for developers

10 thoughts that should be patently obvious to developers, but typically aren’t.


- 10 Principles of the CSS Masters

Best Of August

10 excellent principles that any web developer or designer can find useful, meaningful, or challenging. These are the true masters of CSS. Drink deep from their knowledge and take their wisdom on your next designing adventure.

- Override Inline Styles from the Stylesheet

If you have a little bit of curiosity if you can overide inline styles through your stylesheet, check out this tutorial.

/* override inline styles */
color: inherit !important;
font-size: inherit !important;

- Force IE6 To Support Alpha Transparency

A script created by Dean Edwards to force IE6 to render PNGs properly. Additionally, the script will also help to fix many common bugs from IE5-IE6. It also allows for advanced CSS selectors.

- 10 Useful CSS tricks to conquer the world!

Some CSS gems that are very useful for beginners and for advanced designers.

- Using CSS for Bar Graphs

Best Of August

You can use graphs to display data more illustratively. This tutorial is going to show you how to take boring data in a table and display it in a bar graph. The technique is simple, but the affect is drastic.

- 20 Websites To Help You Learn and Master CSS

Best Of August

This article features 20 excellent websites to help you “grok” CSS. There’s a wide range of websites included – from blogs to directory-style lists and websites that focus on one particular topic related to CSS.

- How to Add Drop Shadows to Menus or Windows with CSS

Best Of August

A tutorial on how to add soft drop shadows to your site’s menus and windows using CSS.

Design News and Tutorials

- School Is In Session - 100 Design Articles To Keep You Motivated : Part 5

Best Of August

100 design related articles to help get you motivated.

- Blank Themes, Frameworks and Templates: Resources to Speed Up Your Development Time

Great resources including skeleton templates that will simply give you a starting point for your design that you can style in any way you like.

- How Simple Web Design Helps Your Business

Best Of August

Excellent article on why “Keep It Simple Silly” is still right when it comes to web design.

- Designing for Print - Setting Up Crops and Bleed

Best Of August

A design destined for print requires setting up to certain specifications to ensure that the work is printed correctly by industrial lithographic or digital print firms. Here is a really useful post that you will put on the right track.

- 66 Links To Learn The Webdesign Basics

Here are some of the best articles and sites from around the internet that will teach you some of webdesign basics.


- 16 “Sketchy” Illustrator Brushes

Best Of August

- 9 colorful rust textures

Best Of August

- FREE Icon Set for Bloggers!

Best Of August

- Worn and Torn Edges

Best Of August

A pack of worn edges contained in one PNG file.

Free Vector Pack 12 Sampler

Best Of August


- 9 Of The Best Ways To Present A Website To A Client

Best Of August

9 of the best ways to present a website design to a client, along with the advantages and disadvantages of each method.

- FYI: Do You Know Your Freelancing Rights?

Do you know what your legal rights are when you work for hire? How do you get a copyright? Is it expensive? Can it be taken away from you? How long does it last? Read on for more information.


Finding ways to bring clients out of their comfort zones and not upset them in the process takes time and practice. However, this is a skill that if practiced can really make a large impact on the outcome of your work.


- Build Your Own URL Shortening and Redirection Service in WordPress

Best Of August

This article discusses the use of Short URLs, lists some services, and explains how you can create your own custom version in WordPress. It also covers a few concepts in the tutorial sections:

  • One way to use WordPress Custom Fields.
  • How to create conditional JavaScript code, based on PHP variables.
  • How to redirect a web page in WordPress.

- Liz Comment Counter by Ozh

Best Of August

Liz Strauss Comment Counter is a highly configurable badge (very similar to the Feedburner one, except it’s more configurable) to show off the number of comments your blog has.

- 21 Mindblowing Premium-Like Free Wordpress Themes

Best Of August

An exclusive collection of free wordpress themes which are not less than premium themes and you may consider any of these themes as per your need before going to purchase any paid premium theme.


- Web Design Black Layouts

Best Of August

- Single-Page Portfolio Sites

Best Of August

If you are looking for ideas to design a portfolio site, here are 30 single-page portfolio sites with exceptional design and implementation.

- 30 Impressive Colour Spectrum and Rainbow Wallpapers

Best Of August

If your desktop wallpaper is looking a bit dull, perhaps it’s time to add a little spice, make it something more cheerful. Here’s some really Impressive Colour Spectrum and Rainbow Wallpapers.

- 20 Famous Logo Designs

Best Of August

- Managing Inspiration

Best Of August

If you’re inner muse is working correctly, you’ll find inspiration strikes just when you need it, but if you’re like the rest of us you’ll find that inspiration strikes at the oddest of times. In this post you will find some nice tools to help manage inspiration: getting it to strike, and making sure it isn’t lost when it does.

- Fubiz Daily Inspiration

Best Of August

If you are looking for daily inspiration proportions then Fubiz site is the place to go. Fubiz is centered on the subjects of the graphic world, the urban culture, the products tendencies and numerical arts.


- Where To Get Your Own Avatar?

Best Of August

- 3 Smart Moves To Make After Landing A New Client

Landing new clients can be one of the most time-consuming tasks for the overworked freelancer–and it doesn’t pay you a single penny. Here are 3 smart things you can do after you land a client that can pad your paycheck for months (or years) to come.

Textures and Brushes

- 200+ Photoshop Brushes for Light, Sparkles, Glows and Glitter

Best Of August

A number of designers have created custom brushes especially for various sparkles, glows and glitter. In this post you’ll find links to over 200 free brushes that you can download to reduce the amount of time spent on your designs and to produce some excellent results.

- 75 Powerful Adobe Fireworks Extensions - It really can be as Great as Photoshop!

Best Of August

Here are some of the best 75 Adobe Fireworks Extensions (MXP), nearly all are compatabile with Fireworks MX, 8 and CS3 (and quite a few with Fireworks 3 and 4).


- Quick Fire with Jeff Croft

Best Of August

In this quick fire, Jeff will answer everything from his favorite music to his “web development pet peeves”. Enjoy!

- Interview with Jacob Gube of Six Revisions

Best Of August

Jacob Gube is the man behind Six Revisions, a popular web design and development blog. Here is a nice interview with him on

- Interview With Jeff Finley of Go Media Via Twitter

Jeff Finely is the main author of GoMediaZine and one of the owners of Go Media. He has created some amazing artwork for print, web and apparel. Here is an interview with him on Vectips.

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Federal court blocks beef exporter from testing for mad cow disease

31 Aug
Mark Frauenfelder via Boing Boing shared by 8 people

The USDA tests 1% of cattle of mad cow disease. Kansas-based Creekstone Farms Premium Beef exporters wants to test 100% of its cattle for mad cow disease. But the Bush administration took Creekstone to court, and a US federal appeals court ruled that the USDA has the authority to stop meatpackers from testing more than 1% of its cattle.
The dispute pits the Agriculture Department, which tests about 1 percent of cows for the potentially deadly disease, against a Kansas meat packer that wants to test all its animals.

Larger meat packers opposed such testing. If Creekstone Farms Premium Beef began advertising that its cows have all been tested, other companies fear they too will have to conduct the expensive tests.

The AP reports that "The Bush administration says the low level of testing reflects the rareness of the disease." The Bush administration should apply the same logic to the TSA. Terrorists are extremely rare, so only 1% of passengers ought to be checked by airport security.

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Google's undocumented favicon to png convertor

30 Aug
(author unknown) via Simon Willison's Links shared by 4 people

Google’s undocumented favicon to png convertor (via). Showing the favicon of a domain next to a link is a really nice trick, but it’s slightly tricky to achieve as IE won’t display a .ico file if you link to it from an img element, so you need to convert the images server-side. This undocumented Google API does that for you, meaning it’s much easier to add favicons as a feature to your site.

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Unique House Plans with Sloped Ceilings

30 Aug

House Plans


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The Google Alphabet

30 Aug
(author unknown) via John Battelle's Searchblog shared by 5 people

Goog Alpha
Brady reprises the Google Alphabet (the first word auto-populated by the newly integrated Google Suggest for each letter in the alphabet).

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funny0036.jpg (JPEG Image, 400×462 pixels)

30 Aug


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Google Implements Social Graph API and hCard in Profiles

29 Aug
Frederic Lardinois via ReadWriteWeb shared by 12 people

google_social_graph_logo.jpgthis February, Google released its Social Graph API, which allows developers to give users the option to easily find data on their social connections around the web. Google itself, however, hasn't really implemented any of this technology yet. Starting today, however, it seems Google is starting to surface some of this information from your Social Graph in your Google Profile, which might be a first sign that Google is planning to do more with these profiles than it has done so far. Google has also started implementing the hCard microformat there. The first person to noticed this was Chris Messina.

Google's Social Graph API harnesses this information from XFN and FOAF data that is published by Wordpress, Twitter, or any other social network or blog that wants to implement these open standards.


Once you open your Google Profile, you might start seeing some suggested links at the bottom of the page (as usual, it seems Google is rolling this out slowly) and, as far as we can see, these links are pulled from your Social Graph. If you don't see anything there, you can help your profile along by, for example, adding a link to your FriendFeed account at the bottom of the page. After you do that, Google will suggest adding the feeds you import into FriendFeed to your profile and, from there, it draw even more conclusions about your online habits.


Also, as Chris Messina points out in this video, the profiles now also support the hCard microformat, which makes importing them into other products a lot easier.


When Google first announced the Social Graph API, we had some concerns about the privacy implications of this. After all, nobody on the net knows more about your behaviors than Google. For now, Google seems to be moving slowly and by just rolling out suggested pages for your profile, it doesn't startle users with too much information.

The Grand Google Profile?

Google, so far, never really pushed the profile. Right now, it is only exposed in Google Maps. However, if Google starts pushing it a bit more, especially now that it is linked to you social graph, it could potentially start marketing the profile as 'the' central repository for your online identity.

Google is already a member of the DataPortability workgroup, which also advocates the use of microformats like hCard and XFN. These additions to the Google Profile could suggest that Google does indeed have greater plans for it has let us to believe so far.

If you are not quite clear about how the Social Graph API works, here is a short video of a Google engineer explaining how it works:

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kubrickonset.jpg (JPEG Imagen, 432×1023 pixels)

29 Aug


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Useful Google Talk Bots That You Must Add as Friends

29 Aug
Amit Agarwal via Digital Inspiration shared by 22 people

google-talk-botsYou can do lot of interesting stuff with Google Talk like get alert notifications, save bookmarks to delicious, manage web calendars, set reminders, write blogs, and so much more.

Such features can be easily integrated into Google Talk through ‘bots’ which, in simple English, are like virtual friends who are online 24×7 and will always respond with a smile to your questions or requests.

Here are some of the most useful ‘bots’ that transform Google Talk into a more useful program:

feeds 1. [email protected] - Add this IM Feeds bot as your Google Talk buddy and you’ll be able to read any blog or website that syndicates content via RSS feeds.

To subscribe to a website in GTalk, simply send a new IM message that says "sub" where is the address of the website / blog you want to read inside Google Talk.

friendfeed2. [email protected] - This secret bot lets you post to FriendFeed from Google Talk. You may submit either hyperlinks or text messages.

3. [email protected] - This imified bot turns Google Talk into a real powerhouse.

imifiedYou can post bookmarks to delicious, send messages to Twitter, submit blog entries to WordPress, Tumblr or Blogger, manage events in Google Calendar, shorten long URLs, run whois and so on.

anothr 4. [email protected] - Like IM Feeds, iNezha bot helps you read feeds inside Google Talk but this is slightly more versatile. For instance, you can simply say "digg" and it will show a list of all feeds that match that search term so you don’t have to type (or copy-paste) feed addresses.

translation 5. Translation - This is a free service from Google that helps you translate words from a foreign language into your native language. Just add the relevant bot (e.g. [email protected] for Hindi to English or [email protected] for English to Hindi) as your buddy, send him a message and it will get translated instantly.

alarm 6. Set Task Reminders - If you need to remember something important, Google Talk can send you reminders for that event.

Just add timer to your Twitter friend’s list and then add [email protected] to your buddy list in Gtalk. Now if you want to get a reminder after 50 minutes, send a direct message to twitter  like "d timer 50 pick kids from school" and a reminder will automatically pop up in your Google Talk after 50 minutes.

7. Transliteration - If you want to chat in your mother tongue (like Hindi or Tamil) but feel more comfortable using the English keyboard, Google Transliteration bot will come in handy.

For instance, add [email protected] to you friend’s list in GTalk and all messages you type in English will get transliterated in the language of your choice.  Available only for a few Indian languages.

Also see:
» Add Google Talk Badge to your Site
» Play Live Music via Google Talk
» Put Google Talk in Firefox Sidebar

Useful Google Talk Bots That You Must Add as Friends - Digital Inspiration

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Why cartoons work

29 Aug
Seth Godin via Seth's Blog shared by 6 people

070827evolution Tom Fishburne has a new book out, and you should take a look if you're seeking a new way to think about marketing, your brand, or your colleagues. The whole tour is here.

Andrew Kaufman's book does the same thing, but in a totally different way--with text that has the same power of a great cartoon. Thanks, Andrea, for sending it to me... I loved every word of it.

Cartoons work because they're not monologues. Even though the medium is one-directional, a dialogue takes place. In between the panels, in between the talk bubbles, the cartoonist demands you fill in the blanks.

This call and response gives the reader far more of a jolt than a paragraph in a book could. Even better, it gives the cartoonist the confidence to proceed boldly. He knows you're there, volleying with him, interacting with the idea as you read it.

Marketers are taught from the beginning to grab the microphone and never let it go. We can learn from authors and cartoonists and talk show hosts that sometimes you gain more power when you let the other person feel engaged.

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