On staying current

My recipe for staying up-to-date with web development news and trends


At TMW, I always ask interviewees how they keep up-to-date with the latest in front-end web goings-on. The answers I receive are varied but there’s always a few recurring themes: Twitter and blogs - but which ones. I thought it would be a good idea to document my own ‘stategy’ for staying current, here it is.

TL;DR

This is my ‘recipe’ for staying on top of web development trends, the focus is on Javascript, HTML, CSS, Responsive Web Design and Accessibility. Grab the full list of links here: pinboard.in/u:MrMartineau/t:on-staying-current/

Podcasts

Javascript Jabber

A weekly javascript podcast presented by Joe Eames, Merrick Christensen, Jamison Dance and Charles Max Wood. They recently featured a show which gave me the idea for this blog post, their’s was purely javascript-based. Shows are typically over an hour long and focus on one topic; the discussions are very useful for gaining a high level understanding of a particular subject making it easy to find out more afterwards. Each show is transcribed which make it very easy to find the site they might have been discussing during the show.

The Javascript Show

Another weekly javascript podcast; this time presented by Peter Cooper and Jason Seifer. Shows are typically 20 minutes long and usually feature a roundup of recent javscript news and plugin releases.

ShopTalk

A weekly show about front end web design, development and UX presented by Chris Coyier and Dave Rupert. I listen to this show sporadically but when I do I’m always impressed with the range of topics and in-depth understanding from all involved.

The Breakpoint with Paul Irish and Addy Osmani

From Google Developers Live comes a not-very-often podcast from some great developers, Paul Irish and Addy Osmani. This podcast usually delves into the Chrome devtools to help developers make their sites for performant.

HNPod

Hosted by Michael Mahemoff this podcast discussed the recent hot topics on Hacker News. The topics are always varied and the guests are always great. Each episode is approximately 50 minutes long.

Other notable podcasts:

Twitter accounts

  • @brad_frost - Brad Frost: Responsive web design guru
  • @addyosmani - Addy Osmani: Chrome dev relations
  • @paul_irish - Paul Irish: Chrome dev relations
  • @codepo8 - Christian Heilmann: Mozilla Developer Evangelist
  • @desandro - David Desandro: Designer at Twitter, creator of jQuey Masonry and Isotope
  • @newsycombinator - Hacker News bot
  • @mozhacks - Official Mozilla account for web developers
  • @brendaneich - Brendan Eich: Inventor of Javascript
  • @leaverou - Lea Verou: Developer Relations at the W3C
  • @github_js - A news feed of JavaScript Github repos
  • @simurai - Simon … (no idea what his last name is): CSS experimenter
  • @lukew - Luke Wroblewski: Mobile guru
  • @adactio - Jeremy Keith
  • @csswizardry - Harry Roberts

I also maintain some Twitter lists:

News, Inspiration and Blogs

Codepen

Created by Chris Coyier, this site is like Dribbble but for front-end developers - I love it. It usually features cool demos and experiments with CSS and Javascript; keep checking it to see what can be done with the latest client-side code.

Dribbble

Dribbble is a smashing community for giving and receiving feedback on work-in-progress designs but also for research; you can search for buttons and get a inspiration for hundreds of different style.

A List Apart

The blog for people who make websites. It has been around for years and never fails to produce top notch content.

CSS Tricks

Chris Coyier’s popular blog about web development, not just CSS. He regularly writes in-depth about the minutae that you or I might overlook, the recent post on SVG is no exception.

Smashing Magazine

Extremely popular web design and development blog. There’s a constant stream of high quality content

HTML5 Rocks

Brilliant blog featuring in-depth articles into various cutting edge web technologies. Some of my favourite posts are the case studies, where the author inspects the code on a new website showing us how its done

Hacker News

General tech, startup and web development news

Designer News

The flipside to Hacker News. - for designers..

Decodering

Great little blog for news and developments, its always up-to-date (on average about 1 post per day) and often has links that no one else seems to find.

CSS Wizardry

This is Harry Roberts’ blog about CSS, responsive web design and other web topics.

Codrops

They always post cool, cutting-edge stuff.

Reddit

Check out: /r/javascript, /r/webdev, /r/html5, /r/css & /r/browsers. There are many more, just search Reddit.

Newsletters

Javascript Weekly

Curated by Peter Cooper of The Javascript Show fame, this weekly newsletter always produces great Javascript content. Have a look at the most recent (at time of writing) issue: javascriptweekly.com/archive/90.html

Web Design Weekly

‘Just pure awesome link to the best new and articles..’ - I agree. Subscribe now.

Curated by Russ Weakley, this newsletter is a very reliable source of links to a wide range of web development and accessibility subjects. Have a look at the most recent (at time of writing) issue:www.maxdesign.com.au/2013/03/05/some-links-403/

HTML5 Weekly

Another weekly newsletter by Peter Cooper, this time focusing on HTML5 and its related technologies. Have a look at the most recent (at time of writing) issue: html5weekly.com/archive/78.html

Github Archive

Ever wondered what the most popular Github repos are? No, nor had I until I found this site.. Every day I get sent a list of all the top new and top watched repositories for the past 24 hours. The repositiories listed are not always front-end related but often are and I find this very useful because there’s always something that I haven’t seen before. Have a look at the most recent (at time of writing) issue: us5.campaign-archive1.com/?u=439aa16a39e4b10e0b65ff2ef&id=133998bbdb

Responsive Design Weekly

Responsive web design news and interviews.

Started by Sacha Grief, Sidebar is a list of the 5 best design links of the day. But unlike a regular linkblog, it’s collaborative and manually curated by a couple great editors. I like it because of the breadth of content and styles.

CSS Weekly

A new addition to my ever-increasing list of newsletters, CSS Weekly, curated by Zoran Jambor, always produces interesting CSS content. Have a look at the most recent (at time of writing) issue: css-weekly.com/issue-49/

W3C Public Digest

Weekly digest of W3C news and trends

Jacob Nielson’s Alertbox

Jakob Nielsen’s articles about interface usability and website design. He is a highly regarded source for UX and his Alertboxes always delve into the heart of the matter.

No RSS love?

You might have noticed that I did not mention any RSS feeds here. The reason is because although I have a ridiculously organised Google Reader account, I just don’t check it often enough. If you are hankering after a bunch of RSS feeds to add to your reader, you’re in luck. Paul Irish has created 3 lists for you to import into your favourite reader, check them out here

Can you add to my list?

Please let me know what you think of this list, is yours similar?