Blog Archives

  1. canvas

    Playing with the New Canvas Element

    Full adoption of HTML5 is just round the corner, and with more and more browser-vendors making HTML5 top-priority these days, it's time, I think, we should take a look at some of the cool things we can do with the new <canvas> element. So what is it? Well although I don't profess to be an expert, I should tell you that it is much like a canvas in the real...

  2. uprinting

    Win 500 Free Business Cards!

    Right guys here's the deal, the kind folks at UPrinting have decided to give the readers of Tom's Big Box an opportunity to win 500 free Colour Business Cards! They offer some amazing printing services. So whether you need them to kick-start your business, or just to top-up your stocks, this is a great chance to use the high quality service provided by UPrinting. And it couldn't be easier to...

  3. commentPreview

    Screencast #2 – Creating a Comment Preview in WP

    So it's been a while since I've done a screencast, but here it is, number 2! In this screencast I'll show you how to create a comment preview section in WordPress which dynamically loads user information and updates as you type! For it I use the trusty jQuery library and a little bit of PHP code to spice things up. See below the video for the code used, and enjoy!...

  4. flash

    Flash, and all that Jazz

    So it seems that the web is alight with talk of Adobe's ubiquitous Flash platform because of some rather interesting decisions taken, and points proposed by Apple's Steve Jobs, but what are the main points, beyond the simple "it crashes Macs" argument? Well in the article I hope to set out a few of my thoughts on the subject, just so that I don't go forgetting them! Flash is, for...

  5. jqueryPlugins

    5 Amazing jQuery Plugins

    Okay, so there are plenty of roundups of great jQuery plugins out there, but I've decided to put together a list of some of my favorite. I've compiled this list because I use most of the plugins on a daily basis, and I have found each and every one of them to be a real help when it comes to creating fancy effects using jQuery. So enjoy! Hover Intent So...

  6. organize

    Element Organization

    So what do I mean when I say element organisation? Well put simply I'm referring to the way in which we group HTML elements in terms of either tables, divs or HTML5. Now to be honest I believe that tables these days are somewhat obsolete and I wouldn't even bother teaching it to new web designers so the objective of this article is to show you that you don't need...

  7. squarespace

    Squarespace is great, but…

    Disclaimer: I think Squarespace provides an excellent service and I don't hate them! So there has been a lot of hype recently surrounding the service Squarespace recently. And I read an article in .NET which was an interview with the founder, but when I finished reading I realized that I disagreed with some of the points he raised in the interview. So basically the people behind Squarespace think that the...

  8. socialme

    What is Social Media?

    So the term "social media" is thrown around a lot these days as a way of making people think that us designers are clever in the way in which we update Twitter feeds. But what does the term actually mean in terms of everyone involved with it? For some people such as clients, social media is simply another tool in their arsenal, which can be used to get their message...

  9. excerpt

    Replacing the […] in WordPress

    Some of you might be wondering what I mean by the [...], well I am of course referring to the symbol generated by WordPress upon calling the function the_excerpt(). Now personally I really dislike the symbol which is generated as it often doesn't fit with my design, and I always prefer to have an ellipse - ... followed by a link to continue reading - but how on earth could...

  10. Light

    What’s that, another theme?!

    Ah yes, it is true, I have changed the theme on the site yet again! Why? Well because I quickly concluded that the previous theme, named "Elegancia" was rather sub-standard, and so I set about creating a more robust theme for the site. While working on this theme I've come up with plenty of idea for tutorials, that is, I encountered a multitude of problems and have overcome them. So...

  11. menu-2

    Making dynamic dropdowns in WordPress

    Note: This article has been marked for a quality review and will soon be updated. The latest craze which is sweeping across WordPress theme development is that of adding drop-down menus to menu items to display sub-pages. Now while this is all very simple if we take a couple of unordered-lists and stick them in the header, making this process dynamic is a little more complex. For this we are...

  12. sketch

    Designing for the Web

    When you sit down at your computer, or with a sketch-pad and pen, to design a website, you are essentially designing for the web. But what does this actually mean? From a designer's perspective like mine, it simply means that I take a number of things into consideration (on top of the many fundamentals of design that is). Firstly the sizes of elements on my page. I generally tend to...

  13. screenshot

    Say hello to Elegancia!

    So some time has passed now since I started this blog, and I decided that I had had enough of the excellent theme that I had in place. And as I call myself a web designer I decided that I would design a theme, specifically one based on elegance, and then use it on my blog. The theme is called Elegancia and took me about 3 weeks to perfect. It...

  14. tooltips

    Making handy Tool tips

    Note: This article has been marked for a quality review and will soon be updated. These days in web design, it is important to be concise, especially when dealing with menu items - nobody likes an unnecessarily long piece of text to click on when it just isn't necessary. However in many cases a simple and concise link needs to tell the user more. For example if you were making...

  15. 100%

    100% Width

    Note: I am planning an update for this article to improve the quality. A common question from new web designers is how to make a div 100% of the browser window, many people complain that there is always some sort of border around their div, preventing them from making their element the full width of the browser window. The answer to this? Simple. Use a CSS reset. But what's a...

  16. toggle

    Using jQuery’s toggle() function

    Note: This article has been marked for a quality review and will soon be updated. jQuery is packed full of useful features that help you to "write less, do more" as their slogan says. One thing I have found over the years, when working with JavaScript, is the need to know what state an object is in. By that I mean wanting for instance to know whether an information box...

  17. web 2.0

    The problem with Web 2.0 Design

    Web 2.0 is the quirky title given to the way in which developers and users have used the web since 2004 to present; and I haven't got a problem with that. I have a problem with the overuse of web 2.0 design. Now there are design trends that come and go, and I am someone who really hopes that this particular one would just go away. It seems that many...

  18. Cityscape

    Screencast #1 – Creating perspective

    In this first ever screencast I will show you how to add perspective to your websites by using a really simple trick which comes into play when users re-size their windows. In the screencast I focus on creating a fancy city-scape for a footer with three basic levels of perspective. The final effect is viewable here - re-size your browser window to see it in action. Hope you like it,...

  19. Facebook

    Could Facebook groups be a bad thing?

    Recently I was looking around on Facebook as you do, and I realized that around 90% of my news feed was full of "John Doe joined the group ... and so did 16 other friends". Now apart from the annoyance this served me it made me think about the purpose behind such groups. One could argue that they are simply the musings and observations of a random person, but I...

  20. preview

    Travel – a free WordPress theme

    So I woke up this morning and felt like sharing the love! And so today I've got a free WordPress theme for you that I finished up only yesterday! Here is the link to download. This is a really simple theme that works in FF2/FF3/IE7/IE8/Chrome/Safari/Opera so you're pretty much covered in terms of compatibility. The sidebar is widget ready, and the options available stretch as far as entering things like...

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