Getting Simple with a CMS

GetSimple really is the simplest content management system (CMS) ever. After seeing so many people amazed by Kirby – a licensed file-based CMS – I started looking for something at least comparable but open-source, and here is GetSimple.

I’ve been atracted by its two first principles and its admin front-end:

  1. XML Based
    We don’t use mySQL to store our information, but instead depend the simplicity of XML. By utilizing XML, we are able stay away from introducing an extra layer of slowness and complexity associated with connecting to a mySQL database. Because GetSimple was built specifically for the small-site market, we feel this is the absolutely best option for data storage.
  2. You can “Undo” Almost Everything
    This feature was based off an eye-opening AListApart article explaining how warning messages never work as planned. Because of this, we’ve included “undo” into almost every action you can take on the site, giving you peace-of-mind for when you make those inevitable stupid mistakes.

Now, I’ll play with it for a small personal project I have in mind, and I’ll tell you more comming soon.

Have you already try it?

UX in Spain

UX Spain – the first event about User Experience in our country – has been successfully celebrated this week with a pretty high number of attendees, almost 400.

We’ve had the opportunity to meet, know, share and discuss hot topics that concerns to our profession at every level and with a very varied kind of people.

Now that we’re back having our minds in the next #UXSP, we all seems to feel like if the Pandora box was opened. So here are some thoughts and conclusions of this rich exchange of experiences:

What’s UX?

As the 1-million dollar question with hundreds of doubtful answers, the UX exists and cover many areas, we can spent our whole career wondering which kind of UX we are, but the only interesting question is what’s the UX we do and how it helps to create big things.

Coding, Technology, Psychology, Aesthetic and what else?

Misconceptions only bring poor-quality products, services, UIs … or experiences. Attending to all these conferences has made me remind the importance of understanding and learning always something different, something new, something old and, why not, something “borrowed” of other specialisation, whatever it is.

UX is your business, your company is your business

Honestly, it is the first time I hear about “Intraprenuer” and I love it, mainly because it highlights the power of changing a company for better. We’re on track 😉

Are UX roles real? The talent is searched

Companies that expressed their failure hiring “UX people” where there, by the way, offering jobs. Some old-fashioned discussions where developers (wrongly called  technologists) and designers (probably conceived as visual designers) where both considered in this big world hiding the most difficult-to-admit true: the only thing that really matter is talent, and it’s not something that everybody can have it. Rest of us we’ll think how to be as good as possible.

Share, share, share…

It’s time to share again, to get rid of confidentiality, or shame, or fear, or mistery… it’s time to tell the truth about our failures and success. We have even a bigger responsibility since we’ve had people to admire who made this before. We have to give something to the community as we have received it in the past.

… and much more

  • User testing not needed anymore, really?
  • Missing something else rather than web pages, web sites, web architectures, and web design… the app world is coming and we cannot forget desktops.
  • Agile, is it new? Shall we say only Lean UX? The challenge of big teams working smoothly, my favorite 15-mins speech of this event powered by Ujue Agudo and Tona Monjo. The design process matters.
  • Universal design is not possible but disabled users have preferences, as any other users (Thanks to Idioa Soto and Nacho Madrid)
  • Prototyping is your communication tool – use it A.L.W.A.Y.S (Thanks to Dani Armengol)
  • The UX is made for something good (Thanks to elecciones.es and Mònica Zapata)

 

I personally don’t have any user-mantra to repeat again and again when I go to the office every day, but I’m in love of my work because I love create things, I love beauty and great ideas that can positively impact in other people.

That’s all, such simple such pretentious.

That’s the way I honor this profession and makes me get by to the uncertainty and disappointments that, being honest, sometimes just happens. I have seen same vision and feelings in UX Spain and I’m looking forward to repeat it again next year, so hope to meet all of you keeping the same energy.

Is Microsoft Common User Interface ended?

Is Microsoft Common User Interface ended?

Designing and developing HTML5+CSS3 webistes and mobile apps

In my previous post “CSS3 Tools” we saw I few well-known websites which provides frameworks and tools to start with CSS3.

Here, I’d like to complete and extend that list with more useful frameworks, libraries and other assets to play with the new version of the html markup.

Applications

Libraries

Frameworks

Helpers

Documentation and Books

I’ll update with more resources soon, just keep tuned.

CSS3 Tools

Digging into web and gathering recommendations, I’ve created this post with a set of tools for CSS themer who wants to develop with the latest version of cascade style sheets CSS3.

Hope you find them useful, too.

Modernizr

Open-source JavaScript library that helps you build the next generation of HTML5 and CSS3-powered websites.

Selectivzr

JavaScript utility that emulates CSS3 pseudo-classes and attribute selectors in Internet Explorer 6-8. Simply include the script in your pages and selectivizr will do the rest.

CSS3.Me and CSS Generator

CSS3 Generator helper tools.

CSS Template layout mode

This specification is part of level 3 of CSS (“CSS3”) and contains features to describe layouts at a high level, meant for tasks such as the positioning and alignment of “widgets” in a graphical user interface or the layout grid for a page or a window, in particular when the desired visual order is different from the order of the elements in the source document.

Font Dragr

A revolutionary way to test custom fonts in the browser. No coding, no uploading, just drag and drop.

Compass and Sass.

Compass is an open-source framework that uses Sass.:an extension of CSS3 which adds nested rules, variables, mixins, selector inheritance, and more. Sass generates well formatted CSS and makes your stylesheets easier to organize and maintain.

CSS3 Cheat Sheet.

A complete listing of all the properties, selectors types and allowed values in the current CSS 3 specification from the W3C. Each property is provided in a section that attempts to match it with the section (module) that it is most actively associated within the W3C specification.

Should the Software Industry learn from other fields?

I’ll share with you an interesting reflection found in the book “Prototyping” by Todd Zaki Warfel regarding why we don’t expect prototyping as stage in the process in software development, regardeless the myth of the “return of investment”:

I think the first reason is that in software development, the emphasis is often placed on the development process and not the design process. The industry doesn’t call it “software design”; they call it “software development.“

In software development, design is often an afterthought. The emphasis is on the technology or features—not the design. In architecture and industrial design, however, the emphasis is on design. Form follows function.

Another reason is that software development is seen as a manufacturing process, but architecture and industrial design are seen as a craft.

In the following pages we’re introduced to the concept of Design studio, which is very common in other design fields:

In studio classes, you design or prototype and present to your peers. Your peers critique your work, highlighting the strengths and areas that still need some work.

Prototypes are not just a tool to communicate or to describe ideas, but also a work methodology, a phylosophy where sharing, colaborating and criticizing can speed up the process, prevent future failures and empower peers into trust and success.

It’s not a believe, fortunately I could check it by my own in my short experience, so the answer from my viewpoint is clear:”Yes, the software industry must learn a lot from other fields and design can help to lead that subversion”.

Conferencia Hispana de Ruby on Rails 2006

25 de Noviembre, estación norte, Madrid, 19:33 pm, hemos perdido el autobús de Granada para las 19:00 y eso que nos fuimos corriendo de la primera conferencia Rails en España. Ya sólo nos queda aguantar el tipo hasta las 23h (¿nos estaremos perdiendo lo mejor?).

Entramos en la cafetería, sacamos libros y libretas, comentamos algunos proyectos empresariales que proponerle a la Junta (todo a su tiempo) y esperamos. Estoy inspirada, esta conferencia me ha iluminado, así que empiezo el diseño de mi “aplicación ideal”, tengo la sensación de que ahora es posible, de que hasta yo puedo programarla, de que puedo tenerla pronto y de que no me costará mucho esfuerzo…(¿me habrán comido la cabeza?)

Llego a casa, son las 5am, el autobús y conducir hasta aquí me han desvelado, el ordenador me tienta pero no, debo conciliar el sueño, llevo una semana de retraso en mi trabajo y algunas prácticas que entregar esta semana…cojo la libreta.

Creí que sería más difícil, pensar en libre ha conseguido que el diseño sea bueno y, sin más esfuerzo, lo termino sobre papel. Todo muy simple, muy centrado en el usuario (en su uso). Duermo.

12pm, necesito sentarme y poner prioridades, podría empezar dándome de alta con la oferta de alojamiento que me han regalado, podría empezar por hacerme una bitácora en Ruby en 15 minutos… pero debo pararme a pensar; tengo un proyecto entre manos con dos palabras claves: Drupal y PHP. Este proyecto es posible, está en marcha y debo terminarlo y hacerlo bien, pero… si de verdad es tan fácil qué puedo perder.

Con un poco de suerte en unos meses habré terminado mi módulo LMS para Drupal, lo liberaré, habré programado suficiente en PHP como para entender las señales; y con un poco de suerte “Mi aplicación ideal” también será una realidad.

Me quedan ciertas preguntas en el aire: ¿por qué la página de la conferencia está programada en PHP? ¿por qué se ve tan mal desde mi PDA y me cuesta encontrarlo todo? ¿por qué no pude encontrar las salas B1 y B2 el sábado por la mañana? ¿y por qué hubo tantas horas dedicadas a la misma introducción a Rails?

Pero también me quedan buenas sensaciones: JAVA apesta (lo sabía!), Ruby es Perl (lo intuía!), se pueden hacer cosas bonitas (La Coctelera mola!), Rails se puede vender (lo imaginaba!), pero, sobre todo y a pesar del índice 7/150, RoR también es para niñas.