Simon's articles

  1. Quick tip: XMLHttpRequest and innerHTML

    XMLHttpRequest is one of modern DHTML’s best kept secrets. If you haven’t encountered it before, it’s a method of making an HTTP call back to the hosting web server without refreshing the whole page – a kind of remote scripting on steroids. Originally a Microsoft extension, it’s been adapted by both the Mozilla browser family […]

  2. CSS Design Tutorials

    Veerle Pieters has published a tutorial series entitled “Designing a CSS Template”, which makes a refreshing change from many existing tutorials in concentrating on design first, and only discussing implementation using CSS towards the end. It’s available in four parts: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4. And speaking of design, I came across […]

  3. Smarter selectors

    The key to writing smart CSS is mastering selectors. Although often overlooked, applying them in an intelligent way can dramatically reduce the size of your stylesheet while simultaneously keeping it more maintainable and easier to alter later on. Eric Meyer has a useful piece covering some of the aspects of selectors that are frequently misunderstood. […]

  4. Processing XML with JavaScript

    I came across a situation at work today where I needed to take an XML string from a textarea and perform DOM manipulations on it using JavaScript. After some digging around, I remembered an open source library called Sarissa I had checked out a few days ago. Sarissa is a remarkably useful piece of code: […]

  5. AllMusicGuide: A Web Standards case study

    Yesterday saw the launch of a new design for All Music Guide, the music world’s answer to the Internet Movie Database. AMG has been around since 1995 and has grown to be by far the largest and most useful music resource on the web. It’s a classic example of good content trumping poor design: you […]

  6. What’s the deal with Gmail?

    If you’ve been connected to the ‘net at all in the past few months, you can’t have missed the hype surrounding Gmail, Google’s new 1 GB webmail service. Going one up on the phenomenally successful word of mouth campaign that launched their search engine to stardom, Gmail’s invite-only policy has created the kind of buzz […]

  7. Easy bulk changes with DHTML

    Andy Clarke has published a neat new technique called Trimming form fields, which uses beautiful unobtrusive DHTML to allow users to toggle the visibility of optional form fields for easier completion of forms. Andy’s code is very tidy and you should go and read his tutorial, because I’m about to extend on it. Andy’s code […]

  8. HTML escapes the browser

    One of the hottest topics to come out of Apple’s recent World Wide Developers Conference was the announcement of Dashboard, a new feature in the forthcoming OS X Tiger which adds a layer of useful mini-applications (aka “widgets”) to the user’s desktop. This in itself is not a new idea: the Mac had Desk Ornaments […]

  9. XHTML validation via RSS

    Ben Hammersley’s new XHTML Validator to RSS source tool is one of those ideas that’s so simple and yet so brilliant that you can’t believe someone hasn’t thought of it before. It let’s you subscribe to an RSS feed of validation errors on a page – if the page is valid you won’t get any […]