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March 26th, 2013
Drupal is a robust and flexible content platform that makes it an obvious choice for education facilities when considering a redesign. Drupal is built to handle a large number of users with different permissions, support collaboration and organize large amounts of content with ease.
September 12th, 2012
“Surprisingly, the current crop of mobile devices, particularly iPhones, has more accessibility features built into the operating system than you’d ever expect,” Brashear says. “A small amount of additional design and development time — over what is normally required — can yield a highly usable and accessible app.” Apple iOS’ accessibility features, for example, can get developers 75 percent of the way there, according to Brashear.
I recently discussed Mobile Apps and Accessibility with the Digital Innovation Gazette, and I wanted to expand on that topic and offer advice for designing and deploying accessible mobile apps.
August 16th, 2012
I recently worked on the redesign of a web application for a client. We agreed that measures of success for the project would be improved customer satisfaction scores from online surveys and fewer calls to the call center. I came up with a concept and created a prototype to use for research. The client’s call center recruited users and we did multiple rounds of qualitative user testing. During one research session, I had a few technical glitches and the user began to tell me more about her experience with the brand overall. Listening to her talk, I made a surprising discovery: the client’s website starts off line. In fact, the main navigation path to the website is off line.
July 26th, 2012
The Apple App world is increasingly competitive, so launching your App properly means doing some serious research. We advise our clients to prepare for launching an App with a phased approach. 5 key principles to keep in mind:
July 9th, 2012
June 22nd marked the fifth year for Philadelphia’s annual Drupal Camp, which was held for the third consecutive year at Temple University’s Alter Hall. This was the largest showing with over 300 attendees and a sold-out venue.
January 25th, 2012
Sitecore employs a number of caches to improve base performance in the system. Some contain database items, others contain access information. One of the most important from a development perspective is the HTML Cache, which (unless explicitly turned off) exists independently.
January 10th, 2012
The following blog post is part of a series on Sitecore optimization from the forthcoming NavigationArts’ whitepaper entitled “Advanced Sitecore Performance Optimization”. View more posts in this series here http://blog.navigationarts.com/tag/sitecore-optimization/.
Load testing is a necessary and often overlooked tool in the optimizer’s arsenal, often relegated to a step after optimization has taken place. Indeed, at first blush, load testing might seem less of an analysis tool than pure validation. Ideally, if you have optimized well, then your Sitecore site will perform well under load, and vice-versa. If you haven’t, then a load test might tell you which of your components is the bottleneck – hardware (CPU, memory), networking (bandwidth, location), code, etc – but not necessarily why. Depending on circumstances, however, a load test can provide valuable insight into why a site is performing poorly.
January 3rd, 2012
The Sitecore CMS is nothing if not completely flexible. I’ve been working with Sitecore for almost 4 years now, and have yet to encounter something I can’t customize if I really want to. Recently, a project that I was working on had special requirements for the Sitecore Workbox. The Workbox is sort of like the To-Do list for content authors and editors. It shows all of the content items that are in the various states of workflow, and CMS users look in the Workbox to see what they must review or approve. The project that I was working on was a multi-site implementation and there was a requirement that the Workbox should display the name of the site next to each content item in the Workbox. This would help the CMS users figure out which content items they needed to work on.
November 30th, 2011
One of the challenges when developing a Drupal site is coordinating development tasks between multiple developers. Frequently, a single developer is responsible for building a site from concept to completion, including both front-end and back-end code. This model is great for smaller, simpler sites; in many cases a good Drupal developer can finish a site in a few days. However, it fails miserably when multiple developers are required to work on a site. In one way or another, this can be traced back to a common problem: improper database management. Understanding the role of the database is critical to creating a successful development, staging, and file versioning process.
July 7th, 2011
While developing websites and web apps is never an easy proposition, some parts of the process are getting easier and fulfill the promise of next generation platforms that trumpet easier application development. I have always been dubious about these claims, and the Adobe CQ5 Web Experience Platform defiantly offers up some challenges to even the most seasoned developers. Yet one aspect I have found really easy was building basic, but highly relevant and useful workflows.