I always try and push myself to learn and use new technologies. I feel that with the digital industry ever evolving and changing its important to challenge yourself and keep up to date. Admittedly some of the list below may be a bit late to the game on my behalf but here is a few technologies and techniques that I’d like to use more in the coming year.
APIs – Spotify, Skyscanner, Instagram
Since realising that Spotify, along with a lot of the other software & apps we use online have APIs that allow developers to tap into the information and use it in their own projects, it has started the cogs turning and coming up with ideas I can incorporate some of these APIs into fun side projects. I am currently developing a web app incorporating the Spotify API so keep your eyes peeled for that!
Now I am pretty late on the bandwagon with this one I think. Having struggled over the last year to find an effective way to create parallax scrolling and trying various jQuery plugins, I finally found Skrollr. The other methods I have tried in the past only accommodate applying parallax scrolling a background image and I’ve always struggled to get those images to position correctly. Skrollr animates any given CSS attribute on scroll from colour to position allowing you to get extremely creative with more than just images.
In 2016 I finally started my journey into learning an MVC framework. I chose Angular for various reasons, the main one being it was one of the more supported in the dev community so in theory, easier to troubleshoot issues and find tutorials.
My Angular journey started with an app that taps into the Spotify API and servers you a personalised soundtrack based on the day you have had. This project is still a work in progress but very nearly complete so watch this space.
24 Column Grid
At The Bigger Boat a few months ago, one of the designers and myself had a chat about the advantages of moving from a 12 column fixed width grid to 24 column 100% width grid when designing and developing sites. We decided to give it a try as in theory it would give our designer much more freedom to create more intriguing and inspiring layouts as well as use the whole width of the screen but still have the structure of the grid when creating layouts. The process worked very effectively (you can see the 24 column grid in use here) and is now in use for every new project at The Bigger Boat and for any freelance work I do.