Accessible HTML video as a background

Today I got a comment on Autoplay is bad for all users which asked:

So why does this high-traffic site designed by a former top-Google UX designer use it?

The comment has linked to a page which has video as a background element playing underneath the introduction text and call to action button, the images are moving but there is no sound on page load. At times this apparently important information is completely invisible.

Using video as a background is on the increase so it’s important to know how to make it accessible for everyone. Continue reading

Five ways with responsive tables

Recently I was uninspired by Bootstrap’s cop-out for responsive tables where they just add horizontal scrollbars for widths under 768px.

I’d come across a few ideas in the past and now I’m exploring them to give pros and cons for each solution. Continue reading

The placeholder attribute

Translations: French

For years designers have overlaid labels onto input fields in order to save screen real-estate. As front-end developers we implement this using absolute positioning and event handlers to move the label offscreen once the user has focused into the field. User focuses; label disappears.

The placeholder attribute was introduced in HTML5 and has since been misused in order to replicate the functionality described above. Let me set this out very clearly before we move on, the placeholder attribute IS NOT a replacement for a label. Continue reading

IE8 password input field displays square characters

Ever seen this when testing a website in IE8… Instead of the usual obfuscation using dots or stars, you see a square/rectangular symbol which usually shows up when the browser doesn’t have the entity available to display. The usual reason is that there is a custom font or webfont in use on the fields. Continue reading

Autoplay is still bad for all users

Just over three years ago I wrote an article called Autoplay is bad for all users. It was written a few months after WCAG 2 became a formal recommendation but before HTML5, particular the video element, had really gone into mass production.

Much, if not all, of that article still holds true today but there are a couple of points to add to it. Continue reading

Front-end developer essentials – User interface design

This is the first in a series that should form the building blocks to being a good all-round front-end developer. If you peruse the current job market you will see that there is so much more than knowing how to code HTML, CSS and Javascript. Continue reading

Autoplay is bad for all users

Translations: Belorussian and Polish

Autoplay is a bad idea not just for accessibility but for usability and general sanity while browsing. This article will explain what the problems are, where to find backup for arguments and what you can do if autoplay is a must have. Continue reading