Liam Lagan

4 Things I learned about Web Development In 2017

You can learn Web Development for free.

With the prevalence of tutorials on Youtube, in-depth problem solving on Stack Exchange and the Docs provided for whatever technology you are learning, you needn't spend a penny to learn web development. However, some careful spending on quality resources could speed the process up by providing the beginner with much needed structure. I myself enjoyed a sense of accomplishment when I completed Team Treehouse's Front End Web Development Track.

Responsive frameworks like Bootstrap can speed up development – but can be a pain if you need to make heavy alterations.

The CSS files operating behind the scenes in these frameworks are very complex; they have to be to make the framework easy to use and compatible with browsers old and new. But this means modifying them can take A LOT longer than modifying your own code. However, these frameworks still shine when used to rapidly develop application prototypes or apps that are for internal use only and don't need to conform to a style guide.

Wibbly wobbly units of measurement are helpful and fun.

It surprised me to learn that you can build a whole website without specifying the size of anything in pixels. Instead they can be sized in relation to the containing element (with percentages), size of the user's screen (with VH and VW) or even the size of the text of your website (with Em and Rem). The result is a site that stretches and reshapes itself seamlessly.

Huge organisations will teach you their design secrets for free.

Randomly land on a page belonging to Google or the BBC and you can instantly recognise who made the content you are consuming. This is no accident and is achieved because their designers and developers are duty bound to follow in-house style guides. These are frameworks that have been developed at great cost to the organisation. Google call theirs Material Design and the BBC have named theirs Global Experience Language. Helpfully they also provide detailed information about these frameworks to the public and reading them gives a great insight into their process.

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