Weekly round-up #3

Roughly a 3 minute read from Alex

05 Jun 2009

It's been a busy week in the office, not really being helped by the air-con packing in! Don't fear though, the weekly round-up didn`t suffer as a result and we've got some cracking links this week. Enjoy!

1. almost.at

This is first really nice site we've seen built with http://cappuccino.org/. It looks like a custom application and the use of Javascript and Ajax is pretty amazing and really slick. It also makes extensive use of APIs with the two obvious ones being twitter and flickr.

To host all the data, almost.at relies on Amazon Web Services with the Cappuccino Javascript being served from an EC2 server and the new content continuously loaded from sequential files on Amazon S3. This is about a fresh as you can get.

2. Adobe Browserlab

Everyone who's ever designed for the web will know that cross browser testing can be a right pain in the a**, especially for those just learning the ropes of CSS. Luckily there are a range on-line services such as browsercam which will allow you to submit a URL and in return receive real-time screenshots of how your masterpiece displays (or doesn`t!) in all the top browsers and across multiple operating systems. Now this is all great, but it comes at a price (often quite a steep one). Adobe is now poised to shake up the market a bit with its (currently) free new tool - Browserlab.

"Now with Adobe BrowserLab, designers have a simple solution that enables comprehensive browser compatibility testing in just a matter of minutes, leaving Web designers with more time to be creative and deliver the high-impact sites customers are demanding."

Lea Hickman of Adobe

We've only had quick play with it so far but it's pretty cool plus it's awesome onion skin ability allows you to really be pixel perfect with your positioning. I just wonder how they'll price it when it gets an official launch.

3. Google Page Speed

On the back of Yahoo!'s YSlow, Google has just released their own open source firefox plugin which provides a nice little speed report for whatever site your viewing. Webmasters and web developers can use it to evaluate the performance of their web pages and to get suggestions on how to improve them. It works by performing several tests on a site's web server configuration and front-end code. These tests are based on a set of best practices known to enhance web page performance. Once the test completes you'll get a set of scores for each page, as well as helpful suggestions on how to improve performance.


Alex is co-founder of Engage. With an awarded background in design and development he now concentrates the majority of his time on moulding the future picture of Engage's development, paying particular attention to the intricate balance of culture, growth and doughnut consumption.

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