TechComm Today
Feb. 12, 2014

Top Web design trends in 2014
The consensus among website design pros, regarding industry trends for 2014, is fairly cut and dry and most agree the significant styles for the year will likely fall under the headings of responsive design, simple design, and storytelling design.More

3 champion design strategies the Winter Olympics can teach your website
Small Business Trends
Without a moment to spare, NBC News revealed a complete relaunch of — a dynamic, responsive website retooled to deliver the glory of the XXII Olympic Winter Games with vibrant visuals and compelling content to smartphones, tablets, and desktops around today's very mobile world. The new and mobile-friendly, in development for more than a year, is an exceptional example of a visually engaging, content-rich platform built to be viewed by any mobile device, anywhere in the world.More

Breaking down the new Web developer tools in Internet Explorer 11
SD Times
Since the release of Internet Explorer 11 last October, Microsoft has pushed redesigned developer tools as a way to ensure application compatibility across browsers. A year after the launch of, Microsoft's virtualization and testing tool and resource site for Web developers, the IE11 team is introducing several new resources to enable faster development of cross-browser applications. The move is a way to reassure developers that they don't need to choose between developing apps for IE11 or other browsers.More

Do you know someone who should be an STC member?

Talk to them about joining your Society and help support their career. STC membership pays for itself by providing access to free and discounted online education, publications, our Job Bank, and networking opportunities that members use to expand professional skills. And if you haven't renewed your 2013 membership, there's still time to do so before incurring extra fees. We invite all nonmembers to check us out and find out why we say that technical communication builds a better world and STC builds a better technical communicator.More

Get to know the candidates in the 2014 STC election

The final slate has been announced, and the Society election is scheduled to open on 10 March and close on 21 March. Detailed information about the candidates, plus an online Candidate Q&A forum, is now available on the STC Election website. Please visit the website to learn about the candidates, and use the Candidate Q&A forum to review the candidates’ answers to questions posed by the Nominating Committee. We encourage all members to pose their own questions of the candidates as well. Get to know the candidates and make sure your voice is heard.More

Make your case to attend the 2014 STC Summit

STC member John Sgammato posted an article to the STC New England website with tips and suggestions on how to approach your manager about getting funding to attend the STC Summit (taking place 18-21 May in Phoenix, AZ). Read John's advice at the link below, and visit to learn more about the Summit and to register today. Be sure to see the sample memo and executive summary, too!More

Final days to sign up for Technical Editing, Writing for Localization online courses

There's not much time left to sign up for one of STC's two multiweek, online courses beginning in February. Join Linda Oestreich and Michelle Corbin every Friday from 21 February-21 March for Technical Editing Fundamentals and learn how to apply your knowledge responsibly as an editor. Or register for Writing for Localization: Hands-on Workshop and Best Practices, presented by Lisa Pietrangeli every Wednesday from 26 February-2 April, for lessons on how to make your companies’ localization process more efficient and achieve consistently higher quality translations.More

STC webinars pick back up next week

STC's hour-long webinars start back up again next week! Five webinars are currently scheduled in the coming weeks, with more to be added soon. Choose from: Raising Your Profile: Building Support for Documentation Projects; Six Simple Success Hacks; DITA-Based Documentation for Complex Software Products; Using Video/Animation: From Storyboard to Finished Project; and Plugging our Black Holes of Knowledge. Start a path toward a new skill, freshen up an old one, or find a new way of doing things with STC's live Web seminars.More

Vision Mobile: 60 percent of developers living below 'app poverty line'
The majority of developers still make less than $500 per app per month, but the overall "app poverty line" has moved from 67 percent to 60 percent, according to Vision Mobile's Developer Economics Q1 2014 report. The analysis firm researched data from more than 7,000 app developers from 127 countries, from the United States and China to Kenya and Brazil.More

Web Design Cheat Sheet v3.0 brings JavaScript section, UI/UX enhancements, and more
Alex Bass has recently forged on through long development hours to bring his free application another substantial update. If Web development is a trinity, Alex has just closed the corner. The new update brings fantastic reference material for HTML5, CSS3, and now Javascript, with over 200 functions that can be seen-detailed and in turn embedded into WDCSs mobile Web editor. This allows tinkering with code bits or building full websites incredibly mobile.More

Web accessibility: Tools and considerations
Web accessibility is the process of making the features of your website accessible to people of all abilities. It's about giving everyone equal access and opportunities, thereby allowing as many as possible to access your features without hindrance. With the potential legal obligations to comply with the accessibility standards set by the W3C, Web developers are taking this issue seriously.More

What is the best programming language to learn in 2014?
Craig Buckler, contributing editor for SitePoint, provides statistics for some of the more popular languages and trends. However, he warns, "Never use statistics as the sole basis for learning a language." Choosing a popular language pits you against thousands of others. Fortunately, we can make a few general observations that may sway your language-learning objectives.More

10 of the best Web page weight analysis tools
Unless you continually monitor page weight, you won't know how your diet is progressing. The average page now exceeds 1.7Mb and increased by 32 percent in 2013 alone. If your developers are secretly gorging themselves on fattening widgets, any of the following assessment tools will highlight their gluttony. They're all free and take a few seconds to run.More

50 of the best online courses and resources for learning Web design
Interested in learning how to build websites or improve your Web design skills? There's a wealth of resources for you. Here, in one place is an exhaustive guide to the best tools around, curated by SkilledUp after reviewing over 140 resources available. The guide covers tutorials, online courses, live courses, and reference materials — and tells you if they're free and the level of students they're best for. More

Static site generator Cactus arrives on the Mac
The Next Web
Koen Bok and Jorn van Dijk, veterans of the acclaimed Dutch software firm Sofa, have released Cactus for Mac, an attractive OS X version of their open-source static site generator. The idea behind Cactus is that it allows Web designers to go back to hand-coding websites by creating an auto-refreshing local version of the site for you to view in your browser as you work on it.More

Apple's UX lesson: It's not that simple to be simple
"Without good UX practices, we're wasting our time building software features that nobody's ever going to use." That profoundly simple quote is from Gene Kim, author of The Phoenix Project and Visible Ops. If something is hard to use, people won't use it. The curse of enterprise IT is that for a long time, users had to use whatever system they were given. So refining the design and usability wasn't a priority in IT. The light seems to have come on for many, if not most.More

How to decide between a responsive website or a native mobile app
The Next Web
Many business owners and entrepreneurs struggle with whether they should design a responsive website that works across devices or focus exclusively on building a native mobile app. It's a difficult choice to make since both options present advantages and disadvantages that must be taken into consideration when moving forward.More