Not very long ago when we were planning the launch of our humble magazine BuildMobile, which you are reading right now, the content strategy included coverage of the nebulous WebOS mobile operating system. Come launch time, there wasn’t enough traction to include it in our platform categories, but we were hopeful for the future. WebOS in 60 Seconds WebOS is a mobile operating system based on the Linux Kernal Initially developed by Palm and first released in January 2009 Acquired by Hewlett-Packard in April 2010 for US$1.2b WebOS uses a “card” UI with a left-to-right flick for app swithcing, flick up for “off” The WebOS broswer, called simply “Web” is based on the WebKit layout engine WebOS “Synergy” feature integrates information from many cloud services into a single list Devices include the Pre , the Pixi and the Veer phones, then the HP TouchPad HP announced in March 2011 that WebOS would run within Windows by the end of 2011 On 18th August 2011 HP announced it would discontinue operations for WebOS devices Potentially even more HP TouchPads will be made and sold at a loss Web Standards based Native Apps A feature that was full of promise, and partly responsible for the underdog adoration WebOS attracted from developers worldwide, is that web technologies like HTML, CSS and Javascript are first class tools for developing native apps for the platform, with full access to hardware APIs like the camera.

Link:
BuildMobile: The Future of WebOS

Digging around the web will unearth a heavy bias against the fold. “A rule of thumb that kills innovation.” “Used by people who don’t know what they’re talking about.” “A concept introduced by someone who is a moron.” “The fold is bogus.” “The fold is a myth.” “The fold is a silly thing that clients like to focus on.” “There is no fold.” There is even a web site called thereisnofold.com . This is not an issue that lacks for opinion. What is the fold and what do we know about it?

Read More:
DesignFestival: The Fold Exists but Does it Matter?

You may have noticed the updated background on DesignFestival, currently, it is Winter Candy by Alex Walker. As mentioned earlier , we’ll be cycling through some of the backgrounds entered into the competition. Didn’t catch the contest? The Cicada Principle Explained Gallery of Entries Contribute to the Gallery Thanks again to all of the entrants for their great work, and we look forward to seeing more entries into the Gallery

Link:
DesignFestival: Cicada Principle — Winter Candy

In a figurative sense, the concept of visual balance is similar to that of physical balance illustrated by a seesaw. Just as physical objects have weight, so do the elements of a layout. If the elements on either side of a layout are of equal weight, they balance one another. There are two main forms of visual balance: symmetrical and asymmetrical

Originally posted here:
DesignFestival: Balance in Design

We’ve looked at some of the broader considerations when designing for mobile, so now let’s address the business of our application. First, we need a plan. Our client has given us some high-level user scenarios, which we will need to examine in more detail to figure out what each means for our application. It’s crucial to decide precisely which features we intend to deliver, and to whom

More:
DesignFestival: Design for Mobile — Putting it Into Practice

You may have noticed the updated background on DesignFestival, currently, it is Blind Date Prep by Alan Dowling . Over the next number of weeks we’ll be rotating the background through the most popular entries to further show off the hard work people applied in this contest. Didn’t catch the contest? The Cicada Principle Explained Gallery of Entries Contribute to the Gallery Thanks again to all of the entrants for their great work, and we look forward to seeing more entries into the Gallery

Original post:
DesignFestival: Celebrating The Cicada Principle

522-browser-trends

It’s increasingly difficult to keep track of the browser market. Chrome 12, Firefox 5 and Opera 11.5 were released last month. Some browsers auto-update, some don’t. Some vendors have lavish launch promotions, others don’t mention it.

The big news for July is that Chrome usage has passed 20% for the first time. Let’s examine the full StatCounter statistics in more detail…

BrowserMayJunechangerelative
IE 9.04.57%6.18%+1.61%+35.20%
IE 8.029.06%27.67%-1.39%-4.80%
IE 7.06.39%6.00%-0.39%-6.10%
IE 6.03.84%3.72%-0.12%-3.10%
Firefox 5.00.00%2.81%+2.81%n/a
Firefox 4.014.23%14.04%-0.19%-1.30%
Firefox 3.5+13.95%10.44%-3.51%-25.20%
Firefox 3.1-1.12%1.05%-0.07%-6.30%
Chrome19.38%20.67%+1.29%+6.70%
Safari5.01%5.07%+0.06%+1.20%
Opera1.83%1.74%-0.09%-4.90%
Others0.62%0.61%-0.01%-1.60%
IE (all)43.86%43.57%-0.29%-0.70%
Firefox (all)29.30%28.34%-0.96%-3.30%

This table shows market share estimates for desktop browsers. The ‘change’ column shows the absolute increase or decrease in market share. The ‘relative’ column indicates the proportional change, i.e. another 3.1% of IE6 users abandoned the browser last month (yay!) There are several caveats so I recommend you read How Browser Market Share is Calculated.

In June, Chrome 11 toppled Firefox 3.6 to become the world’s second most-used browser. Confusingly, the launch of Chrome 12 has split Google’s user base so Firefox 4.0 has now taken second place. Despite being available for little over a week, Firefox 5.0 has already gained 2.8% market share as Firefox 3.x and 4.0 users migrate.

However, there’s little good news for Mozilla. Firefox’s overall total dropped by almost 1% in June: three times worse than IE and one of the biggest falls the browser has ever experienced. There doesn’t appear to be a particular reason; Firefox 4 and 5 have been well-received but they haven’t halted Chrome’s progress. Perhaps the changes were too radical for some? Or did users investigate other options rather than upgrading?

IE9 has made good gains although IE8 remains the most popular browser version. IE6 and 7 continue to drop although the pace is slowing.

Opera also experienced a small drop. However, version 11.5 may be able to reverse that trend and there’s better news for the company in the mobile arena…

Mobile Browser Usage

According to StatCounter, desktop browsers account for 93.47% of web activity. Mobile browser usage grew by almost 1% last month to 6.53%. This may be a seasonal anomaly since it’s summer in much of the western world — net users may be out enjoying the sunshine (or drizzle for those of us in the UK).

Movements within the mobile browser market are quite unusual and possibly influenced by seasonal factors. Nokia may be experiencing business issues, but they will be pleased to discover that their (fairly basic) browser has overtaken Android and Safari on the iPhone. Opera has also made gains following the latest release of their mobile editions:

  1. Opera Mini/Mobile — 22.81% (up 1.00%)
  2. Nokia browser — 17.66% (up 1.16%)
  3. Android — 17.25% (up 0.24%)
  4. iPhone — 15.22% (down 1.49%)
  5. Blackberry — 11.98% (down 0.78%)

If you’ve not done so already, perhaps it’s time to consider how your business will be affected by the rapid rise of mobile platforms.

You may have noticed the updated background on DesignFestival, currently, it is Blind Date Prep by Alan Dowling . Over the next number of weeks we’ll be rotating the background through the most popular entries to further show off the hard work people applied in this contest. Didn’t catch the contest? The Cicada Principle Explained Gallery of Entries Contribute to the Gallery Thanks again to all of the entrants for their great work, and we look forward to seeing more entries into the Gallery.

View post:
DesignFestival: Celebrating The Cicada Principle

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When most people think about grids, they think about engineering and architecture. However, the grid is an essential tool for graphic design as well, and the use of grids in website design have exploded in popularity in the last few years. Using a grid is more than just about making elements on the page be square and line up: it’s about proportion as well. That’s where the theory comes into grid theory

More here:
DesignFestival: Grid Theory

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Even from a nondesigner’s standpoint, defining a design that satisfies all the requirements I outlined previously is a simple task. It’s similar to making a phrase on your refrigerator with magnetic poetry words. Although there are millions of ways to arrange the words, only a few arrangements make any sense. The magnetic words are like the components, or blocks, of the web page

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DesignFestival: Web Page Anatomy