Recent Articles

12 Apps That Do One Thing Really Well - macOS

Tools created to solve one problem often solve that problem best. Swiss army knives are convenient, but they’re not the best bottle-opener, nail file or saw. These little macOS apps do one or two things well and I consider most of these to be essential. Grab a couple if you’re…

Your New Localhost - Netlify Dev

Netlify has been my favorite way to deploy sites ever since I pushed a React project and watched it go live in seconds. It now hosts my personal site, my podcast’s site, and 20 other client sites or small pet projects that I wanted to put up on the web. While it’s truly the…

Write Faster HTML and CSS with Emmet

Writing HTML and CSS can get painfully repetitive. One of the best ways to increase your productivity is to make your creation of code faster. Emmet’s here to help. Emmet is a plugin for your favorite code editor that makes HTML and CSS generation seem like magic. It’s great for…

Why Header Tags are Essential

There is no substitute I know some web designers think that because they can toss a class onto a or element to make it big and bold, it’s easier to use that. You might have been annoyed by the browser’s default margin or line height for header elements like . You figure you…

Put Design First

Getting a new website can be a lot like getting a new car. So much of it is wrapped up in how new and shiny it is. Is it fun and curvy or sleek and sharp? Is it a nice color or a classy monochrome? People get caught up in these visual details of cars and websites, completely…

Focus for Programmers

I have a bad habit of hitting a tough problem and searching for an escape. I’ll try to talk to a coworker to avoid the struggle I’m facing. Either that, or my fingers start to move themselves to open a time-killing site like Reddit or Facebook. If I don’t catch myself as I’m…

Just Start Already

I’ve always had ideas about how to make the next big thing. Some huge idea that would take months and months of work to achieve, and in my mind would be the absolute best of its kind. I, like everyone else, come up with these ideas all the time, and I used to actually go after…

What I Learned from Developer Interviews

Once I felt I was ready to shift from teaching to become a front end developer, I went out on a few interviews and really loved the experience. I made sure to use each one as a learning experience that will make me a better developer and interviewee. Hopefully this can be useful…

Copy and paste SVG code with Adobe Illustrator

My coworker stumbled on a pretty neat trick that allows for quickly getting any vector in Adobe Illustrator into an SVG code output, and vice versa. It's dead simple, so I'll just give you the TLDR: Copy any vector from Illustrator and paste it into any text area. Or copy any SVG…

Understanding React's Virtual DOM

I recently was asked to describe React's Virtual DOM in an interview and I really stumbled through my explanation. It's these kinds of core concepts that we sometimes take for granted and understand only in a broad sense that might come back to haunt us in things like interviews…

How to Add a Favicon to your Gatsby Site

Putting together this site I had to do a bit of digging to find the best way to add a favicon. There's a great Gatsby plugin for setting up the manifest.webmanifest, which gives you icons and theme colors for users on mobile. It's great because you just need to point it towards…

Making a Javascript Arcade Clone

For my Udacity course work I was tasked with making an “arcade game clone” in the form of Frogger. They provided a general game engine as well as some stock image resources. Here’s their repo. I saw a lot of potential in this project to make something beyond the example they…

Teaching Kids Coding for the First Time

Filling students with the excitement of coding has been a dream of mine ever since I began to learn coding myself. I've been looking for opportunities to bring my enthusiasm to the students at my school, but wasn't quite sure just how to do it. Luckily, I was introduced to Kati…

Two Ways to Make Teaching Better With Code

I've been a teacher for 4 years and have tried dozens of software solutions aimed at teachers and classrooms. It’s painfully clear that teachers are in need of better computer support. We need to move past code that just does flash card review or attendance taking, but software…