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Joshua Johnson

Joshua Johnson

Equal parts editor, writer, designer, and photographer. Hit me up on Twitter, or check out my photos.

Easel: A WYSIWYG Bootstrap Page Builder

CSS / 20 Nov 2012

Easel: A WYSIWYG Bootstrap Page Builder

Twitter Bootstrap makes creating complex page layouts a breeze. Drop in a few lines of HTML, apply a few classes and you’ve got yourself a decent looking, minimal working mockup.

Wouldn’t it be nice if things were even easier though? What if Bootstrap had a visual interface? What if you could build Bootstrap pages by dragging and dropping elements onto an empty canvas? With Easel.io, you can do exactly that. Let’s see how it works.

Hammer & Anvil: Two Unbelievably Awesome New Web Development Tools

Software / 19 Nov 2012

Hammer & Anvil: Two Unbelievably Awesome New Web Development Tools

Riot is a small software company currently comprised of only five people. Out of nowhere, this team has dropped two web development apps for Mac users that have blown me away. This is an app category that, in my opinion, hasn’t received much true innovation in recent years and apparently the good people at Riot are out to change that, because their ideas are truly unique and incredibly useful.

Today we’ll take a brief look at both Hammer and Anvil to see what each does and how they can collectively improve your workflow, particularly if you’re a front end developer working with static sites.

Web Design Critique #91: Photofolio

Critique / 16 Nov 2012

Web Design Critique #91: Photofolio

Every week we take a look at a new website and analyze the design. We’ll point out both the areas that are done well in addition to those that could use some work. Finally, we’ll finish by asking you to provide your own feedback.

Today’s site is Photofolio, a Drupal theme by More Than (just) Themes. Let’s jump in and see what we think!

5 Reasons to Start a Web Development Blog Today

Business / 15 Nov 2012

5 Reasons to Start a Web Development Blog Today

It’s there, lost in your “someday” todo list, right under “spit off the Eiffel Tower.” One of these days, you’re going to start your own design or development blog. Is it really worth the effort though? Realistically, what can you expect to get out of such a venture?

As a full-time editor of multiple popular publications, I’ll share with you my top five reasons that you should start your own blog today. All five come from personal experience and I’m convinced that they’ll all be right in line with your personal goals.

A Beginner’s Guide to Zurb Foundation 3: The Grid

CSS / 8 Nov 2012

A Beginner’s Guide to Zurb Foundation 3: The Grid

In the past, we’ve discussed Twitter Bootstrap quite a bit. Much more so than its most worthy competitor: Zurb’s Foundation. Now on its third iteration, Foundation is a robust and responsive front end framework used by hundreds of developers every day.

Over the course of several articles, we’re going to jump in and take a look at its various aspects from a complete beginner’s perspective. Today’s topic is my favorite part: the grid. Follow along to see how it works!

WebZap: Beautiful Photoshop Web Mockups at Light Speed

Software / 1 Nov 2012

WebZap: Beautiful Photoshop Web Mockups at Light Speed

WebZap is an awesome Photoshop plugin for helping designers create high fidelity web design mockups faster than you ever thought possible. By combining simple one-click actions with robust customization options, this tool makes the entire layout process not only painless, but actually fun.

Follow along as we take a look at what WebZap does and put it through the paces to see how it performs. I promise, it’s the coolest Photoshop plugin that you’ve seen for web designers since GuideGuide.

The New Wendy’s Logo: What Went Right

Inspiration / 30 Oct 2012

The New Wendy’s Logo: What Went Right

Logo updates are a precarious business. One wrong move and you’ll have an angry mob calling for your head. This is especially true with brands that people have literally interacted with for the majority of their lives.

Today we’re going to take a look at just such a brand. Wendy’s, the self-proclaimed old fashioned hamburger joint, has a brand new logo. Spoiler alert: it’s great, especially when compared to the recent Arby’s update. So what went right here compared with what we saw with Arby’s? Let’s take a look.

Web Design Critique #90: MOO.com

Critique / 26 Oct 2012

Web Design Critique #90: MOO.com

Every week we take a look at a new website and analyze the design. We’ll point out both the areas that are done well in addition to those that could use some work. Finally, we’ll finish by asking you to provide your own feedback.

Today’s site is Moo, an awesome service for printing business cards, postcards, greeting cards and more. Let’s jump in and see what we think!

15 Great Gadgets and Gifts for Designers: 2012

Inspiration / 22 Oct 2012

15 Great Gadgets and Gifts for Designers: 2012

It’s that time of year again. The weather is cooling down, everything from candles to coffee smells like pumpkin, and the holidays are right around the corner. Before you know it, you’ll be standing in a shopping mall with absolutely no idea what to purchase for the lovable but oh so nerdy designers on your list. Hint: they don’t want another “fancy” pen set from Staples.

Fear not, my fellow geeks have elected me to inform you of all the things that they’d love to see under the tree this year. Just like last year, I’ve put together a list of fifteen awesome gifts for designers. Take a look and start crossing off some names.

The New Arby’s Logo: Better or Boring?

Inspiration / 15 Oct 2012

The New Arby’s Logo: Better or Boring?

Everyone’s favorite roast beef sandwich fast food chain (ok, maybe the only roast beef fast food chain anyone can name) just jumped headlong into a brand refresh. Their new logo, menu and website is meant to bring the admittedly old-timey restaurant into the 21st century.

The question of course is, did they succeed? Follow along as we take a look at the logo and website to see what we think.

50 Amazing Resources for Dribbble Lovers

Software / 11 Oct 2012

50 Amazing Resources for Dribbble Lovers

Here at Design Shack, we’re huge Dribbble fans. Sort of a Twitter for design, this awesome site is home to beautiful bite-sized work samples from the web’s best designers.

To showcase our love for Dribbble, we’ve put together a collection of fifty fantastic resources for anyone and everyone who uses Dribbble. From open source developer projects and quirky web projects to desktop and mobile applications, we’ve got enough Dribbble goodness to keep you occupied for months.