Use our code for free enrollment in the Udemy “Web Design from the Ground Up” Online Course (50 only)

This is a $98 class at Udemy.

This is a $98 class at Udemy.

The first 50 people to sign up for the Web Design from the Ground Up course at Udemy using the special code will receive access to the class absolutely free. This is a class for beginners. Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • Over 38 lectures and 9.5 hours of content
  • Introduction to HTML and XHTML including the most commonly used elements like linking
  • Introduction to CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) for working with fonts, colors, and complete layout control
  • Web Graphics and Image manipulation with an introduction to Photoshop
  • Introduction to JavaScript with practical applications including script tags, alert boxes, form validation, and much more
  • Domain name registration – how it works, pointing your domain to your site, best practices and much more
  • How to put your site on the Internet, including choosing a web host, working with FTP, and much more
  • Accessibility – make your site visible to all users
  • Ecommerce with PayPal – setting up a shopping cart, integrating PayPal, making money with your site!

That’s a lot for 10 hours, so I’m guessing it will be basic info, but that’s what a beginner needs, isn’t it?

Many thanks to Udemy for making this special offer available to Web Teacher readers.

Manage Convention Contacts with Twitter Lists and Feedly Categories

You’re going to a great conference. You’re going to do lots of networking. The stack of business cards you accumulate will be enormous. Here are a couple of tips to help you keep all those names, faces, Twitter handles, and URLs straight.

Twitter Lists

Twitter lists are easy to create. They provide a way to read Twitter feeds from people according to groupings or interests. You don’t even have to be following them. You might have a list of food bloggers or tech bloggers or some other category of Twitter users. When you view the list you see tweets only from the specific people you added to the list.

When someone hands you a business card at a conference, you can quickly add their Twitter handle to a list. That will help you keep names and faces organized.

You can create a list and add to it from a desktop browser or from a mobile Twitter app. Let’s step through creating a list with a desktop browser first.

Create a list with a desktop browser

Sign in to your Twitter account in a browser. Here’s mine as an example.

The Lists option is on your profile page

In the menu bar opposite your profile photo, click the Lists link. When the Lists page opens, you’ll see any lists you subscribe to (you can subscribe to any public list, including your own), any lists you’ve been added to as a member, and the invitation to create a new list. Once you have lists created, this is where you would find them in your desktop browser.

Create a new list button

Click Create new list, give the list a name, and you can begin adding Twitter accounts to it.

When you create a new list, you can make it public or keep it private. If it’s a public list, it has a URL and anyone who is interested can subscribe to it. For example, here’s one of my public lists: womeninwebeducation.

To add someone to a list, find their user profile. You can search for their name, or just click on their name if you see it on Twitter. When their Twitter profile opens, click the gear icon by the Follow button to see user options.

Select Add or remove from lists

Select Add or remove from lists. Your lists open up and you check or select the list you want to put the user in.

Create a List with the Twitter App

Open the Twitter app.

Click the Me icon

Touch the Me icon at the bottom of the screen to see your own profile.

Click the gear icon to see Lists

Touch the gear icon next to your profile image to see Lists on the menu. Touch Lists.

Touch the plus sign to add a new list

At the top of the Lists page, you see a plus (+) sign. Touch it to create a new list. Give the list a name and decide if it’s public or private.

Once you have lists built, this is where you would go in the mobile app to read the lists you’ve subscribed to. This is also where you can see lists you’ve been added to by someone else.

Next, add Twitter accounts to your list.

Touch the gear icon to see Add/remove from lists

When you’re viewing the Twitter profile of the account you want to add to a list, touch the gear icon to see Add/remove from lists. Press Add/remove from lists and select the list you want to use.

In addition to viewing lists from a browser or the mobile app, tools such as TweetDeck have options that allow you to add columns for lists to your display.

Organize Blogs with Feedly Categories

Feedly is an RSS feed reader. There are many such tools, and you may already be using one to keep track of blogs you want to follow. The reason I mention Feedly in particular is that it offers a way to organize blog feeds into categories. You create categories yourself, or you can use Feedly’s suggestions for categories such as Food, Fashion, Books, or whatever.

Feedly has both a mobile and a desktop version, which makes it easy for you to take those conference contacts you made and quickly add blog URLs to the proper categories. In addition, there’s a pro version of Feedly ($5 a month or $45 for a whole year) that connects to Evernote where you can write notes or save snippets from blog posts.

You can login to Feedly with your Google ID or your Facebook ID.

Using Feedly on a Desktop

I logged in and customized my view a bit, which explains the orange. Hope you like orange as much as I do.

The Home menu in Feedly

At the Home page, there’s a menu on the left. It shows you the 3 categories I have so far: Cinema, Culture and Pop Culture. So far I only have a few blogs in each category. When the home page opens, all the unread feeds from everything appears, but I can click on any one of the categories or blogs and see only that.

Feedly has many categories you can browse, or you can make your own. Feedly calls these Collections. To quickly add a specific blog, find the search box on the upper right. Type in the URL of the blog you want to add. I typed

The search brought up the culture mom feed

The search brought up the feed from The Culture Mom. Next to the name of the blog at the top you see a button with +Feedly. I click that to add this blog to one of my collections.

Add the blog to whatever collection you want

I select the collection I want. Or I can add a new category.

Using the Feedly App

On your mobile device, the Feedly app takes some practice to get used to the way it swipes, but you’ll get the hang of it quickly.

A menu at the top left shows your feeds

It opens with all your unread posts. A menu at the upper left reveals your specific collections and blogs, which you see opened above. At the upper right, there’s a magnifying glass. Touch that to quickly add a blog.

Search for the blog you want to add

The search box opens, where the URL of the blog you want, e.g., can be added. Feedly also suggests blogs it thinks you will like. When the search results appear, you see a plus (+) sign at the top near the name of the blog feed. Touch that plus sign and add the blog to the appropriate collection.

It only takes a few seconds to add the information from a business card to a Twitter list or Feedly collection. If you do it while the person who gave you the card is still fresh in your mind, it will help you remember who you’ve talked to, what their interests are, what their blog is about, and it will give you a way to keep an eye on their tweets. Then you can concentrate on having a great conversation with the next person you meet.

[NOTE: This post was syndicated in slightly different form on]

Why is Accessibility Important? (Infographic)

This infographic is from Usability Matters. It’s oriented toward business and financial reasons for accessibility. I might add that accessibility is important to anyone wanting your content, whether you’re selling something or not.

Accessibility matters infographic

Text version

Types of impairments that may affect how people use your website

• Visual impairments such as low vision, colour blindness and blindness.
• Auditory impairments like people with restricted hearing or who are deaf.
• Mobility impairments such as inability to make fine movements or inability to use a mouse or keyboard.
• Cognitive impairments, which includes people with dyslexia, learning disabilities and even memory loss.

It’s bigger than you think!

Accessibility benefits people with or without disabilities, including:

• Older people and new users
• People who don’t have or are unable to use a keyboard/mouse
• People not fluent in English
• People with temporary disabilities due to accident/illness

3 reasons to make your website accessible

1. Increase your audience customer base
2. It may provide significant financial benefits
3. It’s the right thing to do legally and morally

Did you know?
People with a disability have a global annual spending power of $996 billion*.

GTFO The Movie

A scene of gamers from GTFO

GTFO, the movie, premiered at SXSW in 2015 and is now available from a number of outlets. Created by Shannon Sun-Higginson, the documentary takes a look at sexual harassment in gaming.

The description of the film is,

Sparked by a public display of sexual harassment in 2012, GTFO pries open the video game world to explore a 20 billion dollar industry that is riddled with discrimination and misogyny. In recent years, the gaming community has grown more diverse than ever. This has led to a massive clash of values and women receive the brunt of the consequences every day, with acts of harassment ranging from name calling to cyber vandalism and death threats. Through interviews with video game developers, journalists, and academics, GTFO paints a complex picture of the video game industry, while revealing the systemic and human motivations behind acts of harassment. GTFO is the beginning of a larger conversation that will shape the future of the video game world.

You can buy or rent GTFO on iTunes, Vimeo, BitTorrent, Google Play, Xbox, Playstation, and Vudu. The film is available for educators at the movie web site, which has resources for women who are being harassed.

Time Magazine interviewed Sun-Higginson in Meet the Woman Helping Gamergate Victims Come Out of the Shadows. It’s worth reading.

The UI Improvement that Wasn’t

An iPhone 6. Image from

An iPhone 6. The lock button is directly opposite the volume buttons. Image from

I recently got an iPhone 6. As I’m sure you know, it’s bigger than the previous version of the iPhone. I assume that is the reason why Apple moved the power/lock button from the top to the right side. Makes it easier to reach with your thumb.

Since I frequently want to darken and lock my iPhone before putting it in my pocket or purse, this button is a big deal for me. But with it directly opposite the volume buttons as it is now, I have a hard time using it. I can’t comfortable hold the phone in one hand and click the lock button without clicking one of the volume buttons at the same time.

When I click both the lock button and a volume button at the same time, the volume changes. The phone does not lock.

I have to grab the phone with two hands so I can get my thumb on the lock button without also holding a volume button.

I’m sure Apple thought they were doing us a big favor moving that button, but for me, it created an annoying problem.

A Talk About Nothing

Lena Reinhard

Lena Reinhard

You may have watched this elsewhere, but I found it impressive enough to add here as well. Its a very fine talk about the tech industry by Lena Reinhard at the first ever .concat() web development conference on March 7th 2015.

Here’s the abstract of the talk.

And, yes, literally nothing. Together we’ll take a look behind the curtains of reality and explore some of the underlying rules that shape our existence. We will dig into ancient philosophy, the history and today’s status physics and maths, look into the origins of computing, programming and analyse the way we develop software today. We’ll see how nothing influences us, how it shapes our behaviour every day and how nothing can help us grow – in our professions and, even more, as humans.

“Nothing really matters,”, Freddie Mercury wrote in a song that was released 40 years ago. I want to show you how right he is.

The talk is nominated for the “Conference Talk of the Year” in the .net awards 2015. Listen to it carefully as she builds her message and listen all the way to the end.