If you’ve been hesitating about registering for AccessU West – accessibility training from Knowbility in San Jose in January – now is the time. Use the discount code “EarlyAccess” and get a 10% discount. Only good until December 15, so act fast. Did you know you can get Continuing education units (CEUs) through San Jose State University’s for AccessU West?
This brilliant talk by Jeremy Keith is licensed for sharing with attribution to Jeremy. It is the best explanation of how HTML5 grew to where it is now and what it means to web design that I’ve ever seen. It’s more about design principles than code.
The transcript and a link to the slides are at Adactio.
I think this material should be included in the InterACT curriculum as an introduction to HTML5 module. With the CC license Jeremy is using that is doable. I hereby volunteer to write the educational jargon like objectives and test questions to wrap it up in so it becomes a usable curriculum module for web educators.
I have opted in to quite a few corporate emails. They all come to my inbox in HTML. Some are more effective than others. Some get me to click through. Some I delete without even opening. This slim book talks about how to create an effective HTML email that will get clicks and will be effective.
The chapters include
Planning an Email Campaign
Design for the Inbox
Coding Your Emails
Selling Email to Your Clients
The author, Mathew Patterson, works for Campaign Monitor, and he does draw from that background. He isn’t knocking you over the head with Campaign Monitor, however, and gives credit to other email campaign services like MailChimp. What he does represent is the idea of legitimate business email as opposed to spam. He talks about how to get permission from people to opt-in, how to let people unsubscribe with ease, and the legal requirements of email campaigns. He spends quite a few pages detailing the capabilities of various email applications and explains carefully what will and won’t work in most email clients.
I was most interested in what he had to say in the chapter on coding email. No surprise, that. If you learned to make a web page 10 or 12 years ago, you are in great shape to market yourself as an email designer. If you are learning HTML now, you aren’t learning the old school coding techniques needed for email. Some of the tools of the email coder:
600 pixel layout tables of one or two columns
presentational attributes in the code for things like cellspacing, cellpadding, bgcolor, and borders
inline styles for things like fonts and line-height
reduce reliance on images
always use alt text
store images permanently on your web server
use target="_blank" for links
In spite of the fact that some pundits have declaired email to be dead, it’s actually the most used protocol on the Internet. People who don’t do much of anything else on the Internet do use email. Companies and nonprofits rely on email for newsletters, announcements, calls to action, sales, and press releases. I think HTML email skills will be needed for a long time to come, and I think there is a niche market out there for people who can create well designed and effective email for a living.
This book opened up an educational can of worms for me. Do you think that an educational system should include the old school HTML techniques needed for effective email campaigns as a part of the curriculum? Should they be offered as a separate class or maybe a brief workshop, not a whole semester? Should the InterACT Curriculum include a module for HTML email?
Summary: A guide to the ethics and coding of HTML email.
Every presentation was excellent. A few high points. Glenda Sims presentation on Content Strategy featured innovative slides that set a new standard in what is possible with Powerpoint. Derek Featherstone’s talk garnered the most interest and questions from educators who want specifics about teaching accessibility. Leslie Jensen-Inman knocked it out of the park by explaining how busy and overworked teachers can save themselves time and work with the InterACT book and curriculum.
If you couldn’t attend or get a seat during the original broadcast, take advantage of this terrific opportunity from e4h.
It requires the download and installation of Adobe Connect to view, so allow some time to futz around getting that done if you don’t already have it installed. I couldn’t get the download button to work from the link e4h sends you to, but I found it another way by searching adobe.com.
Based on the interest and number of questions Derek Featherstone got during his accessibility presentation at the recent InterACT Summit, I’d say interest from educators about accessibility is very high right now. There’s a free online course from the Web Standards Project (WaSP) InterACT curriculum about accessibility. The course is a perfect resource for teachers. It’s a stand alone course. If you are teaching with InterACT with Web Standards and its chapters on accessibility, the online material a great time saver. Online materials such as exam questions, grading matrices, assignments, objectives, and resources go hand in hand with the material in the book.
Along with members of the Web Standards Project, we are proud to announce the launch ofInterACT With Web Standards, a book that brings all aspects of web design together for teachers and students. To celebrate the release of the book, several of the expert contributors come together online to give mini-tutorials in their fields of expertise.
It’s a free event and we expect tickets to go fast. So, reserve your space now!