!important CSS Declarations: How and When to Use Them

The !important CSS declaration is extremely powerful but like they say, with great power comes great responsibility! Check out this article to find out when you should and shouldn't be using !important.

!important declarations are best reserved for special needs and users who want to make web content more accessible by easily overriding default user agent or author stylesheets. So you should do your best to give your CSS proper forethought and avoid using !important wherever possible. Even in many of the uses described above, the inclusion of !important is not always necessary.

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Essential Design Trends, May 2017

Keeping your eye out for emerging trends is essential in any industry. Here are some of the trends emerging in the world of web design for May 2017

From a purely aesthetic trend in shallow hero headers and diagonal corner layouts to a user interaction trend in this or that calls to action, there are plenty of interesting ways to draw the attention of users. Here’s what’s trending in design this month:

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The Principles Of Cross-Browser CSS Coding

It is arguable that there is no goal in web design more satisfying than getting a beautiful and intuitive design to look exactly the same in every currently-used browser. Unfortunately, that goal is generally agreed to be almost impossible to attain. Some have even gone on record as stating that perfect, cross-browser compatibility is not necessary. While I agree that creating a consistent experience for every user in every browser (putting aside mobile platforms for the moment) is never going to happen for every project, I believe a near-exact cross-browser experience is attainable in many cases. As developers, our goal should not just be to get it working in every browser; our goal should be to get it working in every browser with a minimal amount of code, allowing future website maintenance to run smoothly. In this article, I’ll be describing what I believe are some of the most important CSS principles and tips that can help both new and experienced front-end developers achieve as close to a consistent cross-browser experience as possible, with as little CSS code as possible.

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The 8 Best Free Web Design Ebooks

Looking for some relevant reading? Here are some free ebooks to help you keep up with web design trends.

Improving your web design skills is a continuous, constant process, so it's important to track down useful resources to help you step up your game. In this article we'll explore some of the most useful free ebooks out there, which cover topics spanning from web design trends to CSS best practices.

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Improving Perceived Performance with Multiple Background Images

A great technique to apply on a hero banner or any type of large image size item to give the user a better loading time experience.

I’m on a train right now, which means the wifi is awful. A lot of sites are refusing to load at all, and those that do have lots of images missing, leaving big blank holes in their web pages.

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Better web typography in 13 simple steps

The web is made of text! It’s time to upgrade your typography game with these tips that you can apply today to improve your web design.

"Web typography on the web is not as daunting as you may think. One can go a long way with a few basic tips.”

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The Search For The Holy Grail: How I Ended Up With Element Queries, And How You Can Use Them Today

An interesting new approach to building responsive layouts, using individual page elements as the basis for applying different styles, rather than the width of the page as a whole. It's a JavaScript library, and requires quite a mental shift - and in many cases it may not provide any additional benefits over pure CSS - but for some projects this could really make sense. It's one that we'll keep on the shelf because chances are one day we'll run into a project that needs something like this.

The result of this research has been the creation of a syntax that includes a new set of advanced responsive conditions, scoped styles and new selectors for targeting elements, as well as a pure JavaScript library named EQCSS.js.

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Houdini: Maybe The Most Exciting Development In CSS You’ve Never Heard Of

Browser support for new features - particularly in CSS - has come a LONG way in the last few years. But there's still a long delay between a new feature being defined and it being widely enough supported for general use. Houdini seeks to remove that delay by allowing custom extensions for CSS to be built by developers - effectively meaning that support for new features can be built by regular developers instead of having to wait for browsers to catch up. Of course before we can use it we have to wait for Houdini to be supported by browsers, so it's a few years away from being useful - but it's certainly a move in the right direction.

Have you ever wanted to use a particular CSS feature but didn’t because it wasn’t fully supported in all browsers? Or, worse, it was supported in all browsers, but the support was buggy, inconsistent or even completely incompatible? If this has happened to you — and I’m betting it has — then you should care about Houdini.

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Formatting Gravity Form Errors

We love Gravity Forms, but its default errors are frankly pretty ugly. A couple of small snippets in your PHP and CSS however can make them much more attractive.

Do you want to change the standard error text (when people did something wrong on your form). It looks quite unfriendly, the standard validation error. So let’s make it a little bit more friendly.

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Foundation 6: Leaner, Meaner and Cleaner

The next iteration of Foundation by Zurb is looking great. We'll be integrating this into our next boilerplate shortly. Stay tuned.

Sass is an amazing tool, but like any tool, you need to know the right time to use it. After two years working with Foundation 5, we found we were using Sass a little too much. But we can't imagine life without it, and when Foundation 6 ships later this year, you'll be able to leverage our slimmed down, simpler codebase to learn and build faster than ever.

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