Learn HTML5 with Videos and Books

Treehouse Logo

I moved to a rural part of Japan six years ago with no prospects. There was no job waiting for me and I didn’t have a college degree to help me become employed. My Japanese speaking skills were nonexistent unless you want to give me credit for mistakenly asking people if I could “have” their toilet. I knew I needed to figure out a way to earn a living.

I tried several ideas that all failed. The most notable of the failures was the month I tried to sell Japanese Transformers on eBay. I probably would have done better if I made an eBook “How to Make Money Selling Japanese Transformers”. You really can make money but not much…just enough to purchase expired sushi and paper towels. The towels are important because they will be used to clean up any sushi that is “returned to sender”. Ewwww!…but true.

How did I escape financial ruin? How did I go from being dirt poor to just poor? The answer is online tutorial and training videos. I had computer skills but needed to improve them so I signed up for the free trial at Lynda.com and watched as many videos as I could. I was also learning from YouTube, forums, and by dissecting source code. The way I went about acquiring skills wasn’t ideal. I think the learning online thing would have worked better for me if everything I needed to know was in one place. This is why I was very happy when Faye, the community manager at Treehouse contacted me.

Treehouse is taking a new angle at the traditional online teaching video. Their videos tend to run as a course with quizzes and interactive Code Challenges mixed in. As you complete the courses you will earn badges that are an indicator of what skills you currently possess. These badges are then viewable by anyone including recruiters from big companies. This means that everything you need to know will finally be in one place! Continue reading “Learn HTML5 with Videos and Books”

New JavaScript UI Library

Javascript Library w2ui

I am a big fan of simplicity. Some of my favorite quotes reflect this; “less is more”, “keep it simple”, and “are you going to eat that?”. I live in the land of sushi and believe the world would be healthier if everything people ate had 5 ingredients or less. I don’t own a TV or use a cellphone for anything other than testing new apps and responsive designs. They were both replaced with an iPad.

The best house near me is for a true minimalist. It was built and laid out using a simple grid system that divides the space into three living quarters. The layout feels like the architects were working on a new web design and halfway through decided to create a house instead.

My appreciation for all that is simple gives me a moderate level of enjoyment in introducing the new open source JavaScript UI library called w2ui. It is a nimble 37kb (minified and gziped) which means that the load and execution times will be done in a flash, pun intended. It is 12 times smaller than Ext JS and 6 times smaller than Kendo UI. The w2ui code is licensed under the “if it’s free, it’s for me” license also known as the MIT license.

The w2ui is a complete set of UI widgets for data-driven web applications. Continue reading “New JavaScript UI Library”

HTML5 Security, the Book

HTML5 Security, the Book

I thought I had my first Mac computer virus a couple of years ago. It turns out the vicious hacker was a baby blue stuffed manatee in another room. It was pressing down on a wireless keyboard I had stopped using weeks earlier. It took me longer than it should have to figure out. Very embarrassing! Wouldn’t it be nice if all computer problems were human error? Unfortunately, this is not the case. Malicious attackers are probably reading this right now as they try to find out more information on how to exploit HTML5. The next Dr. Evil is out there and this time it won’t be “sharks with lasers.”

The eBook HTML5 Security is pretty self-explanatory and a must read for all serious developers especially since it’s priced under $5. It is by a German author, Carsten Eilers who is a freelance consultant and coach on IT security and technical data protection. I had the opportunity to download a free copy of HTML5 Security for this post. I like how Carsten handles the basics. He believes the first question you should ask yourself when pondering how to repel attacks should always be “What are the goals of the attacker?”. The book covers XSS Javascript, communication in HTML5, local storage options, Clickjacking, and more. There are also diagrams, code examples, and screenshots throughout the book to help explain the points Carsten is making.

I am giving away 5 free copies of HTML5 Security. Continue reading “HTML5 Security, the Book”