Archive for the ‘JQuery’ Category

Why use CSS3 Transitions?

Monday, October 15th, 2012

You may have heard about CSS3 transitions, and how you should never use them (or CSS3 in general) in commercial sites without a fallback because it’s not compatible across all browsers especially the older ones.

We think, though, that it’s important to start learning and practicing this technology now, because in the future, it could well send jQuery animations the way of Flash.

If you looked across the industry now, it wouldn’t seem like anything could knock jQuery from its perch, but it wasn’t too long ago when we all thought that about Flash.

So why use CSS3 transitions? CSS3 transitions can add an effect from one style to another and not use Flash or Javascript to create transitions.

But what is the reasons for using CSS3 transitions in the first place? CSS3 transitions will offer smoother user experience compared to Javascript animations because everything can be handled by the browser engine.

This bring us on to our next point where mobile devices are getting faster and more people are browsing through the internet using their mobile devices. With the introduction of the lighting fast 4G network we need to ensure that websites are developed to work on the mobile devices. CSS3 transitions will be help produce smoother transitions on mobile devices as mobile devices are not powerful like desktop computers.

There are many other benefits such as the load speed can be significantly reduced the file size of your HTML document can be significantly reduced too because we are not calling Javascript or Flash.

There are issue with cross compatibility issues with Flash, Javascript and CSS3 so they are all bad as each other. But obviously there are greater benefits with using CSS3 hence we have discovered a great solution in using CSS3 so that it is cross browser compatible. Features such as rounded corners, drop shadows etc can be produced and work on Internet Explorer 6 to 9. supports the following elements of CSS3:

  • multiple background images
  • linear-gradient as background image
  • border-radius
  • box-shadow
  • border-image

In the near future we may see a change in how transitions work on website and CSS3 being the major preference over jQuery or Flash that have been so dominate in the past.

Javascript vs. Flash

Monday, July 16th, 2012

Ask any web designer today and they will most likely say that Flash is a relic; the truth is that until the availability of JavaScript libraries such as Jquery and MooTools, developing websites with animation/ interaction was out of reach for most web developers. It originally rose to prominence due to the duration and difficulty of javascript development cycles, cross browser compatibility issues and the inherent requirement of an extensive knowledge of javascript to tackle even the simplest tasks.

The introduction of libraries that support cross browser compatibility are trivialising said development constraints, and in doing so continue to mould the learning curve into a more manageable gradient for web developers today. Using a combination of libraries can give you control over AJAX routines, on-the-fly form validation, search functionality and various content consolidation methods – even some animation; which ultimately covers a large majority of interactive functionality requirements.

Javascript Pros Javascript Cons
Small file size Features are far less extensive than flash
Large number of libraries to suppress the very high learning curve 3D features are limited
Far more cross browser and mobile compatibility More demanding features are processor intensive and therefore slow on most browsers
Can add animation to elements/tags on your webpage Users can disable javascript

These are but a few of the pros and cons to consolidate an understanding of what JavaScript can and can’t offer at the most basic level. There are still however a number of advantages that Flash brings to the table despite most technologies branching out to avoid it…

Flash Pros Flash Cons
3D capabilities Lack of mobile compatibility
Consistent appearence on browsers that do support it Cost of purchasing flash software
Networks of free/ commercial tools Large file size
Supports vector art Requires flash plugin to work
Built in UI Users can disable flash
Changes require the file to be recompiled and therefore is more time consuming
Relatively high learning curve

Javascript libraries happily roam between most formats but are still at home on websites that have more of an interactive design feel vs. strictly informative content, whereas Flash is ultimately still the go-to-guy for video embedding until an iteration of Javascript can rival it. Taking into consideration everything above, it is only fair to say that they are currently two separate entities all together, and conclusively BOTH best… in their respected arenas.

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