An Event Apart 2013

It’s August! And in this city that means conferences and training camps… and we recently attended one of our favorites, An Event Apart!

The presentations this year ranged from discussing the responsive design process to multi-device web design to designing user experiences to content strategy for mobile to designing websites for large screen devices like TVs, and much more.

One of our favorite talks was from Samantha Warren, a Designer at Twitter. She walked the audience through a sample design process using Style Tiles in place of mood boards or design mock-ups. We have been hearing quite a bit about Style Tiles the last year and this talk was downright motivational. We immediately used Style Tiles for a new art museum client to help establish the creative direction before delivering design comps. We are ready to revamp our design process to incorporate Style Tiles from here forward! … »


User Experience Professional Association (UXPA) Conference Recap: Day 2

As we discussed in our last post, User Experience Professional Assocation (UXPA) Conference Recap: Day 1, our UX lead, Danielle Sheffler, was at UXPA 2013 in DC for 2 days recently.

Day 2 brought the opportunity for two more sessions and a 3 1/2 hour workshop. These sessions covered collaborating beyond your usability team, techniques on rapid prototyping, and Google’s iterative usability studies for products such as Google TV. The workshop allowed New Target to share their own process and deliverables for UX strategy and to learn about other companies’ processes and deliverables.

We had the following takeaways from day 2:

  • Some of the processes we use are also used by other companies, who share our same philosophy of “keep it new and fresh” and “it’s good to be curious about many other things.”  The presentation referred to practices we use such as diagnosing the real problem, determining what the user is looking for, and the best approach for delivering the deliverables for a client, as the type of deliverable may change depending on the audience.  However, the presenting team brought up the point that every person is different, and that it’s important every person who uses your site, even your internal team, as being different and wanting to use the site in their own unique way. … »

User Experience Professional Association (UXPA) Conference Recap: Day 1

Our UX lead, Danielle Sheffler, attended the User Experience Professional Association (UXPA) Conference in DC on July 10th and 11th.  The theme of this year’s conference was collaboration. All presentations were related to creating the best user experiences, creating partnerships, making connections, and properly using connections.

The sessions on Day 1 included, integrating usability into an agile environment, collaborating with others to create responsive designs, and the top five usability problems found in government in 2012. Here are a few takeaways:

  • • We learned about the progress government agencies are making on the standards set forth by the Obama Administration’s 2012 Digital Government Strategy, which calls for customer-centric sites that engaged US citizens. As we work on building and redesigning government websites, we will be utilizing a checklist of these items to ensure we are meeting the most up-to-date government standards and best practices. … »

DrupalCon Follow-up – Future of Views

One of our favorite sessions at DrupalCon Portland was the Future of Views from Tim Plunkett. Since we returned last week, this session – which addressed upcoming changes for Views in Drupal 8 – has been on our minds; so we decided to recap a few high points along with thoughts and opinions from the New Target team. If you were in the session and have additional comments, please chime in!

The most prominent change is that Views will no longer require a separate download and installment. Drupal 8 will include Views as part of the core which essentially enables it as a default setting for all websites. Our team considers this a major improvement… particularly, because Drupal 8 will simplify the process for overriding the default views template and because Views will be stored as configuration files.

The Views bulk operations (VPO) has been a helpful module operating as an add-on for Views. As part of the core Drupal 8, various operations like changing entities and updating nodes can be done in bulk by using VBO.
… »


DrupalCon Portland – Drush on the go!

Scenario: It is Wednesday, May 22nd and the Views vulnerability patch is released in middle of Matt Chapman’s session on “Making Drupal the best REST server for Single-Page Apps.” Can’t call home, office lines are dead, nobody is responding. You have to handle this on your own, Special Agent Burt Macklin.

Challenge Accepted!

1. Slowly pull out your smartphone, launch SSH app (ConnectBot) and connect to development server.

2. Once shelled in, run drush up -n | ‘SECURITY-UPDATE’ to get a list of pending security updates. It should only be the newly released Views update.

3. Run drush and create backup of database. drush sql-dump –gzip –result-file=/var/www/yoursite/filename-$(date +%m%d%y-%H).sql.gz
… »

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