Tinned Fruit Missives September 2018

Holy crap the web is slow!

Unfortunately, the people that can actually do something about it don’t always appreciate how dire the situation is, because they’ve spent more than £50 on their smartphone and use corporate mega broadband speeds to view their own sites and apps.

Steadily improving phone and PC hardware hasn’t meant everyone’s experience of the web is lifted at the same time. Instead there’s an ever diversifying set of experiences, which makes front-end performance work more important than ever. It’s not something that can just be dismissed for now and fixed later.

Fortunately, guidance and tooling around web performance is better than ever too. Will this autumn be the time you finally get serious about it?

Have a great month!

– Jim

The Cost of JavaScript - Addy Osmani

My new go-to post for sending people an overview on modern client-side web performance. Just in case you don’t read the article, please, for the love of [insert deity] stop taking fast networks, CPU and high RAM for granted. And buy a low-end Android for testing. Go on, they’re really cheap.

The Power of Progressive Enhancement - Andy Bell

I often find it weird that we talk up learning-led iterative product design approaches, but when it comes to development we jump straight into using a heavyweight JavaScript framework. Andy instead coins the term Minimum Viable Experience and updates some of the practices behind progressive enhancement in the era of extensive browser capabilities and the JavaScript-heavy web.

The system always kicks back - Kyle Peatt

Although this article is ostensibly about design systems, the lessons learned from evolving Shopify’s design systems are valid for product engineering as a whole. In particular, I found myself nodding vigorously to the observation the benefits of foundational systems are less about tooling and more about fostering communication, education and inspiration.

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Tinned Fruit Missives is a monthly newsletter about web product development and front-end practices published by Jim Newbery, an independent coach and consultant from Edinburgh in Scotland.

I help growing B2B SaaS companies create profitable and sustainable web products. Find out more.

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