367: With Micah Godbolt

I got to talk with Micah Godbolt this week! Micah is is a long-hauler at Microsoft working on Design Systems and such. His CodePen account looks a lot like mine: steady consistent usage of “just trying to figure something out” Pens sprinkled with some ideas that somehow seem to click with the wider front-end world. I found it fascinating that putting the word “Design Systems” into his book title “Front-end Architecture for Design Systems” was suggested by the publisher, and they were right! Turns out the term Design Systems clicked a lot harder since the 2016 publication and I’m sure hasn’t hurt sales!

Time Jumps

00:35 Guest introduction

02:46 Front end architecture for design systems

06:31 Building design systems

10:23 Sponsor: Linode

11:08 You don’t need a UI framework

17:49 Responsive multi-level nav pen

19:30 Multi height equal column pen

23:01 How do you ship components?

27:00 Testing for bugs

28:41 Consistently making pens

35:13 Creating a stripped down use case

40:06 Where can people find out more

Sponsor: Linode

Visit linode.com/codepen and see why over a million developers trust Linode for the infrastructure.  From their award-winning support (offered 24/7/365 to every level of user) to ease of use and set up; it’s clear why developers have been trusting Linode for projects both big and small since 2003.   Linode offers the industry’s best price-to-performance value for all compute instances, including shared, dedicated, high memory, and GPUs. Linode makes cloud computing simple, affordable, and accessible allowing you to focus on your customers, not your infrastructure.  Visit linode.com/codepen, create a free account and you’ll get $100 in credit.

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346: With Ben Evans

You might recognize Ben Evans from his absolutely incredible CSS “paintings”, like the portrait of his daughter or the still life. Paintings aren’t the quite word as Ben designs them all to be entirely scalable. And sometimes they have interactivity, like the slight parallax in the Vaccum from Space. Like so many other great artists, Ben’s skills aren’t isolated to CSS trickery, his portfolio reveals artist exploration across nearly every creative outlet there is, including moss, and as I learned in our conversation, even music.

Time Jumps

00:42 Guest introduction

02:02 Working in mediums other than computers

03:42 How do you do this with just CSS?

06:48 How many divs are needed for hair?

11:00 Is it easier to use a drawing app or divs?

13:50 Sponsor: Notion

15:38 Why do you build these?

17:25 SVG vs CSS

19:44 How did you end up in tech?

26:51 Learning Blender

28:35 Making a CSS game

31:52 What are you excited about in the future?

Sponsor: Notion

For companies of all sizes, Notion provides one central and customizable workspace that can be tailored to fit any team, and bring all teams together to get more done and move faster. Notion is an all-in-one team collaboration tool that combines note-taking, document sharing, wikis, project management and much more into one space that’s simple, powerful, and beautifully-designed. Find out how Notion may be the missing piece your team needs to grow, get more done, and delight everyone who uses it in the process.

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345: With Gabrielle Wee

This week I talk with Gabrielle Wee, who’s done loads of creative coding work here on CodePen but like so many other creative people we talk to, her creativity explodes into so many other areas like illustration, photography, drawing, and even gardening. Plus a desire to share those techniques. Her path has led her to be working at Apple, a dream job.

Gabrielle on Dribbble and Twitter.

Some advice from Gabrielle: doing work that she was personally interested in, rather than pandering to any recent trend, was much more fun and led to more clear success. Also: be curious and inspect element.

Time Jumps

00:28 Guest introduction

02:50 Personal website with fancy domain name

04:26 CSS Trickery

07:59 Putting code out into the world for the first time

09:23 CSS Nest Dropdown animation

11:48 What’s the job trajectory to working at Apple?

15:51 Sponsor: Jetpack

17:18 What else was on your path to getting a job?

20:13 Where does your art training come from?

25:33 Making Pokemon in code

26:45 What about Daily UI?

28:49 Making gradients you think you can’t pull off

31:27 Closing advice

Sponsor: Jetpack

Jetpack has some good news. All backups are now in realtime, whatever plan you are on or buy. If you already have daily backups on your plan, email them them to get on the new system. The blog post has details. Real time backups are amazing, because you can back up to very specific moments in time (say, right before a certain post was edited) rather than the more broad sword of having to pick a day.

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338: With Lynn Fisher

Lynn Fisher is my guest this week! You might know her as @lynnandtonic on CodePen and most other platforms. We get to talk about her A Single Div project and all the CSS magic that goes into those, other creative projects and why those are so satisfying, a recent transition over to Netlify, and the fact that we’ve worked together on an illustration project without ever having met.

Time Jumps

00:49 Guest introduction

02:06 Web illustrations in a single div

07:40 Background tools

10:28 Sponsor: VideoPress

12:27 Workflow for creating single divs

17:00 Changing from client work to product work

21:45 What are you excited about?

26:11 Illustrations for flexbox guide

Sponsor: VideoPress

There is a bit of a rebirth of VideoPress that just happened! If you run a self-hosted WordPress site like we do, VideoPress is a major upgrade to hosting videos in content. You get VideoPress through Jetpack. If you buy Jetpack Complete, you’ve got it, otherwise, it’s an ala-carte purchase. Meaning if VideoPress is the only feature of Jetpack you want, no problem, it’s literally the only thing you need to pay for and use. To name a few things… with VideoPress you get a nice customized video player, cloud-hosted optimized video delivery, playback speed control, and the videos will look good on mobile without you having to manually create a poster.

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Come Talk to Us – A .NET Foundation Face-to-Face

Come Talk to Us!

A lot of discussion inside and outside the .NET Foundation has been going on the last two weeks. What we’ve heard is that there is both confusion about what the goals of the Foundation are; as well as how member projects are sheparded. To this end, we’d like to start a conversation with the community.

To begin with, we invite you to a Face-to-Face discussion on October 27th at 5pm UTC (12pm ET/9am PT/11:30pm IT). We’re happy to announce that Richard Campbell (of .NET Rocks) has graciously agreed to host this event.

This discussion will be live-streamed on YouTube to be as transparent as possible. Please come and bring your questions and concerns. Please use the following link to join us on October 27th.


I look forward to talking with you!

Shawn Wildermuth
.NET Foundation