Working at GRAYBOX

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Design by Alum

Working at GRAYBOX the last month has been a great adventure—and it’s only just getting started.

I used to be a classical musician—Now I’m a junior web developer

Before I started working at GrayBox, I worked as a classical musician teaching private lessons and playing gigs, as well as having other various jobs. I began learning about web development in early 2013, soaking up all I could. I took advantage of the internet and reading as many books as I could.

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Pure CSS Loading Spinner

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Design by Kevin Carpenter

How often do you see the same loading graphic, using the same animated .gif file? I know I see it multiple times every day, but why use such a common poorly rendered graphic when we could create one more visually pleasing just as easily in pure css? If you do not know which loading graphic I am specifically referring to, let me refresh your memory: Now we could directly recreate this graphic (I have included the code at the bottom of the post) but for this brief example let's rework this graphic a bit.

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Dev Toolkit: Code Snippet Storage

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Development by Alum

The saying goes that good developers write code and great developers steal code*. The best developers however are those who are able to steal from themselves. The great thing about working with digital tools is the ability to apply previous solutions to new work with copy/paste. Reusing code in this manner can save development time is a standard practice, especially for veterans of the industry who get both smarter and lazier as time goes on. What's hard though is keeping all of your stolen code handy, ready to pop it into the template or script or whathaveyou. Back in the day™ we kept this...

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jQuery: Combining Effects to Make Your Site Sizzle

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Design by Mark Middleton

jQuery, the popular framework for short-handing complex actions in JavaScript, has been extended by many developers around the world to do create some pretty slick in-browser effects.

Today, let's combine a couple of those together (along with some CSS effects) and make your page content a little more interesting.

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Wordpress .htaccess Broken Down

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Design by Kevin Carpenter

As of WordPress 3.0, to create permalinks you will need to use the following .htaccess file: # BEGIN WordPress RewriteEngine On RewriteBase / RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L] RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d RewriteRule . /index.php [L] # END WordPress The goal of this post is to examine what the .htaccess rules are doing, and why they’re doing it. With this information you will be able to customize your own .htaccess file to suit the needs of your web application.

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Great Advice for Understanding most Users

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Design, User Experience by Alum

Do you ever have a hard time explaining UI and UX to clients or coworkers? We came across this video the other day and found it humorous and helpful in explaining the sometimes counter intuitive design decisions that get made to make our sites user friendly.

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4 Tips To Faster Loading Google Fonts

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Web Design, User Experience, Digital Design by Kevin Carpenter

Load Google Fonts First Before CSS Place the Google import code such that it loads first directly after the html HEAD tag, EVEN before loading the CSS file. This ensures the fonts load before the CSS so there isn't any unexpected "jumping" of when the font finally loads. This is actually becoming very common in sites that I have seen recently. Use Link Format There are 3 ways in which you can load Google Fonts – @import, link rel and javascript. The link rel tag will allow you to place the code on the html and load it the fastest before the CSS file. Here is an example:

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The Query Module - Getting Data into Templates

Posted on Fri, December 20, 2013 in Greatest Hits, Web Development by Alum

At its core the job of a CMS is to retrieve information from a database and display it to a user. Inside of ExpressionEngine the most common example of this is the Channel Entries module, which at its most basic it looks something like this;

{exp:channel:entries channel="blog"}

{title} {blog_intro} {blog_body}

{/exp:channel:entries}

If you’re familiar with EE then you should know instantly what’s going to happen here. ExpressionEngine will output the Title, Intro and Content for each entry in the blog channel, one after the next. By adding parameters like “limit=”, “orderby=”,...

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What kind of Social Media User is your company?

Posted on Mon, November 04, 2013 in Digital Marketing by Alum

At GRAYBOX we’ve been working out our social media strategy. As our company grows and we bring in new people with new ideas, we’re slowly working out a consistent strategy that our whole team engages in.

While utilizing different tools and experimenting, I came across tweetlevel and a helpful list of the different kinds of twitter users they have identified. It has helped us decide what kind of social media users we are, and what kind of user we want to be. Take a look, I think it is helpful.

Idea Starters – this small collective of people are the creative brains behind many of the...

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Magento Quick Tip: Magento product does not display

Posted on Wed, October 30, 2013 in Web Design, Web Development, eCommerce, Magento by Mark Middleton

If you have added a product to your store and it isn’t showing up in the storefront, there’s a list of settings to check:

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