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CSS Front End Java Script Network

Optimising Aljazeera.net website – Front End case study

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Why I choose Aljazeera website?

I have chosen Aljazeera website because of the following reasons:

  1. It’s popular in the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region and one the top 1,500 websites in the world. Alexa rank (screened on July 15, 2015):
    Aljazeera Alexa Rank
  2. The website is slow like a snail. More than 4.2 seconds download in the best case scenario. Pingdom speed test:
    Aljazeera pingdom test
  3. It has lots of issues that I wanted to cover in this post.

What does it already have?

The website is not well optimised. I can only say it’s HTML code is good. The HTML has some issues like have extra codes that are useless and some inline scripts.
The DOM is defined as HTML5 tag, which is good. And we have a “viewport” META tag, which means the website is responsive. That’s good for SEO too.
So, its going to be a big article covering all areas and optimising all aspects of this website.

Optimising HTML.

The HTML is not optimised. We have some inline Scripts that should be moved to Javascript files. There are 7 <script> tags in the HEAD. 3 are file includes and 4 are inline code.
We have 16 Javascript tags <script> in the page. All these scripts are around the page. And as i mentioned previously, 7 in the <head> tag.
As we also can see, we have around 156 requests including 3rd-party services. These requests could be optimised to smaller number by concatenating CSS files into 1 file, and Javascript files into 1 or 2 Javascript files.

Also there is a refresh META tag. Seems they use it for increasing page views:

<meta http-equiv="refresh" content="900" />

Optimising CSS.

This area needs lots of work.

  1. Commented CSS code.
  2. CSS properties better to be combined in one. Example “background” instead of background-image, background-position, background-repeat
  3. The use of !important; This !important should be used very carefully. While most of engineers say: Don’t use it at all.
  4. Use real and useful values. We have some values like:

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    text-indent: -50000px;
  5. using CSS properties in a wrong way, using “overflow:hidden” for body and html. Also using font size for html as percentage. While this, or the body, should have the initial value. Here is an example:
    html {
    	font-size: 62.5%;
    	overflow-x: hidden;
    }
    body {
    	line-height: 1;
    	overflow-x: hidden;
    }
  6. There are deep CSS calls, like:
    .CommentsLiveMod #comments .comments-section #ManinReaderComment .main-comment .start-comment-on-comment .close-commenting:hover
  7. Using generic CSS, and this is really bad. Here is an example (its only One css block here):
    .arab_world_drag_tabs>div>div>div

Optimising images.

Article images are well optimised. But when we take a look at the icons and images loaded from CSS, we find the following:

– Images are not optimised at all.
– All images and icons are separated. They should be combined into image sprites.

Optimising JS

We have lots of work here. Here are some points about improving javascript:

  • Move most of inline Javascript code to JS files.
  • Combine Javascript files together to decrease hits on server. And to decrease rendering time.
  • Call Javascript files from CDN, this will boost the website’s performance, while the file are currently loaded directly.
  • Move Javascript files at the end of document. This will affect some events handling in the website, but updating the events will solve this issue.
  • Javascript code is not minified. This means more Bandwidth and more page loading time.
  • There are couple of 3rd-party scripts are loaded, but i can’t suggest anything here while these are used for monitoring, adding features, and delivering extra features.

 

Categories
Browsers CSS Design HTML Misc Web & Programming

Arabic web fonts are here

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When Google Fonts Early Access was released (i guess in 2012), 5 Arabic fonts were added to the list. The Arabic fonts are:

  • Amiri
  • Droid Arabic Kufi
  • Droid Arabic Naskh
  • Lateef
  • Scheherazade

And from that since, only Noto group were added to the list of Arabic fonts:

  • Noto Kufi Arabic
  • Noto Nash Arabic
  • Noto Sans Kufi Arabic

 

And because Arabic websites are lack of Arabic web Fonts, i have developed a website called FontFace.me to serve web fonts for Arabic language.

FontFace.me is a free service to use. I also have FontStatic.com domain to be the CDN to serve CSS and Font files.

I hope this will be used for all Arabic websites soon.

Categories
Browsers CSS DHTML HTML Java Script Jquery Web & Programming

Building and Testing your JavaScript app with Yeoman

I really like automation, especially when its smart.
I am talking here about building applications, testing, building for production and some other process may needed.

We will talk here about these tools:
Bower: is a dependencies manager. Managing your app by simply installing packages needed to your app.
GruntJS: is a Build and Testing tool. So, you can build your application, unit testing, minify CSS and JS files… etc.

Yeoman came to combine these 2 tools and some other tools into one. Yeoman job is to create a development application with a standard structure of files and directories.

jQuery, RequireJS and HTML5 Boilerplate are included by default with Yeoman to build your application.

This structure is like:

Yeoman files and directories

As you see, its using HTML5 boilerplate structure.

How to install Yeoman?

First, you will need to know that NodeJS is required. So, you will need to install it first.
To install Yeoman, write this in your command line:

npm install -g yo

How to build application with Yeoman?

Once its installed, all you have to do is:In your command line, go to the directory (folder) you want to setup your application in. Then, run this command:

yo webapp

Note: the setup directory should be empty, or you will get errors.

After building your application, you can start writing code and developing your app.

How to test my application?

You will need to run this command:

grunt server

It will prepare things and will open the browser for you to see your app.

Note: Make sure that port 9000 is not used by any application, while grunt is using it for testing.

While you are testing, don’t close the command line, and you won’t need to refresh the page. Grunt will do that for you when you update files.

How to build my application for production?

All you need is to run this command:

grunt build

Note: You will need to wait for a minute or two till this process is done.

You will see new folder in your application called dist that contains all built files.

grunt build

You see that script files are combined into one file. And every time you run the build command, it will create another file version for you.

How to install all dependencies and packages for my application?

You will need to know about this when you update your dependencies, or when you install the app in another place.
Because you don’t have to download all libraries and dependencies manually, your app will be clean, simple and be installed anywhere.

All you have to do when you want to install these dependencies is to run this:

bower install

If you already have dependencies installed, and you changed something or you need to update them, run this command:

bower update

But, How to tell my applications about dependencies and requirements?

You will need to update you bower.js highlighted with yellow here:

Bower.js file

For more information, please read:

Enjoy

 

Categories
Bootstrap CSS HTML Java Script Jquery touch Web & Programming

Overriding Javascript in Twitter Bootstrap

You all know about Twitter Bootstrap. It’s the top front-end development framework and it’s spreading more and more. And while this framework was made on standards and most of useful components were added to it, some of us may need to override some code of it for his/her needs.

I had a chance to work on that, i mean overriding. Let me explain what I was doing and how I did that.

I was working on Left Tabs explained below:

left-tabs

I put a Youtube video in the Tab Content side and when screen size gets smaller, the video gets smaller. This is a really bad behavior for using this.
So, I added an exceptional case for Content to get beneath the tabs in small screens.

In HTML, I made this:

 
<div class="tabbable tabs-left">
	<ul class="nav nav-tabs">
		<li class="active"><a href="#tab1" data-toggle="tab">
			<span class="video-title">1st video</span>
		</a></li>
		<li><a href="#tab2" data-toggle="tab">
			<span class="video-title">2nd video</span>
		</a></li>
		<li><a href="#tab3" data-toggle="tab">
			<span class="video-title">3rd video</span>
		</a></li>
	</ul>
	<!-- Here is what i've added -->
	<div class="clearer"></div>
	<div class="tab-content">
		<div class="tab-pane active" id="tab1">
			<div class="tab-content">
				<p>
					<h4>1st video</h4>
				</p>
				<iframe width="98%" height="400" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Sui1IDorBsQ?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
			</div>
		</div><!-- #tab1 -->
		<div class="tab-pane" id="tab2">
			<div class="tab-content">
				<p>
					<h4>2nd video</h4>
				</p>
				<iframe width="98%" height="400" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Sui1IDorBsQ?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
			</div>
		</div><!-- #tab2 -->
		<div class="tab-pane" id="tab3">
			<div class="tab-content">
				<p>
					<h4>3rd video</h4>
				</p>
				<iframe width="98%" height="400" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/Sui1IDorBsQ?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
			</div>
		</div><!-- #tab3 -->
	</div><!-- .tab-content -->
</div><!-- .tabbable -->

The CSS used for the <div class="clearer"></div> is here:

 
@media (max-width:480px){
.clearer {
  *zoom: 1;
}
.clearer:before, .clearer:after {
  display: table;
  content: "";
  line-height: 0;
}
.clearer:after {
  clear: both;
}
}

Why was all that?
I needed to use Left Tabs, and clear the float when viewing in a small screen like mobile.

The problem I’ve got is:
When I click on tabs, when tab content are not in view area, I feel nothing happens. While it’s working fine. But its not scrolling down to tab content.

I tried to add scrolling on Click event, but it didn’t work. The reason is, they are using Event Delegation.

I fixed this with the code below:

// this line will remove the Previous event.
$(document).off('click.tab.data-api');
// This will add event but wthout e.preventDefault(); line
$(document).on('click.tab.data-api', '[data-toggle="tab"], [data-toggle="pill"]', function (e) {
    $(this).tab('show');
});

The Bootstrap code was:

$(document).on('click.tab.data-api', '[data-toggle="tab"], [data-toggle="pill"]', function (e) {
    e.preventDefault()
    $(this).tab('show')
})

The bootstrap JS file I am talking about is: https://github.com/twbs/bootstrap/blob/master/js/tab.js scroll to the end of file to line 131

Resources for solution:

 

Categories
CSS Design Free Stuff HTML Java Script Jquery Mobiles touch Web & Programming

Responsive CSS Frameworks: What to use?!

The 960 Grid systems are the way to develop a faster websites. At the mean time, developing websites should support mobile browsers while mobile usage is increasing. So, supporting all screen sizes called: Responsive web.

I am not writing this to talk about this, i am writing it to give me details and features about several Grid Systems that mostly common. This will help you decide, what to use? and what is suitable for you.

Categories
AJAX Browsers CSS Design DHTML E-Commerce Free Stuff HTML Java Script Jquery Misc Network PHP SEO Web & Programming Web Browsers XHTML

Tips for Better Website Performance

I am here not talking about Server-side improvements. I am here talking about Front-End improvements that really affects the web page speed.

The time spent till the website is running on the client’s browser. If we analyze that time, we will get:

Categories
Browsers CSS DHTML Free Stuff HTML Java Script Jquery Misc Mobiles Uncategorized Web & Programming Web Browsers XHTML

Drag and Drop with jQuery for Touch Devices

In the last post: Drag and drop with HTML5, i explained how to drag and drop using HTML5 and Javascript (jQuery). I mentioned that touch devices such as iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry, Samsung…. etc, does not support HTML5 Drag and Drop features.

Now, in this post, i want to explain how to make Drag and Drop possible for all devices. Before we start, you must know that it’s all about Javascript..  And i will use jQuery library while i am familiar with it and it simplifies writing javascript.

Categories
Browsers CSS Design DHTML Free Stuff HTML Java Script Jquery Misc News Web & Programming Web Browsers

How to: Drag and Drop with HTML5

Drang n’ Drop in HTML 5 is supported by: IE9+, Firefox 3.6+, Safari 4+, Opera 11+ and Chrome 12+. But its not supported yet for touch devices like Touch Mobiles and Tablets.
To make things more clear, its not only HTML 5.. Its a combination between HTML 5, CSS 3, and Javascript.

Categories
AJAX Browsers CSS Design DHTML Free Stuff HTML Java Script Jquery SEO Web & Programming Web Browsers XHTML

15 Free Ebooks for Front-End Development and Design

Hi reader,
I have collected 15 free ebooks for front-end development to put it between your hands. Not all are PDF files, some are websites and online samples.

Categories
CSS Design DHTML Free Stuff Java Script Jquery Web & Programming XHTML

10 Top jQuery Plugin for Images – 2011

1) Nivo Slider: A stunning jQuery image gallery with 16 unique transition effects. Comes with many featrues and compatible with most browser versions (IE 7+, Firefox v3+, Google Chrome v4+, Safari v4+ and Opera v10+). I like this plugin and i recommend it.
Nivo Slider

2) Gloss: Gloss is not an image gallery, it’s a lightweight jQuery plugin to create a gloss effect on images for (Mouse over, Mouse out) action.  (It’s also supported for IE 6+ browsers).
jQuery Gloss