12 Devs of Xmas

Welcome to the 12 Devs of Xmas, 12 insightful articles introducing you to new and exciting things in the world of web development.

Day 12: Take a whirlwind look at Three.js

three.js is a very capable Javascript 3D engine. There are a ton of cool examples out there to learn from, but sadly little in the way of documentation.

This article aims to give you a macro view of three.js, hopefully bestowing you with enough context to explore the parts that excite you in more depth, on your own.

by Paul King

Day 11: Get musical by building a Spotify application

So, you have recently heard about the new Spotify Platform? The new app platform built around everyone’s favourite subscription based audio service. As with all new platforms, developers can’t wait to take Spotify apps for a spin. So let the 12 devs of xmas show you how…

by Syd Lawrence

Day 10: Get dirty with data using d3.js

I’d like to start off by asking what seems like quite a simple question: What is the difference between data and information? And taking it a step further, where does knowledge fit into this definition? Not as easy to answer as you might expect, is it! Before we start getting our hands dirty and creating some awesome data visualisations, it’s going to be useful to learn the definitions of – and difference between – these three words.

by Clinton Montague

Day 9: Get Responsive!

So far, you’ve had the pleasure of learning about LESS. I’m going to build a simple responsive site, mixing old and new techniques, with LESS simplifying my styles a bit.

by Paul Davis

Day 8: Learn how to get local with HTML5 javascript APIs

In this article I’ll be showing you how to make a quick app that gets your location and at your request stores the information to your browser, as well as showing you how to use drag and drop to send a short tweet. This is all made possible thanks to the javascript APIs being developed at the moment in the new HTML5 specification.

by Adam Onishi

Day 7: Identify the ten faces of a web professional

Working as a web professional can be incredibly satisfying. But as the job has matured into its current state, creating websites has grown beyond the traditional “webmaster” role, drawing on numerous skills to deliver a finely crafted end product.

by Si Jobling

Day 6: Get to grips with CodeIgniter

Codeigniter describes itself as “a powerful PHP framework with a very small footprint, built for PHP coders who need a simple and elegant toolkit to create full-featured web applications.”. It also provides the underpinnings for Expression Engine and powers a lot of sites across the web.

by Alun Rowe

Day 5: Add some caffeine to your JS with CoffeeScript

There are a lot of CoffeeScript guides out there. I’ve even written some myself. When I was asked to contribute to the 12 Devs of Xmas with a piece on CoffeeScript, I was keen but knew I needed to take a different angle on it. So I’ve decided that instead of slowly introducing you to CoffeeScript from the base up and writing some typical “Hello World” (does anyone learn from that, really?) I’ve taken a simple piece of JavaScript I’ve written, and together we’ll convert it to CoffeeScript. The original JavaScript and the CoffeeScript rewrite will be available from Github so you can play around to your heart’s content.

by Jack Franklin

Day 4: Improve your WordPress with Custom Post Types

In this article I’m going to give you a brief introduction into custom post types, and the great thing is no matter how you decide to use WordPress, custom post types can be damn handy. Lets do this!

by Ben Everard

Day 2: Learn the magic of client-side data binding with Knockout.js

Keeping track of UI state in web applications can get very complicated very quickly. Data is coming and going; the user is opening and closing components, selecting, filtering and rearranging; and just relying on DOM inspection to understand where things are is likely to end in frustration. Trust me, I’ve been there.

by Stephen Fulljames

Day 1: Learn to use LESS

LESS is a dynamic style sheet language. It’s like CSS but much more powerful, saves time and has a bunch of neat features rolled in to make our lives easier. I’m going to run you through setting up LESS, some of its features and finally, writing some LESS.

by Anthony Killeen