Should you get a college degree or learn online to quickly get into freelance web design and development?
If you feel like you’ve already read about this in a previous article or saw it in a previous VLOG, yes and no. That previous work was about education in North America, “where student loan debt is an issue, where college is not free…”, and this one is about education in places like Europe, which are a little different because, “in Europe college is free…well it’s paid [for] by the taxes, so in essence you’re paying for it whether or not you go, because it’s built into the taxes.” In all honesty, we brought this up because we were contacted by someone in Europe who’s thinking of going to school to get their degree but was wondering about completing online courses and going into freelancing instead.
Now, we made a lot of assumptions on this person’s part: we assumed they were pretty young because they mentioned that their parents wanted them to go to college, which made us further assume they were probably living at home too, so while the advice we’re about to give may seem oddly specific, we still feel most of it can apply if you’re living in Europe or a place that has a similar educational setup. “If you live in a part of the world where the education is free, you’re living at home so you don’t need to make money immediately, and you’re going to pay for it in taxes anyway, right? The government pays, so it means you pay in some form …it’s only a year and a half/ two years, then you know, might as well do it.”
Now there are way more angles to this and the VLOG, of course, goes into more detail and is worth checking out but we want to let you know about a really cool offer by clicking here. We’ve teamed up with InMotion hosting for a really amazing offer where they essentially pay for you to take my course and learn how to become a web developer. Links to the offer below as well. -Enjoy!
Wix is another tool that web designers can use to build out simple client websites and for some client websites, using Wix just makes sense.
When it comes to building websites for clients most devs will turn to CMS giant WordPress but there are other less complicated web-builders out there like Wix, SquareSpace, Weebly, etc. that generally let you create websites easily at the cost of versatility. And that’s not altogether a bad thing, depending on what the client’s needs are.
And from these sites that offer simplicity and ease have risen freelancers in their own right. “If you look at Wix today or shopify…even though they’re much easier to use than, let’s say building from scratch: using a template or something, it’s still something that many small business owners don’t want to tackle. …In terms of freelance work, I call it becoming a web professional. A web professional is not necessarily somebody who is a developer (although they could be), …[It’s] somebody who knows how to put up websites, knows the different options; knows how to build from scratch, …you understand when those types of builders make sense, …hosting options, …domain names …this is what a web professional brings to the table.”
Don’t call Wix and the other builders a niche – I’ve been here for years, rockin’ my peers, puttin’ others in fear…okay seriously though, “…because it’s such a huge demand, this type of freelancer is gonna make a lot of money because there’s so many small businesses out there who are positioned on the web in some form or another and they don’t have all this knowledge, they don’t understand the differences between these different platforms and they’re probably not aware of most of these platforms…”
So should you consider using Wix, shopify, etc when choosing how to service client(s) demands over WordPress? “So your job as a consultant/web professional is to direct them in the right direction. Shopify, Wix, SquareSpace, etc. they’re not competition, they’re not taking away from web design and development, they are just tools in your toolbox. …Go in there first [and] talk to your client: see what their needs are and then you as a web professional can determine whether or not the Wix platform can support that.” As previously mentioned, “the thing about these web builders… they’re typically limited: the simplification comes at the cost of flexibility. …When you simplify you usually remove options that you have on the table. So you have to determine whether you need those options or not; maybe you don’t/maybe you do…”. Hey, we never said it was gonna be easy…
The VLOG goes into a way better explanation, you should check it out. And maybe while you’re at it <shameless promo> check out the really cool and thoughtfully put together courses that we offer. Whether is freelancing, or learning web development, you’ll be taking advantage of almost 3 decades of experience in all these subjects AND if you click here, you can take advantage of a super deal! We’ve teamed up with InMotion hosting for a really amazing offer where they essentially pay for you to take my course and learn how to become a web developer. Links to all these offers are below as well. -Enjoy!
Is Microsoft starting to embrace ‘openess’ in it’s push towards the web platform?
This is something we’ve touched on in past articles and even dedicated a whole VLOG to here, and Microsoft is just another great example: “…when you’re not sure which way to go, always go for the open technologies, …because open technology typically wins out over closed technology”.
We even went so far in a past article to say the native development languages like ‘swift’ for iOS or ‘kotlin java’ for android were going to go down to the open web technology solutions. Now we’re not saying that we know it all or that maybe we have the gift of premonition or anything like that, but it looks like Microsoft seems to be having a ‘premonition’ of their own…
The VLOG, of course, goes into more detail and is worth checking out but we want to let you know about a really cool offer by clicking here. We’ve teamed up with InMotion hosting for a really amazing offer where they essentially pay for you to take my course and learn how to become a web developer. Links to the offer below as well. -Enjoy!
…That’s ‘Positive Mental Attitude’ for ‘Progressive Web Apps’…
We keep on getting requests to cover PWA/RWD’s and because we’re not DJs or that small band at the back of the bar that’s playing ‘only originals’, we’re taking those requests…and 5-6-7-8…
So a PWA is a progressive web app and an RWD is a responsive web design. How are the two related? Well first off, “RWD is basically writing your HTML5 and your CSS code so that the layout of the site will flex and change depending on the size of the screen of the web browser that is visiting your site. So if you have a smartphone or a 75 inch flat panel TV, a properly coded responsive website or web app will look just fine.” So the idea being that fonts, images, layout, etc. will change size depending on the size of the screen you’re viewing them on. As you can imagine, with the way consume data and media, it was a pretty big deal.
Now the VLOG will go into really good detail weighing the pros and cons of PWA or native (and believe me there are way more pros), but as a dev or a freelancer you should always be thinking about where businesses are coming from. Most of the time they’re not interested in the “nerd” implications of the languages, frameworks, etc. that you use, they just want to get up and running fast and get the product or service out there and PWA is your best bet. -ENJOY
Is it even worth becoming a “web professional” now and what does that even mean?
It can be strange how we categorize our positions and professions. For example, what one person would call a web developer, another would call a web designer. Then there are web programmers and specialties like “front end”, “full stack”, “back end” and “mid-thigh carver” ( I made that last one up, and yes, the last place I came from was the butcher’s…). So then what is a web professional?
And there are other questions, like is web development going to be obsolete with products like WEBFLOW and the like (products that will take away the need to code)?
With these titles and questions swirling around it can be very easy to throw up your hands and say what am I doing?! Is this even worth my time?!
The answer is: yes, yes it is and as far as ‘what is a web professional?’, well, that is a little more complicated…
First off, shameless plug: We offer kick-ass, detailed, and laboriously designed courses that will help to answer this question. So a web professional is kind of all these things combined in different ratios: designer, developer, front end, full stack, braised tenderloin ( I think I’m getting hungry…), etc, etc. Some devs may specialize in specific things (ex: back end or client side whatever), but it’s all in there. Hodge-podge is not necessarily the right word, but it’s the first word that comes to mind…
And how do you, as a web professional, ensure you know all these things or have a passable knowledge/experience with them? You learn. Either from having “been around the block” or by taking our course <another shameless plug, I know!>… But seriously, web development or whatever you want to call yourself is not going anywhere, in fact if the rate at which things are becoming more and more technological keeps growing, we’re going to need more and more devs at all kinds of different strengths and experiences.
Check out the vlog for a way more detailed and in depth explanation of this subject and quick side dig at RUBY… -Enjoy!
I know the Flash people are going to be pissed at me (again!) for suggestion the obvious: Flash is quickly moving into obsolescence.
From PC Mag:
Adobe confirmed Monday that it will release one more version of Flash Player for the mobile Web to accommodate Android 4.0, but that will be the final update.
“Adobe will release one more version of the Flash Player for mobile browsing, which will provide support for Android 4.0, and one more release of the Flash Linux Porting Kitâ€”both expected to be released before the end of this year,” an Adobe spokesman said via email. “After that time, Adobe will continue to provide critical bug fixes and security updates.”
I’m all for advancing technology, but this is really vicious!! We now have a group who is actively looking to kill Flash:
Occupy Flash has stepped into the breach with an ambitious goal: “To get the world to uninstall the Flash Player plug-in from their desktop browsers.”
I was one of the first users of Flash in the world – back in the 1990’s when it was called Future Splash. But being a nimble nerd who is language/platform agnostic … I’ve learned to move on from fading technologies, not wanting to fade right along with them. In biology they say the most successful species are the most adaptable; we web nerds have to be ultra nimble too.
Though it will probably take a few years for Flash to fade away into a niche, Killersites has always been about PRACTICAL web training and not getting stuck on a technology. The writing is on the wall, even Adobe is adopting HTML 5 and CSS 3.
Every once in a while, something very big happens that affects the Web in general. Recently the iPad came out blowing away the market and effectively shutting down Flash by not allowing Flash to run on iPads.
… Yes, Flash is dying.
Unlimited Domain Names
The nerd powers that be, have just opened up the domain name market where any extension (suffix) is possible; no longer are we limited to .com, .net, .org etc … anything can go!!
That said, it ain’t cheap but it should still help put an end to the volture-like, blood sucking industry of after market domain names and cyber squatting losers, who can’t come up with anything more original than buying up a bunch of domain names, hoping to bilk someone in a resale.
From the article:
… people and companies will be able to set up a website with almost any address by the end of next year, if they have a legitimate claim to the domain name and can pay a hefty fee.
The Internet body that oversees domain names voted Monday to end restricting them to suffixes like .com or .gov and will receive applications for new names as of Jan. 12, with the first approvals likely by the end of 2012.
And they can be in any characters — Cyrillic, Kanji or Devanagari, for instance, for users of Russian, Japanese and Hindi.