Jens Oliver Meiert

Jens Oliver Meiert

Articles and books on the craft of web development, with a focus on HTML and CSS minimization and optimization.

The cover of “Upgrade Your HTML IV.”

Upgrade Your HTML IV

HTML forms the heart of the Web. The beautiful thing is, HTML is easy to learn. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to master. In the Upgrade Your HTML series, I’m taking examples of HTML, discuss these examples, and make them a little better. I’m excited to announce the fourth book of the series.

Post from November 27, 2022, filed under .

HTML Concepts: Unstyled Documents

There’s unstyled and there’s fully unstyled. And then there’s also styled “in a manner that is useful for a developer.”

Post from November 22, 2022, filed under .

Website Optimization Measures, Part XVI

Spaces, HTTP headers, site generator exports, cite elements, variable fonts, social logos, no-break spaces, metadata—life is never boring when you run your own websites.

Post from November 12, 2022, filed under .

10 Quick Tips for a Great Mastodon Experience

Mastodon is a great alternative to Twitter, feeling refreshingly healthy. Here are 10 things that can help you get off to a great start—from finding a suitable server and interesting people to follow, to useful tooling and mindsets.

Post from November 8, 2022, filed under .

Minimal Dark Mode

What’s the easiest and fastest way to set up dark mode? Depending on the setup, something from one declaration to two rules.

Post from November 4, 2022, filed under .

Vegan Web Developers

If you’re a vegan and a web developer, why not join us on a humble list of vegan web developers?

Post from October 24, 2022, filed under and .

Redo Websites Less Often (to Become a Better Developer)

You want to redo websites: The advantages are great, and the ability to put a website on a new foundation is a useful one to acquire. But—you also want to iterate, which means to constantly make small improvements over long periods of time. On how a bias for iteration contributes to becoming a better developer.

Post from October 18, 2022, filed under .

HTML 2022: 20 Additional Observations from Analyzing the Web Almanac Data

After the initial analysis for the HTTP Archive’s 2022 Web Almanac, here are 20 more observations about HTML as it’s being used today. From (no) doctypes to conditional comment zombies to verbose form markup to viewports to javascript: links.

Post from October 10, 2022, filed under .

A Short Story of the Google Error Page

Why is the Google error page the way it is? Why is it so plain? What drove development and design decisions? Anecdotes and notes from the time when the page was built.

Post from October 6, 2022, filed under .

Website Optimization Measures, Part XV

Automated lossless image compression, mini dark modes, favicon references, prerender, flat image folders, modest product promotions, compact navigation, theme colors—improvements to my own projects, maybe (or maybe not) of interest to your own.

Post from October 4, 2022, filed under .

HTML Concepts: Browsing Contexts

Welcome to another episode of HTML Concepts! Today, browsing contexts—what is that?

Post from September 30, 2022, filed under .

0 of the Global Top 100 Websites Use Valid HTML (in 2022)

When you looked at the top websites in 2021, you learned that 98% of them included invalid HTML. When you do the same for the Top 100 globally, this year, would things have improved? Updated data, with a look at our field’s inability to produce valid HTML output.

Post from September 12, 2022, filed under .

An Attempt at Outlining the Many Factors Influencing Developer Experience

When looking at DX naively, it can seem that it depends on only one factor—DX = Ć’(x). But Developer Experience depends on many factors, and needs to be approached holistically. A quick attempt at sketching just what factors, each of which can tip the scale.

Post from September 6, 2022, filed under .

11 Tips to Read More and Read Faster (After Reading 791 Books in 9 Years)

Are you content with your reading? Here’s a collection of tried and tested ideas to help you read more—from switching to ebooks to reading everywhere to establishing routines to embracing short books to varying your reading speed.

Post from August 17, 2022, filed under .

One-Dimensional Website Optimization Considered Harmful

There are many website optimization vectors—SEO, performance, accessibility, &c.—, but optimizing on only one dimension may not only be expensive, but also counter-productive. On optimizing optimizations.

Post from August 4, 2022, filed under .

Website Optimization Measures, Part XIV

About link relationships, Twitterbot, dark mode, tags, addresses, social markup, color-scheme, and—FLoC.

Post from July 21, 2022, filed under and .

Minimal Social Markup

Every website and app these days relies on so-called “social markup,” metadata for a richer and prettier display in social media and messaging tools. On the absolute minimum you may need.

Post from July 14, 2022, filed under .

Thoughts on an Accessibility “Get Well” Plan

Have you wondered how to anchor accessibility in an engineering team, one that isn’t yet producing accessible sites or apps? Some options to start with, for further refinement and discussion.

Post from June 29, 2022, filed under .

The Machine-Illustrated Life of a Frontend Developer

You may know DALL·E, what you can do with it, what others do with it, and… be intrigued by it, too. And you may wonder, how would AI depict frontend developers?

Post from June 20, 2022, filed under and .

HTML Concepts: Focusable Areas

When you hear “focusable area,” what comes to your mind? Anchors and form elements that receive focus when being “tabbed through,” i.e., that are highlighted and that can be interacted with? That’s not a bad description!—but also not a complete one.

Post from May 30, 2022, filed under .

“The One with the Biggest Hammer Wins”

On a game we could stop playing.

Post from May 24, 2022, filed under and .

Write HTML, the HTML Way (Not the XHTML Way)

You may not use XHTML (anymore), but when you write HTML, you may be more influenced by XHTML than you think. You are very likely writing HTML, the XHTML way.

Post from May 17, 2022, filed under .

2 Approaches to Accessibility on the Web

One can distinguish two approaches to accessibility on the Web: to produce accessible websites and apps (active accessibility), and to produce accessible-making software (passive accessibility). On how largely using one approach would stand in the way of a greater vision for web accessibility.

Post from May 10, 2022, filed under .

The CSS Art Paradox

The fanciest CSS, standing on the shoulders of bloated HTML.

Post from April 28, 2022, filed under and .

3 Books for Working with Reality

With or without The Complete Conversations with God, The Nature of Personal Reality, and Loving What Is?

Post from April 22, 2022, filed under .

About Me

Jens Oliver Meiert, on September 30, 2021.

I’m Jens, and I’m an engineering lead—currently manager for Developer Experience at LivePerson—and author.

In web development, I specialize in HTML and CSS, contribute to technical standards, and write books (like The Little Book of HTML/CSS Frameworks, On Web Development, CSS Optimization Basics, the Upgrade Your HTML series, and The Web Development Glossary).

I love trying things: In philosophy, I’m interested in metaphysics (even in How to Work on Oneself). When it comes to art, I play with photography. And for adventure, I enjoy exploring places (Journey of J.) and activities (100 Things I Learned as an Everyday Adventurer).

Learn about new posts by feed, on Mastodon, or on Twitter.

Found a mistake? Email me, jens@meiert.com.

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Last update: November 27, 2022

Professional frontend developers produce valid HTML and CSS.