Jens Oliver Meiert

Jens the Developer

What I Learned Building Google’s Web Frameworks

On building Google’s Go and Maia HTML/CSS frameworks, and succeeding and failing as a tech lead.

Post from July 25, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

Boyscout Code

Of course, always leave code better than you found it.

Post from July 20, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

Stop Using Resets: Visual Examples of the Practical Nonsense of Resets and Normalizers

Or, when Jens found out that he could just collect websites that use reset style sheets and the like, disable those style sheets, document the results and write a post with the diffs for visual evidence. All because “we ran after this mirage for more than a decade.”

Post from July 13, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

Two Paradigms of Web Development

On a sunny Tuesday in Düsseldorf a few weeks back, at Beyond Tellerrand, I had a pleasant recorded conversation with the team of Working Draft. In our discussion we briefly touched on the idea of web development paradigms…

Post from June 19, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

The Great Web Maintainability Survey Results

Four weeks ago I started a survey about good and bad practices when it comes to the maintenance and maintainability of websites. Participation was amazing, and here are the first results.

Post from June 16, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

70% Repetition in Style Sheets: Data on How We Fail at CSS Optimization

Looking at data for some of the most popular websites, we repeat ourselves too much in CSS; using declarations just once is often one solid avenue to avoid repetition; together, we need to put more focus on style sheet optimization.

Post from May 31, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

The Great Web Maintainability Survey

The maintenance and economics of websites is a much-neglected topic in the web development community. Here are three questions for developers, to gather practices as well as resources.

Post from May 14, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

Web Development and Philosophy

When “eh?” is just a natural reaction.

Post from May 2, 2017, reflecting Jens the , or perhaps .

Principles of Web Development

Web development, at more than 20 years of age, is becoming an increasingly mature profession. Web development is also subject to constant change, and the field produces more of that change, out of itself. More technological standards…

Post from February 16, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

HTML Statistics: 5 Take-Aways

A few quick comments on Catalin Rosu’s interesting follow-up analysis of his sampling of eight million websites. Some practices are wonderful to note, others have been commented on, yet one or the other point drowned.

Post from February 13, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

On Quality and Logistics

Clearly, quality requires quality thinking. But then it requires a lot more, like definitions, criteria, tools, planning, enforcement, &c. pp. And it relies on some organizational foundation.

Post from January 12, 2017, reflecting Jens the .

Apocryphal Apostrophes

Oh, typography. How have you been.

Post from January 8, 2017, reflecting Jens the , or perhaps .

CSS Shorthand Syntax Considered Important

CSS shorthands are no anti-pattern, just as little as universal selectors, just as little as !important, and just as little as no-js would not be one. Now we learn that shorthands were an anti-pattern. No, they’re not. Yes, they are! No they’re not.

Post from December 21, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

Why I Don’t Use CSS Preprocessors

A tribute to Roger Johansson as well as the craft of web development.

Post from December 14, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

About the Mindset for Quality

In my view, quality starts with quality thinking. Quality thinking is broad, but it quickly leads to a quality mindset. This mindset, now, I’ve long regarded as critical…

Post from November 17, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

Stop Using the Old “Clearfix”

I had thought the old method of clearing through “.clearfix:after { clear: both; content: ''; }” long dead, but then I spotted it quite alive and even being taught to developers.

Post from November 14, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

Security, Obscurity: Randomizing New Tabs

You want to leave a less predictable online trail? I wrote a little browser extension for Chrome that accomplishes that: the New Tab Traffic Randomizer. The extension requests a random URL every time a new tab is opened…

Post from November 10, 2016, reflecting Jens the , or perhaps .

The cover of “The Little Book of Website Quality Control.”

New Book(let): The Little Book of Website Quality Control

The hallmark of a professional is not the pursuit of activity, but the expertly pursuit thereof. What’s worth doing is worth doing well; and what’s done well exemplifies quality. A professional website is no exception, and there are criteria and tools to help.

Post from September 27, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

Accelerated Mobile Pages, a Critical View

Last year Google introduced AMP and the Accelerated Mobile Pages Project. Independent of suggesting tech paternalism when AMP gets treated preferably in search rankings, I’ve been concerned about what the AMP spec entails exactly.

Post from August 18, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

WordPress Themes and Web Development

Like everyone on this planet I work with WordPress. Just setting up a new project I ended up using and building on one of their default themes, Twenty Sixteen. Had I better not?

Post from July 31, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

The Anatomy of a Coding Guideline

Coding guidelines produce consistency, help (code) usability, collaboration, and maintainability, and lead to quality. That is what we all typically learn in development practice. Now, what does a guideline consist of?

Post from July 18, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

On Tailoring and Web Frameworks

After building early frameworks for GMX and Google I had rushed to squeeze my experience into a (literally) little book. In it there’s emphasis on a priority I’ve always deemed critical for us developers: the idea of tailoring…

Post from July 13, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

A Note on meiert.com Feeds

There are a number of ways to follow what I write on this website, from a very low volume newsletter for German publications to an enriched account on Google+. The most reliable and focused option, however, is to subscribe to one of this site’s RSS feeds.

Post from July 11, 2016, reflecting Jens the , or perhaps .

“HTML 5,” “CSS 3,” and Expert Web Developers

These days, when we hear people speak of “HTML 5” and “CSS 3,” it’s useful to be skeptical. We’ve long decided for the living standard model, meaning we simply refer to HTML and CSS…

Post from May 20, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

That’s in a Guideline

About two weeks ago I ended a little lottery to give away signed copies of my last book, “The Little Book of HTML/CSS Coding Guidelines.” Here are feedback and winners.

Post from May 17, 2016, reflecting Jens the .

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Like what you see here? Get an e-book version of many of Jens’s posts on web design and development: On Web Development.

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Last update: July 25, 2017.

“What you need is not a bigger hammer but a bigger heart.”