I was asked to cover two topics at our next Web Professionals meeting on September 8, 2015. The first dealt with a continued discussion of security. The second dealt with the issue of internationalization. Since I don’t know if there will be sufficient time to cover both topics, I thought I would put together a weblog post on the topic of internationalization. First, there is some terminology to be aware of on this topic. You may see internationalization shortened to i18n (there are 20 letters in the word, after all). There is also the concept of localization (also known as l10n). You may also encounter the term globalization (g11n). The simple fact is that not everyone in the world speaks (and reads) English. And even if they do, there is U.S. English, U.K. English, Australian English and so forth. For example, is the word color or colour? Let’s look a bit deeper into what all this really means. Read more »


I am sure many readers already know about this tool, but I thought it would be appropriate to cover as I am teaching the CMWEB 220 class on CSS this semester. As we should know, we live in an imperfect world. This is particularly ture when it comes to browsers and emerging CSS capabilities. Often, we want to use the latest CSS-3, but discover we need to employ vendor prefixes so current (and some older) browsers properly recognize the CSS and display our HTML with the style we intended. Of course, this is a royal pain to add all these prefixes. Which lead to the autoprefixer tool. Read more »

WorldSkills Insights

All told, my trip to São Paulo, Brasil was a very interesting and informative trip. I learned a lot about the processes involved with WorldSkills. I received my Expert pin (there was a small ceremony among the experts at the conclusion of the competition where each received a special pin commemorating this event). I met a number of new friends and had many great discussions with peers about web design and development. I am hoping we stay in touch for a number of years to come. Personally, I am already looking forward to 2017 when WorldSkills will next occur (this time in Abu Dhabi). I am very appreciative to Web Professionals for initially nominating me to be a part of this event. Read more »

WorldSkills Closing Ceremony

The closing ceremony for WorldSkills was held on the day after competitions ended (C+1). This event was broadcast throughout the world. Overall, Brasil scored the most medals. The U.S. got a Bronze medal in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning. Lauryn Erickson received the “Best of Nation” medal – she received the highest score among U.S. competitors. All scores in WorldSkills are normalized to the same scale after the judges have finished their work. Here is Lauryn with her medal (photo taken at Chicago airport as we were saying goodby to all competitors). Read more »

WorldSkills C4

Last day of the competition (C4). It was a very long day so I am posting this the following day. Actually, I did not get back to the hotel until 12:45 a.m. so I could not have posted yesterday even if I wanted to. For those who would like to know what the challenges were – here they are. If you are a current or former CMWEB student, I encourage you to try them out. Remember, no Internet, no templates, you write the code. You have either 2 hours or 3 hours to complete the module. You must step away from your computer once time is up. Are you up for the final challenges?

While competitors were working on the modules, we finalized the technical description for this skill for Abu Dhabi (2017 – the next time we will meet at WorldSkills). We votes and approved the changes (this was all done electronically). We also selected the Chief Expert and Deputy Chief Expert (Jeff and Jarred were re-elected for another term). Competitors signed the health and safety checklist. All experts had to complete the marking for all entries (and we had to sign off on the results). At our final session, all experts received their WorldSkills Expert Pin (they are pretty nice). Lastly, we presented Gabriel and Dan with some shirts and other items to express our appreciation for all their hard work. Obviously, we covered a lot in one day. Read more »

WorldSkills C3

Another day in paradise. Hard to believe it is day 3 of the WorldSkills web design competition. The final day is tomorrow. There were new modules presented to competitors today. If you are up to the challenge, one is 2 hours; the other is 3 hours. Remember, no Internet access, no templates and no documentation. Yes, this is a world class competition.

I will be surprised if anyone gets finished with the server project. That being said, I am very impressed with the quality of work by some of the competitors. I spent part of the day marking. We use the WorldSkills system and directly enter our scores into it. A report is then run indicating if there are any major discrepancies in the scores (and we review them again). We evaluate on both subjective and objective items. Since this was my first day of judging, I got the morning off and was able to visit a number of competitions throughout the event. Read more »

WorldSkills C2

Today was the second day of our 4 day competition (day C2). As before, breakfast at 6 a.m., catch the bus at 7 a.m., and arrive at Anhembi Park between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. (depending on traffic). The bus ride this morning was incredibly quick. We held an introductory meeting for experts at 8 a.m. and then the competitors were welcomed at 8:30 a.m. Again, they were presented with 2 challenges (one for 3 hours, the other for 2 hours). If you are in the CMWEB program (or a former student) and want to test your knowledge, skills, and abilities, here are the challenges for the day. Remember, use only the allocated time. No resources and no Internet connection.

Marcelo introduced the module his team developed. Each team provides an overview, but no questions may be asked.

Marcleo introducing module A

After both modules were introduced I had 15 minutes to speak with Nick and strategize. No phones or other electronic media allowed, no notes, no paper. We covered the best approach to solving both the morning and afternoon modules. Read more »

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