5 Tools to Optimize your Web Design Workflow

The toolbox you have for creating websites affects the projects you work on and how you approach them. If it is hard to do something you will do it less often, which means you may take the easy way out. These are some of the tools I use that will help you optimize your web design workflow.

CodeKit – you want this, it makes your images smaller, automatically injects CSS changes to your page from Sublime Text so you can code live, and will compile SASS or LESS to CSS automatically if you ever start using either of those CSS languages. (Use SASS, it is better, and has more support in the professional community)

Chrome’s Developer tools are going to be your best friend. Built-in to Chrome, they let you test everything for problems, design in the browser, and will let you learn how to code better than any other tool. Simply right click on any part of a web page anywhere, select “Inspect Element” and it will show you where the element was created in the code, the css that styles it, and allow you to edit it.

STFP – this is a plugin for Sublime Text that allows you to upload via FTP from within Sublime, and sync local and remote version of your website. Saves having to use Cyberduck for most things.

Emmet – This is a shorthand system for creating large amounts of HTML quickly. Learn the basics first, but once you understand what you are doing, graduate quickly to this style of writing HTML. It allows you to plan the skeleton of your site rapidly, and fill in from the in side out. There is a plugin for Sublime Text.

Adobe Fireworks – A big one – this tool is perfectly set up for web design. It has object based layers, will show you the CSS that is needed to make the designs you create, and it allows you to make clickable mockups.

That should be enough to fill your weekend ;)

Wool – The Silo Saga

Wool is one of the best science fiction stories I have read in recent years. If you like dystopian futures, this series is made for you. Part of a set, this Wool Omnibus is books 1-5. There are prequel and sequel sets as well, but starting with this set works best.

It is written by Hugh Howey, and was a breakthrough success. He was originally planning to write one, but his fan insisted, and he followed up with the whole series.

  • Number 1 Bestseller on Amazon
  • Winner of Kindle Book Review’s Best Indie Book of 2012 Award

PopSci turns off comments because they are “bad for science”

PopSciPopular Science has made the choice to turn off comments because they can be “bad for science.”

Comments are a common problem on the internet, and they tend to trend towards the lowest common denominator. Youtube is known for its miserable comments, and Google has recently been addressing this by incorporating Google+ moderation into it’s youtube commenting system.

While debate is an important part of a community, it seems that until there is a way to make sure that they don’t degenerate into meaningless arguments, they will be more and more moderated.

$1 Oysters in San Francisco and the East Bay

 

$1 Oysters in San Francisco and the East Bay

I love raw oysters on the half shell. I grew up eating gulf coast oysters by the bucket full with my grandfather, and have loved them ever since. They can be expensive, but they don’t have to be!

I put together this list of where to get $1 oysters in San Francisco and the East Bay no matter what night of the week it is – I hope it is helpful.

Enjoy!

East Bay

San Francisco

Monday

  • Luka’s Taproom & Lounge

    2221 Broadway
    (between Franklin St & Grand Ave)Oakland, CA 94612

    (510) 451-4677

  • Marica Restaurant ($1.50 oysters)5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Hog & Rocks (5:00-6:30)

    3431 19th St
    (between San Carlos St & Mission St)San Francisco, CA 94110
  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Boxing Room (11:30-4:30)

    399 GROVE ST @ GOUGH
    San Francisco, CA 94102415-430-6590
  • Mission Rock Resort (3:00 – 7:00)

    817 Terry Francois Blvd
    San Francisco, CA 94158415-701-7625

Tuesday

  • The Rockin’ Crawfish
    211 Foothill Blvd
    (between 2nd Ave & 3rd Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94606

  • Marica Restaurant5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Cafe Rouge ($1.25 every day, $1.00 sundays)

    1782 4th St
    (between Virginia St & Hearst Ave)
    Berkeley, CA 94710(510) 525-1440
  • Hog & Rocks (5:00-6:30)

    3431 19th St
    (between San Carlos St & Mission St)San Francisco, CA 94110
  • Woodhouse Fish Company

    2073 Market St
    (between 14th St & Reservoir St)San Francisco, CA 94114

    (415) 437-2722

  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Bar Crudo (5:00-6:30)

    655 Divisadero St
    (between Grove St & Hayes St)San Francisco, CA 94117

    (415) 409-0679

  • Boxing Room (11:30-4:30)

    399 GROVE ST @ GOUGH
    San Francisco, CA 94102415-430-6590
  • Mission Rock Resort (3:00 – 7:00)

    817 Terry Francois Blvd
    San Francisco, CA 94158415-701-7625

Wednesday

  • The Rockin’ Crawfish
    211 Foothill Blvd
    (between 2nd Ave & 3rd Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94606

  • Marc 49

    4915 Telegraph Ave
    (between 51st St & 49th St)Oakland, CA 94609

    (510) 652-2100

  • Marica Restaurant5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Cafe Rouge ($1.25 every day, $1.00 sundays)

    1782 4th St
    (between Virginia St & Hearst Ave)
    Berkeley, CA 94710(510) 525-1440
  • Hog & Rocks (5:00-6:30)

    3431 19th St
    (between San Carlos St & Mission St)San Francisco, CA 94110
  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Bar Crudo (5:00-6:30)

    655 Divisadero St
    (between Grove St & Hayes St)San Francisco, CA 94117

    (415) 409-0679

  • Boxing Room (11:30-4:30)

    399 GROVE ST @ GOUGH
    San Francisco, CA 94102415-430-6590
  • Mission Rock Resort (3:00 – 7:00)

    817 Terry Francois Blvd
    San Francisco, CA 94158415-701-7625

Thursday

  • Marica Restaurant5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Cafe Rouge ($1.25 every day, $1.00 sundays)

    1782 4th St
    (between Virginia St & Hearst Ave)
    Berkeley, CA 94710(510) 525-1440
  • Hog & Rocks (5:00-6:30)

    3431 19th St
    (between San Carlos St & Mission St)San Francisco, CA 94110
  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Bar Crudo (5:00-6:30)

    655 Divisadero St
    (between Grove St & Hayes St)San Francisco, CA 94117

    (415) 409-0679

  • Boxing Room (11:30-4:30)

    399 GROVE ST @ GOUGH
    San Francisco, CA 94102415-430-6590
  • Mission Rock Resort (3:00 – 7:00)

    817 Terry Francois Blvd
    San Francisco, CA 94158415-701-7625

Friday

  • Marica Restaurant5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Cafe Rouge ($1.25 every day, $1.00 sundays)

    1782 4th St
    (between Virginia St & Hearst Ave)
    Berkeley, CA 94710(510) 525-1440
  • Hog & Rocks (5:00-6:30)

    3431 19th St
    (between San Carlos St & Mission St)San Francisco, CA 94110
  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Bar Crudo (5:00-6:30)

    655 Divisadero St
    (between Grove St & Hayes St)San Francisco, CA 94117

    (415) 409-0679

  • Boxing Room (11:30-4:30)

    399 GROVE ST @ GOUGH
    San Francisco, CA 94102415-430-6590
  • Mission Rock Resort (3:00 – 7:00)

    817 Terry Francois Blvd
    San Francisco, CA 94158415-701-7625

Saturday

  • Marica Restaurant5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Cafe Rouge ($1.25 every day, $1.00 sundays)

    1782 4th St
    (between Virginia St & Hearst Ave)
    Berkeley, CA 94710(510) 525-1440
  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Bar Crudo (5:00-6:30)

    655 Divisadero St
    (between Grove St & Hayes St)San Francisco, CA 94117

    (415) 409-0679

Sunday

  • Marica Restaurant5301 College Ave(between Hudson St & Manila Ave)

    Oakland, CA 94618

    (510) 985-8388

  • Cafe Rouge

    1782 4th St
    (between Virginia St & Hearst Ave)
    Berkeley, CA 94710(510) 525-1440
  • Mayes Oyster House

    1233 Polk St
    (between Bush St & Fern St)San Francisco, CA 94109

    (415) 885-1233

  • Hyde Street Seafood House and Raw Bar

    1509 Hyde St
    (at Jackson St)San Francisco, CA 94109

    (415) 931-3474

  • Waterbar (11:30-5:30)

    399 The Embarcadero S
    San Francisco, CA 94105(415) 284-9922
  • Bar Crudo (5:00-6:30)

    655 Divisadero St
    (between Grove St & Hayes St)San Francisco, CA 94117

    (415) 409-0679

If you know of anywhere else to get $1 oysters in San Francisco and the East Bay, please let me know and I will update this list!

Top road trip apps – road tested from coast to coast (Warning: One of them is probably illegal!)

I am currently in Wells, Nevada at a Motel 6. I recently drove from Oakland, CA to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina and am now on my way back. I used a lot off road trip apps!

  • Total Distance: 5624 miles
  • Time: 9 days of driving.
  • West to East – Tui the dog, Mandy, and Myself.
  • East to West, just Tui the dog and me.

Tui is quite the conversationalist, but I have still had plenty of time to play with road trip apps and find some that do an incredible job.

My Top road trip apps

Downcast

DowncastDowncast is a great podcast app that does both audio and video podcasts. It makes them easy to find, and you can create podcast playlists. Say, a Moth, an American life, followed by an episode of Stuff to blow your mind, and then a Planet Money.

Road Ninja

Road Ninja Road Ninja is meant for road trips! It shows you what businesses are at the upcoming exits, and how far away you are from said exit. You can sort by Gas, food, sleep, coffee and many more.

Audible

audibleAudio books. Good player UI and syncs with Kindle if you happen to have both the audio and ebook. Get a free book when you signup! (Coming soon — How to get a free ebook and half off Audible for 3 months)

Google Maps

Google MapsMuch better than the default Apple maps. Inline directions, updated interface, tons of useful information. Gets me from A to B.

Adobe Kuler

KulerSo much fun. Extracts colors from live video of photos and makes swatches.

Georgia
Ga

New Mexico
Newmex

The last one… Sorry mom… Netflix

netflixSooo this one might not be legal, but I rigged up the iPhone to the edge of my mirror and had Netflix documentaries going for a little bit. They sounded great through the car stereo, and they were in my field of view without me having to focus on them. I could glance at the screen, see who was behind me and keep on going.

“But officer, I wasn’t texting…”

These are just my top road trip apps, what are yours?

Sell your iPhone now, keep it until the new iPhone arrives

Right now two services are allowing you to sell your iPhone, but you don’t have to send it in until mid October, after the new iPhone is available. This saves you the worry of being without a phone, and still allows you to get a good price for your current phone before the new one comes out.

How to sell your iPhone, and keep it too

Check out these sites and see which one offers you a better deal to sell your iPhone. The going rate is around $200 for a 16gb iPhone 4s, and $340 for a 16gb iPhone 5.

Both sites allow you to lock in a price. Gazelle till October 15th, and NextWorth for 30 days from the time you lock it in.

The new iPhone is supposed to be announced on September 10th, so you should have plenty of time after you sell your iPhone to go grab your new phone, get it up to speed, then mail in your old one.

If you use these links, you will get 10% more for your phone!

These prices will be getting less the closer to the iPhone announcement date, so go ahead and lock in your sell price now!

Gazelle logo tm Nextworth logo

Rent got you down? Tools and tricks to find an apartment in San Francisco.

When I moved into my apartment at 23rd and Alabama in the Mission district of San Francisco 2 years ago, we paid $2900 a month.

The current rent for that apartment has now skyrocketed to $4800, and people are willing to pay it. (I have since moved to Oakland!)

Finding an affordable place can be difficult, so here are some useful tools and tricks to find an apartment in San Francisco.

IFTTT

IFTTTIf This Then That is a useful tool that allows you to set up “recipes” based on multiple site interactions. It is powerful, but can take some time to learn.

Example:

New post shows up on Craigslist for 2 bedroom house in the mission under $3000 a month. Based on that search URL for Craigslist, IFTTT sends you a text message so you can be the first person to respond.

You can also have IFTTT automatically set up an email draft in Gmail with your canned “I would like to look at your place” email ready to go, with your attached prefilled rental application, and references. All you have to do now is add a bit about the place you are looking at and hit send!

(If you are ever looking for anything at all on Craigslist, IFTTT is your best friend!)

livelovely.com

lovely

Lovely slurps up craigslist data, but presents it in an organized fashion. It allows you to favorite places, keep notes, and will also notify you when things you are looking for show up. It also allows you to interact with some landlords who use the service.

Padmapper.com

padmapperSimilar to lovely, with some advanced search options and an older interface.

Dropbox

Tools and tricks to find an apartment in San Francisco.

Keep copies of your references, your credit report, and your pay-stubs on Dropbox so you can attach them from your phone or a friend’s computer if you are away from yours when you find out about a place. In this game, being slow means being homeless.

Remember, you need a check for the first and last month’s rent, and the security deposit, so keep those funds in your checking account.

I hope these tools and tricks to find an apartment in San Francisco were helpful – if you have any others, let me know!

Build your own King Size Bed Frame for less than $90

Looking to buy a king size bed frame? Ever consider building your own?

With just a circular saw and a drill, you can construct a sturdy, custom king size bed frame for your room. You can make it any height you want, and build in any head board design or foot board you like.

Some of the easiest to follow plans I have found are from woodgears.ca. You can download the plans, or an interactive sketch up model if you want to use that.

The materials are available from Home Depot for less than $90.

I have built a few of these for friends, and am pleased with how sturdy they are, and how quickly they come together. You can assemble the entire frame in an afternoon, and it is held together with dowels and glue. Screws attach side rails to the head and foot boards.

The bed frame disassembles to be a headboard, two side rails and the foot board, with a stack of slats. Not Ikea small, but you don’t want that particle board anyway.

I am looking to make another bed, and want to play with bolts instead of screws to hold the frame together for easier break down and set up. I also want to stain the frame.

If you are interested in a new bed (can be king, queen, or double) let me know. I can probably make you a wooden frame for less than you would buy one for.

In progress:
king size bed frame

Finished – Look at all that room underneath:
Bed(Photo thanks to Jim Stone!)



Bring Paper Back

What is the half-life of a tweet? Minutes? Hours? Days?

So many of you are creative people, passionate people, people with a voice — a voice that should last longer than a status update, a blog post, or a tweet.

Let’s bring Paper Back. — I will publish your work.

Is there something you have always wanted to say, but never have? A drawing you did that you are particularly proud of? A poem you wrote that needs to be read? A commentary on something you have observed? A photo you love?

I am trying a little social experiment in book publishing. If you submit your contribution I will publish it in book form, and mail a copy to everyone who contributed – free of charge.

http://www.benhanna.com/paper-back/

The Making of a Summer Camp

We have been hard at work creating the first session of Camp Grounded, the Summer Camp for Adults, and wanted to share a little of the process with you!

Checking out the Camp in our site visit:

Archery RangeTeamworkHollow Grove

Getting ready to mail out the Camp Packets

Color War teamsMailing to Cananda!

Setting up workshops villages, etc…

Village SignsScoutBooks

And we are not done yet! See you up at camp!