Four Kitchens Blog

April 17, 2014

Four Kitchens celebrates their 8th year anniversary

Back in 2006, there were only four of us working out of a cheap apartment in Southeast Austin. Half of us were still in school. We had only a few hundred dollars in the bank, and we were making WordPress and MediaWiki sites for free to build our portfolio. Our first paid gig was a $300 blog that took us two weeks to fully design, build, and deploy.

Today, there are 21 of us in six cities, four timezones, and two countries. We’ve built some of the biggest websites in the world. We’ve directly contributed to — and in many cases, led — the growth of dozens of open-source projects, responsive design principles, agile methodologies, backend and frontend performance standards, and progressive management practices. We punch WAY above our weight, and our reputation for quality, service, style, and a values-driven culture is known worldwide.

Today, we celebrate eight years of kicking serious ass. None of this would have been possible without each and everyone of our wonderful Web Chefs.

Photo credits: foryoudesigns

April 11, 2014

Weekly watercooler #80

4K news this week:

  • Come find us at DrupalCamp Frankfurt! Web Chef extraordinaire Chris Ruppel will be in attendance!
  • Are you ready for DrupalCon Austin? So are we! Stay tuned next week for the first announcement of what we are calling the “Four days of Four Kitchens” at DrupalCon Austin!

Links around the watercooler:

March 21, 2014

Weekly watercooler #79

4K news this week:

Links around the watercooler:

March 14, 2014

Weekly watercooler #78

4K news this week:

SXSW press:

Web Chefs were interviewed and quoted all over the place for SXSW 2014!

March 12, 2014

FastClick Drupal module removes 300ms tap delay

Howdy perfers! This week is just a quick note to let you know about a new release for the FastClick Drupal module which provides integration for the FastClick JS library by FTLabs. Drop it on your sites and feel the difference on touch phones!

March 5, 2014

Why SXSW Interactive is good for business

SXSW is just about to start. In fact, it’s already started: SXSWedu, a relatively new offshoot of the SXSW mega-brand — kicked off yesterday, stretching the overall event to a full two weeks. That’s fourteen days of sessions, workshops, parties, and business cards. Piles of business cards. Fistfuls of business cards bursting from your pockets and spilling onto the beer-soaked floor of a temporarily rebranded bar on Sixth Street.

February 28, 2014

Weekly watercooler #77

4K news this week:

  • If you’ll be in Austin for SXSW, come check out the Drupal Drop In! Grab your spot today, no badges required.

Links around the watercooler:

February 21, 2014

Weekly watercooler #76

4K news this week:

  • We visited California State University Monterey Bay to kick-off our work on the redesign. We are truly excited to work with the CSUMB “Web Folk.” They are a great team who hold very similar values as we do. We truly look forward to our collaboration together. You can read more about our kick-off workshop on the CSUMB Web Folk blog.
  • Todd Nienkerk wrote an article for BetaNews on the value of open source. Take a look and leave a comment, there is an interesting discussion going on in the comments. Help us represent open source!
  • If you’re in Austin, come find us this weekend at the Digital PM workshop. There is still time to RSVP!

Links around the watercooler:

  • Using Typekit fonts on mobile: great piece detailing strategies for leveraging Typekit on mobile devices.
  • This one time, at Sass Camp: If you missed Sass Conf, you may want to consider attending Sass Camp, a one-day, one-track Sass conference in the Bay Area happening this April.
  • Launchrocket: A Mac PrefPane to manage all your Homebrew-installed services. All of them.
February 19, 2014

Submit your User Experience Design sessions for DrupalCon Austin

DrupalCon Austin is coming to our hometown June 2-6, 2014 and we could not be more excited. This year, myself and Ken Woodworth are curating the User Experience Design track for the con.

The User Experience Design (UXD) track is the place to learn about everything related to research, content strategy, prototyping, user testing, and more for Drupal.

We’re inviting community members to submit 60-minute sessions on the following topics:

  • Prototyping for Drupal
  • Content strategy
  • Authoring experience
  • User testing
  • Design process
  • Visual design

The rise of mobile-first design and importance of content strategy has caused the discipline of UX to explode. Additionally, the Drupal CMS offers us unique opportunities to improve authoring experience and hone our design processes. With the UXD track, we want you to share your knowledge and stories for achieving success in Modern Drupal projects.

Submit a session today!

The call for sessions is open until March 7, 2014 at 11:59pm CET.

February 19, 2014

Theme it once

The popularity of front-end JavaScript frameworks, driven largely by improvements in JavaScript performance, is skyrocketing. One of their strongest features is allowing developers to build extremely rich applications that will work the same way on most modern platforms. So it comes as no surprise that backbone.js found its way into Drupal 8 as a core JavaScript library. If you haven’t worked with a rich JavaScript application yet, you can be certain you will soon.

A key component of any rich JavaScript application, be it built on a framework or not, is templating. Each templating engine behaves slightly differntly but there’s one thing that they, and in fact all templating engines, have in common: scaffolding markup has placeholders which are later replaced with variables, like this:

That should look relatively familiar, in Drupal we’re used to seeing things like this:

Front end templating is great – it’s flexible and allows you to offload some of the processing power required to render a page to the client. There are some gotchas though, users without JavaScript support (or minimal JavaScript support) is an obvious one. A less obvious case that front end templating isn’t ideal is when you need to be able to render a page both on the client and server side. Dan Webb (@danwrong) from Twitter wrote extensively about Twitter’s move from an exclusively front-end rendered site to a mix of front-end and back-end rendered pages. In their case, and in many cases, a webpage can be delivered and ready for user interaction much faster when it’s been rendered on the server.