Rick's Blog

Sprites and CSS Pseudo-Elements: The Perfect Pair

At this point, we all know why spriting is important. And if you’ve used the technique in a few real world projects, you also probably know they can be a pain. The most flexible approach (at least in the short-term) is to use empty span elements wherever you need an icon, then style those up with CSS. Of course, that’s not semantic at all and could become hard to maintain. If you go the semantic route and use CSS exclusively for your spriting needs, you quickly realize that you need to very carefully construct your sprite map lest your images interfere with each other. Then, when you find out you need to add a few icons to the sprite, you cry. The good glorious news is that it’s possible to have the best of both worlds by using CSS pseudo elements. more

Activate Internet Explorer Compatibility VPC Images in VirtualBox

If you've ever tried to use these images from Microsoft for testing in older versions of Internet Explorer with VirtualBox, then you've probably followed these instructions by Jeff at 10 Volt Media. Lately, these images are requiring activation, which is not covered in Jeff's instructions. But it is possible. Here's how. more

StickyScroll - A stupidly simple jQuery plugin for fixed position elements

We've been working on a couple of projects lately in which we wanted their statically positioned sidebars to stick to the top of the page when you scroll down. When the first project came along, I said "... I can do this" right before writing some custom javascript with hard-coded values. When the second project came along, my instinctual hatred for writing the same code over and over again kicked in and I wrote StickyScroll—a surprisingly (to me at least) flexible and compact jQuery plugin to take care of the heavy lifting. more

Putting On the Hater's Cap for Gowalla

There's something I really need to get off my chest. The only thing in this world I care less about than your Gowalla check-in is the ridiculous prize that you probably just picked up from your latest Gowalla check-in. Whew. That feels good. Now that that's done, I'll try to keep the hating to a minimum. more

The beloved Javascript library of OrangeCoat and the world, jQuery, won quite the award yesterday by being named the "Open Source Application of the Year" in the .net Magazine Awards 2009. The most impressive part—its competitors were Firefox 3.5 and Wordpress! The roots of Firefox and Wordpress go deep in the open source community, so congratulations, jQuery, on a job well done.

It's always reassuring to know that OrangeCoat uses the right tools.

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