This business of ours is constantly changing. It can be a truly daunting task trying to keep up with the latest trends and technologies. In fact, keeping up with the latest and greatest can be a full-time job. So how do we strategically stay current, while managing the rest of our to-do lists? We’re still trying to figure this out for ourselves, but thought we would share a few tips and tricks, as well as helpful links that we use on a daily basis.
There are scads of websites out there offering helpful tutorials, tips, and training sessions that cover everything from running your new Mac to Java Script. Speaking of Macs, did you know that your local Apple store offers FREE classes every day? Check out their website to see what’s available near you.
Treehouse.com is a great resource that we stumbled upon recently. Their mission says it all:
Our mission is to bring affordable Technology education to people everywhere, in order to help them achieve their dreams and change the world.
Web design is best learned by doing, so Treehouse offers several projects where you can do just that, as well as “Deep Dives” which give an extensive overview to specific topics related to the front- or back-end of web design. You can get your feet wet on a few free features before committing to a monthly Silver ($25) or Gold ($49) plan. It’s friendly, easy to use vibe is appealing to our design sense, as well as being specific to our needs.
Lynda.com is a similar resource; it is a well-known, fantastic resource for continuing education and technology training. Lynda is a paid service with incremental plans at a similar price-point to Treehouse, but covers a broader range of technologies / software than does Treehouse.
If you’re looking for more of a quick fix, there are tons of sites out there that offer quick tutorials that are more specific. Some examples include: tutsplus, smashing magazine, youtube (seriously, lots of great stuff on here), vimeo, WIRED’s How-to wiki, PC world’s how-to… just to name a few.
How do I keep up with all of these, you ask? If you’re not using it already, then start making use of your RSS reader. Google reader is most common, and is a natural extension if you’re a gmail user. I almost always start my day by scrolling through my reader to see what’s new. This is also a great way to gain inspiration when you’re in that 2-3 PM post-lunch lull.
How do you keep up with the latest web design trends? We’d love to hear about them. Post your insights below!