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The Web Weekly newsletter keeps you up to date, teaches you web development tricks and covers all things working in tech.

Happy Monday, party people!

Are you ready for some #webdev news? This Web Weekly includes:

  • many new (and old) web technologies and APIs to check out
  • lessons learned from improving Core Web Vitals
  • thoughts on how to improve the broken concept of Open Source

... and, as always, GitHub repositories, a new Tiny Helper and some music.

On a personal note

I entered vacation mode and am planning to finally add dark mode to my blog. Let's see if I'll find the motivation to clean up all this messy CSS. Wish me luck! πŸ™ˆ

But more importantly, this is the 50th edition of "Web Weekly", and it passed 2000 subscribers this week! Thank you for being here with me and reading along!


Something that made me smile

Carton showing Adobe Illustrator with a little person hanging down the macOS menubar

I came across this tweet from @deekaymotion that explains how to make animations. It's stellar work and super cute!

The non-existent sustainability of Open Source

For every issue closed, three new issues showed up. I love open source, but it felt endless and unmanageable. As burnout encroached, I went into self-preservation mode. I did a bit here and there, but sought refuge for my mental health in video games and comic books instead of working nights and weekends.

Running an Open Source project that people use is challenging. I used to be involved in a reasonably successful project for a few months, and I made the sad (but expected) experience that drives all these Open Source maintainers away.

When someone yells at you in public for "the very severe issue" of breaking their builds with your free work, you just want to hide.

Dave Rupert shares his Open Source experience and brainstorms ways to improve the situation.

What's wrong with open source?

Dave also linked Fat's very entertaining talk "What is Open Source & Why do I Feel So Guilty?". It made my day because I saw this talk live. It was the DotJS conference in Paris in 2013. That's almost a lifetime ago.

RSS is not dead, obviously!

You may have heard whispers that β€œRSS in dead” around the web, but the truth is that they are still widely used as virtually every podcast uses one. Maybe you used to be an RSS fan and need to get re-acquainted with it.

Here we are again with me telling you how great RSS is. πŸ™ˆ If you're not using it, you're missing out and letting algorithms decide what you're reading.

If you want to get started, Farai Gandiya collected RSS (and web feed) best practices, and I learned that JSON feeds are a thing. 😲

Learn everything about web feeds

Fancy computer science terms

What is idempotency?  Idempotent scripts can be called multiple times and each time it’s called, it will have the same effects on the system. This means, a second call will exit with the same result and won’t have any side effects.

There are technical terms that'll never make it into my brain (ascendant vs. descendant, anyone?). The concept of Idempotency is one of them. Fatih Arslan nicely describes the topic with many bash script examples. πŸ‘

Write scripts that'll always work

The progression of web technologies

Smooth scrolling? πŸ‘‰ No need for JavaScript because CSS can do that.

Bramus's article "Embrace the platform" is a beautiful primer on web development and how web technologies have evolved over the years. We now have colorful checkboxes, lazy loading, and better date handling, to name just a few features.

Embrace the platform

How to target Apple software with PNGs

A PNG that is rendered differently on macOS software ("Hello world" vs "Hello Apple")

Here's another wild one from Bramus' blog. There's a bug in Apple's PNG decoder implementation, which renders different images coming from the same PNG in Apple software. 😲

Render different PNGs in Apple software

On finding a new job

Within the first two weeks, I got an offer in writing. I was really tempted to just accept it, simply because job hunting isn’t a fun experience. However, I ended up following through with the remaining leads I was interested in. There were many times in the past when I believed I was in the best position I could be in, simply because it was the only thing I knew was possible. If I had taken the first and only offer, I think I would inevitably wonder if there was something better.

Mu-An Chiou shared her experience of finding a new job in tech. It's a valuable read with many tips, tricks and facts on what to watch out for.

Take your time when starting a new adventure

Crappy stuff that we're now stuck with

Source code: let el = document.all[0]; el = document.all('foo'); el =;

Jack and Surma published another episode of their "HTTP 203" video podcast and chatted about web APIs that might have been a mistake. And while this episode is not particularly useful for today's web development, I enjoyed learning about all the crappy web stuff!

Learn about questionable "web features"

Rendering on the Jamstack

Understanding Rendering in the Jamstack – Rendering in the Jamstack? From client-side to server-side rendering, and even distributed persistent rendering - here’s what sets Jamstack apart.

The term Jamstack includes more than static sites because we got new approaches to rendering. It isn't only about static HTML. Brian Rinaldi nicely explains incremental static regeneration (ISR), distributed persistent rendering (DPR), and deferred static generation (DSG). πŸ‘

How do we render sites on the Jamstack?

Teaching is the best way to learn

What if I have nothing to share?  If you have recently learned something or taught someone something then you have something to share! I strongly believe that one of the best times to start teaching something is shortly after learning it.

I loved everything about Monica Powell's post "How to hone your new superpower: teaching". Monica explains that learning happens best when teaching things, and I follow the approach of "talk-driven development", too. πŸ™ˆ

Share what you learn

Surprises affecting your Core Web Vitals

Improving Core Web Vitals, A Smashing Mag Case Study

Everybody's looking into Core Web Vitals these days. Barry Pollard shares how Smashing Magazine improved their Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) metric. The post covers many web performance topics, and the trick that improved LCP was quite surprising. It's an excellent read!

Learn what can affect Core Web Vitals

TIL recap: CSS gradients with redundant values can be shortened

CSS code: .element {   /* some styles */   background: linear-gradient(     #fc6262 20%,   /* start at 0 and end at 20% */     #50bbf6 0 40%, /* start at 20% (fixed because 0 is smaller than 20%) and end at 40% */     #aaffef 0 60%, /* start at 40% (fixed because 0 is smaller than 40%) and end at 60% */     #f9e699 0 80%, /* and so on... */     #2c3749 0   ); }

Writing CSS gradients is tricky. Did you know that you can shorten your gradient definitions when you want to include "hard color stops"? Now you do. πŸ˜‰

Remove redundant values from your gradients

Three valuable projects to have a look at

A new Tiny Helper – device mockup generator for your screenshots

Did you ever try finding device mockups to make your screenshots look good in a presentation? I did it many times, and it was a terrible experience. allows you to upload your image and display it on laptops, phones and tablets. Super handy!

Share your screenshots with style

Find more single-purpose online tools on

A quote to think about

On the topic of teaching and writing down your learnings, Anita Pari once said the following:

Good documentation is like a love letter to your future self.

A song that makes you stop coding

Hand drawing of woman walking over a line with hanging clothes – Kate Nash "Foundations"

I was a huge Kate Nash fan back in the days, and I loved this acoustic version of "Foundations".

Listen to "Foundations"

Thank you for reading!

And that's a wrap for the fiftieth Web Weekly! If you enjoy my newsletter, I'd love you to tell others about it. β™₯️

If you're not a subscriber, you can change that! πŸ˜‰

Stay safe, and I'll talk to you next week! πŸŽ‰ πŸ‘‹

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About Stefan Judis

Frontend nerd with over ten years of experience, freelance dev, "Today I Learned" blogger, conference speaker, and Open Source maintainer.

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