Web Development Reading List #169: TLS At Scale, Brotli Benefits, And Easy Onion Deployments


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Everyone here can have a big impact on a project, on someone else. I get very excited about this when I read stories like the one about an intern at Google who did an experiment that saves tons of traffic, or when I get an email from one of my readers who now published an awesome complete beginner’s guide to front-end development.

We need to recognize that our industry depends on people who share their open-source code and we should support them and their projects1 that we heavily rely on2. Finally, we also need to understand that these people perhaps don’t want a job as an employee at some big company but remain independent instead. So if you make money with a project that uses open-source libraries or other resources, maybe Valentine’s Day might be an occasion to show your appreciation and make the author a nice present.

General Link

  • So here’s something that helps beginners to start with web development and advanced devs to recap some of their knowledge: Oliver James wrote “HTML & CSS Is Hard (But It Doesn’t Have To Be)3”, a friendly web development tutorial for complete beginners.
HTML And CSS Is Hard, But It Doesn’t Have To Be4
Oliver James’ complete guide to web development5 covers everything from the absolute basics to Flexbox and responsive images. (Image credit6)

Tools & Workflows Link

  • With the Enterprise Onion Toolkit7, you can finally deploy HTTP and HTTPS onion sites at scale. While the project is still in its early days, the tool makes it easy to provide access to your web service via a hidden Tor service, which in some countries can be essential for journalists and activists.
  • Rembrandt.js8 is an image comparison tool based on node-canvas running on a server or in the client. Great for visual regression testing, for example.

Security Link

How Etsy Manages HTTPS AND SSL Certificates For Custom Domains11
Two Etsy devs share how they manage HTTPS and SSL certificates12 for custom domains on Etsy. (Image credit13)

Privacy Link

  • Facebook collects data about you in hundreds of ways, across numerous channels. It’s very hard to opt out, but reading this article by Vicki Boykis14 on what they collect, you’ll learn to better understand the risks of the platform so you can choose to be more restrictive with your Facebook usage.

Web Performance Link

Going Beyond… Link

  • In only 1 1⁄2 months a gigantic crack developed in the Antarctic ice shelf, and it’s likely to break apart in the next few months16, setting free about 2,300 square miles of ice into the sea. But the key is not this tiny piece of ice but the much bigger ice shelves that’ll follow. A video captured by the NASA back in November shows the crack in detail17.
  • If you haven’t read “Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)” by George Orwell yet, here’s your chance: The entire book is available for free as PDF18 and Audio19 versions. I personally recommend it to everyone who is only slightly interested in one of these topics: social change, politics, technology.

And with that, I’ll close for this week. If you like what I write each week, please support me with a donation20 or share this resource with other people. You can learn more about the costs of the project here21. It’s available via email, RSS and online.

— Anselm

  1. 1 https://twitter.com/substack/status/829802572508639232
  2. 2 https://twitter.com/jashkenas/status/829817619410780160
  3. 3 https://internetingishard.com/html-and-css/
  4. 4 https://internetingishard.com/html-and-css/
  5. 5 https://internetingishard.com/html-and-css/
  6. 6 https://internetingishard.com/html-and-css/
  7. 7 https://github.com/alecmuffett/eotk
  8. 8 http://rembrandtjs.com/
  9. 9 https://codeascraft.com/2017/01/31/how-etsy-manages-https-and-ssl-certificates-for-custom-domains-on-pattern/
  10. 10 https://blog.docker.com/2017/02/docker-secrets-management/
  11. 11 https://codeascraft.com/2017/01/31/how-etsy-manages-https-and-ssl-certificates-for-custom-domains-on-pattern/
  12. 12 https://codeascraft.com/2017/01/31/how-etsy-manages-https-and-ssl-certificates-for-custom-domains-on-pattern/
  13. 13 https://codeascraft.com/2017/01/31/how-etsy-manages-https-and-ssl-certificates-for-custom-domains-on-pattern/
  14. 14 https://veekaybee.github.io/facebook-is-collecting-this/
  15. 15 https://students.googleblog.com/2017/02/intern-impact-brotli-compression-for.html?m=1
  16. 16 https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/02/07/science/earth/antarctic-crack.html?smid=pl-share
  17. 17 https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/nasa-nears-finish-line-of-annual-study-of-changing-antarctic-ice
  18. 18 https://ia600201.us.archive.org/8/items/NINETEENEIGHTY-FOUR1984ByGeorgeOrwellPDFAudioBook/1984.pdf
  19. 19 https://archive.org/details/NINETEENEIGHTY-FOUR1984ByGeorgeOrwellPDFAudioBook/1984-01.mp3
  20. 20 https://wdrl.info/donate
  21. 21 https://wdrl.info/costs/

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Anselm Hannemann is a freelance front-end developer and architect and cares about sustainable front-end experiences and ethical choices in life. He curates the WDRL, a weekly handcrafted web development newsletter that thousands of developers love and subscribe to.


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