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Design Swap

After months of procrastination, my Design Swap is finally live!

I first met Yaron while out with a few chaps (Jay, Tyler, and Darren) one night after work. He quickly mentioned an idea for a site that allowed designers to trade places for a day. He said he’d email me to be involved, but I quickly brushed it off as the polite musings of a lubricated cohort and thought nothing more of it. A few days later, I received an email, inviting me to participate in Design Swap!

This Brian Hoff fella

I had just recently started to talk to Brian Hoff over Twitter and email, and, when Yaron mentioned that he hadn’t been paired up yet, I jumped on the chance to collaborate with him. Brian’s a talented guy, and I was eager to do something with him. Plus, he’s from Philly, and I couldn’t resist that the commonality could yield some interesting results. (Sadly, the end results remain city-agnostic.)

Brian and I had a few phone calls to brainstorm what we could possibly do for this project. Unlike the previous swap from Yaron and Trent, both Brian or I don’t have blog setups that allow for custom-designed blog posts, so that approach was eliminated. However, we quickly realized how little we knew about each other, so we decided to remedy that through publicly juxtaposing our daily activities.

The only constraint we gave each other was that we had to use the art direction of the other’s website. Other than that, it was free reign! All in all, I think it was a great experiment, and I’m happy to have made a new friend through this exercise!

Under the hood

The timing of the original email (back in April!) was just about when HTML5 and its associated technologies started to gain popularity and momentum, so I thought it would be a perfect excuse to learn it. I also took the opportunity to experiment with other things I’ve been meaning to toy around with, like Typekit and CSS animations.

This was also around the time that the Adobe vs. Apple fiasco peaked, so I also wanted to use this as another example of how HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Flash can be combined as a cohesive experience where each is utilized for its strengths and appropriateness. I used 3 types of animation on this page: CSS, JavaScript (with jQuery), and Flash; see if you can spot the differences (without viewing source, of course). I’d also love any guesses as to why I used each.

There’s more…

What’s great about Design Swap is how many parties are involved. Without further ado, check out my design swap, see what Brian wrote, or read more on the Design Swap website!

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