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Photo by HalGatewood.com on Unsplash

A simple guide to quickly improve your designs

Design and development are sometimes thought of as two very opposite disciplines — one is creative and one is logical. Developers can get stuck in this trap, avoiding design because they ‘aren’t creative’ and getting paralysed when they inevitably have to make a minor design decision.

I wrote this blog to help demystify design for developers, so they can understand designers’ craft and motivations. I also wanted to show that logic and patterns that are just as fundamental to good design as creativity. There are systemic approaches we can take to improve our design work.

To give a concrete example…


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Upgrade your Wordpress forms to collect verified addresses from New Zealand and Australia

This tutorial will show you how to collect verified addresses for BOTH New Zealand and Australia. If you are interested in enabling the widget for just one country see this post.

If you are reading this we will assume you have a Wordpress site and you want to collect addresses. The easiest setup option is to add AddressFinder to the free plugin — Contact Form 7.

Contact Form 7 is a customisable contact form creator which helps you collect data from your users. AddressFinder is an address…


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Upgrade your Wordpress forms to collect verified addresses from New Zealand or Australia

This tutorial will show you how to collect verified addresses for EITHER New Zealand or Australia. If you are interested in enabling the widget for both countries see this post.

If you are reading this we will assume you have a Wordpress site and you want to collect addresses. The easiest setup option is to add AddressFinder to the free plugin — Contact Form 7.

Contact Form 7 is a customisable contact form creator which helps you collect data from your users. AddressFinder is an address autocomplete…


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Hi, I’m Kate! I’ve been working as a web development intern at Abletech for the last two months. Recently I’ve been investigating using React together with Ruby on Rails. My task was to discover common ‘gotchas’ and figure out what it would take to use React in our next project.

As a noob with a little experience with React, and even less with Rails, I ran into a bunch of errors and lost time trying to mush info from different tutorials together until I understood. I thought I’d write a few tutorials/explanations to help other baby devs become awesome!

This…


Hi friends, I’ve got a bit of freetime on my hands and I’ve been thinking about ways I can help people.

I have an idea for a browser extension called ‘TriggerHappy’ that lets you block certain types of content on the internet. Something similar exists on Tumblr which lets you blocked tagged posts. For me tagged posts aren’t really the issue, it’s more the surprise content buried in posts without a trigger warning.

The extension would be internet wide and it would black out certain words or paragraphs in a page, which you could scroll over to view.

Another option…


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SPOILER ALERT: Major spoilers for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince.
TRIGGER WARNING: discussion of rape and sexual assault.

When the new Stars Wars movie came out we saw a lot of posts with ‘SPOILER ALERT’ at the top in all caps. My boyfriend carefully curated his Twitter and Facebook feeds for weeks. There were memes everywhere discouraging people from ruining the movie.

Everyone understands this code of conduct. And people get really mad if someone breaks it. Some of the dramas over Star Wars spoilers included:


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From 18–22 I spent four years working at McDonalds. I worked a mix of part and full time over these years, always failing to find a ‘better’ job. I never advanced up the rungs, never was a manager, never achieved anything of significance in my time there.

Basically I was the absolute stereotype of a deadbeat McDonald’s worker. Lazy, stupid, with no initiative.

Over the years I saw this stereotype play out in a number of ways. The faces of my parents friends falling when I told them what I did. The snide remarks, ‘Do you still work at McDonalds?’…


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Ever wondered how to use the death of 100s to enhance your personal brand? Start here!

1. Show your colours!

First off, add an overlay to your Facebook profile photo. Or don’t. Make sure to post a status about your choice either way. Never be neutral! Here are some helpful starting points:

  • Create a heartfelt status about the loss of human life.
  • Argue that the use of overlays reduces human tragedy to a few lazy clicks
  • Criticize Facebook for the lack of a Beirut overlay.

2. Challenge your peers!

What if you want to take it further?

Perhaps you could lament the lack of mourning over Beirut? But…


We’ve all heard of catcalling. The inexplicable phenomenon of men yelling sexual obscenities at women in the street, and calling it a compliment.

These men seem to think that what women want most is to be attractive. When they yell ‘nice arse’ at the object of their affections, they think they are improving her day. In their minds she leaves smiling, knowing that her new pants are doing the trick.

But in reality, women are not constantly looking for validation. …


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When I decided to move to Santiago everyone told me I was very brave. Obviously this was in part because of the ‘don’t know anyone there and don’t know the language’ aspect. But I think it is also because Santiago, and South America in general is seen to be an intrepid, exotic and perhaps dangerous destination.

It’s the sort of destination lusted over by those travellers that preach about how they ‘want to meet the local people’, but who actually want to take a selfie with the local people and spend the rest of the time drinking in their hostel…

Kate Norquay

Code, travel, feminism, pop culture and probably other stuff as well. I like to make things.

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