Saturday, 24 August 2013

Testing responsive designs

Ferdy has been converting JungleDragon into a new responsive design. He has a test version up and running, and his main focus is mobile access.

These days it's all about mobiles. You either create an "app" for each platform. But then that always leaves out those on different flavours. Or you create things as a website and hope that everything works out as you'd expect. Doesn't always work that way. Hence the reason you need tests.

Now It's no secret that I use Domino (aka Lotus Notes) a lot. In fact I use it on a daily basis even for my personal emails. Having my own server helps a lot. But Notes has always had the ability to break up the design so that you have one set of design elements for the Notes Client, one for the Web and one for Mobiles. But that rather defeats the whole purpose. Surly it's better to have a single design that works across all platforms but adapts itself to the various capabilities. This is what Responsive Design is all about.

The test platform of JungleDragon handles different screen sizes and orientations without any additional code. Granted there is a slightly increased overhead in that you are carrying extra design and layouts to handle screens and formats that do not work on the browser you are using, but in terms of the overall weight of the page, it is a mere pittance.

What Ferdy has created here, after many, many hours of work, is a platform that embraces the whole concept of what responsive design is all about. He has tested against a whole range of devices (albeit via a simulator for some of them) but he lacks the ability to test against BlackBerry devices.

Well guess what. I don't have that problem... since I work for them. So here are a few screenshots of the new JD3 working on my Z10 device.

Switching between landscape and portrait shows the differences in how the home page renders. The menu options change. But you always get the menu button top right of the page. Selecting that again shows differences in how the renderings work.
One slight niggle is switching between landscape and portrait with the menu option open. The menu options don't re-render properly.

Once you start drilling down the site you come across all the goodies.

Feh, and I just realised that I really should have hidden the URL bar in the browser. Never mind. It all works wonderfully.