Essential Summer Reading

~ 06 July 2007 ~

Photo of books: age showing thumb wrestling positions

In addition to the exquisite list of summer reading available from the fine folks at Coudal, I hereby add two to the pile. No bookshelf is complete without these titles:

  • The Official Rock Paper Scissors Strategy Guide - Oh yes. One cannot throw down until he knows the ways of the hand. Written by Douglas and Graham Walker, “leaders of the World RPS Society and organizers of the annual RPS International World Championship.”
  • The Way of the Thumb - Full-fisted conflicts are for sissies. Real warriors use thumbs. Penned by the fingers (and thumbs) of Oscar Villalon, three-time champion of the 826 Valencia Thumb Wrestling Tournament.

Funny thing is both of these titles warrant attention, despite their somewhat facetious subject matter. The Rock Paper Scissors guide is quite comprehensive, and the Thumb handbook exhibits attention to detail:

Photo of page showing scissors hand gesture
Photo of page showing thumb wrestling positions

On a more serious note, two titles I highly recommend this summer are the following:

  • Just Ask: Integrating Accessibility Throughout Design by Shawn Henry, W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI). This is practical resource offers not only an understanding of how to design for accessibility, but also of how to establish an environment conducive to real-world testing with disabled users.
  • Designing the Mobile User Experience by Barbara Ballard, esteemed mobile expert. A thorough, well-researched book that covers mobile applications — thick client, smart client, web — in great detail. It isn’t a technical book per se, but rather an exhaustive guide to understanding mobility and the mobile user.

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A selection of fine reading, available for a limited time only:

In Print

CSS Mastery CSS Mastery: Advanced Web Standard Solutions A solid round-up of indispensable CSS design techniques by Andy Budd, Simon Collison, and Cameron Moll.

Mobile Web Design Mobile Web Design A guide to publishing web content beyond the desktop. Tips, methodology, and resources. Now available.


Letterpress Posters Letterpress Posters The unassuming beauty of a freshly letterpressed print.

Wicked Worn That Wicked Worn Look. Techniques for that worn, aged, distressed look.

Mister Retro Mister Retro Machine Wash Filters Turn the dial to “Instaworn” with these filters.

Blinksale Blinksale Dive in and enjoy shamelessly easy invoicing from Firewheel Design.

Basecamp Basecamp My preferred web app for internal and client project collaboration.


HOW Conference HOW Conference Austin, June 24–27. Pentagram, Adobe, P&G, et al.

Web Design World Web Design World Seattle, July 20–22. Practical sessions on web design.

An Event Apart Stimulate Salt Lake City, September 2009. Entrepreneurship and design conference.

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