Cape Town’s Open Device Lab

Mobile and testing

With the meteoric rise of mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, and ways of dealing with them such as Responsive Web Design, it’s a very interesting (and challenging!) time to be in the pixel business.

One of the biggest challenges we face is reaching as many people as possible: most South Africans aren’t accessing the web on the latest high-end smartphone. Making sure that our web sites look good on as many devices as possible isn’t easy. Hands down the best way to test is to get hands-on with actual devices, and see how your web site feels.

In April this year, Jeremy Keith set up a Test Lab at ClearLeft in Brighton. In the months that followed, more labs cropped up, and they found a sort of official name: Open Device Labs. Last week Smashing Magazine published an article about Establishing your own lab.

nomad device lab logoA few weeks ago, after many months of prodding and poking, I launched Nomad Device Lab in Cape Town. The approach is a little different to some of the other labs, and is more like design testing than device testing, as Andy Clarke has recently written about. You can read more about what’s in the lab, and why, on the Lab page.

WordCamp

WordCamp’s schedule is tightly packed with WordPress goodness, so squeezing in some testing on the day would be tricky. Instead, hot on the heels of WordCamp, the next session of the Device Lab is Tuesday 9th OctoberDrop me a line if you’d like to come along!

On the day I’ll be volunteering at the Happiness Bar, so come at me with any questions about the Nomad Device Lab, testing on mobile devices, or anything else that takes your fancy. See you there!

Who am I?

I’m Steve Barnett: a one man web development shop working with small businesses to establish or improve their web presence; a lot of the time that means using WordPress. I’m passionate about One Web, Progressive Enhancement, Responsive Web Design, UX, Content Strategy, and Typography. Often all at the same time.

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