One thing I love about working in software is the pace and rapid rate of change. As technology evolves, practices and techniques improve, design trends change, and new things become possible. This means there’s always something to learn. In this post, I’m going to share 10 of the best design blogs and websites I’ve found for keeping abreast of and being challenged by new ideas in the industry.
Smashing Magazine has been in my reading list for almost a decade. Their articles are always highly researched and well-crafted, and they cover a wide range of topics related to designing and creating for the web. If you don’t read Smashing Magazine, you should. Smashing Magazine has been one of the best design blogs out there for a long time.
I’ve enjoyed using Zurb’s Foundation framework for the first time on my current project, and I’m enjoying their blog even more. As a software product design company, Zurb is somewhat of a kindred spirit to Atomic Object, so I appreciate reading what’s going on in their neck of the woods and learning about new approaches that they are working on.
Sidebar is a relatively new site. It’s a daily, curated list of 5 links to high-quality web- and software-design related articles from around the net. I appreciate the breadth and depth of the articles featured.
HBR Blog Network
You might not expect to see a business website on a list of the best design blogs, but as a software designer, my job isn’t just about designing pretty interfaces — it’s about helping my clients find solutions to their business problems. HBR Blog Network is great for helping me to “zoom out” and learn more about the business ecosystems surrounding the products I help create. As you would expect from HBR, the articles are well-written, well-researched, and cover a variety of interesting topics.
Cameron Moll is an industry veteran, and his site is another one that I’ve kept an eye on ever since I was a high schooler designing websites in my parents’ basement. Cameron’s tumblr blog is a reliable smorgasboard of interesting thoughts and links related to design, the web, and the world around us.
Jen Myers is great. I respect her as a fellow user interface designer, and I deeply appreciate and the work she does related to increasing diversity in the tech industry. Her writing is thought-provoking. Also check out her tumblr.
Little Big Details
Little Big Details is perfect for a quick brain-break in the middle of the day. As the name implies, they showcase the little details that make a big difference in interface design. Great for inspiration when you’re trying to come up with that signature interaction to really set an app apart.
Design Observer Observatory
A site about “Design and Visual Culture,” Observatory is one of the places I go for increasing the breadth of my knowledge about design. Recent articles at Observatory have covered topics as diverse as architecture, typography, and playgrounds.
There’s a whole genre of web design blogs dedicated to step-by-step tutorials and gallery posts. Design Festival belongs to this genre, and I’ve found it to be one of the higher-quality ones. If I want to learn some new Illustrator-fu or see a gallery of minimalist websites, Design Festival is my go-to.
Did I skip over your favorite site? Please let me know in the comments! I’m always interested in finding more sources of great information!