Masonry and reading order

I recently wrote a post about the CSS masonry proposal on the Chrome for Developers blog. I was keen not to muddy the waters with anything that wasn’t the main point of that post—which was to explain why the Chrome team felt that masonry should be specified outside of grid. Since … | Continue reading | 17 hours ago

On having no visual memory

I have aphantasia—no ability to create images in my mind, or to remember things in a visual way. For well over half of my life I lived under the assumption that suggestions to visualize things were entirely metaphorical, and also that I was incredibly stupid in certain ways, find … | Continue reading | 1 month ago

Closing time

I started in September 2001. I was a young single mother with a background as a dancer, staggering out of the dotcom meltdown, with a tiny grant from The Prince’s Trust and a belief that my ability to sniff out and fix problems in code might just pay the bills. I … | Continue reading | 2 months ago

11 years

Facebook reminds me that it’s been 11 years since I went for an ill-advised run in the snow, fell, and shattered my elbow. I’ve had four surgeries since—the initial one to reconstruct it, with a bunch of metal. Two to remove the metal, and one in 2016 to scrape out scar tissue. T … | Continue reading | 4 months ago

2023 in review

Here we are again, with another year completed. I’ve now been at Google for over two years, I’ve managed to avoid collecting any additional cats or new broken bones, but I have gained a son-in-law! Work 2023 was the most challenging year of my career to date. Previous downturns i … | Continue reading | 4 months ago


My daughter came to stay for a few days at Christmas, and we pulled out a box of old photographs. I found this photo of me, taken in December of 1996. I was 21 and pregnant, and had just been let go from my backstage job in the theatre. The computer—a Packard Bell 486 “all […] | Continue reading | 4 months ago

align-content in block layout

Despite what you might read in some corners of the internet, it’s been possible to vertically centre an element inside a parent for a very long time now. The align-content property from the Box Alignment spec does the job, however browsers require that you make the parent element … | Continue reading | 5 months ago

Why are we not still using tables-for-layout?

I was chatting with a couple of long-time web folk today. As often happens when those of us who lived through the browser wars get together, the talk turned to old browsers, and old hacks to get round the issues in those browsers. I was thinking through the timeframe of CSS becom … | Continue reading | 8 months ago


I don’t remember being taught to cook. Cooking was just something that happened in my vicinity. Growing up in the 1970s and 80s in the UK, people didn’t go out to eat. I can remember the few occasions that we did—the deep pan pizzas near Trafalgar Square, a meal in an Indian rest … | Continue reading | 1 year ago

Technical writing resources

I delivered a talk at the Google Developers Experts Summit in Berlin this week, covering some tips for writing technical content. I gathered a collection of resources to share, and whether you are interested in technical writing as a career, or just want to be able document your … | Continue reading | 1 year ago

2022 in review

There is much to be unhappy about as we close out another year. The news seems relentlessly dark, with a cost of living crisis, looming recession, a collapsing health service, war in Ukraine, and a pandemic that is very much not over, while everyone pretends it is. I am a general … | Continue reading | 1 year ago

Thank you An Event Apart

It’s Christmas Eve Eve, and I was adding the last of my expenses into Concur, when my work email account received a message. My colleagues, being more sensible than me, have vanished, so I checked just in case there was some actual content-related emergency. It was an email from … | Continue reading | 1 year ago

Stop treating all of your content as if it were news

I keep seeing this pattern. You need a content site, and tools designed for blogging are a straightforward way to create a content site. So, you start a blog, except most posts are evergreen content. Content that you are going to update. Before long, you are updating old blog pos … | Continue reading | 1 year ago

A new home for this site

At work, I’ve recently spent a good chunk of my time moving content off legacy sites to the current ones, including making my manager sad by finally pulling the plug on HTML5Rocks. I figured I might as well do the same during my weekends, so have moved my blog archive, so I can b … | Continue reading | 1 year ago

2021 in review

A somewhat belated roundup of 2021. | Continue reading | 2 years ago

Good news about display: contents and Chrome

A nasty accessibility bug with display: contents has been fixed in Chrome. | Continue reading | 3 years ago

Talk for axe-con: Grid, content re-ordering, and accessibility

I am speaking at axe-con on the issues around CSS Grid and content re-ordering. | Continue reading | 3 years ago

Writing technical articles: Defining your ideal reader

When writing a technical tutorial, first define who your ideal reader is, then speak to them through your piece. Some tips for defining your reader, and creating a list of assumptions. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Does masonry belong in the CSS Grid specification?

There is a proposal to add Masonry layout into the grid specification, my thoughts, a demo and a request for you to add your own comments on the CSS WG thread. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Running Online Workshops - The Smashing Podcast

Talking about the decision to take the Smashing Workshops online, in an interview on the Smashing Podcast. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Let's Learn CSS Grid!

Learn With Jason is a live show, streamed on Twitch, where Jason Lengstorf pair programs with other developers and designers, you can watch the video of my joining Jason to build something with Grid. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Making Things Better

The notes from my talk for An Event Apart last year, covering overflow, multicol, regions, and why this stuff matters. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

The CSS Layout Masterclass

In my all-new workshop I will take you through the new system for CSS layout, giving you the ability to properly understand and use CSS Layout with real understanding of why things behave as they do. | Continue reading | 4 years ago


My personal roundup of 2019. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Thinking about page floats, figures, regions and grids

In which I throw half working things at several browsers and draw some vague conclusions about what to use when. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Get Ready For CSS Grid Layout - 2nd edition

The second edition of my brief guide to grid – Get Ready For CSS Grid Layout – has been published. I look back at the time between writing the first edition, and today. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

Grid, content re-ordering and accessibility

A call for urgency in finding a solution to the content reordering problem which our new layout methods make far more likely. | Continue reading | 4 years ago

You do not need a CSS Grid based Grid System (2017)

Explaining why you don’t need a grid system to use CSS Grid Layout, due to it already being a grid system. | Continue reading | 5 years ago

HTML, CSS and our vanishing industry entry points

Some thoughts on entry points to web development today, and my fears about the loss of something that has enabled so many people without a traditional computer science background to be here. | Continue reading | 5 years ago