Over the last five years, one of the most frequent questions I’ve gotten has been “When are you going to write a book?”
You see, I’ve been writing articles and contributing to other people’s books since some time in 2004. In that time, I’ve also presented at dozens of conferences on a variety of topics. The topics I’ve chosen for these endeavors have been all over the map, but the theme that seemed to link them all was progressive enhancement. It’s the philosophical underpinning of everything I do and a subject that gets me excited about coming to work every day. So, naturally, I decided to make that the topic of my first solo book: Adaptive Web Design: Crafting Rich Experiences with Progressive Enhancement.
This book has been writing itself in my head for the last four or five years, so it was a great feeling to finally commit it to “paper” when I began this process a little over a year ago. My primary goal in writing the book was to thoroughly explain what progressive enhancement is, why it works, and how to use it. It is not meant to be a technique book.
My reasoning is simple: People understand techniques that apply progressive enhancement, but techniques come and go (just like browsers do). With a solid understanding of the philosophy and mechanisms of progressive enhancement, our community will be better able to build adaptive websites that truly serve our users. In many ways, I strove to write a philosophy book. A philosophy book with code.
Anyway, after about a year of writing, editing, and production (coupled with the formation of a new publishing house, etc.), I’m very happy to have the book out there and into your hands. So far, your response has been overwhelmingly positive, making me feel like this is the book I was meant to write.
I thanked a lot of people in the book itself, but I wanted to take another moment to sincerely thank my team here at Easy Designs for their feedback during the writing process and their relentless pursuit of perfection when it came to everything from paper choice, to book design, to finding our printer, and even for their care in the packaging and shipping of my precious baby. They did amazing work considering we’re primarily a web shop. I’d also like to thank Krista Stevens for her amazing editorial guidance, Veerle Pieters for her gorgeous cover design, and Jeffrey Zeldman for his wonderful foreword.
Oh, and I’m going to close out this post with one final tidbit about the print version of my book: not only is it printed on 50% recycled paper, but nearly every component of the book and its packaging (including our shipping boxes), was created within 2 hours of Chattanooga, TN (where we’re based). We created a beautiful product and kept every aspect of its production local. I think that’s pretty amazing.