Answers to Common Interview Questions

Are you a designer or developer?

I’m a hybrid with designer leanings. I have focused in the last few years on elevating my front-end build skills. I suppose I fall into the classic Jack-Of-All-Trades descriptor with mastery in knowing form and function will always compete for priority.

Have you worked with Git?

Yes, in the last year I have had my fair share of the Add/Commit/Push world. In my previous roles I was usually the only dev on a project so until then GIT was not needed. I’m now familiar with Gulp and Compass for compiling and use SourceTree for managing a repository. I’ve completed the CodeCademy Git course and look forward to using version control on future collaborative projects.

How would you rate your PHP/Javascript skills?

I would rank myself at “junior” level. I’ve been using PHP sporadically, as-needed, on multiple WordPress sites however I’ve not built out a complete WP theme from the ground up. So while I can add in Custom Post Types here and there, customize some plugins, I’m not a ground-up dev.  Also, I’ve been using Javascript here and there, implementing some standard JQuery tricks (see Home page) but nothing approaching JS guru.

What dev Workflow do you use?

  • Requirements Gathering / Client Goals
  • Site Plan/ Info Arch / Story Flow
  • Wireframes & Iterations
  • Design/Mockups & Iterations
  • Build Locally (preferrably- then push)
  • Test & Fix
  • Full Content Integration
  • Test & Fix
  • Execute pre-launch checklist
  • Launch & Register
  • Test Live

Have you used Basecamp or similar?

Yes, Basecamp, Slack, JIRA, and Trello most recently. At my former FTE position I helped design an internally built project management tool, so I am an advocate for clear tasks, goals, forecasting etc.

What tools do you use?

  • Wireframes w/PencilProject/Invision or other provided
  • Design w/ Photoshop/Illustrator etc
  • Build w/ Sublime Text, MAMP Pro or Staging server, SourceTree  & Git when collaborative
  • Test w/ Firebug, Chrome Inspector, Quirktools and Saucelabs. Pingdom for speed. Actual device tests

What are some basic UX Principles?

  • Desirable, Useful, Usable
  • Use visual hierarchy to reduce the user’s workload in finding their answers/info
  • Readability inline w/ aesthetics (use fonts that make sense not just look “cool”)
  • Layout — keep Z/F patterns in mind, Color is important for clicks to guide the eye
  • Accessible – don’t forget outlier audiences (blind etc)
  • Choices Map to business needs and brand
  • Keep users aware of where they are in the “story” i.e. use wayfinding (see OHCA)
  • Invite interaction- tappable/clickable (therefore some dimensionality/shadow)
  • Simple is better than busy whether w/words or text – creates clearer decision-making
  • Undergoes continuous improvement

What are the basics to cross-browser HTML Emails?

  • Keep it narrow
  • Use simple quirks box model css, inline only
  • No shortcode css
  • Cross platform fonts
  • Use grids/tables
  • Set image sizes explicitly
  • Use spans
  • Use absolute img links
  • Media queries for devices, increase fonts and bump buttons
  • JS/flash doesn’t apply

How do you prevent heavy page weight?

  • CSS in head JS in footer
  • Minimize code and plugins
  • Sprites, compress images, set sizes, cache

How do you build responsive pages?

A combination of fluid CSS and adaptive (a.k.a. media queries).

Have you worked with SASS?

Yes, in the last few years I’ve built most all my sites using Foundation Press and compiling SASS via Gulp/Node.