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Defining our industry's methodologies, standards, and culture have long been a part of Happy Cog's values.

We started Cognition as a product to offer advice, create a dialogue, and serve our industry and clients to help them with their goals and aspirations.

Learn more about Happy Cog at happycog.com.

  1. The Design Value of Content Audits

    6/16/16

    by Aura Seltzer

    “We have so much content, we don’t even know how many pages are on our website.” “It’s impossible for anyone to find anything.” “Our call center spends too much time answering questions about already-available information.” “I’m more likely to Google what I’m looking for than dig for it.” “I just bookmark everything.”

  2. Deploying Static Websites to AWS S3 Behind an Nginx Proxy

    6/10/16

    by Dan Delauro

    We are constantly improving our approach to code. We build it. We break it. We love it. We hate it. And sometimes we blow it all up and start from scratch. If you caught @alliwagner’s swansong article about our starter files, you can recognize the value in years of iteration. But that doesn’t stop with just code. We’re constantly iterating on process, workflow, content strategy, etc. You name it, we’re always looking for ways to improve it. Nothing is ever set in stone. And the same goes for some of the less glamorous (depending on who you ask) tasks like… how do we put these things on the web for people to see?

  3. Content Strategy for Designers

    6/3/16

    by Dana Pavlichko

    Two weeks ago, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to attend Confab Central, the ultimate content strategy conference. I am a designer with no formal training in writing or content strategy. As a non-content-strategist, I thought I’d be entering a whole different world. A world I had only a rough understanding of. While I had read about content strategy in a few books years ago, before the conference I couldn’t clearly articulate what it was. The gist of it from my fuzzy point of view was: It’s the practice of charting a roadmap for future business writing. But how guidelines were to be created, in my mind, was still alchemy.

  4. Happy Cog Starter Files 2016

    5/13/16

    by Allison Wagner

    I have spent close to 7 years as a front-end developer at Happy Cog and in that time I’ve seen our discipline go through many great changes— from spacer gifs to responsive web design, we’ve all iterated quite a bit. This rate of change is one of the things I most love about frontend— the collaborative, communicative community that pushes us all forward whether we like it or not. As process has evolved, so too has it improved.

  5. Cool under pressure

    5/5/16

    by Mark Huot

    Why are doctors sometimes considered “cool under pressure?” Is it because their personality is one that doesn’t get riled up when faced with a challenge? Is it because they have an ingrained character trait that allows them to remain calm when everyone else is completely losing it? Have you ever noticed that web developers are sometimes labeled the same way? Is it the same thing? Are web developers saving the world too? Probably not.

  6. The best laid schemes for house and screens

    4/28/16

    by Amanda Buck

    “If you can design one thing, you can design everything” –Massimo Vignelli

    My husband and I are in the midst of buying our first house together. It’s a bit of a fixer-upper but nothing too major. Our first priorities are to refinish the floors, repaint, redo the kitchen, and update the bathroom vanity. The house is nothing like the Modernist glass box I once dreamed of, but it definitely has character.

  7. Thoughtful Communication

    4/21/16

    by Joe Rinaldi

    Comedian/actor Eddie Izzard makes an interesting point in his 2011 stand up Dress To Kill about communication. Through a (famously misunderstood) historic example of JFK’s 1963 address in Berlin, he illustrates how what you say, is often overshadowed by how you say it. The literal translation of what JFK said could have been interpreted in one of two ways. It could have been interpreted to mean he called himself a jelly doughnut. Because of the powerful way he delivered his message however, and the connection he had crafted with the Berlin crowd, they properly understood his meaning and responded enthusiastically when he declared himself a Berliner at heart.

  8. Search to Show We Care

    4/13/16

    by Dave DeRuchie

    As many of you may know April is Autism Awareness month. As noted on the Autism society’s website: “Nearly a quarter century ago, the Autism Society launched a nationwide effort to promote autism awareness, inclusion and self-determination for all, and assure that each person with ASD is provided the opportunity to achieve the highest possible quality of life.”

  9. On Board with Artboards

    4/7/16

    by Aura Seltzer

    Over the past nine months, our design team has been using Photoshop CC’s artboards feature (new with CC 2015). If you’re not familiar, artboards allow you to create multiple canvases within a single Photoshop file. While we had used artboards in Illustrator, the shift in Photoshop wasn’t a breeze. In the short term, artboards disrupted our keyboard-shortcut habits and file management workflow. Multiple design concepts and dozens of artboards later, they’re a part of every new design system we create.

  10. What Will They Say About Me?

    3/31/16

    by Dan Delauro

    For most of my life, I’ve subscribed to the #zerof*cks mentality. I rarely cared about what people said or thought. I was a real maverick. Ahem, jerk. I broke rules, I did whatever I wanted, when I wanted, and nothing got in the way. Nobody mattered but me and the awesome things I wanted to do. Anyone who did get in the way got trampled (sorry about that). It worked out pretty well – for a while. I managed to align myself with a group of similar people who all wanted the same things out of life. That all changed when I got a ‘real’ job and began taking life seriously