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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. How to build development systems (for a web site)

    12/10/15

    by Stephen Caver

    Over the last year, I have been using Brad Frost & Dave Olsen’s PatternLab for many projects. In doing so, I have learned about building systems rather than web pages. Most of what I’ve learned is that I’ve been doing wrong out of habit.

  2. Learning to teach from a seven-year-old

    11/20/15

    by Abby Fretz

    Last weekend my best friend’s gregarious seven-year-old (we’ll call her Ellie) took over our lunch date to ask if she could teach me to play the board game Sorry!. Ellie has known, since she was four, that she wants to be a teacher. She wakes up early to play school, goes to school, then comes home and promptly starts playing school with her 2-year-old twin sisters. SHE LOVES SCHOOL. But really, she loves teaching.

  3. Using the distraction

    11/16/15

    by Michael Johnson

    The night began innocently enough. Now it’s two in the morning, and the best I have to go on is a sense of irony that’s settled in my lower back. Distractions on top of distractions.

  4. My one true layout

    11/6/15

    by Mark Huot

    Recently I’ve been “evangelizing” Docker quite a bit among the Happy Cog developers. Sometimes that sounds like “zomg, Mark really loves Docker” and other times it’s closer to “omg, why is he over engineering this again.” What I’ve been working on, lately, is a way to use Docker containers to re-implement a more flexible version of Heroku. The end goal is a workflow that starts with a developer pushing code. That code, regardless of branch, is published to a unique URL that anyone can see, regardless of their setup or environment.

  5. Where we’re going, we don’t need roads…

    10/30/15

    by Joe Rinaldi

    Our work with SuperFriendly and Philly.com is well underway. We’ve shared some insights, and launched our work on a beta site starting with our templates for article pages. We’re receiving valuable feedback and some really positive initial reviews and reactions. I’m so proud of this work and its response, but I keep telling people “Just wait, there’s so much more on the way!”

  6. The Web: yesterday, today

    10/23/15

    by Dave DeRuchie

    The beauty of web was pure once
    Design and dev in an unexplored medium
    A true alternative to corporate tedium
    A rise to type, deservedly so
    Was anyone sad to see Comic sans go?

  7. From the Classroom to the Office

    10/15/15

    by Amanda Buck

    As a new Happy Cogger (today is my four-month workiversary), I am slowly but surely adjusting to my new role and schedule. Before joining Happy Cog, I spent two years as a Graphic Design MFA student at Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. Two years of trying new things, advancing my skills, and writing and researching. Despite now working outside of an academic context, that doesn’t mean my education has ended. It’s just shifted focus. The following are ways my education has evolved during this transition from graduate school to professional practice.

  8. Divide and Conquer

    10/8/15

    by Aura Seltzer

    You’ve kicked off a website redesign project for a new client. Between negotiating contracts, facilitating a dialogue with stakeholders, and establishing a deep understanding of your client’s content and design priorities, you’ve arrived at a list of pages to represent a journey from old to new. These pages likely represent templates from which a site-wide design system comes to life. So you return to your desk, work for weeks and months, and snap all of those pages have been designed and coded, and you’re finally ready to share your work with the client. Right? Not so fast.

  9. Gone zshin’

    10/1/15

    by Dan Delauro

    Terminal is one of the more powerful apps that comes pre-installed on the Mac. In a nut-shell (see what I did?), it’s an emulator for bash, which is a command processor that lets us interact directly with the UNIX-based operating system that makes the Mac go. As developers, designers and curious tinkerers alike, it’s safe to assume we all rely on it one way or another.

  10. Get to Know Your Work

    9/24/15

    by Dana Pavlichko

    I decided to experiment with keeping a journal of my projects: an iterative, running log that captures all the small day-to-day decisions made internally or with the client, in one place. It began as a way to keep myself more organized, but I’ve noticed a few benefits to this practice, and overall, it’s been a way for me to get to know my work much better. Unexpectedly, presenting my design work has become much easier, as this journaling has been a way for me to rehearse and commit to memory exactly what happens when anything is clicked, why I made each design decision, and how this will all come together in the CMS.