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Michiel Bijl

Accessibility advocate and front-end author


You don’t want to hire me

I’m a terrible employee, there, I said it! I’m one of those people that takes way too long to develop something. That is probably due to the fact that I want to know how to build something properly. When I start to build something, I want to know everything there is to know about it; from what each button does, to what every component’s function is, and which parts will be editable via the CMS (Content Management System). I probably end up drawing a lot of sketches of all the different states a page or certain component can be in. Everything that leaves my editor should be usable by everybody!

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CSUN 2016

This year marks my first time at CSUN in San Diego. It’s also my first time in the United State of America. Better yet, it is the first time I travel outside Europe! More importantly though, it will give me the chance to learn a whole lot, meet lots of new people and finally shake hands with—or give hugs to—people I have been talking to for quite a while as part of my work for the W3C. So you better watch out if you’re in the ARIA Working Group ;)

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Interesting accessibility links

Accessibility is very interesting. A lot of people in the community seem to agree, because there are loads of great articles, talks, and other resources! This article lists some that I have read, watched, or otherwise enjoyed this year and would recommend to anyone interested in accessibility.

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Front-end Job Interview Questions

After Ana Tudor posted her answers as self proclaimed non-developer, I thought I would post mine as someone who has called himself a front-end developer for the past 15 years. These are all honest answers. The questions are taken from Front-end Job Interview Questions on GitHub.

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A piece of paper which reads 'Describe yourself in three words', next to it is my description: 'I am a rebel' written in four words.

There is no harm in being a little rebellious ;)


Download ‘Rebel’ wallpaper

Do or Dive

A stick figure dives from a board, next to it is the text 'Do or dive'; a play on 'do or die'

Sometimes you just need to make a decision at the last moment, do or dive!


Download ‘Do or Dive’ wallpaper


Smiley face with a slight grim on his face. It has 'Happy Face' handwritten next to it

Needed something to make me smile today, so I created this friendly wallpaper. Hope it makes someone else smile too :)


Download ‘Happy’ wallpaper

Thank you, CodePen

Earlier this year I discovered a website called CodePen. They describe themselves as follows:

CodePen is an HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code editor in your browser with instant previews.

But that is not all, it is also a place where great minds come together to build amazing stuff together, it is a platform to learn front-end related techniques and languages, it is a place to see what incredible stuff other people create, it is a place to try out different approaches to an issue, a place you can grow your knowledge.

Over the last couple of months I’ve spend a fair amount of time on this great website, and have even become a Pro member to support CodePen and its founders Chris, Alex and Tim. In my time there I have learned a lot about all sorts of different parts of the web, met some great people, and hopefully inspired others to create beautiful pieces of code themselves.

This post serves as a thank you to CodePen and its community, thank you.

Some work that inspired me

Some of my latest work

More on aria-current

Updated on 2015-12-27: aria-current has been accepted and is in the working draft.

Last week—after Léonie Watson brought a thread about aria-current on one of the W3C’s mailing lists to my attention—I wrote a reply to said thread. The W3C sent me an e-mail that told me my reply was send to the lists maintainer for manual processing; this is standard procedure if you post to a mailing list for the first time. After the reply had not shown up for a couple of days I asked the W3C for clarification on twitter. They told me they would put it through to the maintainer again. Which was directly followed by a tweet that said I couldn’t post to the list because I am not a member of the list.

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Buttons with a double function

Earlier this month Orange Juice—my previous employer—released their new website. It is a modern, flat design, mobile first website with a lot of gimmicky stuff. The team—that worked on the website—consisted of the creative director, a designer and myself. Work on the project began back in may of 2014. At first my role was to advise the team about the possibilities and performance of animations in browsers and different devices. We discussed about different transitions, different techniques to show the content that is hidden at first to the user. One of those techniques was to show it with the use of a modal window.

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