Matt Wilcox

Web Development

It's my job and still a passion; articles, tutorials, notes, and resources exploring web development are all contained here.

I've been a full-time web developer since 2004, and a keen hobbyist before that. I've been a member of the HTML Working Group and Responsive Images Community Group. If you've heard of me before it's likely because you've also heard of Adaptive Images; an old but still useful project of mine.

I've been writing about web related topics for a decade, and though these things date quickly my archive of old posts is still available, because link-rot is bad.

What I write

I write under the following categories:


Articles are long-form discourse about whatever topic they address. They've usually had considerable thought put into them, and are sometimes an expansion on a topic raised earlier as a 'notes' post.


Off-the-cuff thoughts, notes, and items of interest; these have less time dedicated to them than Articles and sometimes will lead to Articles later on.


Tutorials are intended as step-by-step instructions to achieve a specific task; they're focussed on that and not so much about any broader related topics.

External Resources

Things I've seen elsewhere that I'd like to refer to in the future; essentially these are 'bookmarks' for myself, which I thought might be good to share.


N.b., Timeline excludes Resource posts:

Why I probably won't use Resource Hints' pre-fetch and pre-load directives

21st June 2016, Notes

The biggest trend and problem of the last few years is ever bigger web pages wasting ever more bandwidth. And we're given tools to load more crap based on a guess as to what the user might want to do next?

Responsive and Accessible 'Read more...' links

30th June 2015, Tutorials

My trick for creating 'read more' links that work well for everyone.

Speed up website response times with nginx

06th March 2015, Tutorials

The why, when, and how of using nginx to cache a CMS's output.

HTTP2 for front-end web developers

03rd March 2015, Notes

HTTP2 will mean a change in how we should build websites. The best practices of HTTP1 are harmful in a HTTP2 world.

Trying Zurb Foundation; what I found.

18th February 2015, Articles

I've never built a website based on a third-party framework, but I recently had cause to try one, spending a week with Foundation. Here's what I found...

Fixing file-upload hangs with nginx and Craft

07th February 2015, Notes

A quick tip on how to fix things if your asset uploads in Craft seem to just hang.

2015 rebuild: A technical overview

04th February 2015, Articles

How I used nginx and Craft to rebuild this website.

The 2015 edition of

28th January 2015, Notes

It's taken almost three years to finally get around to, but at long last this website is sporting a design and running on a CMS I actually like.

Unexpected DDOS: Blocking China with ipset and iptables

24th January 2015, Tutorials

When the Great Firewall of China starts hosing your server with unexpected and unrelated traffic, how do you deal with it?

Portable Development Environments

01st December 2014, Notes

Why is it still so hard to set up a portable development environment?

Upcoming features for Web Developers

23rd November 2014, Notes

We have some new technologies coming up which are going to have a big impact on what we do and how we do it.

Keeping srcset and sizes under control

31st October 2014, Tutorials

My strategy to ensure HTML's new responsive image attributes don't grow out of control when you use them.

The insecurity of security questions

23rd September 2014, Notes

Most security questions are at best obstructive, at worst terribly insecure.

Organising SCSS; Code Folding vs Imports

29th July 2014, Articles

Organising SCSS for better readability and faster coding.

Craft CMS; A first impression

19th July 2014, Articles

I've been playing with Craft for a short time, like they promised on their website – I love it. Maybe you should try it.

On Plugins

11th July 2014, Notes

Why I don't trust applications that laregly subsist on their plugins.

The future of mark-up?

02nd June 2014, Notes

With new features like Web Components and Element Queries, what will the mark-up of the future look like?

Setting up a secure website with HTTPS and SPDY support under nginx on a Raspberry Pi

24th May 2014, Tutorials

Why and how you'd get the very latest nginx installed on Raspbian (or Debian), and how to serve your site securely over HTTPS/SPDY

Vagrant, Puppet, Docker?

01st January 2014, Notes

What are these and why should I care?

Optimising HTML and CSS

22nd October 2013, Notes

What do we mean when we talk about optimising HTML and CSS?