My name is Francesco and I’m a Front-End Developer living and working in Munich, Germany, since 2013. My passion is to build experiences for people on the web that are responsive, fast, and accessible. Occasionally I find the time to blog about the things I do and am interested in on this very website.
Things that characterize me and my way of thinking:
- Pretty websites with no semantic markup don’t convince me. A website is only as beautiful as the underlying markup.
- I can reflect on certain subtleties in the HTML or CSS specification for days without getting bored.
- I love to make content on the web as accessible as possible to people. So the first thing I think about when developing a feature is its semantic markup structure and the correct usage of HTML elements as this is also the foundation for being able to write maintainable code in every other layer of the front-end stack.
- I like to develop maintainable and scalable markup and CSS/Sass architectures.
- I care about web performance (optimizing the critical rendering path, strategies for including web fonts, critical CSS, responsive images, caching and cache invalidation, etc.).
- I have a sense for colors, shapes, proportions, and graphic design. Besides that I’m a nerd when it comes to typography and find everything about it interesting (the history, the cultural siginificance, the aesthetics, the micro and macro perspective, etc.). I’m an interface between the design world and the engineering world because I speak both languages.
After the high-school diploma 2006 and a following academic detour to the University of Passau until 2008 (B.Sc. Computer Science and Internet Computing) I completed a two-year IHK apprenticeship as a Digital Media Designer. Then I studied Media Computer Science at the University of Technology in Dresden where I graduated as a B.Sc. in 2013. The subject of my thesis: HTML5 as a trend-setting multimedia technology: concept and implementation of an accessible text and video chat with speech-to-text functionality.
Projects I do in my spare time or alongside my normal job:
You can find a lot of code projects of mine on GitHub.
Redesign and further development of www.jambit.com
During summer/fall of 2015 I was responsible for the front-end and back-end redesign of the website of my employer.
The website has been selected site of the week in the ProcessWire Weekly:
The site itself contains a lot of content, is responsive, and seems quite snappy. […] Another thing we noticed was that the site […] handles touch gestures neatly, which definitely improves the […] experience for mobile users.
Besides a modern build and deployment process I focused on performance and front-end methods such as responsive design, responsive images, Flexbox, and progressive enhancement.
In January 2012 I published the website Bare Figures which enables you to look at quarterly data of major companies through interactive, easy-to-use charts. The release attracted wide media coverage. An excerpt:
Fantastic tool by Francesco Schwarz for visualizing Apple unit sale and revenue growth over the past decade.
Sometimes you have to see things to truly appreciate their magnitude. […] The chart above, which comes from Francesco Schwarz […] shows how unusual this quarter was for Apple.
Simply wonderful […]. Great stuff by Francesco Schwarz.
Over the years the website ran through many iterations and enhancements. In the beginning I manually inserted the data into one huge JSON file, today ProcessWire and some self-written modules take care of the preparation and processing of the data. Highcharts is used for the graphic display and the interaction with the data in the front-end.
Web Developer Community Meetings Dresden
From summer 2012 to summer 2013 I organiszed and hosted the meetings of WDCM Dresden, a monthly get-together of web developers, geeks, nerds, and students to discuss web topics in a relaxed atmoshpere.
- Smashing Magazine; July 2016; The Aesthetic Of Non-Opinionated Content Management: A Beginner’s Guide To ProcessWire
- t3n #44; May 2016; Flexible like frameworks – why the CMS ProcessWire is a real alternative to WordPress
- Envato Tuts+; January 2016; 4 Reasons to Choose ProcessWire as Your Next CMS
- jambit; November 2015; Munich, Germany; short presentation: Die neue jambit-Website: Backend und Frontend von www.jambit.com
- Süddeutsche Zeitung Digitale Medien; May 2015; Munich, Germany; presentation: CSS Best Practices: 5 Ratschläge für besseres CSS; slides
- jambit; March 2015; Munich, Germany; presentation: “Yes, browsers can do that!”
- jambit; May 2014; Munich, Germany; short presentation: Neue Features in Sass 3.3
- WDCM Dresden; May 2013; Dresden, Germany; presentation: ProcessWire: Das Wohlfühl-CMS; slides, video (23:56–01:01:16)
- CCC Datenspuren; November 2012; Dresden, Germany; lighting talk: Formulare in HTML5; slides, video (26:05–29:50)
- WDCM Dresden; February 2012; Dresden, Germany; short presentation: Apple’s quarterly results visualized; slides