The work we do in this class functions semiotically, artistically, socially, culturally, and aesthetically, as well as technologically, and in terms of usability. Please create your work with this in mind. You will be evaluated as such. We will develop these senses over the course of the term.

interactive work

You will create a home page, where you will post your interactive work. You will add a link for each piece you want us to see. We will develop ways to organize these links; this navigational organization will be significant.

Some work will involve substantial coding; in these cases, both the interactive product, and the source code count. These programs need to work. User experience is important. So is the structure of your code. (Good structure will turn out to be reusable across assignments.) We may not grade the source code for every assignment, but we also may, at any time. We will always check out your interactive work.

Definitely make sure your code works with Chrome browser on Windows and Mac OS. Also, it will be valuable for you to support both the mobile and personal computer platforms, and IE, Edge, Safari, Firefox browsers.

Expect to spend a significant amount of time (>10 hours/week) outside of class time on projects.


A Piazza Course Site will be used as an essential medium of communication for updates about the curriculum, including assignments, as well as for students to share questions, solutions, and ideas. You are required to be registered to participate in this Piazza online community, to receive emails about activity therein. You are required to check your email daily for notification of community communication, and to promptly follow-up all notifications through the Piazza website and this course website.


35%Midterm Project
40%Final Project
10%CSS Layout
5%Quizzes as Needed
10%Class and Studio Participation

The grading scale expected to be used is
A > 90% > B > 80% > C > 70% > D > 60% > F.
In addition to this, the instructor reserves the right to provide a relative or absolute curve to project and final grades (note that such a curve has not always been applied, and should not be assumed).

web authoring

You will write all code in this class by hand. The use of wysiwg authoring tools—for example, Dreamweaver, CKEditor, KompoZer, Visual Studio—is NOT PERMITTED. Failure to respect this will result in an automatic F for the entire course.


Attendance is mandatory. It is necessary, but not sufficient, for doing well at class participation. Participation grades will be based on thoughtful engagement: on asking good questions and providing insightful comments. To enable getting credit for participation, you MUST make a name tag like this and bring it to EVERY class: lecture and studio.

To be marked present, your name tag must be sufficiently large and bold that the TAs and I can read it from the front of class. This is true no matter where you sit. Thus, the further back you sit, the bigger and bolder your name tag must be.


Quizzes may be given by the instructor, at any time. If no quizzes are given, points for Quizzes will be redistributed.

programming style and documentation

Good object oriented design is a matter of creating structure which makes code easy to understand and maintain. Writing easy-to-read, well-structured code counts in this class. Create reusable components for yourself, and your peers. Whitespace, naming, and modular structure are keys.

At the same time, scripting code and markup actually needs to be downloaded. Thus, unlike with compiled languages and local filesystems, conciseness is also particularly valued. You need to always be aware of download times.

NB: In HTML (and not in JavaScript, nor in just about any programming language you've ever used before), space is a significant character. The insertion of whitespace can make a big difference in appearance. On the other hand, all whitespace characters are equivalent, and multiple in succession are the same as one. Use whitespace judiciously, to improve readability.

This class addresses the importance of clear code construction and documentation. When assignments are graded, a significant portion of the grade may be based on an evaluation of how well the code is written, and how easy it is to follow. Just producing code that "works" is not sufficient. It is your responsibility to produce code with good structure, which any reader can follow.

late assignments

Each project will have a specified date and time when intermediate and final deliverables are due. Any deliverables turned in late will result in a penalty. The total number of minutes, m, that assignments within a project are late will be added up. The final grade on the project will be multiplied by 0.9998m. For example, if the project is 1 hour late, you lose a bit over 1%. If it is one day late, you lose about 25%. After 3 days, 42% of your grade is lost.

honor code

An Aggie does not lie, cheat, or steal or tolerate those who do.

Upon accepting admission to Texas A&M University, a student immediately assumes a commitment to uphold the Honor Code, to accept responsibility for learning, and to follow the philosophy and rules of the Honor System. Students will be required to state their commitment on examinations, research papers, and other academic work. Ignorance of the rules does not exclude any member of the TAMU community from the requirements or the processes of the Honor System.

For additional information please visit: http://www.tamu.edu/aggiehonor/

For this class, certain aspects of the honor code need to be clarified.

  1. There may be times in this course where you make use of external code/software/libraries. Whenever this is done, you must make sure that, in addition to following any restrictions on that code itself, you clearly document what the source of the external code was, and how it was used.
  2. There may be cases in this course where you seek outside assistance related to one of the projects. You must document, in writing, any assistance received from people other than the professor, teaching assistants, or peer teachers.
  3. You will be working in team environments in this course, and your work as a team will be used to determine grades. As such, it is your responsibility, when asked, to:
    • accurately describe the work that you have performed on a team project. Claiming credit for work that you have not done or that others did instead is a violation of the code.
    • accurately describe (to the best of your knowledge) the performance of other team members. "Covering" for another team member (claiming they did more work than you know they did) or "spiking" them (claiming they did less work than you know they did) are examples of honor code violations.
    • prevent (as best you can) or report (known) violations of the honor code by your other team members. You share responsibility when a project is turned in; if you are aware of a teammate having violated the code in his/her work on the project, and do not report it, you are claiming credit for that violation yourself.
If there are any questions or concerns about whether an action is appropriate, check with the professor or teaching assistant first. If in doubt, assume that it is not appropriate.

quoting vs. plagiarism

One nice thing about HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code is that it is you can almost always see how someone did something, just by using ViewSource, or by asking the browser or wget to retreive a file explicitly. Similarly, hypermedia authoring involves quoting. On most assignments, you can borrow and quote as much as you want in this class. (Assignment one is an exception.) When you do borrow and quote MAKE SURE to tell us what you are quoting, and where we can find it. (Failure to do so is plagiarism.)

You can even reference your classmates' ideas for the same assignment, as long as you cite. In fact, that could get quite interesting. You will be evaluated partially on *what* you choose to reference, and also on *how*. How do you transform the function and meaning of the referenced material?

students with disabilities

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. Inasmuch as you may have a disability requiring support, resources are here.