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16 Fresh Free eBooks for Designers and Developers

December 18th, 2015

Being a designer or developer means that you’ll never be able to stop learning. Learning is like your second leg. You can still move with only one but won’t win any contests any longer. Free eBooks are perfect in helping you staying updated as they usually offer knowledge in a very compact form. That way they don’t take up too much of your time, and we all know that there is never enough time for everything. All of the eBooks presented in the following article is available entirely free of charge. But paying nothing does not mean getting nothing here. Instead, expect excellent content to level up your skills quickly and conveniently. We have 16 eBooks covering different aspects of our industry for you…

1. Pocket Guide to Writing SVG

pocket guide to writing SVG

With this eBook, creating SVGs and integrating them into any website becomes easy. The author has many examples in place, and the book is written in a human-readable tongue. Step by step tutorials help you convert the samples into action.

Format: Online (Web) and Markdown (Download via GitHub)

Written by: Joni Trythall

2. Speaking JavaScript


This is one extensive work on JavaScript. The author digs deep into your favorite script language and shows you corners where no man, at least not you has ever been before. This eBook is the right choice for people who hate to scratch surfaces.

Format: Online (Web)

Written by: Dr. Axel Rauschmayer

3. Adaptive Web Design


Six chapters cover the essentials of adaptive web design from the early days of Progressive Enhancement up to the implementation of its principles with the help of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

Format: Online (Web)

Written by: Aaron Gustafson

4. 27 Page Type Classification eBook


Although this eBook is rather small with its 27 pages, author Jacob Cass manages to transport quite some knowledge of typography. He focuses on classifications and gives an overview of their history and characteristics.

Format: PDF Download

Written by: Jacob Cass

5. 11 Things to Do with Every New WordPress Install


11 useful tips are what this eBook promises. 11 good tips for installing a new WordPress site. It needs no mention that the target audience for this eBook is the WordPress newbie. Then again, most people on this globe are WordPress newbies, so the audience is large enough. If you are looking for step by step tutorials on how to launch your self-hosted blog, this eBook is for you.

Format: PDF Download

Written by: iThemes Media

6. Building Web Apps with Go


Author Jeremy Saenz shows you how to quickly create web apps with the programming language GO. Jeremy leads you through the individual steps over the course of his 15 chapter eBook.

Format: PDF Download | EPUB | Mobi | Online (Web)

Written by: Jeremy Saenz

7. Go Mobile With WordPress


This eBook covers the mobile possibilities WordPress offers. Responsive web design is introduced as well as pure mobile themes. Even the creation of native apps gets covered. Besides all that this eBook has a plethora of tips for you how to make your website mobile-friendly like never before.

Format: PDF Download

Written by: iThemes Media

8. HTML Canvas Deep Dive


This eBook teaches you HTML Canvas step by step and with interactive examples. As it focuses the Canvas element, it should be clear that you need the context to understand what this can do. In other words, this book is not for noobs.

Format: Online (Web)

Written by: Josh Marinacci

9. 10 Keys to Great Landing Pages


This one is short enough to read during your regular lunch break. It is a good one, however. In just ten simple steps it teaches you how to create a proper landing page. You will also learn the difference between a homepage and a landing page and why landing pages are so important.

Format: PDF Download

Written by: iThemes Media

10. Book of Speed

Book of Speed

The Book of Speed by Stojan Stefanov is a free eBook covering the topic of website performance. It starts with explaining why website performance is not just nice to have but a massive factor in your revenue strategy. It then teaches you how to optimize your website.

Format: Online (Web)

Written by: Stojan Stefanov

11. A Practical Guide to Designing for the Web


This guide is one of the more elaborate specimen. You will learn how to work with coloring, typography and layout as well as how to find fresh ideas and a few things more. The five chapters of this book give you a quick but lasting impression of what the world of webdesign holds in store for you.

Format: PDF Download | EPUB | MOBI

Written by: Marc Boulton

12. PHP: The Right Way


If you are into PHP, you must read this reference. Continually updated The Right Way keeps you on track of what PHP development today really is. It is filled with best practices, functional concepts, acclaimed standards and loads of links to more material.

Format: Online (Web)

Written by: Josh Lockhart

13. Essential Career Advice for Developers


This eBook has been written by the CEO of iThemes, Cory J. Miller.  He exclusively targets the web developer. Cory teaches you how to create a good portfolio, to communicate with clients and all in all inspires the entrepreneur in you.

Format: PDF Download

Written by: Cory J. Miller

14. So You Want To Be A Freelancer?


Are you thinking about going freelance but don’t know how to best do that? Read this eBook and you’ll be informed. This guide shows you all of the pros of freelancing without keeping secret the negative aspects. All of this is highly practical and garnered with real everyday experiences. Questions such as how to earn money, how to get organized, how to win clients and many more are answered. This is a recommendable read for any wannabe freelancer out there.

Format: PDF Download

Written by: iThemes Media

15. Magic of CSS


The Magic of CSS delivers six chapters packed with knowledge. It covers the box model, layout in general, colors, typography and CSS transitions. The book is an easy read, very comprehensible, and comes with a load of practical examples.

Format: Online (Web) | Download as HTML (GitHub)

Written by: Adam Schwartz

16. How to Start a Blog


“How to Start a Blog” is made with love, and you see it. It aims for the blogging newbies who want to find the perfect way to express themselves in the widths and depths of the world’s web. The guide works step by step and covers all relevant topics from the choice of an appropriate CMS to its installation, content creation, and even online marketing.

Format: Online (Web) | PDF Download

Written by: Ogi Djuraskovic, Kristi Hines & the FirstSiteGuide Team


These 16 eBooks will transform you into a walking encyclopedia, and you will win any one-million question out there. No, that’s an exaggeration. But what these eBooks will give you is a solid foundation with many web-related topics. We brought together a good mixture so that anyone should find interesting reads. If you read them all, the better.

Do you know more good reads we have missed to mention? Let us know in the comments below


Ioanni Mitsakis is front-end developer at a major European automotive supplier and responsible for the look & feel of their internal cloud-based apps. As his employer works internationally with distributed teams world-wide, a rock-solid development foundation is what Ioanni aims for. He better should ;-)

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7 Comments on "16 Fresh Free eBooks for Designers and Developers"

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Francis Kim
10 months 4 days ago

#11 goes to a 404.

Dieter Petereit
Noupe Team
10 months 3 days ago

Thanks for the hint. I fixed it.

10 months 3 days ago

I’m always amazed by the amount of free content out there nowadays. Good content, too!

Oh wait, it’s always been there – it’s called the library ;)

Seriously though, if you want to learn about coding, design, or pretty much anything, please don’t forget that libraries exist!

10 months 1 day ago

i recomend #3 . a very good book and you will enjoy the reading.

Mamie Kelley
9 months 29 days ago

As a wordpress developer i found 3,5 and 15 helpful for me. Thanks for your great post listing all free book.

9 months 3 days ago

Highly recommended #9. Thanks for the relevant post.

Dan Neamtu
8 months 12 days ago

I’ve just downloaded A Practical Guide to Designing for the Web. I’m so curious. Thank you for fresh free ebooks . Cheers!