Top 5 Make Smarter - CSS Localstorage, Node JS, Best of Paul Irish, Tech Ed 2011 SQL Server Videos, Earth in Blender

First up in this month’s make smarter is localStorage for Forms by Chris Coyier over at CSS Tricks. It’s a good introduction to persisting data with localStorage and shows how to use these features in a way that degrade nicely on older/crappy browsers. If you do any web development, you owe it to yourself to subscribe to Chris’ podcast.

Next up, Nettuts+ has a couple of great tutorials on node.js. I’m both fascinated and repulsed by the idea of server-side JavaScript, but lately fascinated is winning. This second video begins the creation of a blogging platform in node.js.

Also from Nettuts+ is a great series of videos from Paul Irish of Chrome and HTML5 Boilerplate fame. There are 7 videos available, including tutorials on HTML5 Boilerplate, Chrome dev tools, and HTML5/CSS performance. Paul Irish is not only scary smart, he’s also very good at laying out technical material in an approachable way. Here’s one of his talks on HTML5 Boilerplate.

If you’re a MS SQL Server wrangler, LessThanDot has links to all of the Tech Ed North America 2011 SQL Server Videos. The talk on Beyond Relational Landscape dips a bit into spatial. I threw up in my mouth a bit when the videos tried to come up in Silverlight, but there are download links underneath the sucking holes in the page where Silverlight wants to launch.

And finally, another great tutorial by Blender Guru - Create a Realistic Earth. It uses some imagery from NASA to render an animated Earth, complete with clouds and atmosphere. Here’s what the final product looks like.