actuality.log


All entries tagged 'web'

Saturday, August the 29th, 2009
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I’ve been spending a lot of time fixing up the journal lately. This effort has been two-pronged: refreshing the design and cleaning up archival content. The first of these wasn’t as painful as I initially anticipated, and I am pleased to report that the new implementation of the design is nearly complete. The second front, however, has proved to be far more challenging. I think I just may have bitten off more than I can chew.

The plan seemed simple enough in my head: Systematically go through, catalogue and clean up earlier content. What I didn’t factor in is how much the web has evolved over the seven or so years this journal has existed. Broken links, antiquated markup and bad writing ooze from every corner in the dark recesses of this place. The question is, is all that revolting enough to make me stop trying? I hope to answer this question with an emphatic no in a few months.

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Tuesday, March the 31st, 2009
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I haven’t written (or done) anything site related in a while, so here’s me filling that quota.

I just realised the other day that nearly 80% of my traffic still comes from Windows users and nearly all those readers arrive on various flavours of Internet Explorer (IE). Furthermore, since I hadn’t been on Windows or seen my journal in IE for a long time, I only recently realised that things look very different there from how they do on my Mac. And when I say “different,” I mean “unsightly,” which is not acceptable.

When I first “designed” this layout, I remember making sure that things looked reasonably similar across different platforms. I guess it’s just that over the years, the numerous tweaks I’ve been making to the interface have added up to significantly different appearances on different platforms. That being the case, I think now is as good a time as any other for a reset. Toward this end, I’ve started working on a new style that looks remarkably similar to the current one, but has two main goals. One, to simplify and streamline the back-end code. Two, to make things look and feel consistent across major browsers and platforms. (Sorry, my three fucking Opera users.)

actuality.log redesign screenshot

The test page linked-to above serves to prototype and showcase the design. I’m trying to start with a clean slate by using CSS from the YUI Library from Yahoo. I’ll let you know how that works out. For now, notice how things look quite similar on two disparate environments: Internet Explorer 7 on Windows XP and Safari 3 on Mac OS X Leopard. I’m also maintaining a more detailed design status table covering different browsers and platforms.

At the end of this exercise, things should not be too different from what you’ve come to know and love. But over the course of the next few weeks, things might appear randomly broken as I move changes live into the journal. If you experience this, don’t panic. Go out, take a walk and by the time you get back, I should have things sorted out. If I seem to have missed something, do let me know!

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Monday, October the 29th, 2007
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I’ve been comfortable with the way things have looked around here for a couple of years now. In many ways, I still am, but here are a few ideas I’ve been toying with every now and again. I was wondering if you had any thoughts on the matter.

1. Simplicity two point oh two: Using this would be the laziest route, but I know it works well for different sorts of content. I think it needs some sort of slick header to complete it, but I know not what.

The first design option

2. Daily read: This stemmed from something I read a while ago which said “People tend to take sites that look like ‘news sites’ far more seriously than they do blogs.” And we all want to be taken seriously, don’t we? (The eagle is just a placeholder logo.)

The second design option

3. Amber lounge: The logo for this was stolen from a bar I visited while in Europe. It is the latest line of ideas I’ve been tinkering with, and the least fleshed-out.

The third design option

Perhaps the best elements from each will be amalgamated.


1 people conned into wasting their bandwidth.