News : October 2002
Wrapping up this month's theme of User-Centered Design, we are happy to publish a review of Jesse James Garrett's book, The Elements of the User Experience. Elisa K. Miller steps in as reviewer this month while James McNally returns from his honeymoon. Congrats James and thank you Elisa! See you next month with a whole new theme.
A new issue of Boxes and Arrows is up. This issue includes a great review of Jesse James Garrett's book, The Elements of User Experience, by Jeff Lash (Digital Web Magazine's own IAnything Goes columnist) and a review of Christina Wodtke's (Digital Web Magazine's IA) book, Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web, by Ryan Olshavsky. Also in this issue is a great interview with Jesse James Garrett (you may remember the name from a previous interview). And last but not least, in case you missed it last week, check out a great article by Steve Fleckenstein on The Politics of User Experience.
An interview of yours truly is now avilable for you to read on SXSW Interactive's Tech Report. The interview focuses on UCD and, of course, Haloween... they never bothered to ask me about my Halloween Costume. Anyway, the interview does cover some aspects of independent web publishing such as time spent, traffic, globalization and donations.
The latest Apple "Switch" commercial (or perhaps, what should be an Apple "Switch" commercial: Pete Green (Web Designer / Waiter) [Quicktime Movie]. For the record, I use OSX at work, I don't seem to have problems, but then again I was never a Mac user before. I am still a Windows and somewhat Linux user, however. [from Zeldman]
For the first time in history we see a home page on Jeffrey Zeldman Presents that is not acutally any variation of Zeldman Orange (TM). I hope that some day the same can be said of Chistopher Lime (TM). Of course, there will always be Black Red (TM) to say nothing of IBM Blue (TM). Some of you may notice shades of these colors elsewhere.
Developers will find this chart handy: Missing Characters Test Matrix. I have already emailed Pete to see if he plans on expanding the chart and also including browser-specific discrepancies and other entities such as the illegitimate copyright and trademark symbols. [from Zeldman]
Designing CSS Web Pages' book site is now live. You can still get the first chapter free electronically, but now you can download samples used in the book as well as scan CSS-related resources and more.
It is entirely too late for non-nocturnal creatures to be awake so I will be brief. This week's issue on User-Centered Design includes two great columns. First a new edition of "IAnything Goes" by Jeff Lash on "The myth of User-Centered Information Architecture" and second, a new edition of "Keep it Simple" by Peter-Paul Koch on "Client Centered Design." See you next week with another new issue and hopefully I will have had a good rest before publishing.
Some of you may have heard that Jeffrey Zeldman has transitioned The Daily Report to a CSS-driven layout and is in the process of making the design more simplistic, focused, united and usable. Some of you may have posted comments in favor or aginst this change. I have posted my own comments near the end of this thread. Just when I think Web Designers are starting to "get it" along comes some who still insist that the Web is Print (or very close to it). The real beauty of the web is that the designer really doesn't control the medium, the user does. Fluid Thinking is perhaps the best summary of this concept that I have seen. Please read this in detail.
A new mark-up validator is coming from the W3C. Along with bug fixes, there are (much needed) improvements to the error messages, better support for a variety of character encodings, and more Document Types are supported. Although no release date is yet scheduled, you can test it now, but be warned: “the code is not ready for use in a production environment.“
For those readers who live down-under in the Melbourne area you may want to check out Unite 8. The event takes place at 7.30pm on Friday October 25th (AKA this Friday). Register for location details. [from INfront]
Jeffrey Zeldman on Fluid Thinking, a topic PPK recently covered in his article by the same name: Fluid Thinking... this is also a topic I covered in a recent presentation for IPN entitled Layout Standards and Techniques: Graphic Design Use of Stylesheets. While we may have used poor analogies and maybe misinterpreted information the fact still remains that designers are still designing sites for themselves. Successful Web sites will be lead by designers who design for the user regardless of platform, browser, media, or technology support.
Steve Champeon writes a great article on WebMonkey called The Secret Life of Markup which talks about Semantics, Structure, Markup, Content, Style, Transformation, and Presentation. Dive in! [from Zeldman]
Digital Web Magazine is looking for volunteer candidates for the following positions within the editorial staff:
- Associate Editor (you would be responsible for guiding a skilled editorial staff and assisting with editing contributed and in-house works)
- Assistant Editor (you would interview web professionals)
- Windows Product Review Editor (you would review Window based web software)
- Linux Product Review Editor (you would review Linux based web software)
- Web Business Columnist (you would write columns that focus on ROI, budgeting, scheduling, etc.)
Another week means another new issue on User-Centered Design. This week we are happy to have Tammy Sachs join us as a contributing author for "Back to the User: Creating User-Focused Websites," a feature article by the same title as her co-authored book with Gary McClain, Ph.D. In this feature she covers five key lessons learned from listening to and observing all kinds of users trying out all kinds of Web sites at various stages of development. Also in this issue is another great Wide Open column by the ever-brilliant David Wertheimer. He entitles this issue "Making a Timeless User Experience" for obvious reasons. Good reading and see you next week with more content on User-Centered Design.
One element of User Experience that is often overlooked is customer service. After just reading this entry on Off the Top by Thomas Vander Wal I am reminded of some of my online experiences. I'll write more on this later.
Wired News becomes one of the first big commercial site to abandon tables in favour of all CSS-based layout. Though it doesn’t quite validate, this is still a commendable, and brave, move—the site doesn’t even support Netscape 4.x.
AOL version 8.0 has been quietly released. Despite expectations (read: hopes) a Gecko-based rendering engine would be used, the new Windows service still uses IE’s rendering engine. Both the latest CompuServe and AOL for Mac OS X services use Gecko. Both, though, have tiny audiences when compared to AOL for Windows.
Another new issue of Digital Web Magazine just hit the newstand. The theme for this month is User-Centered Design and we are proud to present a great interview with Peter Merholz and Nathan Shedroff by Meryl K. Evans and some great cover art by none other than Adriana de Barros. That is all for this week. See you next week with more content on User-Centered Design.
Welcome fellow IPN members. If you are looking for presentation you can find it linked on my events page or right here: Layout Standards and Techniques: Graphic Design Use of Stylesheets. For those who missed this presentation (either in person or via the live stream on the IPN site), don't worry; I plan on putting up a video of the streamed feed shortly. I will make an announcement right here when I do.
Meryl points out a great article about the legal ramifications of using Seven Illegal Search Engine Optimization Techniques. [from Meryl's Notes]
A Day in the Life offers "a new photo every day, a new location every week", as they have a single photographer each week contribute a photo a day. The site's been going strong for four months now, has had participation from all over the world and has photographers booked through April 2003. Due to a cancellation, I managed to be invited to participate for this week.
My new book, Designing CSS Web Pages, is hitting the bookstores! Published by New Riders the book addresses contemporary new media design through Cascading Style Sheets, Dynamic HTML, PNG & SVG. You can preview the first chapter by downloading the first chapter in PDF at the book site. And for more CSS goodness, you can check out my recent CSS tutorial, Web Page Reconstruction with CSS, I wrote for the June issue of Digital Web Magazine.
Wrapping up this month's theme on Web standards, we have a new book review of "Special Edition: Using HTML and XHTML"—authored by Digital Web Magazine's very own Associate Editor, Molly E. Holzschlag—written by the ever talented James McNally. Also in this issue is a great product review of Adobe's LiveMotion 2 by long-time product reviewer Jesse Nieminen. We will see you next week with a whole new theme.
Carole Guevin has been interviewed on the SXSW Tech Report. Several mentions of Digital Web Magazine articles in the mix including Visual Architecture: The Rule of Three by Carole herself and 99% of the web is obsolete by Jeffrey Zeldman.
Gabe Kean & Anmarie Trimble tell us that they have released the Autumn 2002 issue of Born Magazine with the help of several contributors. In this isssue are 5 interpretations of poetry and prose, plus 4 new additions to the Birthing Room. Check it out!
Hi, just wanted to use my first post to introduce myself and say how honoured I am for being given the chance to help out with the Digital-Web redesign effort. I'm especially looking forward to working with the whole gang and especially Mr. Finck which I must once again thank for giving me this opportunity. I was hoping to find something useful/cool/intriguing to link today but all I could get my hands on was this rather nifty optical illusion which may interest someone.