Anchor for this item  posted Friday, January 10, 2003 at 8:17 pm MST

In the first entry of my LiveJournal, I commented rather rudely on the default link colours. Well, actually, what I wrote was "*heaves sigh / groan* Gawd this page is ugly. pink as the default colour for clicked links? How does that harmonize? *sigh*"
Someone named evan responded, commenting rather cryptically: "#8 (and later, #8 still)." (I've unpacked the links below.)
Here's my reply:
Ya, thanks evan ... I think Nielsen's comments are very sane. Also, I think they are quite usually observed. But in any case, this can't hurt ... Read and heed:

Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox for May 1996: Top Ten Mistakes in Web Design
8. Non-Standard Link Colors - Links to pages that have not been seen by the user are blue; links to previously seen pages are purple or red. Don't mess with these colors since the ability to understand what links have been followed is one of the few navigational aides that is standard in most web browsers. Consistency is key to teaching users what the link colors mean.

Jakob Nielsen's Alertbox, May 2, 1999: "Top Ten Mistakes" Revisited Three Years Later
8. Non-Standard Link Colors - Continues to be a problem since users rely on the link colors to understand what parts of the site they have visited. I often see users bounce repeatedly among a small set of pages, not knowing that they are going back to the same page again and again. (Also, because non-standard link colors are unpleasantly frequent, users are now getting confused by any underlining of text that is not a link. Score: Severe

Cudna said it better myself. Actually, in retrospect, the pink was one of the things that moved me to swing this page in direction of a personal diary. Which, BTW, I happen to think is just fine.


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With "The power of JavaScript in the hands of the user!", Jesse's Bookmarklets Page kicks off a lovely introduction:
Bookmarklets are extra browser features that you can store as bookmarks on your personal toolbar. For example, if you have search links on your personal toolbar, you can go to Slashdot and then click the toolbar button to search the links on Slashdot. Bookmarklets are actually short JavaScript programs that, when stored as bookmarks, act on whatever page you're viewing before you trigger them.
A good example of b'lets' power *yaaa, that's right, b'lets. I just now used this neologism; did I coin it?* is "test styles" on Jess's Web Development Bookmarklets page. This makes reference to "Blast Sites with User CSS Sheets", a " article"", which begins:
All you need is a modern browser [standards compliant, ehh whot? h_b] and a text editor to make use of a powerful tool that will make you wonder why you never thought of [this] before.
Creating your own user style sheets gives you the ability to: find legacy markup; understand how a Web site is laid out; ensure the site is accessible for people with disabilities; conduct fast usability testing
Bookmarklets - free tools for power surfing is another page that looks pretty kewl ... "Bookmarklets allow you to: modify the way you see someone else's webpage; extract data from a webpage; search more quickly, and in ways not possible with a search engine; navigate in new ways ...and more. Over 150 bookmarklets are available." Yup ... kewl.
And just this morning a friend pointed me toward Bookmarklets: Search Engine Bookmarklets -, a nice double-handful of b'lets dedicated to that task. *Did I just coin a new term? 20:43AST 10JAN03 hfx_ben* nota: I'm not sure why appears in this last item's title.

On this day googling "bookmarklet" returned 34,700 results. Consider yourself duly informed. ;-)


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Anchor for this item  posted Thursday, January 09, 2003 at 8:17 pm MST

Though I'm not positive why John Udell uses the term he chooses in "The disruptive Web" (why disruptive? I found that distracting) the phenomenon he describes is pithy, seminal, timely, makes great coffee, etc etc etc. As he puts in in his blog:
"If you're creating a Web service that you hope will have a disruptive impact, the lessons are clear. Support HTTP GET-style URLs. Design them carefully, matching de facto standards where they exist. Keep the URLs short, so people can easily understand, modify, and trade them. Establish a blog reputation. Use the blog network to promote the service and enable users of the service to self-organize. It all adds up to a recipe for recombinant growth."
Long/short, combining areacode lookup with bookmarklets and blogs with online library services and book discussion pages turned out to be a natural! (It's a great article, BTW ... thanks Jon and InfoWorld.)

Somewhat related: another tid-bit that I sense will spawn something virally web-service-like is the GeoURL project that I've described in my LiveJournal ... MeatSpace is here to stay! (Coincidentally, JohnU shows up in GeoURL's "within 500 miles of this webpage" listing!)


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Anchor for this item  posted Tuesday, January 07, 2003 at 7:02 pm MST

*sigh* Got template back to working (almost) but blew my counters away in the process. *sigh*

Apple announces "Safari" ... a snub to Moz-ites?

" In kicking off the Macworld Expo keynote, Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled a new Macintosh web browser named Safari. Jobs said the browser was "based on standards", "works with any Web site", has much-improved performance over IE. . . .

The discussion at KDE New runs the gamut:

  • Too bad that these efforts were not coordinated from the beginning, because right now, the changes in safari-khtml look very massive (and impressive!), so basically this is a fork."
  • " I don't think the importance of this can be underestimated. ... [W]ith the recent success of Mozilla and now millions of Mac heads about to switch to a non-IE browser, the balance will shift back to standards-based web design."
  • "> Congratulations to the great KDE developers, who beat Mozilla.
    It hasn't exactly "beaten" Mozilla, as khtml still has a long ways in the CSS department and other technologies (XHTML) to go to be on the level of Gecko."

One wag, who shall remain nameless [jwz!!] does a number on the language used by the developers:

"Translated through a de-weaselizer, this says:
"Even though some of us used to work on Mozilla, we have to admit that the Mozilla code is a gigantic, bloated mess, not to mention slow, and with an internal API so flamboyantly baroque that frankly we can't even comprehend where to begin. Also did we mention big and slow and incomprehensible?"
A choice of browsers ... hunh ... Given that I've never and will never use IE, that's truly novel concept for me! So, it comes to this, then: shall I use Mozilla 1.2.1? or Phoenix 0.5? .... ummmm, I think the latest Phoenix nightly is the order of the day.


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