Dirty Design

No, not the ones you’re thinking of. I had lunch with my favorite Web Producer today and we were talking about the good possibility that old, old web design will look really nice soon. You know the kind of which I speak — lots of Times Roman text, purple and blue underlines, multicolor headlines, and odd animated gifs.
He said that in one of his classes, the term “dirty design” was what one of the kids called it, and I think that’s right on. I will keep looking for samples of dirty design (perhaps mostly on Geocities, the worst purchase Yahoo! ever made), but it’s not too hard to find.
Importantly, it’s my duty to note that there is both a class and a technology component to dirty design; folks who do not have the time, education, patience, or druthers to build an easily navigable, useful site are not designers and shouldn’t be held up the same light as designers should. Afterall, we don’t ask nurse practioners to heal the same way we do doctors and we don’t judge little league the way we do pro ball. But, and here’s the butt, it would still be really cool to see some nicely designed, bad-looking websites. Send them to me?

Fake Blackout Photo

A friend passed this photo from Snopes.com today of what someone with Photoshop thought the U.S. would look like during the blackout a few weeks ago. It’s an amazingly poor image, but funny in it’s poverty and admission of defeat on the part of the perpetrator. Scroll down the page and you’ll see what the country actually looked like during the emergency.

CSS3, Google, and Me

For anyone who doubts that XHTML and CSS are here to stay in designing and building websites, here is the proof. It’s not very interesting to most people now but it will be when TiVo is bought by AOL and Yahoo! owns CNN and everyone needs to redesign their websites because the only thing that can view everything will be Google’s new browser.
The latter link will actually take you to the new Seth Godin e-book (well, it’s a PDF) about what Google should do next. Yours truly is quoted, which is as hard to believe as it is true.

What Emo Is

[embarrased]All this time, I actually didn’t know what the heck “emo” is. I knew intuitively, having read about emo music and emo bands and emo tunes, and I knew that it was an abbreviation for something. I also knew that bands early 90s bands like Minor Threat and the Pixies and Fugazi were important predecessors to the musical genre called “emo.” I thought that maybe it had something to do with an ironic reference to the weirdo Emo Phillips, who is and always was so average. It turns out “emo” is short for “emotional”, which is long for every band reviewed in Spin magazine these days.[/embarrased]


Our friend Russ is planning coming to town in a few weeks – he’s an excellent photographer who wants to actually sit down with me and build a Flash website for his work. He’ll be here in a few weeks.
So will, hopefully, a new RSS feed for Deckchairs, which I now feel deserves to literally come out of the box. There are so many very good sites on RSS, which allows you to publish your information to syndicated content aggregators and, more interestingly, allows folks to see your content by just typing in a few words or downloads channels of information for you automatically. It’s not for the information faint-of-heart, RSS, but it’s another way to tell people what you do or don’t think.
In other news, I’ve had a strong hankering to own the domain name idontknow.com. The folks that own it say they develop websites and provide hosting, but doesn’t “idontknow” seem a like a poor name for a consultancy?

I'm incredulous that 5,000 folks

I’m incredulous that 5,000 folks have died because of the tragic heatwave in France. I calculate that the same number of people, proportionally, that would have died in the U.S. would be 25,000 — about half the size of the town in which I grew up in Pennsylvania. What really piques my curiosity, however, is how many people died in Iraq who have not had electricity or clean water in three months; this is not to level blame on any one party there — rather, it’s a sad commentary that statistics are only kept by Western countries about Western countries. The U.S. currently does not keep records of Iraqi casualties.

It appears that President Bush,

It appears that President Bush, who once looked like the A. E. Neuman character (did W. have his ears redone recently?), felt that rollling blackout that did not occur in Texas was not a biggie. This New York Times article puts the lie to his “concerns” about terrorism and his compassion for citizens and their economy. I feel a sudden need to print, herein, the first two short paragraphs (as I heave up my evening Coca-Cola) of the article.
Bush Doesn’t Let Blackout Upset Lunch With Troops
SAN DIEGO, Aug. 14—President Bush was having lunch with troops at the Miramar Marine Corps Air Station when Joe Hagin, his deputy chief of staff, told him of the massive blackout on the East Coast.
But unlike the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, when news of another New York catastrophe sent Mr. Bush on an odyssey on Air Force One, today he continued his lunch and went ahead with plans to attend a $1 million political fund-raiser here this evening. Still, he spent the rest of the afternoon on the phone trying to sort out the damage and the cause of the power failure with his top national security aides.

I recently purchased the newly

I recently purchased the newly released Contribute for Mac, which allows non-technical folks to control the content of their websites. I’m looking forward to having my clients do the posting, editing, managing, maintenance, and mucking up of their text and images. Concurrently, I was at the playground about an hour ago, and a fine couple cheered on their straggly-looking child as he pushed (and pushed again) my own out of the way on the slides. I was (and still am) livid. I almost had a minor meltdown in front of them, but decided to let it go; it was next to impossible for me to get that angry before having a kid, and I’m not proud of it now. But I wonder to what society that couple contribute.