Archive for the ‘Coding’ Category

Berners-Lee: Evolve HTML incrementally

October 30, 2006

Tim “Invented the Web” Berners-Lee on a way to evolve HTML without the abrupt disorienting changes characterized by the switch the XHTML: Reinventing HTML | Decentralized Information Group (DIG) Breadcrumbs

DHTML drag 'n' drop folder tree

September 6, 2006

Check out this Folder tree with Drag and Drop capabilities based on unordered list tags.

Rapid prototyping, good; code generating, bad

August 9, 2006

Austin Govella explains why Rapid prototyping tools should NOT generate code:

Why would you need the prototyping tool to generate production code? Is there something about the code they would generate that would make it better than the custom code most applications require? Does the rapid prototyper’s code generator let me tell it how to generate the code, so it codes the way I need it to?

OpenID event for developers in Berkeley

August 7, 2006

Kaliya “Identity Woman” Hamlin writes:

Webwide distributed SSO is finally happening… Learn more from the core guys behind this emerging standard for user-centric digital identity.
August 10th 6-9 in Berkeley at 2029 University, Upstairs.
RSVP to me kaliya (at) Mac (dot) com and please pass this along to those who might be interested…
OpenID is the emerging standard for web wide distributed single sign-on. It works with OpenID enabled URLs and i-names.
The goal of the evening is not to geek out on identity but to connect with developers working on applications that require users to log in.
Find out more about what it is… how it works… how you can install it. The incentives to learn are high with the $5000 bounty for having OpenID in Open Source projects.
Presenting and answering Questions:

  • David Recordon formerly of Live Journal/Six Appart now of Verisign will be presenting a bit about the origins of OpenID but most importantly how it works… and how you install it.
  • Andy Dale from ooTao will talk a bit about i-names and how they work with OpenID2 and looking forward to what comes next after authentication – profile sharing. ooTao is also data sharing, are running ibroker services.
  • Scott Keveton from Jan Rain a development shop in Portland that has been ond of the leading instigators of OpenID. He just posted a walk through on his blog.
  • Mary Hodder CEO of Dabble will talk about the work happening around the development of itags.

If you know a developer – pass the word along.

Perhaps the vision of a universal single sign-on on the Web isn’t just a utopian pipedream after all?
(Reposted from The Power of Many.)

Interview re microformats

August 3, 2006

Microformats are standards-compliant structures based primarily on ordinary XHTML tag attributes (such as “rel=” in a link tag). The Knowledge@Wharton website features an excellent

Prototype JavaScript framework

May 18, 2006

Prototype is “a JavaScript framework that aims to ease development of dynamic web applications,” sporting an “easy-to-use toolkit for class-driven development and the nicest Ajax library around.”
Ruby on Rails features integrated Prototype support, the famous library is built on Prototype (but I curse Joshua Schachter for ever starting that URL trend), Rico offers Ajax components and effects built on Prototype, and so on.

Another vote for XHTML wireframes

May 16, 2006

At the Blue Flavor blog, Nick Finck casts another vote for making XHTML wireframes. I have to admit I find this idea appealing. Granted (and he grants this himself), it may not be the right approach for every client, but the prospect of creating blueprints and schematics that don’t get thrown away after they’re approved but that actually help give the web developers a leg up, is mighty appealing:

So why? Why would we want to do XHTML wireframes? Wouldn’t it take more time to do them in XHTML than it would in Visio or something? Well, yes and no. Yes, you would have to code the XHTML, but that would need to be done at some point anyway. Yes it may seem like it’s slower to create wireframes in XHTML but once you have done your first website using this method a lot of the same markup can be repurposed especially when it comes to navigation and various methods of displaying information on a page like multi-column lists and so forth.
In the end it’s actually more efficient to be building wireframes in XHTML and even navigation schemas because you can see exactly how it works and you only spend the energy necessary to create it once, not twice (once in Visio and once in XHTML).

(via Thomas Vander Wal)

On Nudity and CSS

April 5, 2006

Today (April 05, 2006) has officially been earmarked as CSS Naked Day. The aim of this project is to promote web standards by showing the world what each site looks like sans markup. Those who sign up for the project agree to remove all CSS styling from their website for that day. The result is well, a site without a style sheet.

How to Print Selective Sections of a Web Page using CSS and DOM Scripting

March 30, 2006

Shimone just sent this guide to printing sections of a web page around to our developers’ list with the comment, “You know this is going to come up.”

Notes on "Web Standards and SEO: Searching for Common Ground, Part 2" panel at South by Southwest (day 3)

March 13, 2006

Web Standards and SEO

  • Aaron Gustafson: Sr Web Designer/Dev, Easy! Designs LLC
  • Ed Shull: CEO, USWeb (Web marketing)
  • Eric Meyer: Complex Spiral Consulting, Standards Nazi
  • Andy Hagans: works in SEO, blogs at

white hat vs. black hat SEO

  • cloaking (visible only to search engine)
  • linkspamming
  • comment spamming
  • hiding tables in javascript to make the content show up higher in results (“cheating?”)


  • blackhat is anyone who’s cheating
  • sneaky techniques… at least grayhatting
  • I’m asked too speak at search engine conferences for reasons I don’t understand. At one
  • I was spammed in person on the conference floor

As an SEO I make it my business to know all the weapons in the arsenal. Search engines are getting smarter, so the business case for blackhat getting weaker. I don’t like to get into the moral argument… its gets kind of old.
Professional SEO involves regular testing and writing software. In the long run blackhat doesn’t make sense: you’ll get caught and penalized. Accessibility and web standards = whitehat SEO already.
Copywriting and SEO
Good content for the page, semantic markup all help.
We work with a lot of publishers (example: Forbes). Copy is the thing. Every title on their page said “” They were excited to learn they could change it, but they just wanted “ The capitalist tool.” We got them to put the article names up there.
When the Hummer H3 coming out, we let our clients know about search terms coming up in their space. The Forbes article title was “Baby Hummer” which didn’t help them with “Hummer H3.” Instead of “Martha Stewart Goes to Prison,” “Stewart Goes to Prison” [so we had to get them to use better descriptive titles on the web pages].
The role of copywriting is to get people to like the site and link to it.
I agree: being linkable more important than the code. Re copywriting, you need to understand usability, accessibility, and SEO as well as marketing. Use alt text. Don’t use “click here.”
The alt attribute is important. Title is most often used for snarky comments.
Linking algorithms have killed most of the old tricks. Using common structural elements: h1, good link anchors are the most important things.
Question: Better to use h1 for name of site or page/article title?
Answer: The title.
Descriptive page titles, good navigation, good anchor text
Someone (I forget who):
Personally, I love site maps. another way to make sure every page on your site has a link into it
Google allows you to upload an xml version of your sitemap.
Microformats have a whole lot of potential, not yet a lot of payoff. One example, link rel=”license”, Yahoo has a Creative Commons search that looks for that rel attribute/value.
In the works: hresume. Would enable, for example, a search among resumes of people Jeffrey Zeldman regards as friends
You can use SEO as a way to sell web standards.
Getting to 508 helps, but after that you don’t get much. Still, it’s important to get the low-hanging fruit.
Question: Clients view SEO as a different project. How do you explain to them that it’s inherent in good web design?
Answer: Educate them.
Mention of Matt Cutts, Google search engineer who outs black hats on his blog.
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