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On the Misuse of Common HTML Tags

There are a number of HTML tags which are commonly misunderstood and misused. I've done it myself, with some frequency over the years. I've argued that some of these are deprecated, when they weren't. And now I've come full circle, and I had a full on argument with someone over the use of the <i> tag recently, and I wanted to talk about four specific and oft misused tags: <i>, <b>, <em>, and <strong>.

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Consistency and Death

This post is not about taxes.

There are a few key concepts that people rely on with a user interface and one of them is consistency. Consistency is one of the most important parts of a UI, and trumps practically any other; we want things to behave in a way that we are used to. This makes it easier for us to use things. Doors, for instance, have the same general UI in most cases; there is a handle, some hinges, and a big solid part that …

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Why External Links Should NOT Open in New Tabs

I read an article today called Why External Links Should Open in New Tabs. This is something that is near and dear to my heart, and especially so since it is so very, very wrong.

Savvy Users have Changed Everything

Users are getting more and more used to how the web works and how to use their brows…

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Contrapuntally

In a nutshell, here's the problem with posting a link to something you strenuously disagree with using social media. It's all the success metric. When you link to something, you're basically giving it your vote of approval. If the thing that you are linking to is bad, harmful or stupid, then you need to find a way to remove that vote of approval. The easiest way to do this is to find an actual website that you can link to from your social medi…

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Stats of the Union Address

Forgive the title, but I've been looking through my stats and have found some interesting things and made some decisions about design moving forward.

First up, screen resolution. Over 85% of people accessing my site did so at a resolution at or exceeding a width of 1280px. That's a change from even a year ago, when only about 65% of people ran at that resolution. It's nice to see upgrades happening.

Next, browsers. IE comes in ro…

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Vancouver and San Jose (and a bit about Toronto)

I am a Toronto Maple Leafs fan.

There, I said it. I put it out there. The Leafs, they are my team. My jersey is a blue one. Every year, I hold on to the faint glimmer of hope that my team will make it into the playoffs. Not that they'll win; just that they'll get into the playoffs. That's life as a Leafs fan.

However, they're not my actual favourite team. Like most everyone else in the Leafs nation, I am mildly ashamed to say &qu…

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Aphoenix's Sunny Skies v. [Redacted]

Hello all! I got an interesting email from one **[redacted]** about my my photo Sunny Skies. Here is the email, with Trevor's email taken out.

I believe we have been in contact before. My picture, "Sunny Skies" is still up on your website. I would appreciate this being taken down, or at least some credit given. The reason I am ticked off about this is because that everyone on your c…

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Sunny Skies Saga Solved

There has been follow up from [redacted]:

I do remember taking a picture similar a while back. While it was similar, you are right that it might not have been the same one. Sorry about that. I'll try to dig up my picture for conformation.

Five minutes later, I received this:

I have found the picture on my old computer. While it is extremely similar, there are not any trees at the bot…

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Good News Everyone!

In addition to reading this in the voice of Professor Farnsworth, you now know that my IE6 usage has dropped to well under 1%. To those of you still visiting in IE6, please take the time to complain to the internet cafe that you are browing from in Indonesia.

Yes, Google Analytics can be fairly specific...

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That's Undemocratic!

The past weekend, I was fortunate enough to get involved in a project called That's Undemocratic, which is a tongue-in-cheek political satire site. My good friend Sean had the idea to use a popular style of meme featuring a focal picture, with two text areas, in an effort to remove the efficacy of the words "That's…

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