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Jeffrey Zeldman Presents: the Daily Report. Web design and entertainment.

24 June, 2000
[4:30 am]
All the Indonesian translations mentioned yesterday have been removed. Poof! He really didn't have to do that.

23 June, 2000
[2:20 pm] 
::: Lost in Translation: Earlier this morning, we mentioned some unauthorized Indonesian translations of articles from A List Apart. Actually, this was partly our error. The site's editor, DoniYudono, did ask permission to run one or two of these articles a while back, and we said yes. (Sorry, DoniYudono. We say yes and no five hundred times a day, and sometimes we forget.)
        Apparently, though, there were some translation problems in our email correspondence, and DoniYudono seems to have republished half our site on his site. This is so weird. What would Lycos/Hotwired/Webmonkey do? Call their lawyers. What are we going to do? Ask him not to translate any more articles.

::: Standard Issue: In this week's issue of A List Apart, for people who make websites: The W3C's XHTML language is intended to bridge the web's past (HTML) and future (XML). Shall we cross this bridge, now that we've come to it? Or is XHTML more trouble than it's worth? Peter-Paul Koch ponders the pros and cons in RATED XHTML. Now online for your pleasure at alistapart.com.

::: Pure Play: JazzRadio.Net has been updated to guide Mac users to the station's live MP3 stream. We were unable to change the BroadcastEurope.com stream, which is not Mac-friendly at this time. Third-party, not in our control.
        Several visitors have asked why the black border "disappears" at the top when you scroll. Answer: the border surrounds the content page; it's not part of the menu bar frame. It's done in CSS markup and won't work in Navigator 4. But the site does, and that's the point. Newer browser, better display; older browser, functionality minus some of the niceties.
        These visitors also asked why we didn't just put the "black line" in the navigational menu frame. Answer: there's a well-known frame size bug in Netscape 4. Tell the browser you want a frame to be exactly 25 pixels, and you could get 22 pixels, or 32 pixels. The black line would disappear for some visitors, or come off as a huge black stripe for others. Rather than subject anyone to that kind of ugliness, we avoided the whole problem by letting the menu bar float, and putting our low-key decorative flourish inside the content frame.
        We're explaining these things in case they help one or two of you in your next web design project. Try getting that out of Razorfish.

::: Third Party Updates: JimFormation is back online after a few days of server hell. It's a nice, low-key, personal site.

::: The Incredible, Edible, Internet Economy: The parody site BetterDogFood.com continues to confound the clueless. The Affina Storefront Directory has just spotlighted the site, listing it right alongside serious online business ventures. Apparently the pitch ("We give you the dog and then sell you the dog food.") sounds believable to some folks out there.

[2:15 am]
::: A friend pointed out that JazzRadio.Net looks rather plain in iCab. Well, sure; iCab doesn't support JavaScript or Style Sheets. All we can do for a browser like that is make sure the site functions. We should also point out that the station's live MP3 stream is the best way to hear the music, particularly on Macs.
::: ALA author Scott Kramer found these unauthorized translations of ALA content at toekangweb.or.id. What the heck. "Information wants to be free," and all that. There are also Russian and Italian translations around, but those folks asked first. [See update above, "Lost in Translation."]

::: Made a few adjustments to the book outline today. Why does the idea of writing a book somehow feel "heavier" than web publishing? It doesn't feel better or more valid – just a little more daunting. Web publishing is living together. Book publishing is getting married in a chapel in front of 100 friends and relatives.

22 June, 2000
[12:30 am]
It's morning in Berlin, and our site for JazzRadio.Net is now live on the web.

21 June, 2000
[5 pm]
A List Apart Digest No. 226 has left the building. ::: Useless factoid of the day: The domain www.zeldman.com is ranked #3177 out of 637,918 domains in the WebsMostLinked database. Better than Slashdot (ranked #33,408), nowhere near as good as Adobe.com (ranked #4). The ranking is based on how many other sites link to yours; the lower the number, the closer you are to #1 (Microsoft.com).

20 June, 2000
[10:15 am]
Redesigned this site's front page. It's the new ultra-minimalism, baby! Naturally, there's a totally different version for Netscape 4 users. Kids, please upgrade to IE5 or Mozilla. Do it for you.
        ::: On Our Screen: Alan Herrell writes about Piracy and the Internet. ::: Ed Dumbill writes about the State of XML. ::: Jim McCormick just writes. [Update: Jim's site appears to be having temporary server problems. You may not be able to connect until later.]
        ::: On Our Plate: If we listed everything we are working on, it would scare us. Maybe it would even scare you. Some highlights: Launching JazzRadio.Net. Finalizing the Book Project. Officially launching the Populi Web Design Curriculum. We'll leave it at that, for now.
        ::: Too Cute for Comfort: My Mum is a Web Designer. Yes, it's Flash, yes, it's cutesy, and yes, it's promotional. But it makes a nice break from the Deep Cyberspace Nine thing you see everywhere – or the 3D wireframe stuff you see everywhere else.

19 June, 2000
[1:45 am]
Holiday in Berlin, Blown: As dawn breaks over Berlin this Thursday, our site for JazzRadio.Net will go live. Our plan was to be there for the opening, spend a week in Berlin, then move on to London. Sadly, we've cancelled the whole trip. We are simply too busy to travel at this time.
        ::: Reminder: This week's A List Apart shows you how to use the DOM to design more interactive sites. We know we told you Friday, but we're telling you again because we worry about you.

::: Southern Hemisphere: It is impossible to describe websites in a sentence or two without coming off like a cheap tour guide. So we'll just say this: we've been admiring two regional design zines, and we think you might enjoy them, too:
        Australian INfront, a smoothly crafted, Aussie-centric zine spearheaded by Justin ("tintin") Fox, has been around a while and is well known and respected in the international web design community. Damian Stephens' dplanet is fairly new, and represents South African design with articles, listings, and interviews. Its elegant greyscale imagery and clean code set up a pleasurable experience for people who enjoy "designy" design sites. Jakob Nielsen fans won't like either site. But we do.

18 June, 2000
[3 am]
Book Beat: It may seem that we are always working – it seems that way to us, too – but we read for hours every night. Have to. It's fuel.
        We just finished Acts of the Apostles, John Sundman's dark novel of conspiracy and bio-computer convergence. It's an unusual novel: a satisfying suspense thriller that is disturbingly thought-provoking. As one reviewer put it, "its real subject is Kaczynsky's Postulate: that technology and freedom cannot be reconciled."
        Now, we never recommend books, or movies, or CDs, because (a.) who are we to do that? (b.) we're not marketers, and (c.) that's not why you came here. But we really dug this novel. Like Coupland's work, it is deeply saturated in the geek world view, and full of enjoyable cultural and pop-cultural allusions. Unlike Coupland's work, it is plot-driven.
        The first thirteen chapters of Acts of the Apostles are available online. 'Nuff said.

17 June, 2000
[5 am]
Channeling Diarists: Late dinner at Noho Star with Kris. We both had the flu, both came out to meet each other anyway. Kris picked up the tab. Joshua and Cameron were supposed to meet us. Conflicts. Next time.
        Wandered down to Little Italy. Came upon one of those late-night summer street carnivals in honor of Catholic saints. Smoked meat smells and long-dead Italian crooners warbling from beat boxes. A big bald carny tried to lure us into a dart game. "Take some of that money you've saved on haircuts, and play," he said. Bought a Jesus night light. $3. Inflation.
        Came home. Finished the front page and navigation for JazzRadio.net. Site goes live Tuesday. Stayed up waiting for client to wake up in Berlin and view the page. Posted some sightings to k10k. Scrubbed the floor.
        Daylight is breaking. Sleep? Probably.
        In five hours, Joan will return from San Francisco.
        Putting out the light. This concludes our experiment in personal narrative.

16 June, 2000
[6: 45 pm]
In this week's issue of A List Apart, for people who make websites:
        DOM DESIGN TRICKS. In Part One of a spankin' new series, J. David Eisenberg shows you, step by step, how to use the W3C Document Object Model (DOM), Style Sheets, and JavaScript to pull off nifty design tricks, and add value to your site's content. Now online for your pleasure at alistapart.com. (Special thanks to Nick Finck for outstanding help and support.)

[3 am]
We're still fine-tuning this week's ALA feature article. Watch this space.

15 June, 2000
[10:45 pm]
New Letter of the Month tonight. This one's kind of sweet. Okay, this one's really sweet. Diabetics may want to skip it. Updated the usual pages here, and pumped some fresh blood into the Ad Graveyard.
        ::: Just finished another mini-project for Design is Kinky. That makes two. The first will go live in early July.
        ::: This morning we were crusted over with alien afterbirth. Last time we had this flu, it stuck around for three weeks. Hello, ladies.
        ::: Some folks have been saying it's time to turn our backs on the 216 web-safe colors, and use "any colors we want," since "most" people today can see thousands of colors on their monitors. Actually, it is not at all safe to ignore the 216 color palette. As soon as we have time, we'll explain why.
        ::: Happy belated birthday to Spoonfed. We woulda baked a cake....

[5 am]
Artist Miles Davis. The JazzRadio site is coming soon. The forum is up. The music is streaming. The main pages and subpages have all been designed and produced. With a few more tweaks and a bit more work, the JazzRadio site will be ready to roll. ::: We also put together a revised book proposal, and sent it off to the people who may become our publishers. ::: Not bad for a sick day.
        ::: Dave. Dave? What are you doing, Dave? www.kubrick.org invites you to reinvent the films of Stanley Kubrick. ::: Revenue Streams: The Commercial Archive, compiled by Ask Wapling and friends, offers gazillions of streaming commericals. Removed from the context of TV, they are fun to watch.


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