The Ergosphere
Friday, May 13, 2005
 

A list of don'ts

Hints for web site designers:

1.)  DON'T use Javascript links to other pages.  Use direct links.  I can't see where a Javascript link will take me, and often they won't let me launch it in a new tab - they do whatever YOU THINK it should do, not what I NEED it to do.  Especially DON'T use Javascript functions where links will do.  (Are you listening, all you bloggers who use HaloScan?)

2.)  DON'T default links to popping up in new windows. If I want a new window or a new tab, I'm quite capable of launching the link in one myself (unless you prevented this using Javascript; see #1 above).  I do NOT need to click your link, close the new window I did not want, then control-click to get a browser tab and then close the original tab I don't need anymore.

3.)  DON'T squeeze significant amounts of text into frames much smaller than the full window.  If the navbar and other things take up so much room that I can't have them up while reading the text, let me scroll them off.  The window is for INFORMATION, not just all the pretty thingies that web designers like.

4.)  Along with #3, DON'T use Javascript to re-load all the frames I tried to get rid of by clicking "View only this frame".  If you've put too much nav clutter on your page, let me get rid of it.  Better yet, provide buttons so poor folks still using IE can do it too.

5.)  DON'T make a link do different things if it's launched in a new window/tab instead of the same window/tab.  (Are you listening, Yahoo Mail?)

6.)  DON'T force your pages to ridiculous window widths... especially not in flyspeck fonts.  Ultra-wide text columns are hard to read, and even harder as the font gets smaller.  Text becomes nearly impossible to read if lines grow wider than the window, or the screen.  This should never happen, so why do so many of you do it?

7.)  DON'T give your nav links priority for window space over the content.  If the user expands the font to read the content, the nav stuff should move aside gracefully.  If this doesn't work with your whiz-bang layout, rethink your layout.

8.)  DON'T use a style sheet which keeps the user from scrolling over to the left margin if their window width isn't what you think it should be.

9.)  DON'T make me re-load button graphics and other static stuff every time I come by; if I visit you every day, those things should come right up out of cache.  The last-modified and expiration date on all elements of the page should be trustworthy.  (Are you listening, Keenspot and the rest of you comic sites?)

10.)  DON'T use automatic reloads unless it's essential for the READER!  Your view-tracking is not reason to reload a page, suck down the user's bandwidth and maybe make the browser go wonky.

<the engineer-poet breathes a sigh of relief as one insistent peeve is let out to do its business> 
Comments:
Comments (numbers on the left refer back to the original number from the post):

1) It's not really fair to blame HaloScan users for their default code; this isn't always a techno savvy bunch.

4) Better: don't use frames. I have actually seen websites that will refuse to load except inside a frame. It's rare, but then, I don't go to those sites anymore.

6) Websites that fullsize your browser need to be taken down. Fortunately, I believe this is controllable with Firefox.

7) Some Blogger templates are really bad about this; I've had to break out the CSS monkeywrench on more than one occaision to fix text sizing issues.

9) Unreliable modification dates are often a side-effect of PHP, ASP, and other related server interfaces, but I wouldn't be surprised to see that some servers have done away with them altogether.
 
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home
Talk largely about energy and work, but also politics and other random thoughts


Mail Engineer-Poet

(If you're mailing a question, is it already in the FAQ?)

Important links

The FAQ
Glossary
The Reference Library

Blogchild of

Armed and Dangerous

Blogparent of

R-Squared




The best prospect for our energy future:
Flibe Energy

ARCHIVES
January 1990 / February 2004 / March 2004 / June 2004 / July 2004 / August 2004 / September 2004 / October 2004 / November 2004 / December 2004 / January 2005 / February 2005 / March 2005 / April 2005 / May 2005 / June 2005 / July 2005 / August 2005 / September 2005 / October 2005 / November 2005 / December 2005 / January 2006 / February 2006 / March 2006 / April 2006 / May 2006 / June 2006 / July 2006 / August 2006 / September 2006 / October 2006 / November 2006 / December 2006 / January 2007 / February 2007 / March 2007 / April 2007 / December 2007 / January 2008 / May 2008 / June 2008 / August 2008 / October 2008 / November 2008 / December 2008 / February 2009 / March 2009 / April 2009 / May 2009 / June 2009 / July 2009 / August 2009 / September 2009 / October 2009 / November 2009 / December 2009 / January 2010 / April 2010 / May 2010 / June 2010 / July 2010 / August 2010 / September 2010 / October 2010 / November 2010 / December 2010 / January 2011 / February 2011 / March 2011 / April 2011 / May 2011 / July 2011 / August 2011 / September 2011 / October 2011 / April 2013 / November 2013 / December 2013 / January 2014 / February 2014 / March 2014 / April 2014 / July 2014 / August 2014 / September 2014 / October 2014 / November 2014 / February 2015 / April 2015 / October 2015 / March 2016 / April 2016 / May 2016 / June 2016 / July 2016 /


Powered by Blogger

RSS feed

Visits since 2006/05/11: