Topic: ui

Yummy Yummy, New Delicious Design

Looks like the long awaited web 2.0izing of the del.icio.us website is finally here. Very sleek and sexy is my first impression.

Take a look at some of the older user interfaces to get a sense for how del.icio.us has evolved until now. Aside from the new look there are new features as well. The delicious dev team has supposedly completely rewritten the code base, to allow for a more scalable and spry tool.

New features:

Navigation: New simple CSS tabs with onclick drop down menus make is simple to find your tasty bookmarks. The navigation structures seems to borrow from Flickr. Search also comes with a simple drop down option list to find stuff in your bookmarks, network or everyone.

Bookmarks: You have Title view, regular view and Full View options here. View your popular bookmarks to filter the good stuff and filter down more by choosing fresh only.

Sidebar: is updated to show a relative set of tags related to your left content pane.

Action Box: This light blue box in the sidebar shows the common tasks for the given page.

Search URL: This is a reverse search for bookmarks and pulls in the ones with the given URL along with tags used for that URL by each user, broken down in chronological order. You can also view the notes added by each user to the given URL.

Settings: The settings page is laid out with all the actions listed on one page, similar to a sitemap.

Forums: There is a support forum that looks more like a categorized list of links than a forum. I like the non-cluttered design. Reminds me of Drupal.

As in the past their API is still available for developer consumption.

iPhone Browser Simulator

I have created a simple Simulator for the iPhone Safari (TestiPhone.com) web browser. You can use this to test you Web Applications and see how they might look in the Safari web browser included with the iPhone. I have tested this using IE7, FireFox2 and Safari 3 within Windows. The beautiful graphics come from the iPhoney project which is a wonderful application for testing using your Apple PC. I just wanted to have a quick and dirty browser based version of this tool that I can access from anywhere. Some of the iPhone apps are also listed for easy testing.
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Frustrations as a Web professional

Roger writes a great rant about his frustrations?in life as a web developer. I have to agree that these points are quite?real. Here is his list for excuses why people don’t always do the best they can in web development. Continue »

What your colors say about your site

While in designing a website you should not rely on color alone, it does help to know what the colors you choose are saying. Why does Google use 4 colors in their logo while Yahoo only uses red? Why did JetBlue choose this color as opposed to JetGreen or JetRed?

Do you know the meaning of colors? For example while blue is a male color portraying peace and sadness, green can portray newness. Color Psychology shows us what colors brings out what moods, emotions, and appetites. There are even tests that can analyze you based on color preferences. There is the belief that different cultures have completely different interpretations of color and no universal psychological reaction to a specific color exists. For example, death is symbolized by black in most Western cultures and by white in many Eastern cultures.

Various display devices also handle colors differently. CRT, LCD and a Phone screens, PCs and Macs, all have unique color rendering characteristics. To be complete also correct for color blindness. Sim Daltonism is a small yet powerful free OSX app to test your website for color blindness. It comes with 8 different filters to simulate everything ranging from partial to complete color blindness.

Apple Skins

From the User Experience documentation for Apple Developers:

You should not use a brushed metal window if your application: * Is a multi-window application for example, Interface Builder * Is a document-based application – for example, TextEdit Use the brushed metal window look for the primary application window and other windows that meet the above criteria – for example, the Equalizer window in iTunes. Don’t use it for supporting windows, such as preferences and other dialogs. It is acceptable to have a mix of standard Aqua windows and brushed metal windows within an application, as the Finder does.

Now I know why my mac doesn’t have a way to change the skin of all apps globally. XP has this figured out pretty well and gives itself a uniform look across. In OSX I have to deal with each app and each window in each app having it’s own set of skins, brushed metal, round corners, square corners, and burnt metal now with the new iTunes. Sure I guess It’s great that I can tell mail from safari by seeing a different skin. But really I hope to see per application skin support built natively into all tiger apps going forward, as there is currently for language support. Can you imagine if each app was forced to a specific language?