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Archive: January 2002

Thursday, 31 January 2002

It was a week ago that John Allsopp and I announced the existence of css-discuss.  In that time, we’ve gone from 1 subscriber (me) to 1,301 subscribers.  There was one message on the list when we started—my initial test message.  Since then there have been 1,013 messages posted, many of them utterly fascinating.  Several subscribers have commented that they’ve learned a lot about CSS from the list in its first week.  That goes for me too.  While the posting volume does seem to be slowing a bit, it’s still close to 100 messages per day, indicating that there is more interest in CSS than I had dared even to dream.

So I’d like to thank each and every member of css-discuss for already making it an amazing, vibrant, useful community of learning.  I don’t think I could have asked for much better.

Speaking of CSS,  I’ve added three more presentation choices to the menu, all of them variations on the basic layout.  “Darkfall,” at least, presents a very different look to the site.  I also managed to squash a couple of bugs in the site’s minimal Javascript, with help from Bill Pena and co-worker Bob Clary, so you shouldn’t be seeing errors any more, assuming that you did at all.  Remember: if the text is smaller than you’d like, go to the “Advanced setup…” page and set your preferred font size.  (If you don’t see the advanced setup or any theme choices, you might want to read about this site.  If you get my drift.)

Friday, 25 January 2002

Last night, I announced the creation of a new mailing list devoted to practical discussions of CSS called, ingeniously enough, css-discuss.  In the first two hours we’d picked up 150 subscribers; two hours after that the list size had doubled.  As I write this, we’re passing 700 subscribers and still climbing.  If I’d known it was going to be like this, I probably never would have done it!

Of course, it wasn’t just me.  Major thanks go to John Allsopp of Western Civilisation for providing the server resources and setting up the list.  John and I will try our hardest to keep up with this runaway train, and we hope you’ll hop aboard!

Thursday, 24 January 2002

Here’s a good way to improve national security: arrest people who admit to inadvertently taking potential weapons onto airplanes.  Yeah, that will really encourage people to be helpful.  So let’s say, just hypothetically, that I or somebody I knew had accidentally taken a utility knife or knitting needles or whatever on a flight or two, and airport security missed it.  If I report this fact in the interests of improving screening procedures and helping authorities identify weak points in airport security, I could face jail time.  What a great idea!

In a novel, this state of affairs would be tragicomic.  In 2002 America, it’s deeply stupid and somewhat scary.  To paraphrase Ellen Ripley, did IQs just drop sharply when I wasn’t looking?

Monday, 21 January 2002

A new look for a new year.  Readers of my next book may notice some similarities between this and one or two of the projects.

If the text is too small for you to read, try the “Advanced setup…” link in the sidebar.  There you can define a default pixel size for this site and have the value stored in a cookie so that for the next year, you’ll see the text at that size.

No tables were harmed, or even used, in the making of this design.

Update: I’ve made a few adjustments to the design to step around bugs in IE6/Win.  Apparently, the MS programmers fixed most of the parsing bugs from the 5.x line, but not too many of the layout bugs.  To make things worse, the parsing bugs are fixed in both the strict and quirks modes, so none of the traditional workarounds (like the “box model hack“) work, and so I can’t hide styles from IE6 at all.  If their layout engine were as good as, say, IE5.1/Mac, then that wouldn’t be a problem.  No such luck.

(Thanks to my father for first discovering the layout problems in IE6, and for helping me figure out that I couldn’t work around the bugs without changing my design approach.)

Friday, 18 January 2002

Last night, Kat and I were lying in bed talking (honest!) when we heard a deep, distant rumble.  Even though we hadn’t seen a flash, we guessed it was thunder from an energetic snowstorm over Lake Erie, which happens sometimes.  It wasn’t thunder.  Our house is located almost two miles from University Hospitals, with a hill between us.

Thursday, 10 January 2002

<style type="text/css" media="quantum-foam">
   cosmos {color: #A1E8CD;}
</style>

I just thought you’d want to know that. (Confused?  There’s an explanation.)

Thursday, 3 January 2002

New at css/edge: boxpunch.  Be sure to progress on to the second page of the demo.

Whenever I get a new CD, I usually listen to it semi-continuously until I get tired of it, or I get a new CD.  That much is known.  But I am now seriously, seriously hooked on Spiritual Machines, the latest from Our Lady Peace (a Flash-dependent site, sadly).  I really liked their first three albums, sure, but this one is something else.  I found myself intentionally seeking out other albums to listen to today, just so I wouldn’t overdose.  It didn’t take too long for me to go back to Spiritual Machines.  I’m like some kind of audio junkie all of a sudden, and it’s a touch disturbing.  So hurry up and buy a copy for yourself, so I don’t feel so alone, okay?

Wednesday, 2 January 2002

I decided to wait until day 2 of 2002 to post.  Mostly because I have a weird thing for numeric patterns, even ones that don’t make a lot of sense.  Every time my RSA SecurID widget gives me a token that features some sort of repetition or matched pairs, I get an obscure glow of pleasure.

Okay, so I’m strange.

The holidays came and went, and we’re all still here for now.  I scored high on the Swag Meter at Christmas, but I’d gladly give it all away for something completely outside my power to either give or receive.  Anyone know where I can purchase the remainder of a full life and have it gift-wrapped for a loved one?

January 2002
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