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Archive: 5 May 2003

Laughter and Sorrow

This morning’s Penny Arcade just floored me (it makes more sense if you read the preceding comic first).  Say, did you know the Pants Association encourages you to wear your pants at least three times a day?  Yes, that’s a quote.  You get major geek points if you can identify the source, and about a million times more geek points if you know the exact episode name.

Some time later, I chuckled quite a bit at this joke:

Look inside a typical CSS flamer house.  What do you see?  Chairs, only chairs.  No tables.

That was followed by a post asking for realistic experts to explain how to use CSS effectively.  Hey, that’s me!  It’s what I strive to be, anyway, as I have for quite some time.  I hope it shows in my work.

I’m still trying to get a handle on this whole “CSS flamer” thing, a term I first encountered only a few days ago.  I can’t quite tell if there are people running around using CSS advocacy as a way to pummel others because it’s fun, or if strong advocacy of the use of CSS is interpreted as flaming, or what, exactly.  I mean, yeah, I think that if you can design without tables, then you should definitely do it.  Is that being a CSS flamer?  Even though the reasons are good things like reduced page weight, simplified page structure, and better accessibility?  I also think that if you need to do something CSS can’t handle, then use the next best tool—tables, Flash, public radio, whatever.  Is that some sort of betrayal of the Holy Path of CSS?  Help me out here, people, I’m trying to understand.  Are technologies forever dead because they aren’t perfect?  Did visual styling become a war?  How?  When?  Why?

I thought about ranting a while longer, but frankly everything I wrote sounded whiny (as if the above didn’t) and it was getting pointlessly angry, so I decided to stop.  Maybe I’ll come back to it later.  Summary: technologies are tools, not religions.  Use the best tool for a job.  Show other people how to better use a particular tool, if you can.  No matter how skilled you are with a tool, please don’t hit other people with it.

Every now and again, a little anger does indeed leak through.  I might be grouchier than usual today because of the spam I’ve been getting over the last few days.  Here’s one I got just this morning: “Remember Mom on Mother’s Day!”

Well gee, Mr. Spammer, thanks so much for reminding me that I can’t really do anything else.

May 2003
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