Published 20 years, 6 months past

Off the road again: I’m back from User Interface 8, where a good time was (once more) had by all.  Especially me.  I don’t know exactly how I ended up with good-looking women in my lap so often, but I don’t think I’ll complain about it too much.  I have a huge collection of pictures that cry out to be shared, and a huge lack of time to assemble a gallery.  I could use iPhoto’s export-to-Web function, except I hate it.  I’ll have to dig up one of those cleaner plug-ins I’ve been hearing about and give it a whirl.

To catch up things that happened while I was away:

  • A List Apart is back.  That in itself is cause for celebration, even if my article “Going To Print” no longer makes sense in the new template.  However, the real news from where I sit is the publication of “Sliding Doors of CSS” by the always brilliant and readable Douglas Bowman.  Check out the presentation, HTML source, and text-zooming robustness of this demonstration page from the article, and then read the article if you’re impressed—as I suspect you will be.  I’m seriously thinking about publishing a followup article to “Rounding Tab Corners” using Doug’s Sliding Doors technique, and comparing it to the techniques presented in the the original article.  Some have said that Doug built on my article, but that’s not true.  He came up with his approach independently, and if anything I’ll be building on his ideas, not the other way around.
  • Russ Weakley published the Floatutorial, which “takes you through the basics of floating elements such as images, drop caps, next and back buttons, image galleries, inline lists and multi-column layouts.”  It does this with a simple yet powerful step-by-step approach that reminds me a bit of Eric Meyer on CSS, except it’s much more concise.  The Floatutorial joins the Listutorial in Russ’ oeuvre.
  • The House of CSS (not to be confused with the House of Style) opened its doors, and the crowd went wild.  I like it.  Sure, it’s a whole lot of structural hacking to achieve a purely visual effect, but so what?  I didn’t think of it, and neither did you.  Or if you did, you didn’t bother to assemble it.  Chris Hester did, and he deserves recognition for the creativity and skills it took to do so.
  • Apparently Microsoft’s recently started admitting that Longhorn will launch in 2006, as I predicted a few weeks ago.  A few people wrote to ask if I’m always so prescient.  The truth is, it didn’t take an oracle, a guru, or a clairvoyant to figure out that Longhorn was likely to be delayed by a year or more.  As I’ve been known to say every so often, the best predictor of future behavior is past behavior.
  • In a possibly related move, Microsoft has apparently decided to save time by releasing their critical-flaw fixes in groups, or what I’m going to start calling “patch batches.”  You know what to do, right?

For no apparent reason, I’ve had the song “Rhinestone Cowboy” stuck in my head all day.  Even a potent cocktail dosage of Ministry, Joe Boyd Vigil, Crystal Method, The Prodigy, and DJ Z-Trip has failed to dislodge it.  I’m starting to think that a power drill is my only hope.

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