Earning A Spot

Published 20 years, 1 month past

Through a winding chain of links—it was, of all things, the result of an extended surf on the Web, and who does that any more?—I came across Cameron Moll‘s “80/20 and the design blogosphere“, where he listed the 20 people from whom he feels 80% of vital new media design information flows.  I was deeply flattered to be on the list, although I again feel weird about it.  I don’t give out design information, and meyerweb is certainly nowhere near as well-designed as many sites (including Cameron’s).  Heck, I don’t even talk about CSS all that much any more, despite numerous vows (public and personal) to do otherwise.  I suppose all the books and other writings allow me to coast into these lists, and that’s a nice feeling, but I’m starting to seriously ask myself what I’ve done for everyone else lately.

So I’ll throw it open to the crowd: what kind of information, new media design or otherwise, would you like to see from me?  What do you feel would earn me the right to stay in Cameron’s 80/20 list?  Post and ping, or contribute a comment.  Your choice!

(I have to shoot down one potential request now: I’m not going back to browser support charting.  Westciv does a decent job already, and as I wrote a while back on www-style, going any further is a massive undertaking.  And, to be honest, it’s mind-shatteringly dull and incredibly time-consuming.)

Comments (26)

  1. Pingback ::


    […] ndering how in the heck I wound up on Blogger. It turns out that Meyer’s post about Earning a Spot on a list somewhere led me to Cameron Moll […]

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    […] ndering how in the heck I wound up on Blogger. It turns out that Meyer’s post about Earning a Spot on a list somewhere led me to Cameron Moll […]

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    […] ndering how in the heck I wound up on Blogger. It turns out that Meyer’s post about Earning a Spot on a list somewhere led me to Cameron Moll […]

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    […] ndering how in the heck I wound up on Blogger. It turns out that Meyer’s post about Earning a Spot on a list somewhere led me to Cameron Moll […]

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    […] ndering how in the heck I wound up on Blogger. It turns out that Meyer’s post about Earning a Spot on a list somewhere led me to Cameron Moll […]

  6. You post, others link, therefore you are. I really think that is what it boils down to. I always get a little be of entertainment to watch some unknown blog post some great story about web standards and see how no one links it until one or two of those on the 20 list link it. I guess people like to only visit the top 20 most popular blogs and that’s it… which is fine, those on the list deserve the traffic… but, I do make a point to clean out my bookmarks and feeds every several months and go searching for the currently unknown trend setter.

  7. Eric,

    I think that while there may be better designers out there, you offer something that most designers can’t: theoretical knowledge. You are and have been intimately involved with the development of CSS since the mid-1990s, and to steal a quote from the inimitable Admiral Kirk – “you have to know why things work on a starship” – why CSS behaves as it does and in some cases, why it doesn’t work a certain way when it might seem reasonable to believe it might. Any number of hotshot designers may know what to use and how to use CSS in spectacular ways, but if I had to truly understand the reason why a property is the way it is, and how to make the most of it, you’re the person I’d turn to.

    Obviously, a lot of this is covered in your books (which I own), but I’m sure there are tidbits, observations, notes, heck, even historical anecdotes on the development of CSS that you could tell that are as interesting in their way as folklore.org is in its.

    You hold a unique place in the current web pantheon. I look forward to your postings more than just about anyone else’s.

  8. Read the forewords to both ‘Eric Meyer on CSS’ books again; we’re all glad you’re around. You’re like the cheat sheet we weren’t allowed to bring into the exams. Comments like this one (and your subsequent write-up which I’ve referred to hundreds of times for myself and others) have helped me immeasurably along the way. Somehow I doubt that’s the answer you were going for, since it’s boring to write about CSS all day every day. But it’s one answer, anyway.

  9. Eric, I’d like to see… more of the same! I enjoy your explanations of CSS, like Tom said. Heck, I’d even like to see those infamous “Command Codes” (of “why things work on a starship”). You’ve said it yourself: “we’ve only scratched the surface of what CSS can do for us.”

    For me, it would be, “toward the first star on the left and straight on ’til morning.”

  10. Eric,
    I work with a lot of folks studying “multi media” at a well known English university. They all do one term on web programming. They can all use Dreamweaver. And not one single one of them, knows the first thing about web standards, accessibility, valid and semantic markup, or separated css. My point is that there is plenty of work still to be done in spreading the word. Whatever further contribution you care to make will continue to make a real difference. And thank you.

  11. You definitely deserve to be on the list, but I must say that I’ve definitely noticed the professional-to-personal ratio go way way way down over the last year. Your blog is whatever you want it to be so you should obviously continue to post things as you see fit, but one approach that’s nice is to offer a checkbox which says something like “View meyerweb with personal dreck” and “View meyerweb without personal dreck”. Youngpup.net had this on his site (with verbatim verbiage) and it was great. It lets users either get just the CSS/HTML/professional info or the whole shebang.

  12. More CSS, pweeze! I think it’s fair to say that most of the people reading your site have a good grasp on writing up semantic HTML and basic/intermediate CSS, but I think a lot of us (well, me anyway) don’t know the really advanced stuff (for example, your ComplexSpiral demo was a real eye-opener to me when I actually read the article and realized that it wasn’t just a PNG layered over a fixed background. Another example would be how in your “Going to Print” article, you showed how to use CSS3 selectors and pseudo-classes to make the URLS print out). That‘s the kind of stuff I’d like to see more of. :-)

  13. Just keep being your own self, Eric. Your books and the “css-d” list pretty much cover all any web developer would ever like to know about CSS. I get more fun reading about Carolyn than about yet another CSS browser hack.

    Perhaps a little more insight on your radio show! (Still do it?)

  14. I like your weblog the way it is; the pleasant mix of tech stuff and personal reflections.
    I wouldn’t mind seeing more practical examples of useful CSS techniques, much like your “On CSS” books. (Both books have been great sources of inspiration to me.) They wouldn’t have to be as comprehensive as in your books, since that obviously requires a lot of time, but something in the same spirit.
    A careful introduction to CSS3, perhaps?

  15. Eric, there’s two reasons you belong on this list. The first is for your books, which are the gold standard of CSS books at every level (beginner, exhaustive guide and reference). The second reason is for CSS/Edge. I myself was very ambivalent about the need for CSS and web standards until I stumbled onto CSS/Edge and it blew my mind. Finally here were things that you simply could not do without CSS. There’s not table tricks or invisible gifs that could ever do what you were showing us right on the homepage of CSS/Edge. I went from thinking that CSS and web-standards were a snobby impediment that interfered with real design to understanding that real design could never happen until web authors embraced them. And I bet I’m not the only one for whom those amazing demos tolled the proverbial bell for font tags and spacer gifs.

    If you feel guilty about staying on the list and want to give back more (although you’ve earned a spot in the hall of fame here, you know), show us more of what the cutting edge of CSS is. Even if you don’t consider yourself a good designer, you’re opening doors for real designers and frustrated web authors everywhere.

  16. Eric,

    As said before, your contributions to educating everyone about all things CSS through your books and articles is enough to earn you a permanent place in the top 20.
    About the personal nature of your blog: it’s one of the things that keeps me coming back, and it’s one of the things that make all your publications so pleasant to read.
    You’re just a big softie, and that’s what makes even an often rather dry subject as CSS so palatable.

    I recently finished “More Eric…” and loved it front to back; the one real thing that I disliked about the book is that it was too thin! If you’d want to contribute anything CSS related it would be those wonderful “come-and-look-over-my-shoulder-to-see-how-it’s-done” exercises that we can learn so much of.

  17. From. Learn so much from. Get so much out of. Whatever.
    Oh, and the softie bit: it’s a compliment. Big one.

  18. Just write about what feels right. If there are no pertinent CSS/web design topics to talk about, then talk about your life. And talk about it anyway, it helps to make your blog more personal.

    If there was anything I would ask, it would be for you to link to and give your opinion on some of the new techniques out there as they happen, such as Shaun Inman’s Flash Replacement technique. These are important developments (IMHO) and it would be nice to know the viewpoint of an influntial CSS author such as yourself.

  19. I’d like to see you spend half of your time on CSS/Edge and the other half as the Project Manager for the IE team :)

  20. Eric –

    You sound as though you don’t consider yourself a designer. If you break it all down by it’s previous labels – this person is a graphics designer and this person does markup, etc., then by those terms you might not consider yourself a designer. But I disagree with that.

    Through your efforts and those of several others, building web pages has become a mix of several disciplines. Web design is more than Photoshop now. Those of us who build with standards and CSS recognize that, today, “design” is mixture of our markup skills, graphic skills and creativity.

    And to those of us who think this way, you are every bit a leading designer and an influence. Just keep doing what you’re doing, and more of it. The word “leading” is intentional.

  21. How about some coverage of CSS3 selectors? I’ve found you can do some interesting things with ~ and :not on a flat document, like a cascading outline rendering.

  22. Yes, we need more experimental css like ‘CssEdge’. Whatever happened to that? It just seemingly came to a halt, which was kinda disappointing. I’d like to see you put your design shoes back on.

  23. Eric,

    You earned a great deal of respect among web designers world wide (web [sorry, couldn’t resist]) with the work you have done in the past. This is what made your name known, and more than that, stand out. You wonder why people continue to recognize and mention you as such? Well, legacy, for one, but I think there’s a more important aspect to it… there is for me, at least.

    Webdesign covers many different disciplines. To make a website work (or even more so, great) you need to properly address them all, or at least as much as possible. Visual design is one… backend technology is one.. CSS is both… sure, but that’s not the end of it. There are entities that are at least as important. One in particular (which can be considered the most important, I’d say) is content. Values of content, like writing style and integrity, are at least as important as the aesthetic value of the communicated visuals — especially in the longer run.

    I think this is what you earn most credit for, today — whether you do write about CSS, or write about statistic reports of the women beat up per minute ratio in the States, or some random action by Carolyn: the writing has been thought through and has a certain intellectual value and level of integrety — a lot of integrety.

    I think it’s not although but because you shy not to weigh in your personaly opinion, or write about things that take place on a very personal level, that people (I, for one) keep enjoying to read “your stuff.” It makes it easier to identify with the author, and that makes any future articles of said author less static, even when they’re technical reports.

    So, my wish (slash advice) is: keep doing what you’re doing — it’s the combination of techinical writing and bits from the personal life of the author that keep your writing (not restricted to “Eric’s Thoughts”) interesting. (I wouldn’t mind to see some more collaberations with Dave Shea though — that’s some good stuff!)

    P.S. I never considered you as much as a designer as I consider you a writer. The writer gnome from the design forest. :p

  24. css-edge


    When I first saw this site just about three weeks ago I was inspired.

    I am rede(singing) as I learn with great pleasure. Please don’t lose your ability to inpire is all I ask.

    Thank you.

  25. CSS/Edge alone earns you the the right to the position. And your books add to that, and your articles add from there. People like you point the way to doing beautiful design with the proper tools(web standard, css, etc.). And sometimes the most beautiful designs get in the way of proper dissemination of imformation. Your design is pretty enough, in my opinion.

    So, keep providing info that points the way to technically proficient beautiful design, and you’ll at least maintain your position of influence.

    And the bits about politics and your family help make it less dry in the process, by the way.

  26. Seeing as it is nearly 3AM right now where I live, I won’t be writing about how much I love your previous posts and linking to specific ones (though I do highly enjoy them… I must, I spend enough time checking back every day for more). I would like to answer to your call though. I would like to see a good, brief (a page or less) descriptor of how to convince in-house administration why CSS and Web Standards are the best choice. I know what you are thinking– this has already been overdone– but it hasn’t been done well, even Dave’s Mezzoblue write up seemed somewhat lacking and though I am fairly in the know myself, I beleive your more expert opinion on the matter may lead to some better convincing, as well as an outside source to use as reference.

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