When It Rains…

Published 11 years, 7 months ago

I’ve been largely offline for the last couple of days due to an inexplicable failure of my DSL modem.  I was certain that it was another case of the DSLAM dying on me—it’s happened a few times in the past—and when the Covad techs claimed it had to be a modem failure, I was deeply skeptical.  Score one for the topical experts: they were right, and I was not.

While I waited for the replacement modem that I was sure wouldn’t change anything, I was using dialup.  Man, I never want to do that again.  Talk about sipping the Internet through a cocktail straw.  To make it even worse, I was tethered.  To a phone jack.  There was no wifi infusing the house, letting me work anywhere.  It was like having lost a perceptual sense.  It was wrong and confining and I didn’t like it.  No more of that, thanks.  If the Republicans are so hot to amend the Constitution, how about they be useful for a change and add “the Right to Unfetter’d Bandwidth”?

So.  Nothing much happened CSS-wise while I was gone, did it?  No controversies or anything?  Good.

While I may have been getting my bits by carrier pigeon, the AEA team was able to assemble and post a full schedule for An Event Apart Seattle, which includes a session by Kelly Goto on “Designing for Lifestyle”:

As design migrates from the web to mobile devices, our approach must also shift. Learn how companies are using ethnographic-based research to design smarter interfaces.

I’ve seen Kelly speak in the past, and she’s always funny, smart, and relevant.  I’m really looking forward to hearing what she has to say about ethnography and design.

I’ll be offering updated versions of my highest-rated talks in New York, “Hard-Core CSS” and “One True Layout”, and Jeffrey will be talking about selling standards to difficult clients (especially when the client is a boss) and the importance of writing to good design.  All this and Stan too!  If you’re fixin’ to come see us, the early bird deadline is still a ways off, but don’t wait too long.


  1. The Federal Marriage Amendment (to which you were implicitly referring in the second paragraph) was proposed by some Republicans in Congress to thwart the actions of rogue judges and public officials — people who undermined the very foundations of the Constitution by creating “rights” out of whole cloth. It’s quite sad when judges find rights in the Constitution that aren’t explicitly stated (abortion, gay marriage) and ignore rights that are explicitly stated (gun rights, and basically the entire 9th Amendment).

    Can you show me a more glaring example of the courts ignoring stare decisis than the Massachusetts decision to allow gay marriage?

  2. It’s always a good idea to keep a dial-up modem around so you can remind yourself how much better a light-weight CSS layout is than the old tables-and-split-GIFs of the olden days. Also, it lets you experience the web from the point of view of people on Australia’s biggest broadband carrier, who most days can’t get much better than dial-up speeds. And, best of all, it lets you think you’ve time-travelled into the distant past, a bit like people who still think it’s OK to treat people differently according to which kind of uglies they prefer to bump. It’s all good.

  3. Gee whiz, I use dialup. Doesn’t bother me. You’re just spoiled. :)

  4. Matthew:

    The Federal Marriage Amendment (to which you were implicitly referring in the second paragraph)…

    Actually, I was implicitly referring to both the Federal Marriage Amendment and the Flag Desecration Amendment ,with the latter being foremost in my mind—thus the “so hot to amend” formulation. Personally, I think my proposed amendment would be furlongs more useful than either of those cynically political panderings, but of course mine is not the only view in the world. Just the only one represented in my blog entries.

    Can you show me a more glaring example of the courts ignoring stare decisis than the Massachusetts decision to allow gay marriage?

    Absolutely: the U.S. Supreme Court, Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka.

  5. Eric, I’m currently on a so-called “vacation” in a small village on a mountain where in fact I am working on a database application. Some vacation, hugh?

    Well The only available connection is a dialup line but for some reason the wires produce a humming sound that drops the signal to 24kbps (and that’s for a lucent modem, other modems cannot even connect).

    But comparing the pros and cons of the mountain village vs the noisy city, I’d say 24kbps are enough :)

  6. Awww man…I was hoping to see a response to the Dvorak CSS column that has had everyone in a tizzy the last week. Though, I guess it really speaks for itself.

  7. Hey Eric,
    Just curious…do you read WIRED magazine?

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