I've started a new blog that's based on my 100 Random Colors website. The blog is (drum roll please) 16 Colors.

My idea here is fairly new– it's called "Colorblogging." In 16 colors, the posts will be all colors. 16 squares of different hues with their hex equivalent.

I hope the users of 100 Random Colors will embrace its younger brother with its ability to be accessed on feedreaders, news aggregators and other blogs.

Look Ma, No Powerpoint!

April 19, 2006

S5, as author Eric Meyer puts it, is a "simple standards-based slide show system." The S5 site has a nice primer on how to get started and can be viewed as an alternative (empahsis on alternative) to the Powerpoint and OpenOffice.

I came across S5 with Meyer's presentation on WE04, and it's similar to browsing a linear website, but with the then-innovative AJAX controls. The presentations at last year's Web Essentials 05 have web-based presentations.

Quick answer: Absolutely yes.

Then the next question: How?

Web Standards IS the face of Web 2.0. This 2005 article from Digital Web Magazine supports this idea. The app that users control content, search and do stuff with ("mix and remix") is written with standards-compliant code, is developed with semantics in mind, and implemented with content separated from presentation.

Flickr, Google Calendar, 30 Boxes, Basecamp, the list goes on and on and one thing is clear: web 2.0 means web standards.

The Real Alternative

March 31, 2006

If Internet Explorer is mainstream, what is considered alternative?

Some would say Mozilla Firefox or Opera. While both browsers account for approximately 15% of the browser share, there is a product out there that trumps them both– Amaya.

A niche browser in the truest sense, Amaya is maintained by W3c to be a web browser and editor to "provide a framework that can integrate as many W3C technologies as possible." according the the W3C website. The open source project is very active (the last release was February) and is available for the Windows, Linux and Mac environments.

I tried the browser and it actually made my learning of the Opera browser a walk in the park. The interface takes a lot of getting used to, and its rendering of some websites would look weird to the IE/Firefox user. As for the editing capabilites, I would rate it several notches below NVU, another open source HTML editor.

Here are some screenshots (from the Amaya website):

10 Web Predictions for 2006

December 12, 2005

Yeah, I know. The year is at its tail-end and this is basically your "predictions" article where the author does a Nostradamus and predicts what's in store for the next year. So drum roll please…

  • Blogs with AJAX – People on the bleeding edge of web technology will eventually find a way to integrate AJAX into the mix, with all this Web 2.0 hulabaloo. Functionalities like on-the-fly article display, collapsing, etc. may be getting a lot of screen-time.
  • Browser Wars – Internet Explorer 7 vs Firefox 2.0! It's going to be like 1999 all over again. IE7's has been impressive with the demos I've seen Microsoft– the multiple window preview may turn out to be the perfect compliment to tabbed browsing. The question a few months from now is what feature Firefox will have to compete with IE7.
  • Web 2.0 Saturation – This is actually a misnomer since only the mainstream sites will incorporate functionality while the rest of the world haven't even heard of Web 2.0.
  • More Minimalist Look – Interface-wise, more and more sites will settle for subtle aesthetics. But that doesn't mean creativity will be fettered– Think more iPod-esque visuals. Designers will try to achieve that look.
  • Hot Colors – There will be a lot of experimentation with strong colors– yellows, oranges and reds for mainstream sites, with off-beat accents. Of course, subtlety is the key here.
  • Tables, Still – Unfortunately, web development IDE 2006 releases would still not be able to fully integrate Web Standards in the presentation layer (VS, Sun Enterprise, etc.)
  • New Tools – At the heels of the acquisition of Macromedia, Adobe will churn out a web development tool that will dominate the market, but it will be a "miss." It will suffer from the growing pains of integrating the strengths of the Macromedia product line.
  • It won't be the year of Ruby on Rails – Despite demonstrating great potential for web development, Ruby on Rails won't go mainstream yet. The PHP-ASP(.NET)-JSP elite club won't be accepting new members in 2006. Maybe 2007.
  • Bigger Resolutions – 800 x 600 will see a massive reduction in monitor resolution share (~15-20% share) and designing for 1024 x 768 will be the de facto standard (~50-60%).
  • Up and Coming Web Fonts Rule – Gainers: Lucida and Vera. Loser: Verdana. Stay-put: Trebuchet and Georgia.

Make sure check back here a year from now and see how far off I am. 🙂

First Look: Yahoo Mail Beta

December 9, 2005

I just tried out Yahoo Mail's new interface. It's chock-full of AJAX components and functionality: It tries to emulate the traditional desktop application, particularly an email client in the mold of Outlook or Mozilla Tunderbird.

Here are some features I got to use:

  • Keyboard short-cuts/functionality
  • Dynamic frame/window resizing
  • Item selection similar to a desk-top application

I'm sure there are more functions left to be discovered and dy only beef is the big advert a the right side of the interface.

Thus far, Yahoo Mail and its competitor, Google's Gmail, are the some of the few web applications that are showing the way in terms of providing a fluid web experience. (Although from a visual design perspective, Yahoo Mail gets the nod.)

Dreamweaver = Opera? Yes!

September 6, 2005

Here's a pretty interesting list of layout engines. I stumbled upon this list when I was researching if Dreamweaver Studio 8 was using Gecko or Trident, the engines for Firefox and IE respectively. I found out that it doesn't; DW8 apparently seems to be using Opera's engine, Presto.

This is very important, in my opinion. In Dreamweaver, it has a preview/WYSIWYG feature that emulates the browser and that means you are viewing your webpage in Opera, which is roughly around 1% of the browser market.