As James Risen and Nick Wingfield reported yesterday in the New York Times, the interests of tech companies and the NSA have been converging over the past decade in two ways. The first way is fairly prosaic: Lots of Silicon Valley companies are in the business of selling stuff to the NSA: storage hardware, sophisticated communications equipment, data analytics software, and more. But while this may have increased recently, it’s not fundamentally new. It’s just the latest high-tech twist on the good old military-industrial complex.
— Kevin Drum: The Surveillance-Marketing Complex, Coming Soon to a Computer Near You
Before you visit that or any other site, you might want to install Ghostery to block all the tracking beacons.
If you are responsible for text marked up in HTML, please learn about character entities. Of late, I’ve noticed prominent companies sloppily using two hyphens where they should be using an em dash, which is
—. This is particularly irritating when the text comes from a company that purports to know about design.
A Google page about the Nexus 7:
A Fast Company story:
An Atlantic post discussing future mobile technology. The Atlantic is not a design publication, but surely they have people on staff who care about typography:
If you really want to get fancy, the double hyphens can be replaced with an em dash with thin spaces (
) on either side. The difference between a standard space and thin space is subtle, but it is noticeable in Safari, Firefox, and Opera.
Like many things in typography, there is variation in the use of dashes, but no respectable typographer thinks two hyphens are the way to go. I should figure out how to insert thin spaces around em dashes in my existing posts…
Another common web typography problem is quotation marks. Setting up a regex to enclose quotes properly using
” might be trickier, but it should also be done.
Apple gets these details right. See the press releases for the latest announcements.
I happened to be in the right place at the right time, and I happened to have the right combination of background.
—Tim Berners-Lee in an interview with Robert Wright
Berners-Lee is a rare example of altruism and principle among the legends of computing.
One of the apps that has been on hold now for quite a while now, but I use every day, and is in desperate need of a refresh is OmniWeb.
—Interview: The Omni Group’s Ken Case
Years after its last major update, OmniWeb is still my default browser.
I use the Password Assistant in Keychain Access (/Applications/Utilities) to generate passwords for new accounts. The Assistant is pretty handy, but currently not integrated with any browsers, meaning I have to open Keychain Access, create a new Password Item (File > New Password Item), then click on the key to open the Assistant. I might then have to bounce back and forth between my browser and Keychain Access to find a password that complies with the (frequently unexpressed) password rules of the site.
The Assistant would only appear when two password input fields are detected. What to do when a site doesn’t require confirmation? Maybe check the Keychain for existing accounts at the domain and show the key icon only if none is found?
I didn’t see anything on the Snow Leopard Enhancements and Refinements page about Detectors being added anywhere but TextEdit.
The inline searching seen in the 10.5 Help menu could be used in other menus.
Providing searching in the Bookmarks menu in browsers and the menu immediately right of the Application (File/Document/Thingamajig) would also make sense. The default search scope would be filetypes the application can open or import.
This type of inline searching would provide the sort of application-specific search focus that I mocked up earlier, but it doesn’t provide an easy way to move a query between applications.
Yes, jazz bagpipes. That cat could burn!
Evolutions of the Konqueror microformats plug-in in the context of the Flock browser.
- The browser indicates the presence of hCard markup on a page using an icon in the status bar. The icon provides access to the pop-up menu:
- To allow multiple selection without having to repeatedly open the menu, a dialog allows the user to check individual names:
Contacts Service Preferences
Online Contacts Services
A dialog similar to Add Contacts would facilitate multiple event selections.
Calendar Service Preferences
Obviously, the Default Calendar setting would only work with services that allow multiple calendars.
Online Calendar Services
The Konqueror plug-in currently works with Kontact, the KDE PIM. Along those lines, it would also be nice if browsers could pass hCards and hCalendars to external applications like Address Book/iCal on OS X, Outlook on Windows, and Evolution in GNOME.
If installed on your system, this text should be displayed in Futura Condensed, a nice sans-serif. If you are looking at this page in Firefox or Opera on OS X, it appears in that face. Safari and the latest nightly build of WebKit (13244) use the standard Futura. Setting
font-stretch: condensed; has no effect.
Filed as WebKit bug #7709.
Keyboard accessibility suggestions for Measure Map, the web statistics service from Adaptive Path.
Type-Ahead Link Selection
Make the text labels of the four top-level sections links. This enables the use of the type-ahead link selection feature found in Firefox, Camino, and OmniWeb.
Assign access keys to the four primary navigation links:
- v for Visitors
- l for Links
- c for Comments
- p for Posts
The three secondary navigation items could be:
- b for Browsers
- u for Countries
- t for Times