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Dear Blogosphere

2010-06-17 14:59:20.510611+00 by meuon 17 comments

I don't use/read a lot of the "blogosphere", yet I can tell you how to not get read: by using some third rate ad service for your blog (or anything else like insane background image sizes, javascript laden navigation and calendar pages..) that has me looking at a blank, incomplete, or frozen page for 10 seconds or more.

I'm an old modem/BBS user.. I'm patient.. I'll wait a while, I used to read BBS posts at 1200 baud. But just because it works quickly for you, with your browser full of caches pages, cached images, cached DNS and cached JavaScript because you look at it 100 times per hour.. does not mean it looks that way to the rest of us.

[ related topics: Weblogs ]

comments in descending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-21 15:48:02.9902+00 by: Dan Lyke

In a few hours I'll be back on the Mac side, I may have to upgrade to XCode4 and see if it helps, since the next few days are going to be a maze of "WTF are the methods to this Cocoa object again?" hell.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-20 18:52:44.35965+00 by: markd

I've been giving Xcode 4 a whirl since WWDC, and I'm surprised how little I'm hating it, even though I generally hate the OBFW effect. Having the LLVM backend behind the editor makes it less squirrelly.

And if the Koolaid still doesn't work, I'll just go back to emacs and keep treating it like a Visual Make.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-20 17:41:43.818689+00 by: meuon

DaveP, you win. I've loaded paper tape onto systems.. but at that time of my life the idea of coding such things was a magical secret beyond my comprehension.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-19 12:21:23.834162+00 by: DaveP

FYI, the change in Safari I mentioned was not actually a change in Safari, it was a change between Leopard and Snow Leopard.

Given what I've heard of the window behavior in Xcode 4, I'm seeing a fairly limited amount of time left in my fanboy-hood, which is sad, because it'll leave me zero computer platforms I'll want to work on.

As for codgerdom, my first terminal to the outside world was a TTY33 which went no faster than 110 baud. I was using it while Gerald Ford was still President, and still have the paper-tape of at least one program I wrote back then.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-19 12:05:03.804268+00 by: meuon

"Connect to the Electrolux"... "Smart" Appliances before their time :)

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-19 03:01:49.480393+00 by: markd

My first modem would only do 110 due to wiring in the house. After getting it fixed by a deaf guy from the phone company, 300 was amazing. 1200 was 'oh my god I'll never see anything faster than this'.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-18 23:06:13.868934+00 by: Dan Lyke

My first BBS experiences (yes, we're getting into serious overshare territory here) were a TI Silent 700. 300 baud all the way. If I ever did 110 anything it was later, connecting to legacy gear somehow. Anyway, the Silent 700 had a 1200 baud half-duplex mode, which, of course, no BBS would connect to.

However, the modem on the TI Silent 700 was an acoustic coupler type. If you left the device on and started vacuuming, it would connect to the Electrolux at 1200 baud half-duplex and start spewing paper with garbage on it.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-18 22:37:49.844551+00 by: meuon

TC, I also did 110 Bell and 300 baud.. but I was trying to not show my age.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-18 16:26:30.349224+00 by: TC

Dam you M! I was going to out curmudgeon Meuon with my 300 baud (kinda like a telegraph where you read as the letter streamed across the screen)and backups were made on pizza sized floppy disks (ah good times)

My reading pattern is much like yours Dan except I modified it when tabs became available and tend to group "thought clusters" by browser instances(full of tabbed pages) ....it's less ADD than sounds .....maybe

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-18 15:08:22.570322+00 by: Dan Lyke

I use Ctrl-W to close 'em, but my reading pattern is roughly the same. I don't use Safari, because there are things about it that have always annoyed me, and I've never gone back to using it.

My general impression with the iPad is that... well... there are business models that work from enabling me to do what I want to do, and there are business models that work by keeping me from doing what I want to do. The latter are immensely profitable, and usually have some component of suckering me in with a relatively low price at the front end, and then charging me out the proverbials for add-ons which let me do only what the manufacturer envisioned later. Printers. The iPod. A few other products that I won't name here because I want to keep certain relationships clean, but that I've worked on.

I think that there's a general design attitude when you have an organization turning out products like that that makes the design blind to any use case where you could work around that model. Like, for instance, the iPad skipping splash ads. Apple doesn't want to give you a tool that'll help you bypass someone else's revenue model. That's just one of many places where the iPad isn't about a tool to do what you want to do, it's about building a device to deliver content to you in the ways that the developers of that content want it to be experienced.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-18 11:28:09.793817+00 by: DaveP

Dan, I still read the web by opening the site with a lot of links, and then command-clicking on each link to "open in a new window behind the current window." Then I use command-` to cycle through them before going on to the next source of links.

Worked great for me until Apple changed the order of window cycling in Safari (maybe going from 3.x to 4.0?). But still, all the "look at this ad for N seconds" ads have already timed out by the time I get to bringing that window to the front, and usually all the content has loaded. I really wish I could be a subject on an iPad usability study, since they didn't seem to even consider this behavior when designing mobile Safari.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-18 00:26:03.582046+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

Mark's tip reminds me that, after using our Apple TV for a year, we JUST discovered (entirely by accident) that holding down the Play button on the remote will present us with an option to mark the video as "watched". Hidden functionality does not a good design make.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-17 21:13:13.874475+00 by: Dan Lyke

Yeah, kinda. I find it often ends up trying to reload that page, or at least re-render it, and there's a long unusable wait.

Which is part of why I generally find myself grabbing a laptop eventually.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-17 19:02:57.356796+00 by: markd

You can load pages on the 'pad - long touch (heh) the link, get a popup which lets you open it in another 'window'. Then navigate back to your first one. Doesn't work if you do it for dozens of pages, but for a couple, it works ok.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-17 17:12:42.983674+00 by: Dan Lyke

At some point in the past few years I went back to my whitewater pages and was amazed at what we used to think images were, back in the day when a 40k image was a big freakin' deal.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-17 16:47:20.486274+00 by: m

A truly cranky old curmudgeon of a BBS user was on a 110 or the then newfangled 300 baud modem. Even I typed faster than the 110.

#Comment Re: made: 2010-06-17 16:40:52.715652+00 by: Dan Lyke


Though it's weird. Back when I had that relatively slow but always connected wireless modem service that I can't remember the name of right now, I developed the "control-click" reflex of opening windows as I scanned something, then going back and reading them after they'd loaded. The problem with that is that I often lose context, "where'd this window come from and why did I think it was interesting?", the up-side is that I care less about document load times.

That I can't do this on the iPhone or iPad is a major failing of those devices, especially since their net connections aren't terribly fast.