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Aug
28
2000
0 comments
A cluster of people at one end of the lawn, a girl with a backpack at the other, the flash of a camera, there are hugs, and then the girl starts down the sidewalk.

The First day of School is here.

To the girl, this day only has personal meaning. It is the end of the pool and Dairy Queen, it is the return of old friends, a new teacher, and new things to learn. Still, the importance of The First Day of School as a family ritual is not lost on her.



Aug
27
2000
0 comments
New layout -- it will slowly spread to the internal files, but as of right now, it's just on this index page and the 'past daily stats' page. If you want to see how this looked before, take a look at the "about" page, or any of the editorials. I haven't settled on this 'stationery' style, but I think it looks good so far.

I've been considering changing it for quite a while now. The old version was first designed almost a year ago, and while I liked the variance in the backgrounds, it was rather clutterred. This new version is still cluttered, but it's a little bit cleaner and easier to read.



Aug
23
2000
0 comments
I have to agree with every point that Katie Lukas makes in this article. Except possibly the part about nested tables; it depends on what is IN the tables that slows down the load, and applying appropriate size tags, otherwise everything has to load first before the table can be drawn. Despite that, there are many excellent points, and many are already tenets of how I design webpages.

Katie makes several excellent points about art, environment, and the meeting of both. Too bad the article is short; it could have been fleshed out better with examples, but the "Ten Commandments" format gets the point across rapidly.



Aug
19
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

In CD Player: A cool promo CD from Cartoon Network's Boomerang channel. The non-music things kinda suck, but the best part of it is the song snippets from 19 classic cartoons - including theme music, end-credit music, and other internal tunes. I have now adopted the Johnny Quest theme as my own -- imagine it playing whenever I enter a room.

My condition: Contented. Today was a very nice day, compared to yesterday.



Aug
18
2000
0 comments
First there were four, then there were only three.

After an hour of noisy saws, measuring, gluing, and clamping, I now have four once more.

The lowest of the four drawers had a crumbling bottom, which was beyond use, and had finally disintegrated. A new sheet of plywood salvaged from another dresser, a few cuts, and some loving care has brought my antique dresser closer to it's original glory.



Aug
18
2000
0 comments
Derek Is Reading:

The Confetti Generation - How the New Communications Technology is Fragmenting America, by William Donnelly



Aug
17
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

In CD Player: Billy Idol, cyberpunk
I don't know why people think this album sucks. It's not any worse than Skinny Puppy, really. It kicks most industrial-techno's ass, and considering this disc came out around 10 years ago, that ain't bad.

my condition: stressed. Why am I wasting time on my website when I have so much work to be done!??!?



Aug
16
2000
0 comments
The key is not to create a site where people know that they'll find what they're looking for. The key to attracting visitors, and keep them returning, is to create a website where visitors aren't exactly sure what's on the site, and thus they must check back often to see what's new, if anything has changed, or if there's anything specifically for them.

If it's the same data every time, then one view is enough (maybe a return to verify the info). Compare a personal webpage to a webjournal. For both sites, you have an idea what sort of content will be there -- content relating to the creator's life. With the journal, however, there is no certainty as to the exact content, even if you have been to the site in the past. A person's personal site requires one, maybe two, visits, but a journal means that at any time, something new may be there.

Consider the Receipt site: had the site just been scanned images of all my receipts, one visit would be enough. However, since the content changes moment-by-moment, thanks to visitor comments, there is ample reason to return to see what has changed.

The faster the content changes, the more often a user has to return to keep updated on the condition of the site. Uncertainty makes a visitor return, and uncertainty is what brings website traffic.



Aug
15
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

In CD Player: Soul Coughing, Irrisistible Bliss

My condition: waiting for the workday to end.



Aug
15
2000
0 comments
The Silly Putty is missing.

It's plastic egg sits empty. Destiny last used it, but has since forgotten where she was at the time.

The hardest fluid, the runniest solid, the Silly Putty lies somewhere, dripping as fast as it can. Slowly expanding on a flat surface, will it become infinitely thin, or will surface tension force it to pool like a water droplet? How long would it take to run downhill, if the floor is uneven? What if it lies on carpet - will it take years to seep into every pore and fiber, the same as KoolAid does in a fraction of a second? It is impossible to judge what a neglected blob of Silly Putty will do if given enough time.



Aug
13
2000
0 comments
My new artsy website is up and running.

I'm not sure what to expect -- it's very limited, far more than the receipt site, but the potential outpouring of individual emotion could become very endearing.....Funny, angry, sad, happy; every emotion could be expressed within the site.

It's less "in your face" than the receipt site, too. But, I guess my problem is that I created the framework, not the content. I have no way of telling what will end up on the site; the receipt site could still have existed without user comments, but this new site exists FOR visitor comments.

On the receipt site, user comments were a reaction to the content, this site expects the content to react to the user themselves. Deep, huh? If all goes well, it will have a similar following to the receipt site. I could see it being addictive, coming back every day to see what new expression of emotion are present.

But, well, where would this site be linked? How do I categorize something where the content doesn't exist yet? How to I bring visitors to a site which doesn't exist until they're already here?



Aug
11
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

in CD player: Crystal Method, vegas

my condition: LAST place?!?



Aug
10
2000
0 comments
I have owned the CD for quite some time; probably 3 years. I listened to it once, right after I bought it, but then I put it in my CD rack and ignored it.

My first impression of the CD was not good. For whatever reason, I never again had the urge to listen to it.

Now that I have a 5-disk changer in my apartment, and a 10-disk changer in the car, I've pulled out a bunch of the older CDs which haven't gotten much play-time since I bought them.

This particular CD, which I had ignored for so long, is now one of my favorites. I'm not sure how I had even formed a negative opinion of it in the first place.



Aug
9
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

On Radio: Re-run of a National Press Club speech from earlier today. I'm only catching audio-snippets; something about a book called How To Overthrow The Government.

my condition: mmmm....apple juice......



Aug
9
2000
0 comments
Derek Recommends:

magazine: In Formation



Aug
7
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

In CD player: sountrack, Run Lola Run

my condition: excited about my ZDTV interview tonight.



Aug
6
2000
0 comments
Daily Condition:

In CD player: eternal fire, meat beat manifesto

my condition: wishing antihistimines got rid of my runny nose, not just making me a sleepy-person-with-a-runny-nose.



Aug
6
2000
0 comments
Derek Recommends:

book: Night Sky Mine, by Melissa Scott

Is it a fantasy novel with scifi elements, a scifi book with cyberpunk elements, or a cyberpunk book with fantasy elements? It doesn't matter -- the book cascades through well-formed characters with real culture, interacting in a highly technological distant age. There really isn't a climax in the storyline, but it doesn't matter. The characters keep the story moving, not artifically induced external forces that normally move an adventure story along.



Aug
6
2000
1 comment
In the checkout line at WalMart, a woman in a nearby lane waved in my direction.

I smiled in response, and she sppeared to smile back.





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