The Valentine Day Massacre

Thanks to , a handful of “gentle readers” of the A List Apart website were invited to ranttalk about what they hate about “the web”. The article got the appropriate title, Valentine’s Day Massacre. And really – who would have expected it – the list is not too short, and I am glad to see that one is not alone with his opinion on certain topics and viewpoints.

One Response

  • I am somewhat impressed by that article. I actually sat and read the entire thing, which is fairly rare for me.

    The majority of the comments were spot-on, and I truly agreed with those gripes.

    My major gripes:
    1) Flash – properly used, Flash can be fairly nice. However, it is so often improperly utilized, that I simply have Flashblock installed in my browser, and end up completely ignoring it altogether.

    2) Non-friendly sites (I realize that’s an awfully broad category, but I’m getting ready to explain) – It really upsets me when I visit a site that uses Flash, or Javascript, or some other proprietary script that requires you to have certain things enabled or installed on your browser in order to view the site. Using these things is fine, and can truly enhance a visitor’s experience. However, please make sure that a version of the site is available for those of us without those tools.

    3) Web designers constantly touting CSS versus tables, and talking about how tables are the most evil invention ever used on the Internet. Quite frankly, tables are simple, and work exactly the way you want them to 99% of the time. CSS (for the sake of positioning elements) doesn’t seem to work (cross-browser) any more than 50% of the time. When CSS is as reliable as tables, I will gladly switch over. Until then, however, I will continue using tables and spacer images, no matter how much other web designers cry about it. At least, when my visitors shrink the size of their browsers, they don’t lose half of the site’s content because one div has slipped over top of another div.

    4) When my browser does something I didn’t ask it to. This incldudes pop-ups (or pop-unders), resizing my browser window, etc. If I wanted to resize my browser window, I would have done so.

    5) I was pleasantly surprised to see that this one was mentioned (in a very brief post) in that article: Unknowingly clicking on a link that leads to a PDF file. No matter which computer I am using, it generally takes anywhere between (and I’m not exagerating here) 30 seconds and 5 minutes to open the PDF file. Not only that, but the way PDF is implemented into my browsers, it’s generally rather difficult to abort the operation when I realize that I’ve accidentally clicked on a PDF link. Please, please warn me when I’m getting ready to click on a PDF file.
    Although I hate javascript to a certain extent, maybe it would be nice for people to use javascript confirm boxes when they click on PDF links.

    6) WYSIWYG editors (and WIKI’s to a certain extent) – while these can be nice for some simple things, they are incredibly annoying in most other ways. People use these things all the time. They weigh down your pages unnecessarily. When something breaks in your page, you really have no clue what went wrong, because you don’t know a lick of code. Experienced designers often have trouble diagnosing your problems, because they all use proprietary code that’s five or six levels deep, so you have to spend a week just pouring through the code to figure out where it leads.

    I think that’s about all there is to this rant. Thanks for letting me vent.