See Me Speak!

On July 28, 2003 I’ll be speaking at Web Design World in Seattle. My presentation is titled, “From Tables to Styles: CSS-Based Redesign.”

I'm also speaking at WebVisions3 in Portland on July 18. My presentation there is CSS, Markup and Standards: Back to the Future. Check out the Digital Web interview for a preview of the talk.


I've managed to talk my employer into purchasing a couple of iSights! I'm hoping they'll arrive this week. A review will be forthcoming...

»plink« · June 30, 2003


This week at Photo Friday: Angles...

»plink« · June 27, 2003

King James’ Version of the NBA

Set up to be the National Basketball Association's Messiah (or at least that of the Cleveland Cavaliers), LeBron James dressed the part, but can the 18 year old shoulder the load?

4:36—Quote from Mike Tirico: ‘There (LeBron) is with his Mom, Gloria. Gloria sacrificed a lot. Gave birth to LeBron when she was 16 ... on their own at 19, living on assistance, food stamps, and now here they are ... it’s a great American story.’

“(What about parents who stayed together, worked hard, provided for their children and put them through school? Since when did not practicing birth control and lucking out because of DNA become a ‘sacrifice’? I’m confused. Let’s just move on.)”

Can I get an “Amen!”?

»plink« · June 27, 2003

Random bits and bytes

»plink« · June 27, 2003

Speaking of web design

Today is was the last day to save $100 on a Gold Passport to Web Design World in Seattle. And don’t forget that I’ll also be speaking at WebVisions3 in Portland on July 18. I’m really looking forward to enjoying the cool(er) weather of the Pacific Northwest again...

»plink« · June 25, 2003


Panther (Apple’s name for the next version of OSX) was previewed today by Steve Jobs at the World Wide Developer’s Conference, with over 100 new features including a final version of Safari (available today), Exposé and iChat A/V (beta available today). And to go along with the video iChat is iSight, a FireWire camera touted as the eyes and ears of iChat. It is capable of 30 frames per second at 640x480 pixels and 24 bit color.

But that was not the only hardware announcement. Apple also introduced the “world’s fastest personal computer,” the PowerMac G5, with IBM’s PowerPC 970. Starting at 1.6 GHz for $1999 to a dual 2 GHz for $2999. These things toasted the fastest Intel based PCs they could find in several “bake-offs.” I’m not so sure about the new enclosure [I’ll reserve judgement until I see the official product photography rather than the screen caps I’ve seen on the net (Update: I’ve seen the pics on Apple’s web site now, and I’m still not sure, but it is starting to grow on me...)], but it doesn’t really matter when you consider what’s inside!

»plink« · June 23, 2003

Up in flames

About an hour north of Tucson, some 8000ft above sea level, is a small town of about 250 cabins on Mt. Lemmon called Summerhaven. It’s long been a cool retreat for city dwellers who want some relief from the 110°+ heat we get in Tucson in the summer. Last year they were granted a reprieve when a large forest fire swept through the area. This year they were not so fortunate.

Most estimate that about half of the homes up there were ravaged by a forest fire yesterday. And more could succumb today. Officials are predicting that the fire will continue to burn for as many as three more weeks. It may take longer than that before we find out just how bad the damage to the homes and businesses are.

This is especially sad as I know several cabin owners, including my aunt and uncle. All they can do is wait. And pray. Even those whose homes survive the fire will be greatly affected by this event.

It’s hard to watch from town, knowing that when we see the flames flare, and the smoke darken, it is quite possibly another home giving in to the intense heat, and fire-generated 60MPH winds that forced the fire crews to evacuate for a time yesterday. The threat of propane tanks exploding, and the unpredictable nature of the wind made things too dangerous until the sun went down, cooling things off enough to allow them to return and fight the flames. Today, and the next several days, do not offer much hope for improved conditions; they may, in fact, get worse.

It’s still unclear what the cause of this fire is, but the effects are sure to be felt for a long time...

»plink« · June 20, 2003

Questions have been asked

Answers have been given. And it’s all been documented over at Digital Web...

In the meantime, my silence here of late can be explained by a busy schedule at work and enjoying my family at home. In addition to working on my presentations for WebVisions3 and Web Design World next month, I have been busy creating a new Spanish Language Astronomy Materials Education Center web site at work. Still in beta, I’ve had a lot of fun with this one. It uses PHP to do some tricky stuff on the back-end to enable the site to be completely bilingual. Each page has a link to the complimentary page in the other language, and it is all done automatically. Once I upload the files for a new review, the PHP/templates take care of everything.

It is also using a pretty cool search engine from the fine folks at Fluid Dynamics. This is a fully customizable search engine that so far is playing pretty well with the site.

At any rate, my presentations are due Monday, which, coincidentally is Apple’s World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC). The rumors that are swirling around this event means that there will probably be a lot to discuss come Monday morning.

You haven’t heard the last of me yet...

»plink« · June 19, 2003

15 minutes of (local) fame

Saturday I took our girls to story time at the library. We hadn’t been able to go for quite some time due to other weekend busyness, so we were surprised to see a reporter and photographer from the local newspaper there. Due to budget shortfalls the city council is voting to cut back library hours, including all day Saturday for our closest branch. The story was front page news today (including pictures of two of my daughters). The reporter asked me what my thoughts were regarding these cuts. The interview was a bit leading with questions like, “Do you think this is going to affect libraries ion a negative way?” rather than, “What do you think the effect of the budget cuts will be?” That said, the quotes attributed to me fairly accurately described my feelings on the issue...

»plink« · June 16, 2003

What a weekend!

Friday was our oldest’s birthday - 11 already! - which we celebrated quietly as a family. Saturday we had set up a surprise breakfast at the zoo, with a behind the scenes tour. We also surprised her by picking up a friend on the way out to enjoy it with her. The tour ended with everyone being able to feed the giraffes. That evening we had a bar-b-que at my parent’s house, with extended family.

Sunday after church we stuck around to practice a “human video” of the song Butterfly Kisses for Father’s day. And after that our middle daughter and I played model at a photo shoot to illustrate various parts of the first verse: a crooked cake, putting white flowers in her hair, a pony ride. For the pony ride we went out to a friend’s house. The little black and white paint we were using for the shoot was three houses away. But since each house is on 4 acres of horse property, we had a short walk in the near 100° heat. On the way over we saw two mares and their three month old foals. The protective mothers ran over to the fence and whinneyed to remind us to keep our distance.

The shoot was fun, and each daughter got a short ride with me leading the horse around the grounds. I could hardly believe our youngest was brave enough to sit up on the horse all by herself and have me lead her around. I think it was the highlight of the month for them!

On our way back to the house we had quite an adventure. One of the mares had managed to fall over and get two of her legs stuck through the fence. When we saw her she was laying very still, with one leg sort of dangling over ne crossbar on the fence. Our friend, a very experienced horsewoman, quickly ran over to see what had happened, and then ran to tell the owner. She was soon back and over the fence to get the other horses away (the foals were pawing at the mare with their hooves, and we were afraid they’d cause her to kick, and hurt herself more than she already was).

It was clear that we were going to need to remove the section of fence that the horse was stuck in, so we jumped the fence and tried to figure out the best course of action. At this time the owner, and older lady, had made it out to the corral and informed us that this mare was not gentle at all. Not something us city slickers really wanted to hear. Especially when the mare did get distressed and began kicking quite violently. Fortunately we had our fearless friend with us, and she was able to calm the mare down so we could remove the fence.

Once the fence was gone she was able to get up, and we kept her on her side of the corral. We put the fence back together and were on our way. We saved the mare’s life. She’ll be a bit lame for awhile, having scratched and bruised her leg, but she should be ok. We probably also saved her foal’s life, too. Though the foal could be hand raised, or perhaps adopted by the other mare. It was miraculous that we were even out that day, and had decided to walk over to the other house. Nobody walks around the desert in 100° heat, and if we hadn’t have come along when we did, the mare would have certainly died within an hour. And if we had been much later, she could have been too weak to stand back up even after we did free her.

What a weekend...

»plink« · June 9, 2003

Standards Talk

A List Apart is back with an interview with Anil Dash about Six Apart’s upcoming, standards compliant web publishing tool, TypePad. And Meet the Makers interviews Zeldman on Designing with Web Standards.

»plink« · June 6, 2003

Apple Updates

This week Apple released updates for several applications—iSynch, iMovie, QuickTime and Keynote on Tuesday, and today they announced that Final Cut Pro 4 will be on sale starting at 4:00pm, Saturday, June 14. Since they aren’t saving these announcements for the World Wide Developer’s Conference coming up on June 23, which kicks off with a keynote by Steve Jobs, there must be something big in the pipeline. Rumors are rampant regarding the next generation chip being announced then, and maybe even available for sale. This would be great news for Apple, especially if the new chip lives up to the hype. Apple has long been hamstrung by Motorola’s inability to keep up with Intel and AMD’s raw speed. I know that I have personally put of the purchase of a new desktop until I see what the new IBM 970 chips can do...

»plink« · June 5, 2003

You appear to be using a browser that does not implement style sheets correctly, or you have turned style sheets off in your browser. If it’s the latter, turning style sheets back on will greatly enhance your experience on this site, and many others on the web. If you are using an older browser (such as Netscape 4) you may wish to know that there are standards compliant browsers available for all platforms. See the Web Standards Project’s Browser Upgrade Campaign if you would like to find one for your particular needs. Otherwise, rest assured that you are seeing all of the content that everyone else is - it just doesn’t look as pretty...