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Filed in:CSS
Web Dev·The Web

Improving a Lightbox Effect

August 31st, 2009  · stk

There's a spiffy-looking CSS Technique that's been getting a lot of play in the web-design and web-development social circles lately. Unfortunately, it's not a CSS technique and even as a JavaScript technique, it's crap! Did you spot it?

"Innovative CSS Technique" Making Rounds is NOT a CSS Technique

Even as a JavaScript Technique, it's Crap

This article, authored by Emanuele Feronato, has been getting some attention within the web-design and development social network recently. I've seen it Tweeted, FaceBook'd, Blogged, Digg'd and included in various "Totally Amazing CSS Techniques" lists.

On his website, Emanuele bills himself as an "Italian Geek & Programmer". Unfortunately, his article demonstrates he knows very little about web-standards, W3C validation, pure-CSS, graceful degradation, cross-browser compatibility, accessibility or white-hat SEO. He says his LightBox-like effect is "100% CSS-based" and that it's made "only with CSS - no JavaScript needed".

No JavaScript needed? What a pile of hooey!

The article is the most popular article on his blog, sporting over 252 comments and it's currently being shot across the design social circuit like it was the newest communications satellite. While some of the commentary points out the shortcomings, most (who don't know better) are lapping up this code - using it on commercial sites and passing it on.

At first blush, the technique seems very cool, but it's not code we would use and you shouldn't either. In a nutshell, out-of-the box it's crap. (Are you a web-developer, designer or programmer? Can you spot the problems?")

To learn more about why this code is crap (and to get an improved version) ... carry on ...

Turning Crapola into Shinola

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Updated: 13-Feb-2011
Web View Count: 32052 viewsLast Web Update: 13-Feb-2011
Filed in:Kayaking
Adventures

Six Days of Sea Kayaking

August 23rd, 2009  · stk

We just got back from our first-ever sea kayaking adventure, spending 6 days exploring the Canadian southern Gulf Islands. We had a great time and are slowly getting our journal online. We thought we'd post what we have, as family and friends might like to read about the adventure, as it unfolded. Cheers! (Busily working away at spell-checking and such)

First-Ever Kayaking Trip: Canadian Southern Gulf Islands

Descriptive and entertaining entry about how lucky we are to have such a wonderfully diverse, rich and popular sea kayaking destination right in our own backyard. Till such time as I cobble all that together, just pop on in and read about our recent 6-day kayaking trip.

Though we're no strangers to camping, backpacking, cycle-touring and other outdoor adventure ... this was our first time traveling by sea kayak. We can laugh now at some of our mistakes, preconceptions and landlubbing ways, but make no mistake - we had a great time and we're hooked! There will be many more sea kayaking adventures in our future (and Alex's too, though she missed this one, away with her maternal grandparents and having her own summer adventure at Watch Lake).

Note: The text is a bit raw, at this point, as I've only run it through the spell-checker - still need to go through and finalize it. (Three cheers to Rachel for all her hard work writing the journal!! Yippee! Yippee! Yippee!)

What's Completed:

  • Intro Text | Pictures
  • Day 0 Text | Pictures
  • Day 1 Text | Pictures
  • Day 2 Text | Pictures
  • Day 3 Text | Pictures
  • Day 4 Text | Pictures
  • Day 5 Text | Pictures
  • Day 6 Text | Pictures
  • Slide Show
  • Resources & Planning

 

Kayaker at sunset in the Canadian Southern Gulf Islands

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Updated: 21-Oct-2012
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Crazy Canadian Contests

July 13th, 2009  · stk

Rachel recently won $5 in a Subway Scrabble promotional contest. Like all Canadians, she had to correctly answer a mathematical skill question in order to receive her prize. Find out why a "skill test" is a uniquely Canadian thing.

Returning from the floating cabin last month, we stopped at a Subway sandwich shop in Port Alberni for lunch. (Alex cried, because she wanted a McDonald's "Happy Meal" - it's all about the toy). Parental units decided fresh ingredients were more important than supporting China's export trade. As a result, we all had a healthier lunch.

Rachel also won a "$5-off Subway Card", after tearing off a "Subway scrabble" game-piece from her drink cup. Yesterday I redeemed the instant prize online (contest ends today, July 13th). I entered the alpha-numeric code printed on the game piece. On the next screen, I was required to pass the uniquely-Canadian ritual of answering a "skill test" question, in order to claim the $5 Subway Card prize. As per usual, it was a math question: What is 6 x 14 ÷ 6 + 48 - 14?

I've lived in a lot of places, but only Canada has a "math test", when you win a prize! When I first arrived, I thought, "Wow, Canada really places an emphasis on basic math skills!" It wasn't till later that I realized that the purpose of the "skill test" is to circumvent Canadian anti-gambling laws.

To learn more about the odd Canadian contest "skill test" requirement, you must first derive the Wave Equation, from Snell's Law of Refraction ... (ack ... I mean, click the following link) ...

Great Canadian "Skill Test"

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Updated: 13-Jul-2009
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Filed in:CSS
Web Dev·The Web

xBrowser Fonts

July 4th, 2009  · stk

For years, web designers and bloggers have been limited to a select number of "web-safe" fonts. With the Jun 30th release of FireFox 3.5, it's now possible for cross-browser font embedding using the CSS3 @font-face selector. Here's a tutorial to show you how

@font-face font hell

Expand Your Font Palette Using CSS3

In a tale involving proprietary font formats and a week-old release of FireFox, I'm here to say that using the CSS @font-face selector to spice up your website typography is an easy, light-weight, valid and cross-browser solution. Finally, fancy fonts for the masses!

Can this be true? You bet your sweet bippy! Read on.

 

Fancy Fonts For All

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Updated: 12-Jul-2011
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Filed in:Alexandra
Family

Last Day of Kindergarten

June 24th, 2009  · stk

Kindergarten is finished today. Alex is pretty certain she'll have a great summer, filled with lots of social activities. We're pretty certain Alex is going to miss school. (Class photo included).

"The Oop" Graduates Kindergarten Per Ultum Tripudium

There were no caps; no gowns. There wasn't any of the pomp and circumstance that graduates across the U.S. and Canada are experiencing this month. Alex just went to school at 11:35 AM and was released at 2:15 PM, just like any other day. The only difference, of course, is that it wasn't just like any other day, because it was the last day of kindergarten.

I asked her, this morning, if she was going to miss school (as I'm pretty sure she will, since she's such a social creature). It surprised me when she said, "No."

Exploring a little further, I asked, "Why not?"

"Well Dad," she said, putting her hands on her little hips, as she does when she's explaining how things are, "because during the summer, I don't have to go to school, see? And every day I'll have play dates!"

(I told you she was a social creature).

Unfortunately, as the Dad and one of two qualified chauffeurs in the house, I was pretty certain that her hastily thought-out plan of multiple 'play dates' per day weren't going to be the norm. I tried to explain that school was the ultimate play date and especially because (now) she's in day-care on many days, in addition to school, so she actually has more actual playing opportunities when school is in session, than during the summer months. (In our rural neighborhood, Alex has only a few kids to play with, within walking distance and none are her age - there are two that are 1-2 years younger than Alex and three that are 4 or more years older).

Of course, my argument fell on deaf ears and Alex remains excited by the prospect of upcoming 'social' summer!

To see Alex's kindergarten class photo ... head to the next page

The Graduating Kindergarten Class

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Updated: 21-Aug-2012
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